Italian. 11/F, The L. Square, 459-461 Lockhart Rd., Causeway Bay, 2658-2128. If you seek out restaurants for food over ambience, you’ll feel right at home at Involtini, which serves up excellent handmade pastas crafted by ex- 8 1/2 Otto e Mezzo Bombana chef Jack Law.
HIT With eight years of experience in one of the greatest Italian kitchens in Hong Kong, you’d expect chef Jack’s handmade pastas to be pretty solid here—and you won’t be disappointed. The carbonara tagliolini ($148) boasts a glossy yellow sheen, rich and creamy with a slice of pancetta fat to ramp up the unhealthiness factor. We also tried the pork ragu tagliatelle ($168), which had wide ribbons cascading through a meaty ragu of roasted pork and mushrooms. The lack of color on the ragu made the appearance rather average; however, the flavors were bold and the sprinkling of fennel pollen on top an excellent addition. Our lamb ($270) featured two pistachio-crusted chops with a fava bean and mushroom mixture and potato slices. The lamb was cooked well, and the pistachio crust added a bright green pop of color— although not a whole lot of flavoring.
MISS Desserts are an after-thought, with only three choices available. We went for the dessert duo ($128) with yogurt panna cotta, tiramisu and gelato; the flavors were there, but we were hoping for a bit more excitement.
BOTTOM LINE A decent place to satisfy pasta cravings, although a touch of refinement could go a long way in making this a place we’d put on our regular restaurant rotation.
Open daily 11:30am-3pm, 6-10:30pm. $$$-$$$$