Linguini Fini (Restaurant Reviews Series)

New to the Restaurant Reviews Series? Have a look at the ReReM first.

What: Italian – Homemade Pasta & Pizza
Where: 49, Elgin St, Central, Hong Kong (map below)
Verdict: 12/20
Damages: HK$ 690.– for two pax (antipasti and pizza as described, 1 beer, 1 cocktail). All prices on the menu include the service charge.

Would I go back? Sure, why not: Liguini Fini is casual, easy, its patchy service is made up for by massive and well-made pizzas. People smile and everyone’s happy with an 18-incher. While I was not transported into a surreal emotional state of mind brought forth by the flavours, all was good and well and pairings of dish was easy because well-balanced.

Visited & Reviewed: September 2015

Linguini Fini is making history (sic): the first of a hopefully long series of restaurant reviews on my little website. No pictures in this review, future reviews may or may not feature any.

The restaurant enjoys a great location, and a sort of reputation on its own. First, it is sitting right in front of your feet when you start believing you are done with the world’s longest (really?) escalator – second, a number of friends mentioned it to me recently. 1.5 good reasons to check it out.

Liguini Fini Location

It was a Thursday evening, no reservations, we walked in at about 8pm and were promptly delivered to a rather good table. Drinks ordered (a cocktail and a beer). Beer came first, then came two glasses and a bottle of still water.

We ordered 2 antipasti and 1 pizza, the first of which –a Caprese salad – arrived faster than a TaoBao delivery. Decent, easy to share, correct tomatoes which is nice and a good serving of basile, also nice. A little extra olive oil, perhaps on the side? There are extra virgin fanatics out there who have to fulfill their needs (yes, we are still talking about oil…)

Buddy: “Would you have some salt and pepper please?”
Waiter: “Sure, here it is” (delivering at the instant the pepper mill)
Buddy: “Thanks, could I also have salt?”
Waiter: “Hold on, I’ll find one.”
(delivered within a minute)

Then came the cocktail, and wait – where’s that bottle of water now? Someone sneaked it away to make room for the HUGE pizza. 18” worth of dough, cheese, tomato sauce, meatball, etc. Meet the “Bronx”, announced for 30 minutes of foreplay before consumption, delivered in 14. Later the waitress would nicely comment that the oven is not very busy tonight so they could make it a little prompter than announced.

The pizza was really good. With so much meat on it I had anticipated that it will be super salty. It turned out to be well balanced. Dough was thin enough and tasty, especially these slightly burned crusts that everyone seems to love. Tomato sauce was of quality and although the meat was overcooked, the sauce got the balance in check again. Really nothing wrong with that pizza; yet, nothing transcending either.

Buddy: (referring to the second antipasti) “Where’s my sausage?”
Me: “Let’s see, they might have forgot it.”
Buddy: “Yeah, someone did that before.”
Me: “We’re not talking about the same sausage I hope.”

Count 4 minutes and 6 slices of a giant pizza later, then here comes the homemade spicy sausage. And spicy it was, which I love but that may not be for everyone, the menu was not very clear on the spiciness level (in fairness it does say ‘spicy’) so watch out for it if you are sensitive. Either way, it came on a nice serving of fried bell peppers – which levelled the spiciness – and was cooked through, consistent and tasty.

A word on the cocktail: it was well prepared. The beer hardly needs a mention and there was no complaints there.