Hong Kong's M at the Fringe Bids Farewell to The Fringe

 

By LAWRENCE TAN

After 20 years in the weathered and battered confines of a former dairy farm and ice storage depot dating back to 1913, M at the Fringe will bid farewell to its charming Central residence at Hong Kong’s iconic Fringe Club at the end of this year.

It’s not curtains down for the celebrated restaurant though, as the closure was the result of lengthy and extensive renovations that would be implemented on the historic address to comply with new government regulations.

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Said its owner Michelle Garnaut: “We have been offered many locations but as yet have simply not found the right one to take M at the Fringe into the next chapter.”

While M may not have the historical eminence as its tenant, it is fair to say that M has been a culinary pioneer as far as the fine dining scene in Hong Kong is concerned.

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At a time when Hong Kong’s fine dining scene was largely, well, Cantonese fare, M was a “European” success founded on Australian grit and enterprise, when Garnaut flung open the doors in November 1989.

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Numerous awards followed, and a clientele list that counts local and Hollywood celebrities like Pierce Brosnan, Barry Humphries, Kate Moss, and Chow Yun-fat quickly establish M as one of the go-to places in Hong Kong.

Garnaut has since expanded her restaurant empire under the auspices of the M Restaurant Group, which now includes M on the Bund and the Glamour Bar in Shanghai, and most recently, Capital M in Beijing.

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Garnaut said: “We’ve seen it all, we’ve partied like it was 1997, gone through the turbulent years which followed the crash of summer 1997, bird flu, SARS and whatever else Hong Kong has thrown at us, and we’re still here and as strong as ever.”

“Of course it’s sad for all of us, our staff and our loyal patrons, the prospect of leaving our original Hong Kong home, but we look at this as an opportunity and not the end of our story.”

“We will continue to look for another special location to take M into a new era, and hopefully find our new home for another 20 years. Watch this space...”

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M Restaurant Group

 

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