With dining services only open until 10pm, Hong Kong's bar and nightlife offering has been dramatically changed. The turn of service is fast-paced, and people just want to get a good quality meal and after-work drinks before cut off. This fuss-free dining and drinking trend created opportunities for 'elevated' dive bars to thrive, with the likes of Shady Acres still flourishing on Peel Street – even after most of its neighbouring venues already closed their doors permanently – and bars like Honky Tonks, Dead &, and The Last Resort to open in the city. Now another bar, Hungry Pal, is joining the fold with the promise of elevated takes on pub classics.
This new gastropub is created by three culinary industry veterans, Bikal Ghale, Ashok Lama, and Ganga Gurung, who have worked at popular venues like Carbone, Buenos Aires Polo Club, and Ovolo Hotels. Inspired by bars that your high-end restaurant bartenders actually drink and hang out at, this new bar is the kind of place where you go to get quality drinks after a stressful day at work.
The venue is open daily from lunch until 10pm (until restrictions lift). Ashok, who is in charge of the kitchen, is preparing dishes like chicken and mushroom pie ($88), cajun fried chicken ($148 for a half; $280 for a whole), caprese salad ($168), and grilled salmon served with peppered couscous, shaved radish, and beetroot vinaigrette ($178). The bar, headed by Bikal, will be serving twists to classic cocktails (starts at $68) like Martinez and Last Word, and highballs, with an addition of their signature tea gimlet called Oolong Sour made with oolong milk tea-infused gin. Other drinks on the menu will include beers on tap like Stella Artois and Goose Island IPA, and a wine list focused on Old World wines.
Hungry Pal is currently in its soft opening and will fully open by the end of the month. Visit the bar at 11 Lower Elgin Street, Soho, or follow them on @hungrypalhk on Instagram for updates.
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