Garley Building, Graham Street, 45-53, Central, Hong Kong
You know a place holds special meaning in the community when a group of customers willingly take up ownership of its lease rather than see it go. That’s what happened to The Globe, not once but twice. In 1999, when a hike in rent threatened the closure of one of Central’s most beloved neighbourhood watering holes. Luckily, a group of its loyal patrons refused to say goodbye to the longstanding British pub, and since then, The Globe has renewed its lease on life, steadily getting back on its own two feet with a growing list of customers as regular investors.
The second rescue was in 2009. When the rent doubled, an in-house crowdfunding campaign, helped relocate the pub out of its old location to a new space on Graham Street. With the move came a revamped look, the addition of a full kitchen, and a space almost five times the size of the original venue. While the expansion has certainly led to some practical improvements and a larger customer base, the atmosphere has remained as intimate and cosy as ever.
Much of the booming business these days is due to current owner-operator, Toby Cooper, a well-seasoned publican with over 30 years of hospitality experience managing restaurants and bars. He jumped onboard the project in 2003, and has been instrumental in helping The Globe develop and managing the daily operations. The final piece of the puzzle at The Globe, was the addition of English-born Head Chef, Patrick Barrett.
The Globe is a Gastropub in the true sense, boasting over 200 different varieties of beers, with a focus on local breweries and craft beers as well as rare imported varieties. As the founding Chairman of the Craft Beer Association of Hong Kong, Toby makes it a priority to educate the staff and help customers discover new brews, making The Globe a central hub for beer lovers to gather and share their love of hops.
In addition to advancing the beer program, the expansion of The Globe has seen its menu develop by leaps and bounds, turning the pub into a dining destination in its own right. While most sports’ bars relegate their food offerings to standard pub grub, The Globe’s menu represents a “Choose your own Adventure” with dishes from around the world, reflecting Patrick’s diverse culinary background.
Patrick focuses on organic, sustainable and fair-trade produce and crafts a menu that constantly evolves with the seasons – an ambitious undertaking for a casual neighbourhood pub. Accordingly, you’ll find Crispy Hawke’s Bay Lamb Ribs next to Japanese house pickles with miso, jerk chicken sandwiches spiced with habanero, and a new innovative set lunch every week. Of course, there’s also the standard British pub fare: think beer-battered fish and chips with mushy peas, Mangalica liver and bacon, and one of the best meat pies in Asia.
The sophisticated food offerings paired with excellent beers mean that The Globe isn’t just your weekday watering hole – it can be a date night spot, a celebratory occasion destination, and a place to impress out-of-towners. Though The Globe has been through many iterations over the years, one thing hasn’t changed: it remains one of Hong Kong’s most well-loved neighbourhood pubs, backed by a strong and unfailing sense of community.