Sunday, May 24, 2020

Ying Jee Club

I can understand why the name "Ying Jee Club" can be confusing to some - Is that a club? Is that a restaurant? Does one need to be a member to eat there? What food does it serve? What's the style of the restaurant? And the food? At least I got those questions answered for myself when I visited the restaurant for the first time last week.

The posh decor resembles just about any high-end Chinese restaurants in the proximity in the central business district, but not too up-tight to the point of feeling out of place if one walked in with T-shirts and shorts. And no, you don't need to become a member to come to eat - the name of the restaurant only reflects the concept of resembling a private dining club with focus on classic cooking in a formal setting, not the kind of places exclusive to members.

What we had this time was a customized tasting menu with some of their new dishes. We started with a nice platter of sliced sea whelk with jelly fish and caviar, plus pan-fried Kagoshima wagyu tenderloin, followed by the sautéed lobster with shallot and scallions. The piece of the baby lobster tail was done with the shell on with tender yet bouncy texture and great flavor from the sautéed shallots, scallions and soy sauce.

I also loved the crab claw dish which arrived next – usually this classic Cantonese dish either came as steamed or deep-fried, but here chef did a little bit of both – pan-fried with a light batter than finished with steaming with just a tad bit of shrimp paste for the rich flavor and some crispy conpoy on top along with a light crystal glaze made of thicken superior broth underneath. I love this combination.

The fish maw in chicken broth was another dish I love, with the big piece of fish maw came with soft texture and went along with the chicken broth with the golden color and rich taste from the slow-cooking. The goji berries added to a hint of sweetness. And before that, it's another platter with pieces of the thin and crispy suckling pig crackling with goose liver pate plus sauteed pigeon - both with strong flavor and well executed. We shared the fried rice as our last savory course, served with the braised whole abalone on top. The texture of the abalone was excellent, just tender enough to be cut through effortlessly but retained a bouncy bite.

Baked Sago Pudding is always my favorite and this version was just perfectly done, with the right portion of custard and sago plus the sweet lotus paste filling, baked in a ramekin with a slight charred crust on top. That’s in addition to a couple of sweet snacks served along side (coconut pudding and mango mochi) and both were tasty.

Not often I could pull a long lunch these days but I am glad I did this time with a pleasant meal at a new venue that I came to know more about.

(Meal was by invitation and more photos can be found in my Flickr album:

When? May 14 2020
Where? Ying Jee Club, G/F Nexxus Building, 41 Connaught Road, Central, Hong Kong
Menu Highlights? Wok-fried Lobster with Shallots and Scallions

No comments :