Hong Kong Island isn’t the only part of China’s special administrative region catching on to craft beer.
While tap bars like The Roundhouse, The Globe, and newcomer Tipping Point Brewing Company lead the considerable charge on the Hong Kong side — The Roundhouse is my favorite — these days even Kowloon has a handful of fancy beer dens in which to sate your craft beer fix.
Randomly tucked away among bank branches and flower shops on the first floor of the old Peninsula Centre is tiny craft-beer bottle shop Craftissimo. There’s not much to it, really; it’s just a bottle shop, people. It may lack size and character — and the two very friendly ladies working there during both my visits admitted that they weren’t really craft beer drinkers, so don’t necessarily expect nuanced recommendations — but the selection is stellar and the prices reasonable.
You’ll note some big names on the shelves pictured above: Evil Twin Brewing, Mikkeller, Rogue Ales, Birra del Borgo, and if you look closely enough the great Founders Brewing Company from my homestate of Michigan. Many of the beers are also available chilled, and if you buy four or five bottles they’ll pack ’em in a nifty, reusable cloth bag with individual bottle slots for safe, easy transport. Pick a few favorites, then find a quiet spot on the coast for the nightly Symphony of Lights at 8pm.
Look for discounted bottles in the craft beer crate; two beers from Italy’s Revelation Cat, for example, were marked down to just 20 HK during my recent visits.
Hat tip to Christopher DeWolf, who recently penned an excellent profile of Hong Kong’s craft beer scene for The Wall Street Journal that led me to Craftissimo.
Craftissimo is located at 67 Mody Road, Peninsula Centre, Shop 166, 1st floor. Open Monday – Saturday 12pm – 9pm; +852 6274 3130.