May 11, 2018
Sydney import turned heads when it opened in 2013; with its simple yet
effective Italian menu and focus on natural wines, it filled a niche that had
otherwise gone unfulfilled in Hong Kong. Stylish and often crowded – there is
little room to stand, with most patrons occupying the one large shared table
that dominates the room. A narrow bar and window bench, along with a small
private room, make up the other options.
Simone Sammuri came with the group when it expanded to Hong Kong and thus the
space – not to mention the wine list — retains a lot of the characteristics of
its home base in Australia. Most of the wines on the list you will struggle to
have encountered – Sammuri prides himself on his close personal relationships
with his wineries, most of which are in his native Italy. There are some gems
on here however, with the macerated whites a particular favorite. Simone is
only too happy to point out his favorites.
interiors are stylish and slick; plenty of polished concrete and black wood,
topped off with a centerpiece light fixture which fairly dominates the room. It
is convivial, with big windows opening right out onto the street, making use of
the space to the maximum degree.
on trendy Peel Street in Soho, it caused some grumblings when it first opened,
having taken over Joyce Is Not Here, a long-loved bar once rents had gone up.
But if natural Italian wines and sensibly-priced sharing dishes are your thing,
you won’t begrudge them taking advantage of what has long been an issue for
many a drinking establishment in this city of spiraling costs.