A neighbourhood gem by ex-Robuchon chef serving one of the best tiramisus in town.
Words Iris Wong Photos Samantha Sin
Ex-Robuchon chef Angelo Aglianó’s first restaurant in Hong Kong is tucked away up a small, steep street in well-heeled Happy Valley. Greeting diners near the entrance is a 1940s Berkel meat-slicer, the Ferrari of slicers, testament to the restaurant’s Italian authenticity and is used to cut all the prosciutto served here. Comfortably seating 26, the compact space features a semi-open kitchen, where diners can observe the busy chef and his team at work. The warm grey interior is cosy, elegant and understated, which makes for an intimate dining experience.
We chose two appetisers, buffalo burrata cheese with tomato, baby lettuce and bottarga ($188) and Mediterranean tuna tartare with eggplant and caviar ($288), which were meticulously presented and marvellous on the palate. The fusilli “Mancini” ($198) that followed was a real showstopper: the reinvented carbonara with salted egg and bacon tasted as good as it sounded, and the clever addition of dill gave a herbaceous touch that lifted the dish without compromising the overall flavour. Hokkaido sea urchin risotto with fresh wasabi and chives ($328) was umami-packed, though we felt the wasabi got lost in the abundance of flavours. Roasted New Zealand baby lamb chops ($388) were welcome after all the carbs. Served with sautéed spinach and polenta (a complex carb we can make room for), the lamb chop was juicy and tender but wasn’t able to outshine the other dishes. We were right to not skip dessert. The tiramisu ($118), with coffee granita, was possibly the best we’ve had in Hong Kong.
With every dish meeting or exceeding our expectations, we will be back for more of Aglianó’s cooking (indeed, one colleague had returned for a second helping before this review was even written). For a neighbourhood restaurant, Locanda dell’Angelo is not cheap, but this hidden gem will no doubt draw in the crowds with its homely, traditional fare with a modern twist.
Spending: $700 to $1,000pp
Highlights: tiramisu, fusilli “Mancini”
What else: the restaurant has an extensive Italian-focused wine list with great by-the-glass options.
12 Yuen Yuen Street, Happy Valley
Tel: 3709 2788