Lifestyle

5 drinks we loved this week, from Samsen, Quinary and more


Best Sips is a look back on the most incredible drinks — alcoholic or otherwise — we had in the past week. Those which renewed our love for established venues; caught our attention at a new opening, or freshly impressed upon us the creativity and skill of Hong Kong’s talented bartenders and mixologists alike. From tipples at charming dive bars to award-winning apéritifs at five-star establishments, these are the best drinks to try in Hong Kong; the drinks we’d recommend you make a special trip for.

The best drinks we sipped on and savoured this week:

COA

The drink: Chelada (HK$108, 4-can pack)

As a big fan of the collaborations between tequila and soda over the years, it’s no surprise that I love COA, which is now, once again, my neighbourhood haunt. Clearly I’m not the only one: Asia’s back-to-back #1 bar is getting the recognition it deserves the world over, from the delightful sips on its agave-centric menu to the educational and community-focused work of Mezcal Mission, which founders Jay Khan and Andrew Davis have hosted throughout the pandemic to teach us all — even agave heads like me — a thing or two about Mexico’s national spirit. That’s a lot of tequila talk to spill about my love for a totally different drink on the menu: the Chelada, the third collaboration between COA and the brewers at Hong Kong’s own Young Master. Lime zest, sea salt and chillies brewed in a pale lager base, it’s summer in a can — but even better in a salty rim glass. ¡Salud! — Nathan Erickson, Editor-in-Chief

COA, Shop A, LG/F Wah Shin House, 6-10 Shin Hing Street, Central, Hong Kong

Quinary

The drink: Big Spice in Little China (HK$150)

Quinary’s Big Spice in Little China joins Agung Prabowo’s A Moveable Feast and COA’s Bloody “Beef” Maria in my very own, running list of perfect, no-notes cocktails. My must-orders. My Everests. My “AHHs” Awards. (And, to quote an incomparable television moment in Tamra Judge’s otherworldly cadence: That’s my opinion!)

But back to Big Spice in Little China. If you love your cocktails on the saltier, spicier, “Wow that’s a journey” spectrum, you’d love BSiLC. Tempering the sweetness of Ovaltine with several wrist-shakes of Tabasco, this Michter’s Bourbon-infused drink — which arrives so joyfully in a makeshift Tabasco flagon — dabbles deep in the umami, with puffed rice cracker treats on the side that add a sweet crunch to every sip. A sodium-forward sip with a snack! Again: perfection. — Joey Wong, Editor

Quinary, 56-58 Hollywood Road, Central, Hong Kong, +852 2851 3223

Samsen

The drink: Pineapple & Ginger Fresh Fruit Slushie (HK$56)

It’s not just the Hong Kong humidity. It’s also the waiting 20 minutes in line at a perpetually crowded Samsen that draws you to the coldest sip on the menu from the instant you’re sat down. Luckily, with the Thai street-food serves here, it also means that tropical flavours of coconut, mango, pineapple and watermelon are staples on the beverage list, introduced as refreshing fresh fruit slushies. Because there’s no passing up on pineapple, my very-biased pick is with Pineapple & Ginger. Samsen does their icy blends with fresh pineapple, so that’s already a very deserving Best Sip from me. They also add ginger slices for a bit of that back-of-the-throat heat, which appropriately cuts the sweetness every so slightly. Order one as you wait next time you visit — it’ll change your life. — Lorria Sahmet, Editor

Samsen, 68 Stone Nullah Lane, Wan Chai, Hong Kong, +852 2234 0001

Nathan Left

Excuse the tissue on the side.

The drink: Piña Colada (HK$108)

Nathan Left’s iteration of Piña Colada drove me coconut crazy, officially. My love for this resort staple stems from my yearning for an island life as well as my water element deficiency — oh, and how can I forget, Günther’s lyrical genius in the dance hit “Teeny Weeny String Bikini”:

You have a sunburn, like chokolada. It’s you, me and Piña Colada.

Needless to say I was dying for a glass during the entirety of last week, and Nathan Left delivered: creamy coconut milk meets tropical fruits and a dash of (understatement, obviously) sweetness, standing as one of the smoothest, richest spins on this classic. Emphasis on creamy. — Michelle Chan, Editor

Nathan Left, G/F, 5-9 Hart Avenue, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, +852 2369 1333

ONLY Beverages

The drink: Guava Hibiscus vodka soda (HK$360 for a pack of 12)

I’m not usually a vodka girl, but ONLY Vodka Soda got me at 0 sugar, 0 carbs and 0 gluten. With my attempts to be health-conscious about my diet, a low-fat alcohol beverage is definitely appealing. I loved their previous Yuzu Ginger and Tahitian Lime flavours, so I had to try out their latest, Guava Hibiscus. The sweet and flowery scent mixed with hints of fruitiness make for an extremely refreshing drink. It is basically summer in a can and the perfect sip for all events involving beach, sun and bikini (or when you want to pretend you’re on vacation at home). — Leanne Lam, Social Media Manager

ONLY Beverages, www.drinkonly.co

(Lead and featured image: Quinary)





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