Aperitivo whets the appetite at La Piola, the Italian restaurant with a new home in Wan Chai

Eatery specialising in cuisine from the Piedmont region serves appetisers delicious enough to be the main event

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 16 November, 2017, 10:46am
UPDATED : Friday, 17 November, 2017, 12:09pm

Previously on Lyndhurst Terrace, La Piola’s new spot in Wan Chai brings a taste of Hong Kong history to the Italian eatery. Sharing a late 19th-century heritage building - once home to Woo Cheong Pawn Shop - with Tom Aikens’ The Pawn, La Piola enjoys high ceilings and grand archways.

Serving cuisine originating from northern Italy’s Piedmont region, La Piola specialises in aperitivo - the art of whetting the appetite with a drink and hors d’oeuvres. Traditionally this drink is an Aperol spritz, which La Piola serves alongside a collection of sweet and dry vermouths, grappas and Italian liqueurs. Also on offer are Italian cocktails, shooters and wines.

Unsurprisingly, it’s all about the appetisers at La Piola. The carpaccio all’albese (HK$138), topped with olive oil, salt and parmigiano cheese, is a highlight, as is the grilled tomino cheese, served with zucchini and poached pear (HK$168). Lovers of thin-crust pizza will enjoy the diavola (HK$168), made Napoli style, which is light enough to leave room for further aperitivo. La Piola also offers multiple handmade pasta dishes. We tried the angel hair with luganica sausage and leek (HK$195), topped with burrata, and the Alba style ravioli (HK$198) filled with castelmagno cheese. Castelmagno comes from a small village in Piedmont, and each kilogram requires 28 litres of milk. The ravioli is a must-try.

We could have skipped mains altogether and continued sampling aperitivo dishes. It would, however, have been a shame to miss the pork schnitzel (HK$248), which was topped with fontina d’aosta cheese and served with creamy mashed potatoes.