Le Garçon Saigon
This Vietnamese hotspot on Star Street has been making headlines for its skewers, salads and stir-fries ever since it opened at the tail end of 2015, but regulars will know that it also has an unusual beer on its carefully curated drinks menu. Le Garçon Saigon is one of the few places in Hong Kong where you can get your hands on a bottle of Saigon Export Lager, a pale lager that’s brewed primarily with rice, which gives it a bright golden colour and some citrus flavours. We recommend trying one during L’heure Saigon, the restaurant’s daily happy hour, which runs from 5pm-7pm.
The Captain's Bar at the Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong
Young Master Ale Brewhouse is one of the stars of Hong Kong's own brewing scene and makes innovative beers with unusual ingredients. One of our favourites is their Captain's Bar Beer, which they brew exclusively for The Captain's Bar at the Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong. This craft lager is brewed using German malt and a selection of European-style hops, which make it extra refreshing on a hot summer's day. On top of this classic brew, Young Master Ale Brewhouse also offers a mix of year-round and limited-edition beers. Some of these include unusual Chinese ingredients, such as dried orange peels, five spice and chrysanthemum. The brand’s current seasonal offering is called In The Mood for Spring and, in keeping with the floral theme, includes notes of chrysanthemum, jasmine and osmanthus.
The Pawn's drinks list is so extensive that it's easy to get distracted, but it stocks some great local beers. One of the standouts is Moonzen, a local brewery that keeps things simple by using only four ingredients: water, grain, hops and yeast. In addition, the local company is environmentally friendly, and promotes sustainability in their field by making compost out of their grain and recycling their bottles. Handcrafted at the company’s nano-brewery in Kwun Tong, each bottle also contains live yeast to ensure slow fermentation in the bottle. Not one to shy away from distinctive ingredients, one of Moonzen’s most distinctive creations is the Yama Sichuan Porter, which features a spicy kick of Sichuan peppercorns that is followed by a note of smooth caramel. A lighter option is the Monkey King Amber Ale, which is best enjoyed with a burger on a hot summer’s day but is available year-round.