You can never go wrong with French food and especially not in Hong Kong. The French have the biggest expat population in the 852 and we are seeing more and more French restaurants and bars opening in the city. I have been hearing some rave reviews from friends who have visited this hidden spot, so I was keen to check out what all the fuss was about.
What makes the les Fils a Maman’s concept different from any other French bistro is its throwback to the good old days and an aim to provide (French) mum’s cooking, hence the apt name ‘Mama’s boys’. Upon entering the restaurant, you are transported to the 4 French owners’ childhoods with Asterix and Obelix comics and toy cars, photos of the owners in the 80s lining the walls as well as some very cheeky ones in the bathroom plus a huge blackboard just like you are back in school. You almost forget your own childhood as you are transported into theirs. The décor is very unique and provides a lovely journey of nostalgia.
Very thoughtfully, the menu is also designed to look like your beloved maths homework with puzzles in between sections as well as a very useful map of French wine regions.
My first outing to Les Fils was for a dinner for 2. We ordered the quiche of the day, the tuna and the lamb. All were tasty dishes, although I recall the lamb being a bit tough and the quiche slightly underwhelming. It was a nice touch getting some sweets (pick ‘n’ mix style) after dinner though!
My second outing was during a girlie catch up lunch where we selected the 3 course lunch for 170 HKD each (2 courses are 130 HKD) with the seabass ceviche with coriander & ginger for starters and the cod fillet Fish of the day with roasted potatoes for our entreés.
The ceviche was presented in a small cup, suitable size for a starter. The fish taste was slightly overpowered by the ginger flavours but overall this was a satisfying dish.
Our fish of the day was absolutely spot on! The cod was placed on a bed of not so boring salad, the tomatoes were so juicy and they added a few cubes of feta cheese. The cod itself was both seasoned and cooked perfectly. Rejoice! They added amazing roasted potatoes to the fish dish!
My friend who absolutely detests desserts ordered us the almond, berry & raspberry Tart and the white chocolate & strawberry crème. The almond tart tasted homemade and just sweet enough, I am not 100% convinced that the berries complemented the nuttiness of the tart. Maybe some pears or no fruit at all would have made this dessert better.
The white chocolate and strawberry crème dessert was slightly tart and saccharine for my taste. The white chocolate on the top was probably the best part, although I still feel this dessert needs a lot of work and I didn’t really feel that it was homely or French.
Verdict: Les fils à Maman has a fabulous setting and I can see why it has lasted so long in Hong Kong, however I am a bit baffled as to why they would serve dishes that to my knowledge are not typically French or synonymous with Mum’s cooking such as ceviche and tomato mozzarella salad. There seems to be a slight mismatch with the décor/concept and the menu. Also sadly, the service was quite slow and as we were the only patrons in there for lunch with a set menu, we expected a quicker turnaround. I wouldn’t say I didn’t enjoy my experiences at Les Fils however my favourite French spots will still remain as Le Bouchon, La Cabane, Figaro and Saint Germain.
LG/F 75 Hollywood Road, Central, HK
Ph: 852 2871 0045