With the festive time of year finally here, it’s all the more reason to raise a glass and sip some seasonal beverages at new bars and brand new menus around town. Here are the best places to drink in Hong Kong this month.
Sensual Festive Luxury in the Clouds at Ozone
When: Through 31 January, 2020
The world’s tallest bar has teamed up with Lane Crawford to offer a touch of unconventional luxury in its cocktail menu. Inspired by the iconic scents and makeup of Tom Ford Beauty, Ozone bar manager Oscar Meña has created three new cocktails (HK$148) and one mocktail (HK$110) named after Soleil Blanc, Fabulous, Oud Wood, and the Scarlet Rouge lipstick. From now through to the end of January, every order from the special cocktail menu comes with a gift set, including a Tom Ford fragrance sample and an exclusive consultation service at a Tom Ford Beauty counter or retail store.
Ozone, 118/F, The Ritz-Carlton, Hong Kong, International Commerce Centre, 1 Austin Road West, West Kowloon, Hong Kong
Kakure x World Class hosts Shelley Tai
When: 7 December, 7–10pm
Prince’s Building Japanese bar Kakure is bringing Diageo Reserve World Class bartender of the year Shelley Tai behind the bar for one night only this December. Tai together with Kakure’s own Sharad Chhetri will be shaking up three special Tanqueray cocktails each (HK$130). Tai’s cocktails include ‘A Pine Mind’ using Tanqueray 10, and pine and hinoki infused vermouth; ‘Bouquet Au Ville’, using Tanqueray Rangpur with fennel pollen honey, lime juice, olive brine and a French aperitif; and ‘A Pine Heart’ featuring Tanqueray Malacca, pine nut, fig leaf cordial, and rhubarb juice. Don’t miss Chhetri’s special selection of three cocktails including the ‘Gin Sonic’; ‘The Spark & The Blaze’ and the ‘Samurai Jack’.
Kakure, M/F, 20-24, M/F, Prince’s Building, 10 Chater Road, Central, Hong Kong
You can’t get more apt with harbourside dining than this: Ink is an al fresco seafood and ice cream bar situated right at the water along Victoria Harbour, part of the recently reopened Hong Kong Museum of Art. The Woolly Pig Group eatery boasts unbeatable views and sunny open air dining, the perfect spot to knock back some G&Ts on tap or craft brews from Gweilo Beer (plus a new gin distilled by the Hong Kong brewery).
There are also artisanal sodas from New Zealand’s Six Barrell Soda, house made iced teas and a healthy selection of rosé, white and red wine that pairs well with Ink’s modern Australian cuisine. You definitely don’t want to sleep on the menu of house-made ice creams, featuring quirky flavours such as vanilla star anise, raspberry milk tea or strawberry cheesecake.
Ink, G/F, Hong Kong Museum of Art, 10 Salisbury Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Hong Kong, +852 3500 5881
Paying tribute to the smokehouses of the American deep south, Henry is Hong Kong’s swishest new temple for meat boasting chef Nathan Green, formerly of Rhoda, at its helm. With its luxurious leather banquette seating, polished brass hardware and leafy al fresco terrace forming the backdrop to a theatrical meal celebrating fine steaks and cured meats, no doubt it’s also the perfect place to enjoy drinks of equal heft.
Peruse the bar menu and you’ll find an impressive selection of gin, rum and agave spirits, with classic cocktails (HK$120) such as the Old Fashioned (HK$120) and Boulevardier, as well as fiery Michelada or Tommy’s Margarita. The wine list spans some-200 bottles of magnums from Napa and Bordeaux (some bottled exclusively for Henry), pre-2000s vintages, as well as ‘Underdogs’ from boutique wineries from the New World.
Henry, 5/F, Rosewood Hong Kong, 18 Salisbury Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Hong Kong, +852 3891 8732
New Cocktails at Shady Acres
One of SoHo’s most popular happy hour haunts (daily at 5-8pm and 11pm-1am) shakes up its cocktail repertoire with a few new additions to its quirky menu. Try the Five Finger Death Punsch, a potent rum-based, five-ingredient nod to Uma Thurman’s ‘The Bride’ in Kill Bill who learns the five point exploding heart technique to, ostensibly, kill Bill. There’s also the Bird Up!, a result of too many regulars ordering Palomas, to which Shady Acres has responded by adding its own riff to the classic Mexican cocktail as a permanent fixture. It tips its hat to Coa’s Jay Khan, who in Shady’s opinion makes the best Palomas in town, and features Shady Acres’ own ‘staff meeting’ tequila (rather lethal shots involved).
