Sunday, December 11, 2016

Sunday Yumcha: Zi Yat Heen

Sunday afternoon we made our way to Four Seasons Macao for lunch at their Chinese restaurant Zi Yat Heen. We have been here once many many years ago when we stayed at the hotel over Chinese New Year holidays and we were curious to try the place again, this time courtesy of their PR team who made the arrangement.

The hotel is one of the longest serving luxury hotels in the Cotai strip, tucked away from the always-crowded complex developed by Sands which also houses The Venetian Macao, the newly-completed Parisian (with the real-size replica of Eiffel Tower right outside), plus the mega shopping mall and gaming floors. We felt the restaurant didn't change much since we were last here - just round the corner from the lobby reception with elegant decor - and we were seated straight away near to the entrance in a quieter section when we arrived.

We had a rather sumptuous lunch, beginning with a couple dimsum items, moving on to a few dishes served in individual portion and then desserts. I didn't think much of the steamed rice rolls with crispy seafood rolls when they arrived, thinking it's probably just like a glorified "ja leung" (a local street food with deep-fried dough wrapped in steamed rice rolls) but it was very delicious with a mild soy sauce drizzled on top.

The restaurant was probably the first to introduce the baked whole abalone tart to this side of the shore, after the dish was made famous by Lung King Heen at Four Seasons Hong Kong. The version here was just as good as I remembered - the abalone may appear a bit small but it tasted great with a good bouncy bite with finely-diced chicken meat and rich gravy underneath. I could live with the tart shell a bit more buttery and fluffy but it was still good.

A specially-made appetizer platter was next, with suckling pigs, marinated jellyfish, char-siu and crispy scallops served in a big plate. The char-siu was not the type with a charred crust, but I like the fatty texture with the sweet maltose glaze. A few other restaurants offer excellent char-siu in Macau but I reckon this is among of the best we have tried. The two small pieces of suckling pig, garnished with gold flakes, had one the crispiest skins, perfect with just a small dab of hoisin sauce on top.

The steamed crab claw with egg custard was slightly different than the similar dish offered elsewhere – to start, the crab was served with mashed shrimp paste wrapped around, added to the overall texture and generous amount of caviar, added to the flavor. The egg custard underneath was milder but very silky.

Our last savory course of fish broth with spinach-stuffed bamboo pith was another dish I love. Almost only the leafy bit of spinach was used, giving this a smooth texture and stuffed inside the bamboo pith, and the fish broth was creamy with distinct flavor from the whole white peppers. Dessert was a bowl of steamed egg white and milk custard with mashed taro on top. It’s delicate and very soft – almost watery – but with very rich flavor.

Our non-stop eating in Macau continued...

More photos available at

When? December 4 2016
Where? Zi Yat Heen, Four Seasons Macao, Taipa, Macau
Menu Highlights? Baked Whole Abalone Puff with Diced Chicken, Steamed rice rolls with crispy seafood rolls

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