Hong Kong in 2010: Food & Drink
Here are the top dining trends to watch out for in 2010.
The mainstreaming of sustainable foods
We’re already seeing it in restaurants, and we’ll see a lot more of it in the year to come as “sustainable” becomes the new “organic”. A few restaurateurs to watch: Commune Limited’s Todd Darling, Robert Spina and Cathal Kiely, who started Posto Pubblico (G/F, 28 Elgin St, Central, 2577 7160); Kate and Brian McGettigan of Coast (1/F, Kinwick Centre, 32 Hollywood Rd, Central, 2544 5888); Mark Bannon of The Bostonian at Langham Hotel (8 Peking Rd, Tsim Sha Tsui, 2375 1133).
Spending more than $500 for a good bottle is just not necessary – there are so many great low budget and mid-range options out there. If you spend more than that for a non-celebratory meal, you’re just exhibiting your lack of wine literacy.
Bull market for Italian
It seems a handful of new Italian eateries have been opening every few months. It’s already clear that the new year is no exception, with the launch of posh new joint Otto e Mezzo Bombana (Shop 202, 2/F, Alexandra House, 18 Chater Rd, Central) by Team Island Tang, and Carpaccio (Shop 307, 3rd Floor, iSquare, 63 Nathan Rd, Tsim Sha Tsui, 2328 5202) by Team DiVino in January. Over in Wan Chai, La Baita (Shop G7 & G8, G/F, 248 Queen’s Rd East, Wan Chai) was recently opened by the chef of Cinecittà.
High-brow fast food
Yes, we’re still tapping our comfort G-spot. Hamburgers, hot dogs, pizza and all things deep fried will be popular menu items in 2010. Expect everyone to go up a size by year end.
Sandwiches are the new sushi
Sushi has finally left the stage. That’s not to say our best sushi spots will disappear – just that there won’t be a new one opening almost every day, as has pretty much been the case since 2007. The new luxury is actually a humble sandwich, this time sexed up with quality meats, homemade condiments, and (here’s hoping) non-commercial breads. Check out Bun Me’s (Shop A, G/F, Sen Fat Bldg, 6 Bonham Strand, Sheung Wan, 2581 0000) bánh mi Vietnamese sandwich to see what we mean.
There’s no need to spend excessively in 2010 as talented chefs exercise their restricted budgets and produce more exciting dishes for less, like at The French Window (3101, Podium Level 3, IFC Mall, Central, 2393 3812). French eatery Amuse Bouche (22/F, The Hennessy, 256 Hennessy Rd, Wan Chai, 2891 3666) is winning over picky clientele with their $158 set lunch before diners fork out $468 for the dinner menu. Don’t get us wrong, people still want fine food – they just want to pay less for it.
Pseudo private kitchens
Stop pretending you are not a fully blown restaurant and get a restaurant licence already.
Ten items or less on the menu
A well-edited menu means a chef can concentrate his efforts on a few things rather than trying to please everyone on one plate. Cult private kitchens have been the main progenitors of this trend. Embrace brevity.
Cafés and casual diners are embracing the shared table concept rather than scatter tiny tables about in a small dining room. Pull up a chair, make a friend.
23 Sotheby’s Wine Auction
26 Zachy’s Winter Auction
Time Out Hong Kong Wine Walk
12-14 Hong Kong International Tea Fair
12-16 HKTDC Food Expo
7-9 Restaurant & Bar Hong Kong convention
4-6 Hong Kong International Wine & Spirits Fair
12-28 10th Annual Macau Food Festival (tentative dates)
TBC Third edition of Michelin Guide launches
Food & DrinkMacau