Why Quinary Is Still The Go-To Cocktail Bar In HK

A consistent winner in this rapidly changing city.

There’s certainly no shortage of fabulous drinking holes in Hong Kong, considering it’s home to 8 out of Asia’s 50 Best Bars on this year’s list. But if there’s one bar that’s managed to be a consistent winner in this rapidly changing city, it’s Quinary. With an award-winning team that’s continually pushing the boundaries of molecular mixology, any booze aficionado can always fall back on Quinary for exciting new concoctions and masterful cocktails. 

Quinary
Antonio Lai. PHOTO Nadia Cho

Quinary was the very first venue created by bartender extraordinaire, Antonio Lai. Antonio is nothing short of a legend in Hong Kong’s hospitality industry, considering he personally built much of the city’s booming cocktail bar scene. Since opening Quinary in 2012, he’s added The Envoy, Origin, VEA, Room 309 and Draftland HK under his belt. But Quinary is where Antonio’s concept of multisensory mixology was born, and it’s still the main stage to showcase his most innovative developments. 

“The concept was a good quality cocktail bar by using culinary skills and techniques to create drinks we call multisensory drinks, that are related to the five senses. For example, the Earl Grey Caviar Martini. We actually use spherification to mix tea with the caviar and we also make like a tea air. So you can see, you can smell and you can actually taste the texture of the caviar together with the drink. We call it a drinking experience.” – Antonio Lai, Bartender Extraordinaire

Quinary
Molecular Mixologists. PHOTO Nadia Cho

The bar itself is set up more like a laboratory, while the lounge space is straightforward and intimate. Dark modernist furnishings populate the perimeter around a long black no-nonsense bar. The space is meant to be simplistic and comfortable so that attention is focused on the drinks (and the hot tattooed bartenders making them). Behind the bar, all sorts of unconventional gadgets are present for distilling, carbonating, centrifuging, purifying and smoking drinks. 

Quinary’s incredibly well-rounded and extensive menu will make even the most discerning cocktail drinker swoon. The cocktail list, which spans over ten pages, offers never-before-seen options for every flavor profile in their most elevated form. The menu doesn’t shy away from offbeat ingredients like glutinous rice syrup, dried shrimp and umami shaoxing wine, particularly for the Seasonal cocktails. Patrons will get to imbibe exciting new conceptions like Ardberg 10 year old whisky mist, Jack Daniels soaked wood chips and vanilla coffee bean slow-cooked vodka. No matter how unconventional the preparation or the ingredients, every drink is a coherent and polished product. 

Quinary
Intimate setting. PHOTO Nadia Cho

Some of our favorite elixirs include: 

The Earl Grey Caviar Martini

The mac daddy of Quinary’s signature drinks, for which people travel far and wide to try. Refreshing little Earl Grey infused caviar bubbles burst in your mouth as you sip on Ketel One with elderflower through puffs of foam made with tea air. 

Quinary
Earl Grey Tea Caviar. PHOTO Nadia Cho

 

Quinary
Earl Grey Tea Air Foam. PHOTO Nadia Cho

 

Quinary
Earl Grey Caviar Martini. PHOTO Nadia Cho

Whose Goose

A fizzy tropical number featuring Grey Goose, Bacardi 8, Cointreau and Antonio’s favorite combination of passionfruit with cola. 

Quinary
Whose Goose. PHOTO Nadia Cho

Brothers in Arms

A striking choice for anyone who likes their drinks dry, earthy and boozy, featuring Amaro Montenegro mixed with ginger, lime and almond flavors. 

Quinary
Brothers in Arms. PHOTO Nadia Cho

Pan

A colorful and intriguing concoction of Don Julio blanco, vermouth bianco, lemongrass, pear and purple begonia syrup which is then topped with spiced pear, dill and ginger sorbet. 

Quinary
Pan. PHOTO Nadia Cho

The neverending drive to push the boundaries of molecular mixology explains Quinary’s perpetual presence on every top bars list in Hong Kong. Antonio Lai’s original lab for multisensory cocktails is still a consistent winner, seven-and-a-half years after opening. Even for the pickiest cocktail aficionados around the world, Quinary is always there to show you the latest and greatest in contemporary mixology. 

Nadia Cho

Communications Associate

Nadia reps Team JST traveling the world in search of exclusive features and online via JST's social media platforms. You can find her exploring metropolitan cities or lounging on tropical beaches.

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