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Cocktails With A Conscience

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The Bar at John Anthony Takes Ethical Sourcing, Zero Waste and Sustainability to a New Level

Ethical sourcing, zero waste, sustainability. These are the foundations of a movement in Hong Kong, one that is taking place behind the scenes in kitchens and bars around our city. John Anthony Cantonese Grill & Dim Sum and Gin & Cocktail Bar takes this movement to heart, from the very design of the venue to every detail on the menu.

Walking down the steps and into the beautifully appointed space, there’s something that feels warm and inviting, comforting even. Starting with the floor you walk upon, the message is clear – sustainability prevails in this place. Reclaimed Chinese terracotta flooring (from old Chinese village houses), upcycled plastic and paper coasters and menus, hand-dyed fabrics and eco-paints greet you before you even look at the super eco-friendly and ethically sourced menu. Stepping into the enchanting bar area at John Anthony feels like a decadent treat for the senses. Your eyes are drawn to the centerpieces of the bar, four 12-litre Gin Tubes, each containing house-infused gin with botanical blends from the Spice Routes. Tilt your head to look up at the beautifully displayed extensive gin library, containing upwards of 600 varieties. Sitting back into a rattan sofa, you can look through the classy recycled paper cocktail menu, a menu outlining the incorporation of their sustainable ethos into every detail of the creation of the select list of options.

The house-infused gins are featured in four signature Gin & Tonics on the beverage menu – one for each type of infusion. The shiso and elderflower G&T adds green tea, lime and mint for a refreshing starter cocktail while the sun-dried tomato G&T is a savoury treat with strong rosemary overtones. The pretty pink rhubarb and ginger G&T has the citrusy goodness of grapefruit alongside a subtle, mild ginger. Local honey adds to the sweetness of the strawberry and apple G&T which is complimented with blackcurrant and cardamom bitters.

Moving on past the G&T page, the signature cocktails are of an other-wordly uniqueness. The focus here is on ingredients from the old Silk Road trade routes as well as foraged items, sustainable plants and local specialties. The inventive, environmentally conscious mixology team couples leftover ingredients like fruit rinds and excess liquids to create cordials in addition to using them for edible garnishes to further limit waste. With any small amount of left over ingredients they may have, there is a composting machine behind the bar. The byproduct of the composter is transferred back to the farms used in sourcing some of the ingredients for the restaurant and bar. It all comes full circle. Beautifully.

Not to give away too much, but there’s a drink magically dusted with dehydrated strawberry and another using distilled sunflower. You simply must try them yourself. And then there’s the food. Some of the delicious items to try include, seaweed okra, Australian wagyu beef char siu with shredded scallion sauce, veggie & beetroot dumplings, free-range chicken siu mai with shrimp, fried vegetarian spring roll and the sweet & sour iberico pork with pickled ginger and dried tangerine peel. You will not be disappointed.

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