Fresh Food, with the latest Butchers Club venture, a whole host of new openings, and a Happy Valley favourite shutting its doors.
It’s still a very precarious time for us Hongkongers, and while many are spending night after night protesting on the streets, others are beginning to return to normal lives. And the restaurant industry continues to chug along, so let’s get started on this week’s Fresh Food.
The big news of the week, of course: after the success of their Deli (78%) and Burger (82%) concepts, The Butcher’s Club is set to expand once again, this time with their first steak venture. Steak Frites will open somewhere in Central before the end of the year and will only serve the classic French-style meat-and-potatoes pairing. The obvious competition is La Vache (76%), and you can expect a Food Fight column from us soon after it opens.
For fans of Wyndham street nightlife, the Prive group has almost completed construction on their first supper club concept, Bungalow, located in the former Socialito spot. No real details on what the food will be like, but we’re guessing it’ll take a backseat to the venue’s clubby atmosphere.
Tai Hang is quickly heating up as a cool, new dining district, and two new spots will soon cement that reputation. There’s Andy’s Garage, a Mexican joint that'll be cashing in on the city’s Tex-Mex trend; expect burritos, quesadillas, that sort of thing. And ever-popular Japanese restaurant Kiyotaki (82%) recently expanded with a second store in the district, on Shepherd Street.
In other recent openings, The Continental opened its doors last week: if you’ve forgotten, it’s the long-awaited restaurant that’s taken over the the former Domani spot, with famed British chef Rowley Leigh at the helm. And Gaucho, the Argentinian steak concept from London, is set to fully open later this week. We can’t wait to try both.
Foxtail and Broomcorn is a new little spot on Jervois Street that serves nothing but noodles, with varieties ranging from Taipei and Tokyo, to various parts of China. And there’s also Shiba, a new yakitori restaurant on Smithfield, in the ever-growing Kennedy Town district.
El Grande, the folks behind Inn Side Out (65%) and Grappa’s (63%), have gotten into the pizza game, with the Italian-style Mickey B’s Pizza Company on Harbour Road in Wan Chai. And the Tang Palace group recently opened its first Hong Kong venture, with Social Place on Queen’s Road Central, a casual and affordable Chinese restaurant.
In a rare and somewhat sad closure, The Chapel, a longtime pub favourite in Happy Valley, will shut its doors this week, after a major increase in rent. Sad to see it go, but we have to admit that after its modern renovation a few years back, it was never really the same.
And finally, if there ever was a sign that Hong Kong’s dining scene has truly reached a fascinating point, it’s this: The Pawn, after months of renovations, is set to finally reopen this month. And ahead of that, they've released a teaser video - we’re not sure how to react to it, but it’s certainly an interesting approach to restaurant marketing.