Best Sips is a look back on the most incredible drinks — alcoholic or otherwise — we had in the past week. Those which renewed our love for established venues; caught our attention at a new opening, or freshly impressed upon us the creativity and skill of Hong Kong’s talented bartenders and mixologists alike. From tipples at charming dive bars to award-winning apéritifs at five-star establishments, these are the best drinks to try in Hong Kong; the drinks we’d recommend you make a special trip for.
The drink: Strawberry Banana Wine (HK$90)
There was a period of time in my childhood when I refused to drink water because it was, and I’d still stand by this, a boring drink. No, I will not hear from water apologists today. But I digress. I wanted more for my “daily eight” and, to compromise, settled on those strawberry-flavoured Volvics. They were de-li-cious and, I’m sure, extremely bad for me but this started a lifetime chasing that strawberry-spiked high. One to add to that rarefied roster, this 10-days-fermented strawberry banana wine from Penicillin, a relatively new addition, is what I’d call a Basic B*tch drink. (In a good way! I am one, too!) It’s a simple concoction of strawberry, banana and locally-sourced honey and, no, those aren’t barely-distinguishable wine notes you must grin and bear when the sommelier comes through for comments. You can taste the fruit! It’s sweet! It goes down like, uh, water! And you’ll have many more, guaranteed. — Joey Wong, Editor
Penicillin, L/G, Amber Lodge, 23 Hollywood Road, Central, Hong Kong; +852 9880 7995
The Coffee Academïcs
The drink: Signature Cold Brew Coffee (HK$228 / pack of 6)
Like most people, I’ve spent the last week pottering about, working from home. And like most people, I appreciate a strong cup of caffeine in the morning to get me through the day. Now if I were at the office, I’d probably get an Americano with a splash of oat milk from the Pacific Coffee around the corner. But while I’ve been home — with no barista-grade coffee machine in sight and no motivation for a coffee run in the AM — I’ve been sipping on tea. It’s okay! I like both!
That is until I received a very welcomed delivery from The Coffee Academïcs: A six-pack of their signature cold brew as part of their newly launched TCA+ Delivers. I’m usually partial to their Manuka, but this signature cold brew in a can was a good one as well. I can’t tell you much of the notes or the beans — per the can, it’s nutty, sweet with flavours of chocolate and made from Brazilian, Colombian and Ethiopian beans steeped for over 18 hours — but it is unsweetened. I haven’t forgotten about my love for oat milk either; I like to mix in a generous pour for added creaminess. — Lorria Sahmet, Editor
NOC Coffee Co
The drink: Oat milk flat white (HK$45)
This photo summarises what the perfect morning is for me. A book in hand, a full-day breakfast with not one but two poached eggs, and an oat flat white. To many people’s surprise, I am not a coffee person; only on occasions when I feel productive or am up very, very early in the morning. So, when I do get up early enough to avoid the brunch crowds, this is my go-to latte. The silky texture and the fruity aroma calm me down and every sip is like a warm hug for my stomach. If you want me in a good mood for the day, buy me a cup of good coffee. — Leanne Lam, Social Media Manager
NOC Coffee Co, various locations, including Shop 4, G/F, Bohemian House, 321 Des Voeux Road West, Sai Ying Pun, Hong Kong