Opening in November 2015, Le Garçon Saigon is the newest restaurant by Black Sheep Restaurants. The tenth venture by the renowned hospitality group, Le Garçon Saigon celebrates the vibrant and fresh flavours of Saigonese cuisine in a bright and welcoming space that evokes the sophistication of a chic Parisian brasserie. Conveniently located in the charming Star Street neighbourhood, the establishment is the perfect addition to the area’s quaint boutiques and eateries.
A concept created by Black Sheep Restaurant Co-Founders Christopher Mark and Syed Asim Hussain, Le Garçon Saigon is simultaneously inspired by traditional Vietnamese flavours and the restaurateurs’ incessant passion for innovation. “We want to bring Hong Kongers the Vietnamese flavours we crave through authentic, regional dishes that have been enhanced by premium ingredients and modern cooking techniques,” says Mark. Guests can expect Vietnam’s typically complex and fragrant flavours elevated with exceptional proteins in dishes such as Wagyu Beef Tri-tip ‘Bo Liu’ (HK$138) and Kurobuta Pork ‘Thit Nuong’ (HK$138).
Helmed by Chef Bao La of Ho Lee Fook fame, his story is a charming mother-son tale. Growing up in his parents’ Vietnamese restaurant in Australia, family recipes and cooking methods formed the foundation of the chef’s culinary repertoire. Committed to preserving traditional techniques, his now inimitable style showcases a distinct genre of southern Vietnamese cuisine with une touche Française.
Large floor-to-ceiling patio doors open up onto a bustling square revealing a bright and clean 70-seat dining room that welcomes guests for food and drinks. Lofty pressed ceilings, vintage Indochine accents and intricately-tiled floors create an enchanting atmosphere. A well-stocked and prominent bar reinforces the French brasserie culture of casual drinking with friends, family and colleagues.
Paying homage to Saigon’s colonial influence, plush banquettes, brass detailing and intricate mosaic floors are juxtaposed by eccentric hand painted murals, distressed concrete walls and art deco light fixtures. Languid ceiling fans nod to life in Vietnam and add an element of romantic nostalgia to the comfortable yet sophisticated space.
Presented like a traditional brasserie and best enjoyed family-style, the menu showcases an unexplored genre of Vietnamese cuisine. Divided into appetisers, entrees and sides as per a classic grill house offering, a meal begins with selections from the Les Petits section of the menu, which features Vietnamese favourites elevated to a new level. The pièce de résistance is a selection of hearty grilled plates from Les Grillades, served with flavourful Saigonese condiments comprised of fresh ingredients and dipping sauces, accompanied by bright and fragrant side dishes. Simple and refreshing regional Vietnamese desserts round out the meal.
Wholesome fare is complemented by an approachable and well-curated list of French wines, in addition to a menu of classic French cocktails, liqueurs and digestifs.
A soundtrack of gypsy jazz, a genre that characterised bistros and cafes in 1930s-50s Paris, and a mixture of French pop and rock, plays throughout dinner. The tempo picks up as the evening progresses, with French house from the 1990s onwards playing late into the night.
Open for dinner first with all-day dining to begin early next year, Black Sheep Restaurants’ latest concept takes Vietnamese cuisine far beyond pho and spring rolls, with a forward-thinking menu and classic Parisian design that will redefine Vietnamese cuisine in Hong Kong.