January 30, 2016

Lunch at the new three star

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We were catching up with a fellow bloggueur friend over lunch, and kinda throwing a few names around to find something we all could try together.  My one and only visit to T'ang Court (唐閣) had been over a weekend lunch years ago, and since it had been promoted to its new 3-star status only a couple of months ago, I figured it might be worthwhile to revisit...

I chose to leave the ordering up to my friends, although I did pick out a special seasonal item that I wanted to try.

Baked barbecued pork buns (酥皮叉燒餐包) - these were pretty good.

Golden-fried spring rolls stuffed with crab meat, avocado, and onions (牛油果蟹肉春卷) - pretty interesting choice of filling, as avocado isn't normally an ingredient used in traditional Chinese cuisine...  Nice and creamy inside.

Pan-fried green pepper filled with shrimp paste (煎釀虎皮尖椒)

Steamed shrimp, pork and bamboo shoot dumplings (筍尖鮮蝦餃) - I wasn't wearing my bifocals today, so I had a hard time looking at this up close to count the folds.  I thought I counted 11...  Nothing to complain about here in terms of the flavors or texture.

Baked stuffed crab shell with crab meat and onion (釀焗鮮蟹蓋) - this place is supposedly famous for the dish, so Hello Kitty wanted to try it.  Beneath the breaded crispy shell was a pile of shredded crab meat mixed with shredded onions.  The crab meat was deliciously sweet, and the onion was crunchier than the versions from other places around town.  Not bad at all, and somewhat of a bargain, relatively speaking...

Pan-fried rice flour rolls with home-made spicy sauce (XO醬煎腸粉) - this was the place that I first tasted the crunchy rice flour rolls all those years ago, and Chef Siu Hin Chi (蕭顯志) took with him to Duddell's.  Very delish, both due to the satisfying crunchy texture and the spicy kick.

There was a little fuck up with the next item.  I had seen a waiter carry what seemed to be a bowl of snake soup out from the kitchen, then somehow, before he reached me, he turned and set it down on the next table.  I was a little disappointed.

The Mainland Chinese guy at the next table didn't even blink, and started sprinkling powdered white pepper into the bowl.  Before he had a chance to dig his spoon in, though, a more senior waiter realized that something was wrong.  He grabbed the other waiter, double-checked the order in their system, and confirmed that... yep, they had delivered the bowl to the wrong table.

So the stupid waiter went back to the Chinese guy, told him that the bowl of snake soup wasn't his, and took it back to the kitchen.  As we were watching all this happen, all Hello Kitty and I were thinking was "They'd better not fucking give me that same bowl of soup with the white pepper!"

No one ever came over to apologize to ME for their fuck up.  Instead, I just had to sit around and wait for another bowl to be delivered to me.  One eventually showed up...

Braised snake soup with chicken julienne (太史五蛇羹) - first impression wasn't great.  It just looked like they added corn starch or something to thicken it.

The ingredients weren't sliced as finely as my favorite private kitchen.  They were maybe a little bit closer to what I had at Cuisine Cuisine (國金軒), where they are hand-shredded.

Since there was only one bowl, the condiments that came with it seemed kinda meagre.

To be honest, this was kinda disappointing.  The flavors weren't that deep, and there was definitely some white pepper and ginger in here.  (Did I actually get the bowl that was sent back to the kitchen?) There's no need to put ginger and white pepper in the bowl.  At all.  Unless I choose to do it.  That kick was totally unnecessary, and masked the real flavors of the soup.  For a whopping HKD 320 a bowl, it definitely wasn't worth it for me.

Steamed shrimp, pork, mushrooms and conpoy dumplings (瑤柱滑燒賣) - pretty decent.

Barbecued pork (蜜汁餞叉燒) - oh man, this just looked absolutely beautiful.  Clearly leaner at one end and fattier at the other.

I made sure to take pieces from the opposite ends to see the difference.  Sooooo yum!  Even the end that supposedly wasn't fatty was actually marbled.  Just incredibly tender in terms of texture, and really tasty.  For me, this was one of the best char siu in town.

Double boiled sweet osmanthus, dried longan and Chinese herbal tea (茨實圓肉桂花茶) - this wasn't what I expected at all.  I thought the soup would be much sweeter, and I had hoped there would be more osmanthus.  The foxnut seeds were kinda interesting.  Overall, though, this was decent and a relatively light end to the meal.

Other than the snake soup, I thought the quality of the rest of the dishes was pretty high.  Was it worthy of three stars?  I dunno.  One dim sum lunch wasn't enough to judge, and I'll just have to come back for dinner and check out the other stuff.  But I am hopeful...

1 comment:

Sue-Ann said...

The green pepper filled with shrimp paste then fried- that should be a nice dish to sample.


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