The Japanese cutlet sandwich — or katsu sando — is a simple enough dish. Take a deep-fried tonkatsu pork cutlet — the kind that features in the popular katsudon rice dish — and put it between two pieces of toasted, slightly sweet milk bread with tonkatsu sauce and shredded cabbage. Recently, the humble dish is transcending its status as mere comfort food and showing up on the menus of some of the most upscale eateries across town, from hotel restaurants to eateries at the very edge of cool. And, of course, each restaurant has its own take on how the sandwich is prepared. Many are skipping out on the pork in favor of marbled, melt-in-your-mouth beef, instead, for example. We’ve rounded up some of the best katsu sandos in Hong Kong for your gustatory pleasure.
Newly opened at the for location of Catalunya in Wan Chai, Wagyumafia is known as the restaurant that serves up the most expensive katsu sando in the world. At the Hong Kong branch, the sandwiches go for $800 a pop, but its most expensive sandwich available at its native Tokyo uses a Chateaubriand cut and goes for a whopping $1,400. Prepared by chef Hisato Hamada, the sandwich is made with Miyazaki beef, a house-made panko crust using five different types of bread, and a house-made sauce of aged soy sauce and vinegar. We’ve no hesitation in branding this the best katsu sando in Hong Kong.
G/F, Guardian House, 32 Oi Kwan Road, Wan Chai
Seating only 12 people in an interactive open kitchen setting, the Michelin-starred, intimate fine-dining spot headed up by chef Daisuke Mori serves up its own version of the katsu sando: an Okinawa Sangen pork tenderloin sandwich with house-made tomato relish. The sandwich is only available upon request – make sure to pre-order it when making your reservation – and features the restaurant’s contemporary French-Japanese approach.
Shop 1, G/F, The Oakhill, 16 Wood Road, Wan Chai, 2574-1299.
The newest F&B offering at art and lifestyle hub H Queen’s in Central, PIQNIQ is a breezy rooftop eatery by the Le Comptoir group. Its international dishes — featuring Mediterranean, Chinese, and Japanese fare — are served up in picnic baskets that match the al fresco setting. Among these is the restaurant’s own take on the katsu sando, a moreish Wagyu variety.
Rooftop, H Queens, 80 Queen’s Road Central, Central
Trendy hotspot turned firm favorite, yakitori maestro Yardbird was arguably doing katsu sandos before it was cool. Yardbird’s katsu sando is an off-menu special and, like the majority of its barbecued dishes, served on a skewer. $90 will get you two small sandwiches. The sandwich even inspired the Yardbird Hotdog that Please Don’t Tell served at its pop-up at the Mandarin Oriental a couple years ago. The Yardbird Group’s Sunday’s Grocery also used to sell a katsu sando that netted rave reviews across Hong Kong before it went online-only. This definitely ranks as one of the best katsu sandos in Hong Kong.
G/F, 154-158 Wing Lok Street, Sheung Wan, 2547-9273
French-Japanese kappo restaurant Marble, at the Crowne Plaza hotel, serves up a katsu sando made with Kagoshima Wagyu sirloin, toasted shallots, and a secret sauce whipped up by chef Stone Chan. The sandwich is so popular that it’s found its way on the restaurant’s lunch menu as a special set. Other types of meat for the sandwich are served at dinner. The restaurant has a specific focus on meats and seafood.
1/F, Crowne Plaza Hong Kong, 8 Leighton Road, Causeway Bay, 2650-8988