Cover Image courtesy of Yick Fung Crab

Like, share, and eat your way through these social media-savvy purveyors of hairy crabs

In Hong Kong, the onset of autumn is signified not by the fiery hues of fall foliage, but by an altogether more drool-inducing sight: oodles of golden roe bursting out of freshly steamed hairy crabs. And where better to witness this phenomenon than your Instagram feed, as your foodie friends engage in a game of seasonal one-upmanship, competing to see who has the better luck in cracking open the most roe-filled crustacean? 

While banquet halls and neighbourhood pop-ups have traditionally been the place in Hong Kong to pick up and dig into a hairy crab of your own, Instagram has provided a new front for crab shopping, as entrepreneurs follow the money right to your phone screen in a new ritual made possible by social media, e-payment systems and same-day delivery.

Deliveries are normally dropped off in cooler bags and come complete with crab-eating tools (scissors and picks), shiso leaves to steam the crabs with, Zhejiang dipping vinegar, and "heaty" ginger tea to counteract the qi-cooling effect of the roe. For peace of mind, look out for vendors who can provide a health and import certificate upon request. 

Keep scrolling for our pick of the best places to buy hairy crab on Instagram, and may the odds be ever in your favour!

Read more: 6 Essential Tips For Eating Hairy Crabs At Home This Season

1. Yick Fung Crab

Offering crabs ranging between 4.5 taels (170g) to 8 taels (300g) in weight, Yick Fung Crab is one of the few Instagram vendors with a website, making it all the easier to place your order. Yick Fung also offers abalone and poon choi for those who want to round out their feast. Orders over HK$800 are eligible for free delivery.

2. Crabtastic

Featuring crustaceans from Lake Taihu, China's third-largest freshwater lake and the best-known breeding ground for hairy crab, Crabtastic also sells uni and sashimi imported from Tokyo's Toyosu fish market, alongside poon choi and premium Japanese fruits like Yamanashi peaches. Orders of 15 crabs and up are eligible for additional crabs on the house.

3. Crabs Wave

With five years experience in selling hairy crabs, Crabs Wave offers specimens of between 3 to 8 taels (114g to 300g). Orders over HK$800 include free delivery, while orders of HK$1,200 or more will net you four complimentary crabs or more.

4. Crab Kingo

Having sold hairy crabs for the past three years, this vendor sources their stock straight from the waters of Hokkaido. Crab Kingo's flexible terms are a boon—aside from allowing payment after inspection of the delivery, customers also don't have to pay for any crabs that might not have survived the journey.

5. HK Crab Crab

A supplier to banquet halls as well as running an Instagram shop, HK Crab Crab sells crabs between 3 and 7 taels (114g to 265g) alongside Japanese uni and oysters. Buyers can pick up their order from any MTR station, or enjoy door-to-door delivery for orders exceeding HK$731.

6. 9 Eat Crab

Boasting 10 years of experience, this vendor ships fresh crabs in on the daily—these can range anywhere between 3 to 9 taels (114g to 340g). They also offer party sets for two people all the way to a dozen, so that nobody is left without their share of roe.

7. Big Hairy Crab

Featuring daily imports of crabs from Jiangsu province, this vendor's stock tends toward larger crabs, which range from 4.5 to 9 taels (170g to 340g). Better yet, customers can try the biggest 9-tael crabs for a trial price of HK$350 each (normally HK$399 per piece). For those who are too squeamish to steam their own crabs, Big Hairy Crab can do it for you for the price of HK$10 per crab.

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