Hong Kong bar reviews

Bar review: My House, Wan Chai - cocktails and a down-to-earth crowd

Newly opened bolt hole opposite Hopewell Centre homely and unpretentious

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 17 November, 2015, 5:15pm
UPDATED : Wednesday, 06 April, 2016, 2:13pm

The vibe: Wan Chai’s QRE Plaza is home to an eclectic mix of businesses, from foot massage parlours to dance studios, restaurants and bars. Thankfully, the building’s latest addition on the 26th floor doesn’t greet guests with bright lights or blaring music – it is homely and warm thanks to wood features that include wine barrels as tables which cleverly transform into comfortable seats.

Sit down at the central bar and take in your surroundings: shelves housing vinyl records that can be played during the day on one of seven private consoles; a deck for DJswith the city lights as a backdrop. But before images of annoying hipsters enter your thoughts, think again. This place is unpretentious, and on a Wednesday just a month after opening it was heaving, helped by a girls-only gathering of pilots that was in a party mood even before the DJ started spinning.

The drinks:MyHouse is big on “natural” wines (made in small batches with minimal chemical and technological intervention). It’s the cocktail list that is this bar’s biggest draw, though, and barman James French is a font of knowledge. “You like pineapple? Then try this,” he says, pointing to the 26/F, a mix of rhum agricole, Lillet Blanc, pineapple syrup, grapefruit bitters and an absinthe rinse that was a lot more delicate on the palate than you might expect. Next up was the aptly named Mi Casa (HK$100), a mix of Mina Real mezcal, watermelon juice, homemade watermelon syrup, lemon juice and orange bitters. It was the Osakan Summer (HK$110), a combination of White Oak Akashi (aged three years), strega, Amaro Averna, lemon juice, forest honey and chocolate bitters that won the tango of the taste buds – a perfect winter blend.

The gin-friendly Sir Edmund Celery (HK$110)was cool and refreshing; despite the additions of pineapple, vanilla syrup, lemon juice and a creamy egg-white foam, the celery bitters stole the show – not my cup of tea. The Blue Stone (HK$100), a mix of vodka, lemon juice and homemade vanilla syrup with a simple frozen pink grape, was lush.

The verdict: mix some not-too-fancy cocktails with comfort food and wine, add some groovy tunes and a down-to-earth crowd and staff, and it’s hard to think of a better place to call a home away from home.

MyHouse, 26/F QRE Plaza, 202 Queen’s Road East, Wan Chai. Tel: 2323 1715