If I had to choose a last meal it would probably be something Italian, and it would most definitely include arancini – those bite-sized, deep-fried balls of rice and cheese that are just so delizioso. So, as soon as I saw the arancini bucket ($75) on the menu at Pirata, I was sure I’d died and gone to heaven; they’re a delicacy not often found in this town. We had them for starters, along with very fresh and tasty tomato bruschetta ($55), and the vitello tonnato ($100) – veal, tuna, mayonnaise and caper berries.
While the tasting menu looked very appealing, we chose to be a little bit sensible and went for the à la carte pasta instead. All of the pasta is made in-house, using flour and eggs imported from Italy. Another personal favourite, tagliolini with white truffle sauce and shaved black truffles ($130), was very good, but I did have to ask for black pepper and extra parmesan to really give it that authentic kick that I was looking for. The crab tortelloni with cherry tomato and basil sauce ($190) was delicately flavoured, allowing the crab to shine through. The portions were also generous without being overwhelming, and many of the pastas are available in half portions so you can leave room for other delights. On the side we shared a simple garden greens mixed salad ($70), which was very fresh, and perfectly dressed.
The dessert menu features Italian classics like tiramisu and panna cotta, but we went for the chocolate lava cake. It takes a little longer to prepare but was well worth the wait. The wine list is outstanding, with a few wines on there that we’ve tried in Italy but haven’t been able to find in Hong Kong – a definite plus. Despite being on the 30th floor of a high-rise in Wan Chai, Pirata offers a rustic and traditional Italian vibe, and if you block out the view you could almost be in a classy trattoria anywhere in Italy.
30/F, 239 Hennessy Road, Wan Chai
2887 0270 | pirata.hk