Hong Kong: Celebrity Chef and Ex-Rugby Player Team Up to Open Italian Eatery in SoHo

Food and Beverage

Italian Celebrity Chef Fabrizio Napolitano and ex-professional rugby player Ricky Cheuk team up to open Hong Kong’s first meatball bar on the outskirts of trendy SoHo in Central.

You remember Fabrizio Napolitano, the celebrated Italian chef that headed the kitchen at Goccia Ristorante e Bar Terrace for 9 years until it closed last summer!

He has teamed up with Ricky Cheuk, who played rugby professionally before working in finance. He is now pursuing a career in food and beverage and is involved with 4 different restaurants and bars in Hong Kong.

Together the two have opened a self-described ‘artisanal Italian eatery’ named NOM, which stands for ‘Not Only Meatballs’.

As the name implies, meatballs are featured – but there are other Italian dishes on the menu, as well.

I was lucky enough to attend a media event at which we got to preview some of the dishes. This is what we were served:

  • Chicken meatballs
  • Classic meatballs
  • Lamb meatballs
  • Wagyu beef sliders
  • Truffle pizza

So what were my favourites?

Everything was yummy, but I liked the classic beef meatballs with Neapolitan ragout served on paccheri pasta stuffed with ricotta cheese best!

I also quite enjoyed the Wagyu beef sliders, which are usually referred to as ‘mini hamburgers’ in Hong Kong, as well as that mouth-watering truffle pizza.

These are some of the dishes that we DIDN’T get the try: suckling pig meatballs with celeriac puree and seafood meatballs with clams and mussels with crispy baked bread on the side.

Would love to try the former, but I’d give the latter a miss. I’m not a big fan for clams or mussels.

Meats are sourced from small family businesses in New Zealand and Australia. Seafood is mostly wild and sustainably produced, from Italy, New Zealand, Finland, Spain, and Australia.

The restaurant offers a ‘wide selection of organic and biodynamic wines’, which can be ordered by the bottle or by the glass.

And the yummy cocktails we were served were pure dynamite!


NOM – Not Only Meatballs, 1/f, 1-5 Elgin Street, Central, Hong Kong. Telephone: +852 2540 7988.

The restaurant is located on the outskirts of SoHo, within walking distance of Central, the Central MTR station, the Mid-Levels Escalator, and Sheung Wan. It is a shore taxi ride from Western, Admiralty, Wanchai, Causeway Bay, the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre, and other points on Hong Kong Island.

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