December is kicking off with a bang, as we hurtle towards the end of the year with an explosion of anticipated new restaurants, from casual Cantonese bistros to Italian-American restaurants and authentic Belgian food. As you indulge in the coming weeks with holiday parties and festive feasts galore, you’ll want to save room for some special guest chefs and pop-up dinners coming to town. Whether it’s getting into the spirit of ‘hygge’ with an authentic Danish Christmas feast or digging into a unique Japanese tasting menu paired with New Zealand wines — here are the one-off events you won’t want to miss in-between glorious holiday feasting.
Chef Chase Kojima at SEVVA x Cloudy Bay
When: 5–25 December
Price: HK$2,000 for 5-course tasting menu, plus HK$600 for 4-glass wine pairing
Iconic New Zealand winery Cloudy Bay will serve as inspiration for a holiday-themed tasting menu this December created by award-winning chef Chase Kojima from Sokyo at The Star Sydney. Available from 5–25 December at Sevva, the gourmet degustation showcases chef Chase’s wide-ranging culinary influences, including years of training with the lauded chef Nobu Matsuhisa. Emphasising contemporary Japanese flavours, the dishes from Sokyo spotlight exquisite seafood from Hokkaido, paired perfectly with Cloudy Bay’s renowned Sauvignon Blanc with its crisp, aromatic and refreshing qualities. Start the menu with seared scampi with Beluga caviar — an elegant match with Ruinart Blanc de Blancs Champagne — followed by kingfish miso ceviche, king crab tempura and Wagyu tenderloin, expertly paired with various Cloudy Bay vintages. Dessert caps off with a mini panna cotta with coconut, sago and mango; and mini blueberry frangipane tart with yuzu card and lavender ice cream for a tart and refreshing palate cleanser.
Sevva, 25/F, Landmark Prince’s, 10 Chater Road, Central, Hong Kong, +852 2537 1388
Test Kitchen x Chefs Filip Søndergaard and Morten Langford
When: 22–25 December
Price: HK$980 for Danish Christmas menu, plus HK$380 for drinks and wine pairing
Those looking to experience the warm spirit of Scandinavian ‘hygge’ this Christmas should look no further than Test Kitchen, which welcomes two Danish chefs in December to serve up a festive Nordic feast. Returning to the pop-up culinary incubator for the second time, chef Filip Søndergaard will be joined by chef Morten Langford this season for a second run of its popular holiday menu, serving up a mouthwatering 8-course traditional Danish Christmas feast available for four nights only from 22–25 December.
Discerning diners can explore the intriguing produce of the Scandinavian region ranging from herring to skyr shrimp tartar and beetroot cured salmon with egg, while the main events celebrate the spirit of sharing and cosy time spent with family and friends with a shared-style slow-cooked duck and Christmas pork belly with a plethora of sides. The spirit of Danish Julefrokost (Christmas lunch) continues with an array of special cheeses from the region and the Ris la mande dessert paired with cherry sorbet. Eat, drink and be merry with the add-on drinks pairing inclusive of Glogg, aquavit, wine and craft beers.
Test Kitchen, 158A Connaught Road West, Shop 3, Sai Ying Pun, Hong Kong, +852 9032 7628
Chef Nicolas Isnard at Le Méridien Cyberport
When: 16–20 December
Price: HK$298–$1,188 per person
Head to Southside for an authentic taste of Provence as Le Méridien Cyberport welcomes acclaimed chef Nicolas Isnard to serve up a French-inspired tasting menu during the lead-up to Christmas. Available at Prompt Restaurant, the special all-day menus incorporate the flavours and ingredients of sunny Provence, while showcasing chef Isnard’s culinary innovation from years spent working in renowned restaurants in the south of France, including one-Michelin-starred Le Vieux Logis, and two-Michelin-starred La Rotonde in Lyon. Currently chef-owner at L’ Auberge de la Charme in Burgundy, chef Isnard combines tradition and modernity in dishes such as his take on onion soup, made with onion ice cream with crispy onions and bread crumbs, savoury foie gras and corn, and red tuna ceviche with pequillos ice cream.
Chef Isnard’s Sunday brunch, set lunch and dinner menu will be available from 16–20 December, in addition to two exclusive wine pairing dinners on 16 and 20 December, where diners can mingle personally with the French chef and explore a selection of wines from the region. Meanwhile, the highlight of the week is the “Gala Dinner with the Stars” on 19 December, which kicks off with canapés in an intimate cocktail reception on the terrace, followed by a mouthwatering 7-course wine pairing dinner (HK$1,188 per person) with dishes such as fresh jelly set oyster with caviar and iodized cream and lobster ravioli with Asian-style broth. During the evening, diners will also be able to participate in a raffle for round-trip business class ticket to Paris sponsored by Etihad Airways.
