August 1, 2009

Entertaining tourists

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A couple of ex-colleagues are in town from Taipei, shopping up a storm. I thought I'd take them to sample some good, solid Cantonese fare. Island Tang was just the place.

We ordered a bunch of dim sum to start: steamed pork bun (叉燒包), steamed shrimp dumplings (筍尖蝦餃), steamed pork and scallop dumplings (蟹子燒賣) and pan-fried bean curd skin rolled with shrimp mousse (蝦漿百花腐皮卷).

There were also a few starters, like their classic char siu (叉燒) that is just amazingly succulent and tender, without an excessive amount of fat (pity...) The preserved duck eggs accompanied with pickled ginger (松花皮蛋酸薑) was only so-so...the century eggs are still better at Yung Kee. The deep-fried frog legs with chili garlic and seasoning salt (椒鹽田雞腿) were pretty tasty.

The pan-fried prawns with premium soy sauce and garlic (蒜香頭抽皇煎中蝦) were decent, but we waited a little before digging into these and they taste best when piping hot.

I expected the ladies to appreciate the deep-fried de-boned duck coated with taro crust (荔茸香酥鴨), and they did. All that taro is pretty irresistable. But somehow the execution tonight wasn't quite there... the duck meat itself wasn't quite as tasty as what I had before.

A plate of choy sum (清炒菜心) later, we're full and done with dinner. My friends liked the food, which I always thought was pretty solid at this establishment. This time around, though, we give dessert a pass and head for the second round.

We went to Sevva for a round of drinks so we could continue to catch up. Since we didn't have dessert with dinner, I thought we could sample some of the yummy cakes here. The Co Co Cake was pretty darn good...with coconut flakes and coconut cream in a light, fluffy cake. Everyone loved it. The chocolate fudge cake with orange marmlade was as good as I remembered. It was definitely a good way to end the evening.


Lambda said...

My experience at Island Tang wasn't that good. The almond paste I ordered was made from instant mix....

e said...

great timing...going there tomorrow.

by the way peter..our visit to el bulli was fantastic last month. IMO some dishes worked and some didn't but the whole experience was amazing.

one interesting thing is that some of the dishes were repeated from last matter to me since I didn't go last year.


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