Shady Acres, 46 Peel Street, Central, Hong Kong
New Cocktails at the St. Regis Bar
The iconic St. Regis Bar was established in 1904 — the same year that the New York underground and the Hong Kong tramline system both opened. Since it was opened earlier this year, The St. Regis Bar in Hong Kong offers a menu that, pun intended, transports you to key neighbourhoods throughout both cities, and the double-sided tome has just undergone a revamp with new additions and tweaked recipes.
Try the Hung Shing Ye (HK$148), a thirst-quenching cocktail which pays tribute to the God of the Sea, a coconut-milk washed cocktail featuring Beluga caviar-infused vodka, St. Regis Vetiver Essence, oyster leaf and spices. While on the New York side, the Gennardo’s Negroni (HK$148) won’t disappoint classic cocktail enthusiasts: with an herbaceous, saline spin to the negroni with fresh sage leaf, Campari capers, Carpano Antica Formula and prosecco and olive syrup — finished with an intricate olive garnish.
The St. Regis Bar, 2/F, The St. Regis Hong Kong, 1 Harbour Drive, Wan Chai, Hong Kong, +852 2138 6800
Christmas Trivia at 208 Duecento Otto
When: 12 December
Nothing rings in festive cheer towards the end of the year like a good old fashioned trivia night, especially when it features cocktails by guest mixologists, holiday tunes, and gifts — a lucky draw on the evening will dole out incredible prizes all night for quiz winners, with the ultimate prize as a dinner voucher worth HK$3,000 and a magnum bottle of Veuve Clicquot. Embrace the other great festive tradition of ugly Christmas sweaters and don your ruefully cheesiest outfit for a drink on the house.
208 Duecento Otto, 208 Hollywood Road, Sheung Wan, Hong Kong, +852 2549 0208
The Gospel Bloc Party at Holy Eats
When: 7 December
Celebrating the first birthday of Elgin Street’s very own church of booze and art (its interiors suggest the spiritual equivalent to a latino biker tattoo parlour), Holy Eats is hosting a block party with free beer from 6pm, delicious plates of East-meets-West bistro fare, and flash tattoos by Galaxy Tattoo HK starting from HK$500. As night rolls round, you’ll be stomping your feet to a lineup of local musicians — from hip hop artists to rock and roll sounds to DJ beats, plus a guest appearance by rockabilly band The Boogie Playboys.
Holy Eats, 23 Elgin Street, Central, Hong Kong, +852 2890 2892
Light Bites and Late Nights at La Petite Maison
A new late night bar bites and cocktail pairing menu stretches La Petite Maison’s indulgent French Riviera vibes well into the early hours — whether you’re finishing the evening with a nightcap or in search of a late supper. To start, you’ll want to pair the refreshing flavours of the LPM classic Tomatini — made with fresh tomatoes muddled with vinegar and shaken with Ketel One vodka and syrup — with tapenade with garlic croutons (HK$145) or the burrata tartine (HK$145). Other pairings feature juicy, thirst-quenching drinks such as the Genevrier Sour with moreish deep-fried baby squid (HK$110); or the classic Vieux Carre finished with mezcal mist together with the punchy onion tart with anchovies (HK$140).
La Petite Maison, Shop 1, H Queen’s, 23-29, 1/F Stanley Street, Central, Hong Kong, +852 2887 1113
DiVino’s Caviar Christmas Aperitivo Hour
When: 12 December, 6–8pm
Get merry for the season the Italian way at DiVino Wine Bar & Restaurant’s twist on its daily aperitivo hour. Along with its daily spread of light bites, patrons can expect treats such as classic panettone and other festive antipasti ‘di Natale’ — and a whole 1kg of caviar served at this pre-Christmas fete.
DiVino Wine Bar & Restaurant, 73 Wyndham Street, Central, Hong Kong, +852 2167 8883