We revisit this hidden speakeasy – one of Hong Kong’s worst-kept secrets – for a taste of good, hard liquor
When this elusive speakeasy – its marker a black doorway with an illuminated doorbell off the side of Graham Street, lurking behind a market stall – first opened a few years back, we couldn’t get enough of it. The inspired creation of whisky and spirits specialists Liquor & Liqueur, 001 was one of the few bars in the city that really seemed to take its drink seriously. The environment reflected it, too; sophisticated with a gentlemen’s club-meets-vintage library vibe. It is thankfully free of the shrill cacophony that infects most Central watering holes, with classic jazz flowing demurely through the speakers instead. The cocktails, too, are expertly crafted – here lies one of the best Old Fashioneds in the city, a drink we have enjoyed during many an evening sunk down into one of the plush velvet armchairs or behind one of the secluded booths. And it goes without saying that the whisky selection surpasses most wannabes in the area. Surprisingly, the food is also worth a trip – the grilled gruyere cheese sandwich is disarmingly good and a must-order. All things considered, 001 would be the perfect bar were it not for its increasingly snooty door policy – make a reservation well in advance, forget about walk-ins and once you do manage to get in the door, make sure to remain in your seat at all times (no sociable perching or milling around allowed here!) or risk a telling off.