Linguini Fini | Hong Kong
Linguini Fini has got a new home in Soho on Elgin Street right by the escalator! I like the decor here better than its old shop in the L Place as it is more bright and chic while airy with the open walls. It's even got a little garden area in the back where they recycle any leftover food for use in planting herbs and tomatoes which looks a great space for a private party IMO. Helmed by Chef Vinny Lauria, the food here is casual New York Italian with a focus on farm to table and nose to tail dining - I'm told that everything is homemade and they like to use local produce whenever possible. I've been to Linguini Fini before and found the prices to be quite reasonable so I was looking forward to trying some of their new dishes along with classics as well.
Fresh linguini made everyday~
We got here just in time for its Happy Hour special - free flow Pabst Blue Ribbon beer and chicken wings for $98 only! Available Monday to Friday from 5-7pm. I would have liked the wings to be juicier as they are a bit on the dry side but it's a great deal for the price.
For those who don't like beer (me!), they also have a wide selection of cocktails and I was recommended the Whiskey Smash ($68) with whiskey, citrus and mint on the rocks. I'm not a big fan of whiskey in the first place but this drink went down surprisingly well as it wasn't strong in whiskey at all with a well-balanced acidic flavor.
Fried Calamari ($88) - homemade old bay, zucchini, chilies with spicy 'nduja laced marinara sauce. The calamari could have been crispier but I liked the fried zucchini and especially the spicy marinara sauce which enhanced the flavors tremendously. [3.7/5]
Homemade Spicy Sausage ($108) - with peppers and onions, chili and oregano mustard, the sausage was really spicy but at the same time quite salty as well (not sure if it is due to the spices in the sausage or not). [3/5]
Fragrant Grass Infused Linguini Fini ($118) - one of the classic pastas here with a new twist. I was told that this used to be served with sheep's milk cheese sauce so it can be quite pungent along with the grass infused pasta so the new and improved version uses Parmesan cheese instead. I've never tried the old version but I didn't find this repelling at all - in fact it tasted quite normal and a tad dry actually. [3.5/5]
Italian "Xiao Lung Bao" ($168) - pork filled agnolotti, tomato sauce, chili oil and 30 year balsamico. It was an interesting take on the classic xiao lung bao with an Italian twist and I would have loved more balsamic! Keep pouring! [4/5]
Radiatore Alla Vodka ($148) - spicy 'nduja laced cream sauce, fresh mozzarella and basil. Obviously this reminds me of the the Spicy Rigatoni Vodka at Carbone but they actually taste quite different as the one at Carbone is more creamy and subtle while the one here has a heavier emphasis on the spiciness. If you like really spicy pasta, then this one is for you. [4/5]
Garlic Butter Black Cod ($188) - with kale, lemon, capers and anchovy. The fish was cooked perfectly as it was flaky soft with rich flavors! [4.2/5]
Dry Rubbed Hanger Steak ($168) - with caramelized onion aioli. This was my favorite dish of the night as the hanger steak was tender yet juicy with an excellent quality for the price! I'd prefer this over the one at The Continental which costs more and doesn't taste as great. [4.8/5]
Grilled 1/2 Chicken ($158) - with chili, lardo and honey glaze. The mains just continue to shine as I love the honey glaze on the chicken which was moist and succulent. [4/5]
Chocolate Banana Cake ($78) - killer combo with chocolate and banana. No words needed. Just EAT. [4/5]
Caramel Apple Pie ($78) - I love the chunky pieces of apple used in the pie but would have liked it if the pie crust was thinner and softer. [3.5/5]
Verdict - a great place for casual New York Italian dishes with an excellent price to value ratio.
49 Elgin Street, Central
Tel: 2387 6338
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