G28, Tsim Sha Tsui Centre, 66 Mody Road,, Tsim Sha Tsui
+852 2724 0707
In a city where endless openings and closings are the norm, restaurants that have been around for over a decade are few and far between. Opened in 2006, LaVilla has stood the test of time, retaining its loyal following over the years due to a mixture of its balmy waterside location, delicious and affordable Mediterranean-inspired fare, and charming resort-like hospitality.
If you’re strolling along the Tsim Sha Tsui promenade, LaVilla is hard to miss – its open-air facade and spacious patio invites passers-by to stop and soak in the sun and atmosphere with a cocktail or two accompanied by delicious Mediterranean tapas and superb seafood.
The latter is courtesy of Executive Chef, Matthieu Bonnier, a native of Brittany in France – a region known for its history of fishing and fresh seafood, prized around the world. At LaVilla, Matthieu takes his enthusiasm for classic recipes from the region and combines it with his extensive experience working in seafood restaurants – most recently at IFC’s French Window Brasserie and Bar – to deliver a menu rich in the treasures of the ocean.
As you wade through the extensive menu, the first order of business is to order yourself a refreshing tropical-inspired cocktail. The ruby red Strawberry Daiquiri is a favourite and is splashed with rum and fresh strawberry juice, while the Sea Breeze should transport you straight to the coast of Brittany with its mix of vodka, cranberry and grapefruit for a sweet-and-sour tipple.
Whether you’re a party of two or a table of 10, the seafood platters are a must-order to dive into the fresh bounty of the sea, from meaty sea whelks to succulent king prawns, brown tourteau crabs and up to eight varieties of premium oysters daily. If you’re looking to splurge, add a serving of caviar served LaVilla style with a mix of egg yolks, shallots, parsley, crab meat and black truffle mayo, topped with a generous spoonful of rich and briny roe.
Starters are prepared in the classical French way, from golden brown sauteed frog legs to gratinated snails baked in herbed garlic butter to crisp crab cakes drizzled with pesto and balsamic reduction. If you’re feeling particularly indulgent, the duck foie gras makes for a sumptuous mid-meal treat, served with tart onion and raspberry jam on buttery toasted brioche.
Don’t be tempted to throw in the towel now. The main courses are worth saving your appetite for: dig into slow-braised Burgundy beef cheek, tender French duck leg confit, pan-fried salmon, sea bass and more, and a seafood paella stained yellow with saffron and chock full of shrimp, mussels, calamari, scallops, king prawns and barramundi.
With hunger sated, take some time for a leisurely amble up and down the Tsim Sha Tsui waterfront promenade. After an hour of walking the along the harbour, you might want to head back to LaVilla for an evening nightcap – with the picturesque view and street-side patio great for stretching your legs, there’s no better place on the waterfront for watching the sun dip below the horizon.