Header image courtesy of Braza Churrascaria (via Facebook)
Originally published by Annette Chan. Last updated by Tommy Yu.
From tacos to empanadas, ceviche, and churrasco, Latin America has given us a lot in terms of food. And while there are not as many representatives of the continent’s varying cuisines as we would like, the restaurants we do have in Hong Kong are—thankfully—doing their home countries proud. Read on for our favourite places to get Latin American food in Hong Kong (sans Mexican, because that’s a whole other post… but here’s a Taco Tuesday round-up!).
For Peruvian comfort food that hits the spot every time, head to Chullschick. This diminutive shop on Graham Street is known for its perfectly golden-brown Peruvian rotisserie chicken—a.k.a. pollo a la brasa, which is marinated in dark beer, herbs, and spices for two days before being roasted. Its menu is enormous—impressively, everything is made in-house—but don’t leave without trying the seabass ceviche ($148), which can be upgraded to a larger size.
Chullschick, Shop D, 45–53 Graham Street, Central | (+852) 2668 3948
As the home of the largest Japanese population outside Nippon, it’s no wonder that Brazil has its unique own take on Japanese cuisine, a.k.a. Nipo-Brasileiro. Uma Nota (which you are sure to recognise from its Elsa Jean de Dieu mural, even if you’ve never eaten there) specialises in Nipo-Brasileiro street food inspired by the founders’ trips to São Paolo’s Japanese neighbourhood, Liberdade. Go for the coxinhas de frango ($80) and the dadinhos de tapioca ($70) for a Japanese spin on some of Brazil’s most famous finger foods.
Uma Nota, 38 Peel Street, Central | (+852) 2889 7576
As per its name, Buenos Aires Polo Club is a homage to Argentina’s capital city, as well as the country’s status as the international capital of polo—fittingly, the décor has an equestrian-inflected members’ club vibe. The menu features a number of traditional Latin American dishes, including morcilla (Argentine blood sausage; $78), spinach and provolone empanadas ($78) and of course, a selection of Argentine beef.
And what a selection it is—from 10-ounce tenderloins to 300-ounce t-bones, they have it all. The same approach is applied to the condiment menu, which includes standards like mustard and horseradish as well as some more Latin American choices like the deliciously herbaceous and zingy chimichurri, as well as fresh salsa criolla.
Buenos Aires Polo Club, 7/F, LKF Tower, 33 Wyndham Street, Central | (+852) 2321 8681
For a taste of Nikkei cuisine, which marries the culinary traditions of Peru with Japan, head to Tokyolima (the brunch is particularly good). Its tiradito mar y tierra ($298)—a combination of flavourful lean tuna, seared beef tenderloin, passionfruit tiger’s milk, ginger oil, and herbs—is a perfect encapsulation of Tokyolima’s playful fusion cuisine, while the “Ki-mo-chi” chicken karaage ($120) is one of the best fried chooks in the city, in our opinion.
Tokyolima, Car Po Commercial Building, 18–20 Lyndhurst Terrace, Central | (+852) 2811 1152
For classic Brazilian churrasco (barbecue), your best—and only—option in Hong Kong is Braza Churrascaria, which free-flow fanatics will recognise as the place with the all-you-can-eat meat. In keeping with Brazilian churrascarias, the meat here is directly sliced onto your plate by roving servers, who will keep bringing food over until you signal that you are full using a colour-coded coaster. And it gets better—on top of the buffet meal, you can purchase a free-flow drinks package to get unlimited caipirinhas (you can also get house wines, beers, and non-alcoholic beverages, but we’re mostly here for the caipirinhas).
Braza Churrascaria, 3/F, Grand Progress Building, 15–16 Lan Kwai Fong, Central | (+852) 2890 9268
With an emphasis on native ingredients, a full ceviche menu, and thoughtful takes on traditional dishes, Ichu is modern Peruvian food done right. Its beef tenderloin tartare ($150) is a favourite, while the soft shell crab causa ($140) puts an Asian twist on the classic layered dish. Don’t forget to drop by the beautiful terrace for a drink before you go.
Ichu, 3/F, H Queen’s, 80 Queen’s Road Central, Central | (+852) 2477 7717
On a lookout for something uniquely Chilean? Astra is the place. Helmed by veteran chef Francisco Araya, who leverages his Michelin-starred culinary experience to shape the exquisite experience, the restaurant specialises in the unique asado grilling method to offer a char-grilled menu with an authentic Patagonian touch.
Aside from grilled meats, other delicacies are also featured to accommodate different palates and dietary preferences. For a fulfilling spread, order the 10-ounce Argentinian rib-eye ($288) and the orzo pasta ($128) with homemade tomato sauce and Grana Padano from the lunch menu. For sharing options, consider the wet-aged one-kilogramme Argentinian t-bone ($1,098) or the 350-gramme Iberian pork shoulder “secreto” ($428).
Astra, G/F, The Centrium, 60 Wyndham Street, Central | (+852) 2668 2348