From the award-winning Mott 32 team comes an exciting new Chinese restaurant created to push the boundaries of culinary innovation and sustainability. Opening at the brand-new Lee Garden Three on September 21st, John Anthony will showcase its new 7,000 sq. ft. space with three custom-built barbeques, a highly customized kitchen and unique interior designed and built with sustainability in mind. The goal was to incorporate as many sustainable features as possible in hopes to set a new standard of environmental consciousness in restaurant design in Hong Kong.
Mott 32’s Group Executive Chef, Lee Man-Sing and John Anthony’s Executive Chef, Saito Chau have teamed up for this menu. John Anthony’s cuisine is inspired by the journeys along the Spice Routes that brought highly coveted commodities from the Far East into the Western World. Not only did Chinese markets flourish during this time, but an unintentional blend of culinary diversity also blossomed. The food at John Anthony thus celebrates the best of this world, with Cantonese favourites such as charcoal grill-roasted meats and handmade dim sum at its core, and different regional cuisines such as Szechuan, Hunan and Shandong heavily influencing the menu.
Experience three custom-built BBQ grills drawn from researching ancient tandoor ovens in Southwest China and traditional Cantonese barbecue methods. The Flat Bed BBQ, which will cook signature Char Sui dishes such as Iberico Presa Pork Char Siu, Australian Wagyu Beef Fillet Char Sui with Shredded Scallions and Grass-Fed Black Angus Beef Short Rib Char Siu, Served on Bone; The Top Load BBQ, specified for northern-spiced meats such as a Slow-Cooked Lamb Shoulder with Cumin Dry Rub; and The Kettle BBQ, which will cook John Anthony’s Signature Cantonese Goose in a traditional style, served with Dark Roasted Plum Sauce & Home-Pickled Cucumber.
The restaurant’s menu will also feature an extensive range of dim sum delicacies hand made every day, including Alaskan Crab Dumpling with Egg White & Shrimp Roe, Steamed Rice Roll with Soft-Shell Crab & Squid Ink and Black Truffle Vegetarian Siu Mai, to name a few.
At the heart of the venue itself is a sustainable message, which is weaved into every aspect. From using natural pigments such as indigo dye on the back bar drapery and plant-based interior paint, to upcycling wasted plastic and paper into coasters and menus, to tiling floors with reclaimed Chinese terracotta from old village houses, every element has been seen as an opportunity to drive an eco-friendly or ethical initiative. The restaurant stays energy conscious with energy-efficient light bulbs affixed to reclaimed metal or natural bamboo fixtures, and uses patented, eco-friendly water utilities in its kitchen to reduce energy usage. Even the restaurant staff’s uniforms have been created from “deadstock” fabric, which are textiles that would have otherwise been thrown away by factories.
With this deep appreciation for materials comes a parallel in the thoughtful consideration towards ingredients and cooking methods. The culinary team has paired the freshest ingredients found along the Spice Routes with the latest in modern cooking techniques to embrace a melting pot of influences, such as in the Razor Clams with White Vinegar & Pickled Peppercorn, the Szechaun Pan-Seared Scallops with Cucumber Salad, and the Slow-Cooked Wagyu Beef Cheek with Cold Watermelon & Chili Sauce. Though the focus remains Cantonese at heart, these dishes are unafraid of utilising chilies and spices from regions along the Northern spice trail, such as Szechuan. Traditional favorites are presented in a daring, nontraditional way to offer diners an extension to his or her palate’s imagination, such as in the Stir-Fried Leopard Coral Garoupa with Salted Fish, Peppercorn Oil and Dried Fish Chili, the Smoked Duck Eggs topped with Manchurian Roe and Hwa Tiao, and the Northern Red Stained Spicy Lamb Rack rubbed in Homemade Chili Powder.
The clear centerpieces of the bar are its 12-litre Gin Tubes, each containing gin that has been house-infused with a different blend of botanicals found along the Spice Routes. These infusions are featured in four signature Gin & Tonics on the beverage menu – one for each type of infusion. The mixology team also creatively harnesses leftover ingredients like fruit rinds and excess liquids to create cordials and edible garnishes, which are featured in signature cocktails like The Seafarer, made with Beefeater Gin, Seaweed Distillate, Cocchi Americano, Naked Campari, Beeswax, Amer Nouvelle & Aerated White Chocolate, or Broken Blossoms, a concoction of Goslings Rum, Camus VSOP, Five Flower Tea, Honeycomb, Lime, Pink Peppercorn & Grapefruit Bitters, or Mr. Wu’s Bubble Tea, made with Buffalo Trace Bourbon, Homemade Cornflakes Milk, Lady Grey Tea, Boba Pearls and Honey.
In addition to minimising waste in the bar area, the team has also implemented a composting system in its kitchen to prevent food waste. By composting recyclable food scraps, John Anthony reduces its food waste by over 80% as compared to the average non-composting restaurant. The restaurant also uses recyclable or fully biodegradable takeaway containers to provide guests a guilt-free dining experience from start to finish.
John Anthony will open its doors on September 21st, and is now taking dinner pre-bookings.