Thursday, April 26, 2018

Yumcha at Ritz Carlton Shenzhen

We spent the maximum amount of time in our hotel (up until when we were required to check out) chilling in our room and at the library before heading out for lunch during our staycation weekend in Shenzhen. It’s been a while since I last spent significant amount of time in Shenzhen and I am amazed at all the new hotel and restaurant openings in town for the last decade or so – still not at the same rate in the neighboring Macau but now they have all the global hotel brands you could think of making a presence here with different ranges from the most luxurious to the simple boutique hotels.

And we went for a dimsum lunch at a restaurant in one of the hotels. Ritz Carlton Shenzhen may not be the newest nor the most luxurious these days, but it’s conveniently located in the busiest part of the central business district and I have heard good things about their Chinese restaurant so I decided to check it out. While the newer Ritz Carlton properties (like the one in Hong Kong) featured a more contemporary, stylish decor, the one in Shenzhen (opened in 2009) represented more of the old-school design, with the lobby with marbled floor, large crystal chandeliers and spiral staircase.

But Xingli, their Chinese restaurant, has a more modern décor up on the 4th Floor, with the open but cozy dining area (and more private rooms hidden somewhere, I am sure). It seems to be popular on weekends but we still managed to get a table walking in without a reservation. Their menu geared towards classic Cantonese cuisine but with some specialty Szechaun dishes, and during the lunch service, they also offered a good variety of Cantonese and Chiuchow dimsum dishes.

With just the two of us we only managed to try a few dimsums and they were very decent. We began with a cold appetizer of pork knuckles with galangal and chili oil with the fatty meat cooked with the marinate of mashed galangal, cooled and cut into chunks, and served with coriander and a dressing with chili oil, soy sauce, rice wine and vinegar. It’s salivating with rich flavor from the seasonings and good collagen texture from the knuckle meat.

The Shenwan Barbecue Pork Bun was the baked style bun (as opposed to the more traditional steamed buns) which was just as popular these days. I preferred it to be served warmer like it’s just off the oven but the ones we had was a bit lukewarm, but the filling of sweet charsiu was good and I like the slightly crispy crust of the buns too.

The pair of steamed dumplings we ordered – the har-gau (or shrimp dumplings) and the chiuchow dumpling – certainly tasted better than their appearances. In both cases at first glance I thought their wrappers were too thick to my liking, but turned out I was deceived by its rather creamy color. They were indeed of the right thickness and properly done. Same with the beef rice rolls – we had an excellent beef dinner the previous evening, and here the beef filling in the rice rolls were just as good, with rich flavor and a slightly bouncy texture with some crunchiness from the bits of water chestnut mixed in.

And we finished with a simple dessert of steamed red date cake, served in a fancy leaf shape hot off the steamer. Previously we have enjoyed excellent dimsum lunches in Ritz Carlton at both their Hong Kong and Macau locations, and while I wouldn’t go as far as saying the one in Shenzhen was just as good, but it’s more than decent and our lunch was at a fraction of price, so yes it represented great value without sacrificing much of the comfort and quality.

When? March 31 2018
Where? Xingli, Ritz Carlton Shenzhen, 4/F, 116 Fuhua San Road, Futian District, Shenzhen, China
Menu Highlights? Pork knuckles with galangal and chili oil (沙薑豬手)

More pictures from our Shenzhen stay-cation:

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