Chicha, 26 Peel St., Central, Hong Kong, Hong Kong S.A.R., China
Nearest Train:Sheung Wan
Opening Hours:Mon-Sat noon-midnight
Chicha’s dim lights, wooden furniture and warm baritone colors are a stark contrast to the current trend of restaurants industrializing their looks with concrete accents and exposed ceilings. In that sense, Chicha doesn’t feel like a new restaurant at all.
Opened by resto veteran Concept Creations and backed by the Peruvian government, the restaurant’s credentials are strong, and we certainly weren’t disappointed with our recent Friday night dinner there. There are two sections to the restaurant: one is a proper dining section with long dinner tables; the other is a more casual bar space that faces a cozy open kitchen crammed with up to a dozen chefs.
The staff are knowledgeable and the service is generally spectacular. We started with a mixto ceviche of prawns, octopus, scallops and squid mixed with passionfruit, honey and ginger leche de tigre (aka the marinade), which was quite refreshing—although the leche de tigre combo kind of reminded us of the syrup used in canned fruits, which sadly tricked our brains to think that Del Monte was involved. The seafood causas with the mashed potato base and creamy sauces were a gooey mess of goodness, while the hard-shelled Peruvian fish tacos with aji rocoto (Peruvian chilies) provided mouthful after mouthful of crunch, zest and fresh meat.
Our main of roast duck arroz looked fantastic, and the duck meat was soft and juicy—but the soft, chewy skin was a surprise since we were expecting something crispy from the looks of it. The dessert of cinnamon sponge cake topped with caramel, pisco syrup and strawberry compote is a must, especially if you like a bit of a kick with your sweets.