Based on present situation, Hong Kong is not the place to visit, even I had to cancel my expense paid business trip for a recent trade fair. Then again, we’ve got Hong Kong Street in the CBD precinct that houses some pretty good feeding grounds.
A routine monthly pig out session with fellow like-minded foodies with a passion to pen our experience, kudos to Hence for the pick… Amò – an Italian Concept by Michelin Star Chef-Restaurateur Beppe De Vito, and by the ilLido Group.
This place offers original Italian food and drinks inspired by authentic traditions and modern techniques. It’s possible to walk by without noticing, but upon entry, the combination of elements for the interior leaves your woes outside the glass door.
Ushered & seated by hospitable service staff, and before you can flip the menu, recommendations are already sprinkled for your consideration.
The menu features homemade pizzas and large mains for friends and large groups – made with natural leaven, semolina and extra virgin olive (EVO) oil, their pizzas are light, seasonal and easy to digest – the result of patience, exceptional produce, and a fine-tuned knowledge of food chemistry.
You will find two categories for the pizzas, Classic & Signature. What’s the differentiator?
Classic is deemed authentic & true to its origins/ recipe, while Signatures means you can’t find the same thing anywhere else.
From the Classic menu, Margherita DOP consists of Buffalo Mozzarella, San Marzano Tomatoes & Basil. The crust is light & thin, mildly charred in the over that emits a nice smoky fragrance, buffalo mozzarella creamy & runny, and the oasis of tomato sauce renders natural sweetness in every bite.
What does DOP mean?
DOP is short for Denominazione di Origine Protetta (literally “Protected Designation of Origin”). As the the name suggests, this certification ensures that products are locally grown and packaged. And it makes a promise to the consumer: It’s a guarantee that the food was made by local farmers and artisans, using traditional methods. In fact, by law, only DOP products like balsamic vinegar can carry the word “traditional” on their labels, because they adhere to local traditions.
So the DOP label may bring a higher price tag with it. But it also promises the highest quality!
Note: the crust is light & thin, and can’t quite hold its own weight. Fold the wedge like a New Yorker, and it’ll still be flaccid. Makes it easy for ingestion, unanimous thumbs up round the table.
From the Signature menu, Broccolini, Pancetta, Pumpkin & Smoked Mozzarella, possibly my first ever encounter of a pizza with a sweet base. The pumpkin puree is quite a brow raiser, the savory pancetta & smoky mozzarella combinations grows on your palates, building up a crescendo.
Also from the Signature menu, Pork Sausage, Caramelized Onions, Potatoes & Buffalo Mozzarella, sweet tasting pizza brought to a whole new level. The potatoes gave it an interested texture, while the buffalo mozzarella holds it together, but the caramelized onions are so sweet they blanket all other flavors. You’ll probably need to add-on extra savory toppings to level the scales.
From the Mains & Wood fire grills, Iberico Pork Chop with Spicy Broccolini & Celeriac Puree, the pork is juicy tender and good enough on its own (some parts somewhat dryer), while the silky celeriac puree gives it a nice balance. Spicy Broccolini throws on a mild heat to the palates.
Roasted Mushrooms with Egg Confit, packs a nice woody flavor of roasted mushrooms, while the burst egg envelopes it with a rich creamy texture.
Hand Cut Fries with Rosemary, the fries are thick & crisp on the outside, crumbles nicely when the ivories sink in. The truffle mayo dip is just addictive.
We were surprised with a serving of Frappe/ Cioffe a complimentary bow shaped dessert snack, crispy dough shrouded with a decent dose of icing sugar. Nice!
All in all, I find the ambiance to be somewhat calming, while the waiting staff are busily running the floor, I can see myself revisiting for sips on their cocktails, or feasting on their Classic Pizzas, especially the Margherita DOP, come to think of it, I shall try out their pastas too.
Good food usually taste better when in good company; I was blessed to be at the table in good company of; Ivan, Hence, Kris, Shermaine, Ailing and Rachelle.