36B Staunton Street, SoHo / 2899 2244 / facebook.com/flamingfrango
What’s it all about? If you can taste the zing of chicken prepared piri piri-style with that special blend of African chillies, perfected into a piquant sauce by the Portuguese as you are reading this, you might have just found your fix in Hong Kong.
The menu: Small plate options start with classic piri piri wings, nachos with pulled piri chicken and quesadillas as well as calamari. Now, our recommendation is that you try the oddly named chicken jam, which to us sounds incredibly unappealing but in fact was the exact opposite.
Littered with fresh chillies and a toasted crusty baguette, the chunky spreadable pate was the perfect way to open up the appetite. Although chicken is their big draw, they also serve a sirloin steak, salmon as well as a portobello burger if you’re just not in the mood for poultry. If it were up to us, we would go straight for an order of the piri piri full chicken and never look back.
Juicy, tangy and incredibly moreish, they have their house special down to a fine-fowl art. We also sampled the fried halloumi salad, pleasantly accented by tangs of fresh orange, lemon, red peppers and olives. We were impressed by the fresh vegetables –often so boring when dining out– that came with carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, zucchini and green beans; impossible to be bored with such variety. Shoestring fries, mash and rice are all tasty accompaniments to the chicken showstoppers.
The place: Comfy high tables in a simple and sociable setting with a few spots to sit outdoors and watch the thriving nightlife of Staunton and Elgin flow by. Spanish versions of old favourites like I Did It My Way provide a background ideal for digging in to a continental menu of spiced up flavours.
The drinks: We wouldn’t recommend the strange lemongrass and lychee colada, as this unusual combination is perhaps just a step too far into the peculiar mixes that are dotting the Hong Kong cocktail scene. There are plenty of other unique libations to lure us in next time, namely the black pepper raspberry martini and the strawberry and cardamom cooler. Drinks have a little way to go still.
The verdict: Delicious chicken and tonnes of fresh vegetables. We like!