3/F, LHT Tower, 31 Queen’s Road, Central
A bastion of fine Italian gastronomy in the heart of Central, Spiga stands as a love letter to Italy’s past, present and future. Helmed by two-Michelin-starred chef Enrico Bartolini, the restaurant takes everything that’s revered about Italian cuisine – much of it involving flour, vine-ripe tomatoes and fresh cheese – and places it front and centre on Hong Kong’s culinary stage.
Local gastronomes didn’t need much convincing: since opening in late 2016, Spiga has been one of the hottest tables in town. And it’s no small feat that the restaurant is booked out most nights. Divided into a bar, main dining area and outdoor garden area, the 7,000-square-foot space accommodates 128 guests in total.
Whether you’re in the main dining area, which mimics the bustling central market in Rome, or on the outdoor ‘Portico’ where lush plants and foliage evoke a secret garden, Spiga provides you with a different experience each and every time.
Many of the dishes on the menu have made the journey from Enrico’s flagship restaurants in Italy. A Tuscan native and Italy’s youngest two-Michelin-starred chef, Enrico’s style is heavily influenced by the northeast region of the country, melding the cooking styles of Lombardy and Piedmont effortlessly to bring out the essence of Italy in each dish.
Enrico is joined in the kitchen by Giuseppe Carlucci. An Italian native, he grew up in his father’s pastry kitchen. Inspired to pursue cooking full time, he joined a culinary school while working at a number of small restaurants, eventually making his way to a number of the Grand Hotels across Italy. He first worked with Enrico at Le Robinine in Lombardy in 2007 but it wasn’t until 2015 that he moved to Hong Kong to take up the Head Chef position at Spiga.
It would take you several visits to conquer even half of the menu, but here’s a good place to start: the Sicilian red prawn served half-raw and half-fried. Follow this with the pillowy buffalo mozzarella ravioli with a roasted tomato sauce, or the irresistibly creamy risotto with beetroot and gorgonzola cheese.
It wouldn’t be an Italian restaurant without a selection of wood-fired pizzas and the kitchen delivers the classic crowd-pleasers without fail. The margherita makes use of the holy trinity of fresh tomatoes, pockets of hot mozzarella and bright basil, while the prosciutto di Parma is a salty and creamy one-two punch with a buttery mound of Parma ham and creamy buffalo mozzarella.
A voluminous wine list courtesy of Sommelier, Maurizio Severgnini shines a spotlight on Italy but spreads its wings to include some delightful drops from around the world, ranging from the accessible, everyday varieties to rare and exciting labels. For Maurizio, wine is all about fun.
Spend some time exploring each section of the restaurant between courses – a tapestry of old Italy brought to life by local designer, Joyce Wang. The interiors are rich in colour and character, with dramatic lighting fixtures, vintage instruments and beautiful antiques, and a colour palette of olive green and brown evoking glamorous 1950s Italy.
While the decor is rooted in the past, Enrico’s food is a refreshing breadth of modernity, gently nudging Italian cuisine into the contemporary era while remaining faithful to the time-honoured tenets of great Italian food.