With current dining bans giving a sense of deja vu, bringing to mind those harsh months in 2020 when Covid-19 wreaked havoc on the F&B industry, 2021 did have its share of highs—and thankfully, relatively fewer lows. As the Lunar New Year approaches and Hong Kong readies itself to fight the ongoing battle against the fifth wave, we’re digging into the memory bank to take stock of what defined 2021.
We opened a restaurant!
Of course, one of the highlights of 2021 had to be the launch of Tatler Dining Kitchen at Haus, a nine-month project that turned our vision of giving the F&B community a platform to explore and experiment into a proper restaurant. With its slight speakeasy vibe, hidden on the first floor of Haus—the collaboration with our partners Mercedes Benz and IWC Schaffhausen—TDK, as it became fondly known, was a space where we welcomed an impressive roster of chefs, mixologists and tastemakers. Chef Antimo Maria Merone, who was our opening chef, has since opened Estro; Shane Osborne and Michael Smith of The Arcane Collective were able to do an experimental preview of Moxie before launch; Anthony Ng ran an insanely busy month of Uza by Nikushou, soon to open in Central this year.
We were also able to pull together a dream line-up of previously unheard of collaborations: a husband-and-wife night where Amber’s Richard Ekkebus cooked Mauritian cuisine with his wife Fiona, and the dishes paired with cocktails by Penicillin’s Agung and Laura Prabowo; a caviar, cocktail and sando night by Lorenzo Antinori, Cut Sando Sound Bar and Nomad Caviar; an immersive dining experience highlighting the plight of refugees by Table of Two Cities, Antonio Lai and Alison Chan; The Sake Bistro concept by Ta Vie’s Hideaki Sato and Godenya’s Shinya Goshima; and May Chow cooking a Ningbo feast with her mother, Juliana Foo, to name a few. On the final night of TDK, we had four incredible young chefs—Felix Cheung (aka FatCheFelix), Ash Salmon, Stephanie Wong and Graf Kwok—cooking an art-inspired menu to send off the venue in style.
Stay tuned as Tatler Dining Kitchen will certainly return in 2022!