Le Comptoir’s Silencio is Hong Kong’s first and only contemporary izakaya featuring live jazz music. Taking the space which formerly housed the post-work drinking spot, Lily & Bloom, the restaurant recreates the well-loved Japanese tradition, with a few modern twists. First off, the venue features provocative artwork by renowned Tokyo artist Tomoo Gokita, a cult figure back in Japan, and secondly, the live jazz, which fills the ambiance in the room (Note: due to government restrictions, live music is currently not available). Then, of course, the main attraction—Silencio’s izakaya menu. We stopped by the drinking-and-dining den to try the new menu, curated by the talented Chef Yong Soo Do. Here’s what we thought…
Image courtesy of Mr Ping | Cha Siu Papers Times
Silencio is nestled within LKF Tower, taking over the space which previously housed Lily & Bloom, which used to be a two-floor establishment. Beneath Silencio lies Poem, another Le Comptoir venue. It’s easy to get to this area, and if you’re familiar with the Hong Kong nightlife scene, then you’d know that Lan Kwai Fong is a go-to destination for late-night owls. Although the party district is only minutes away, it doesn’t feel like you’re in LKF, thanks to the secluded setting and dark atmosphere.
Reimagining Japanese izakaya settings, Silencio showcases the traditional vibrant ambiance of the drinking spots and updates it with art, live jazz, and an exciting menu influenced by international flavours. The artwork found throughout the restaurant is by Tokyo-born cult figure Tomoo Gokita, a contemporary Japanese artist best known for his monochrome abstract figurative (and provocative) paintings and prints. His signature compositions include pieces based on found photographs and old magazines featuring a central figure whose face is obliterated. In the private dining room, childlike drawings are hung on the wall, followed by a central masterpiece, showcasing the demonic figure with a woman.