So the young folks in the lab decided to go for a CNY lunch the wednesday before chu yi, and we wound up here (about $4+ by cab from the office). We always come here with LM, who really likes their signature dishes :P When I showed L the photos from lunch he said he could probably guess what we were going to order.
They’re really good at butter pork ribs:
Pork ribs coated in a milk powder mixture with butter, very fragrant and somewhat sweet, like cereal prawns but without the cereal! We always order this when we come here and it’s always very nicely done.
Another really popular favourite is the hum in garlic and chilli. I haven’t figured out if the cockles are cooked or not (I suppose at least poached, because the shells are open and there’s no other way to open them) but if I’m not wrong they are still a little bloody. This is served cold and I would imagine very shiok with a beer. Cockle lovers can polish off an entire plate of these by themselves, no problem. It’s about $6.
I tried their sweet and sour pork for the first time – not bad, but definitely not as innovative as the pork ribs. The corn starch batter around the pork was a little thick.
The hotplate tofu was pretty good, but nothing spectacular. The egg layer at the bottom of the hot plate was pretty thick and somewhat overdone, if that’s possible.
We ordered some sliced fish yee mee which I didn’t try, but people seemed to enjoy this.
The three egg spinach is also another crowd pleaser, if you’re not watching your cholesterol. People are divided as to whether you’re supposed to eat the “chap” that comes with the veggies :P
I really liked the herbal chicken – no idea how they manage to cook it so quickly and so tenderly – do they just have bunches and bunches of precooked chicken wrapped in aluminium and PVC paper? It was pretty amazing – took < 15 mins to serve up. When I steam herbal chicken it takes me 2.5 hrs – perhaps there is some quick cheat using a pressure cooker?
Their sambal kangkong is pretty chinese style (not enough sambal) – probably you’d get more sambal at a place more notorious for its seafood. It was decent though, especially for people who don’t eat the san dan cai (me).
We also got a plate of yusheng to lo hei which was a total rip off at $33. So this is not relevant to anyone else unless they come here during CNY – don’t order the yusheng! Still, people had a good time redistributing the veggies all over the table.
The service here is pretty sucky I think (standard for a zhi char restaurant), and they seat people really close to each other. The food is good and probably they do the best of its kind for their specialties – so you just gotta look past things like ambience and crappy service. Next to the establishment (Commonwealth branch) is a food centre (on the 2nd storey) which sells chng tng and also soy milk with azuki beans :P