Photography by Vea
Words by Theodora Sutcliffe on 24-Mar-2016
29/F, The Wellington, Central Hong Kong, Hong Kong
Tel: +852 2711 0063
Website: View bar's website
Hours: Mon-Wed 5pm-1am; Thu-Sat 5pm-2am
Door: Open door
Style: Lounge bar
Recommended for: Alfresco, Cocktails
Price guide: High-end
Food: Full menu
The latest concept from Antonio Lai (Quinary et al), Vea does a whole lot more than turn out cocktail pairings for the restaurant upstairs - although the partnership between Lai and name chef Vicky Cheng is a big part of the concept.
Culinary tricks of the bartender's trade are firmly on display here. Leszek Stachura and his team make their own vinegars, redistill spirits, play with carbonation, blow-torch garnishes, barrel-age their Holland Gin Cocktail in new oak and fatwash bourbon with bone marrow for a signature Old-Fashioned.
The short but perfectly-formed menu is so insanely creative it's worth settling in for the night to find out exactly what happens when you add salt to a Negroni or lapsang souchong to a cooked Bloody Mary, although there's a nicely curated selection of classics on offer too.
Set on the 29th floor of The Wellington building at the Sheung Wan end of Wellington Street, Vea has a Gilded Age feel, with William Morris wallpaper and sleek bar top. But the narrow and vertiginous terrace, surrounded by tall buildings, feels straight out of Gotham.