Saturday, 29 May 2010

Binge Hong Kong - Portuguese fare in the heart of Hong Kong!

So you did not make it to Macau for the recent long weekend and you have no intention of jostling with the Aunties on the ferry to Macau during the coming Fathers'Day weekend. But you have managed to get on the MTR to Central and find yourself aimlessly wandering in Lan Kwai Fong at just about lunchtime. Well, head to the 8th floor of the LKF Tower above the swanky Lan Kwai Fong Hotel (not to be mistaken for the Lan Kwai Fong Hotel in SoHo, a few streets away) where you can tuck into some authentic Portuguese fare. SIMPLYFAB was asked to check out Casa Lisboa, a new colonial-style cosy Portuguese eatery opened by the same folks who own the Imperial Kitchen, Eighteen Brook Cantonese Cuisine and Ole Spanish Restaurant and Wine Bar.

The Executive Chef here, Martinho Moniz has bagged several notable European awards in Portugal and through Europe for his creativity in combining traditional Portuguese cooking with modern elements, all the time using Portuguese ingredients flown in from Portugal to keep the taste authentic. The menu offers good variety and a long list of traditional Portuguese favorites.

We started with a selection of home made bread baked in their very own bakery and a selection of four different types of Portuguese cheese. All best downed with a glass of their excellent Sangria which served in a good sized glass and was full bodied rather than watered down (unlike many restaurants here that I won't name).

The starters landed 50-50 with me. The Pork Sausage Flambe or Chourico as its called was tough on the chew (think leathery) and a bit too fatty for my liking. Not on my re-order list but perhaps this was a matter of personal taste. 
I was however most suitably impressed by the house specialty a Bacalhau Cream Crunchy Croquette. Well presented, this rich and creamy croquette was just the right appetiser and served in the right proportion to whet your tastebuds and leave you wanting more. If you are a soup person, the restaurant serves a traditional green and vegetable soup made from potato and spinach.

We had a tasting portion of another restaurant specialty, a Roast Suckling Pig done Bairrada style which reminded me a little of a good German pork knuckle with its delicious crispy flavour. This was served cut into small squares with a side of chips that were a bit too soft for my liking. 

My favourite and something that I will definitely order when I come again is the Lobster Seafood Rice. It really looked alot like Spanish Paella but I would rate this better in many respects as it tastes like a lovely risotto done perfectly and with a more than generous serving of seafood rather than rice so you definitely get your value for money.

By this time, we were stuffed but of course I have never turned a good dessert down and there is a fine selection of Portuguese desserts at Casa Lisboa to ensure that sweet ending to your meal. We tried the Sweetened Biscuit with Egg and Cream and Portuguese Egg Pudding served with special house made cream.

8/F LKF Tower, 55, D'Arguilar Street, Central, Hong Kong.
Tel: +852 2905 1168

- Elaine


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