A Three-Day Guide to Drinking in HK
By Chip Whitley
As All That Junk begins planning our soon to be announced 1st Year Anniversary Party, we want you thinking about drinking and how Hong Kong is one of the best cities in the world for it. So we follow our writer Chip Whitley’s guide for a proper 3-day bender.
Hong Kong is one of the world’s great drinking towns. Like Chicago, or Dublin, or Mexico City, or Tokyo – our city has a boozy stride that ambles through the night and on into the weekend.
Fridays start as close as feasibly to the office. After-work beer, wine, and a bite of something (hopefully cheese) take the edge off the week. Progress will be made to something more substantial, eventually.
At the cooked food market in North Point, beers are sloshed through blue porcelain bowls and Asian cuisine is taken to its logical extremes. Perhaps you made it South of Hollywood Road, or to Knutsford Terrace, or Sheung Wan for dinner, where the transition to a before-midnight bar is smoother. Either way, a substantial subsistence is necessary to carry you forth into the hours of the night.
After eats, there’s a place for cocktails – something classy and bubbly – especially if it’s going well, and the craic is good.
Right when Friday night becomes technically Saturday morning, Wanchai looms. Teenagers who can’t afford bars nod in the street, sailors drink arm and arm, and the older gentlemen slip off and lose the moniker of gentleman.
Inevitably there is Lan Kwai Fong. I prefer to avoid it until I’m good and ready, but once you’re in the maelstrom it’s all perfectly acceptable. Mob rule takes hold and high heels get stuck in cobblestones. Try to catch them if they stumble, we’re all in it together.
Maybe you eat before your head hits the pillow. There’s that 4:00 a.m. dim sum joint in Kennedy Town that’s remarkably good. Once, a Mexican girl asked me to fuck in the back of the line at the Sai Ying Pun McDonalds, but that’s a more specific story.
The sun comes up and you just get an inkling to go on home. I don’t know, sometimes I just don’t know. You’ll get there eventually.
Somehow, in spite of it all, you make roll call for the Sunday morning junk.
The diesel fumes pooling at Pier 10 may make one nauseous at first, but a sea breeze will cure that real quick. Grapefruit juice is good that way.
What can one say about junks?
Usually it’s a combination of Hong Kong squads and F.O.B.’s. They’re an inclusive adventure fueled by an encouraged day-drunkenness.
[Pro-tip: get out front while you’re steaming out from pier. There’s no better view on earth than Hong Kong’s skyline from Victoria Harbor (and I’ve been everywhere, man)].
Wind in your hair and yesterday forgotten, the day starts by mingling with old friends. With that first drink in hand, one tends to re-ascend to the lofty heights of the previous evening, bypassing the wallow of a normal hung over morning.
The geography of junks is designed to combine small groups, and under the sheltered muster station you can toast the night before.
Generally there will be three crews gathering; the bow upfront in the wind crew; the sunny open top deck crew; and round the u-bench in the covered stern crew.
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