Legendary chili sauce made with a secret recipe
Mr Yu’s story
Hailing from Shunde in Guangdong Province, Mr Yu came to Hong Kong in 1922 as a young man. Using an old family recipe, he started making chilli sauce in the kitchen of a Sai Ying Pun shophouse. Mr Yu sold his sauce on the streets, carrying it in two buckets slung on a bamboo pole. Eventually, he saved enough money to open his own shop in 1950. Business took off from there: Yu Kwen Yick now produces a range of sauces—oyster, sesame and lemon sauce—but the chilli sauce is still their signature. It's so good, you can find it in restaurants all over the city—and far beyond.
A recipe for success
Each bottle of chilli sauce is a genuine, homemade product. Made with fresh local ingredients only—no preservatives or additives are added—every batch takes about six days to produce. "We use the same old method. We stir the sauce manually with wooden poles and use an old stone grinder," says Antony Yu, Mr Yu's grandson. "We suggested our chefs replace their tools, but they wouldn't have any of it. This grinder has been here for ages, and its speed is nice and slow, so we can keep the flavour of the ingredients intact. We can at most produce 600-700kg in a single morning."
A spicy cocktail
Mr Yu has become a local legend: his brand is synonymous with Hong Kong's entrepreneurial spirit and has inspired a cult following. The Intercontinental Hotel even created a Mr Yu Cocktail; an alluring blend of cognac, port, berries, vanilla, citrus and, of course, a dash of Yu Kwen Yick chilli sauce!