Rose Kitchen in Wan Chai flourishes during economic downturn, selling over 600 chickens on Labour Day

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22nd May 2024 – (Hong Kong) The Rose Kitchen in Wan Chai is a beacon of success amidst a wave of local business closures attributed to residents choosing to spend north of the border. Unlike many, this café thrives solely on local patronage, often seeing queues of customers eager for its signature dish: the crispy roasted spring chicken, priced at HK$88.

Wong Zheng, the owner, observed a record-breaking turnout on Labour Day, 1st May, with over 600 chickens sold, translating to around 1,200 meals. “We were swamped even before opening at 11am,” he remarked, outlining the sheer demand faced on public holidays.

The secret, according to Wong, lies in the dedication to quality and a heartfelt approach to service, akin to caring for a loved one. “You only get a few chances to impress your customers. If your service and food quality consistently meet their expectations, they will return,” Wong explained.

At Rose Kitchen, the preparation of their renowned crispy roasted spring chicken begins at 7 AM to meet the lunchtime rush, where up to 250 chickens are prepped. The process involves meticulous seasoning and a four-hour preparation cycle that includes cleaning, marinating, blanching, drying, and frying.

Despite economic challenges and a trend of locals spending in mainland China due to better price-value propositions, Rose Kitchen has nearly returned to its pre-pandemic business levels. Wong credits this resilience to the loyal local customer base and the influx of tourists who have discovered the café through social media platforms like Xiaohongshu.

Wong’s commitment extends beyond business. He emphasises community service, particularly towards the elderly, and insists on maintaining high standards. “It’s all about caring genuinely. If we are good, it’s not just for us; it’s for Hong Kong,” he stated.