Le Méridien Cyberport, 100 Cyberport Road, Hong Kong, +852 2980 7417; book online here
Michelin Guide Hong Kong Macau 2019 Gala Dinner
When: 11 December; 6pm cocktail reception, 7pm gala dinner
Price: MOP4,888 per guest or MOP28,000 per table of 8 guests
A gourmet culinary extravaganza is set to take place at City of Dreams on 11 December, as the most celebrated chefs from Hong Kong and Macau descend on the Grand Ballroom at the ritzy casino-resort for a Michelin Gala Dinner black tie event. Titans of the industry including The Tasting Room’s Fabrice Vulin and Kelvin Au Yeung Man Yin of Jade Dragon, to name a few, will present a delightful evening of world-class gastronomy for one night only, with six acclaimed chefs from two- and three-Michelin-starred restaurants joining hands to thrill discerning foodies.
Themed ‘Metamorphosis’ this year, the gala dinner is inspired by the evolution of modern dining trends, with chefs showcasing their innovative and resourcefulness in the kitchen to represent the creativity of the modern-day chef. With honoured guests including French culinary master Alain Ducasse and Masa Takayama of Masa in New York, the evening will proceed with highlights such as poached oysters with shellfish tartare from chef Vulin, Masa toro caviar from Masa Takayama, fish maw in rabbitfish soup from chef Yin of Jade Dragon, and Alain Ducasse’s signature cookpot chock full of blue lobster, black truffle and potato. Dessert wraps up with a stunning selection served by none other than French pastry master Pierre Hermé. To complement the evening, a wine pairing will be available from Robert Parker wines, in addition to special live music and dance performances.
Grand Ballroom, City of Dreams, Estrada do Istmo, Cotai, Macau, +853 8868 6681
‘Shades of Sapporo’ at Nobu InterContinental Hong Kong
When: Through 9 December
Price: HK$668 for 6-course lunch omakase, includes mocktail; HK$1,488 for 8-course dinner omakase; prices subject to 10% surcharge
The InterContinental Hong Kong’s 2018 Gourmet Journey of Japan wraps up with its final episode this month: “Shades of Sapporo”, highlighting famed ingredients and culinary traditions from the capital city of the northern Japanese island of Hokkaido. At the award-winning Nobu, fans of Japanese cuisine can tuck into omakase lunch and dinner menus featuring authentic dishes from Sapporo, with menus showcasing local cooking techniques and premium seafood from the region.
Nobu Executive Chef Sean Mell and Executive Sushi Chef Araki Kazunari have created a degustation menu celebrating the best of Sapporo, kicking off with zuwai kanu with potato and sweet corn aioli, and botan ebi shrimp sashimi paired with the famed Yubari melon of the region and beer jelly. The omakase continues with Hotate butter yaki with fresh scallops and shiso salsa, and decadent A5 Wagyu beef with Yakiniku tare, the latter paying homage to the Sapporo tradition of huddling around a warm grill and roasting meat table-side with a pitcher of Sapporo beer. For dessert, pastry chef Joanna Yuen presents her lava cheese tart, highlighting the Hokkaido’s celebrated dairy products; while a premium Nobu sake experience rounds out the dinner with rare sakes from Hokusetsu as well as Champagne Ruinart Rose for a festive touch.
Nobu InterContinental Hong Kong, 2/F, InterContinental Hong Kong, 18 Salisbury Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Hong Kong, +852 2313 2323
Wingman at PMQ Taste Kitchen
When: 11 December–13 January
Price: À la carte
Sometimes it’s nice to take a break from tasting menus and festive celebrations to enjoy simpler — yet equally satisfying — fare, like the humble chicken wing. Enter Wingman, a delivery-only operation that debuted over the summer on Deliveroo; now, Wingman is partnering with Taste Kitchen (Hong Kong’s first-ever food and beverage incubation programme) to serve their irresistible wings in a restaurant setting for the first time. Starting from 11 December, guests can tuck into plates of globally inspired wings like classic American Buffalo wings and Cantonese-style wings glazed in hoisin sauce. Drawing in particular on flavours from Japan and Southeast Asia, the wings will be complemented by a selection of sides and appetisers that will be equally casual and reflect the American/Asian fusion that Wingman is known for.
PMQ Taste Kitchen, H113-H114, 1/F, Hollywood, PMQ, 35 Aberdeen Street, Central, Hong Kong, +852 6532 6528