It’s the end of another year, and the perfect time to check out all the new restaurant and bar openings in the city before making your New Year’s resolutions. Here’s a list of what’s hot and new in December.
Words Nicole Hurip and Iris Wong
Shop OTE 101, G/F, Ocean Terminal, Harbour City, 3-27 Canton Road, Tsim Sha Tsui
Tel: 2577 1668
Restaurant by day and nightclub by night, Hexa is the all-new hotspot at Ocean Terminal for contemporary Chinese with a side of sick beats courtesy of Club Cubic Macau. Try reimagined dim sum items like the steamed bamboo charcoal shrimp dumplings, or more conventional items like the smoked chicken with longjing tea and the double boiled pear in Chuanbei and aged tangerine peel. The stunning interior, inspired by the swinging 60s, is the handiwork of renowned designer Steve Leung and his team, featuring a bar wrapped in dark green marbles that is sure to draw your eyeballs – assuming you’re not otherwise distracted by the panoramic sea view.
La Rambla by Catalunya
3071-73 level 3, ifc mall, Central
Tel: 2661 1161
La Rambla by Catalunya has opened in ifc mall! Serving authentic Spanish favourites, La Rambla’s menu includes a selection of traditional tapas and mains, as well as modern interpretations of Spanish dishes. Their truffle bombas are phenomenal, inspired by the traditional bomba (potato bomb) hailing from Barcelona’s famous La Cova Fumada restaurant. La Rambla’s interpretation is topped with freshly shaved truffles and served with brava sauce and garlic aioli – a winning pairing if we’ve ever seen one. Great paellas and the Spanish “Xurros” are also on offer, as well as a comprehensive list of Spanish wines and spirits to complement the great food. La Rambla is also offering a weekend brunch buffet featuring Calalan classics like Segovian-style suckling pig and paella, at $550 per person.
Shop J, 9 Kingston Street, Fashion Walk, Causeway Bay
Tel: 2489 8822
After Fashion Walk’s 10-month renovation, EAT.it has reopened in Causeway Bay. While the Italian eatery retains its casual and relaxing atmosphere, the food they serve is of high quality and at a very affordable price. We’d expect nothing less as EAT.it is the brainchild of Gianni Caprioli – the man behind Giando and Mercato by Giando. At the helm is chef Benjamin Pippin who has more than nine years of experience in Italian cuisine in New York.
Among the dishes we have tried, our favourites include the burrata cheese served with Italian tomatoes ($108), margherita pizza ($108) and carbonara chitarra spaghetti ($118). EAT.it also makes some mean truffle fries ($98), and the dry-aged meatballs ($158) made from dry-aged beef (dry-ageing done by chef Leo Kam of CRFT PIT), veal, pork, tomato and parmigiano are delicious.
Basement, 65 Wyndham Street, Central
Tel: 2530 3870
This sultry speakeasy reminiscent of scenes from Moulin Rouge has undergone a radical transformation to become an edgy, spray painted drinking parlour. Hong Kong-based street artist and award-winning interior designer Szabotage is behind the transformation, doing away with all the pompadour that characterised the old venue and injecting heaping doses of cool with neon accoutrements and copper drinking ware. Try the new Piña Rosemaria, made with Absolut Elyx, sweetened with pineapple juice and elderflower syrup and spiked with Thai red chilli and smoked rosemary.
6-10 Shin Hing St. Central
Tel: 2813 5787
COA, Hong Kong’s very first Oaxacan inspired artisanal cocktail bar has soft opened, led by bar veteran Jay Khan. Paying homage to its namesake – a machete-like tool used for harvesting giant agave plants – COA offers an impressive range of rare agave spirits for mezcal lovers to enjoy. Some of the bottles are available exclusively at COA, such as El Jolgorio Tepeztate, which is made from one of the rarest agaves in the world – Tepeztate, which requires an average of 30 years to mature before it is ready to be harvested. Eight artisanal cocktails are on offer, including the Horchata de Pistachio ($90), a blend of homemade Mexican horchata, Ocho Blanco, homemade pistachio orgeat, lemon, egg white and a sprinkling of sweet potato dust. Be sure to pair your drinks with bar bites like the fries with Mexican spices ($68), only available during the soft opening period
6 Kau U Fong
Tel: 2824 3898
Showcasing modern European cuisine with a strong focus on seasonal and locally sourced ingredients, Beet offers a compact a la carte menu and a 5-course tasting menu for $690, as well as the option to go for a vegetarian tasting menu. Located in the secluded Kau U Fong beside Cô Thành, Chef Barry Quek serves diners with food influenced by his culinary experiences throughout Europe and Asia using classic and progressive cooking techninques. Beet also caters to the lunch crowd – $190 for two courses and $245 for three courses.
22 Staunton Street, Central
Tel: 2529 3001
A cool new Californian beer and barbecue spot has opened up on Staunton Street, serving Cali-style dishes like the Mixed BBQ Plate and ‘Baja’ tacos with grilled prawns and Big Sur-izo. Also on offer are 14 taps of craft beers by Young Master Brewery as well as a tap that serves gin and tonic. Californians are notorious for their obsession with healthy eating, so in the spirit of wellness, sip on cocktails made with fresh pressed juices mixed with your pick from the extensive list of tequilas, mezcals and bourbons at the bar. Weekend brunch is also served, with classics like French toast with house smoked bacon and eggs.
Shop 12, 11/F MegaBox, 38 Wang Chin Road, Kowloon Bay
Tel: 3543 5638
Offering sous vide classics like slow cooked young pigeon with port apple cinnamon jus as well as fresh, handmade egg pasta, Madison’s is the perfect place to unwind with good food with good friends (there’s also an open bar area!). Situated in East Kowloon, Madison’s specializes in contemporary European cuisine using seasonal seafood and produce. The tagliolini tossed with an anchovy and prawn sauce and served with a whole Hokkaido scallop looks delicious, and we can’t wait to try it.