Monday, June 22, 2020

Fourth time the charm

I confess that I have been to China Tang for more than a few occasions in the last couple of months – thanks to their special promotion of Peking Duck dish. I enjoyed just about any Peking Duck and I did particularly like the one prepared here. So I believe this is already my fourth time when I came back with a few friends in late May. 

Of course the duck was still a star of the night, served with the usual condiments, sauces and wrappers. But this time Chef Menex did introduce us to a few of the new dishes, some of them not yet on the regular menu. We started with the marinated duck chunks, slow cooked with the soy and herb marinate well infused into the meat and almost fell off the bones. Excellent flavor albeit a little dry. 

I didn’t have char-siu the last few times I was here, and the version here was decent, right on par with other high-end restaurants in town. The meat was roasted with a slightly charred crust with great texture and glazed with a sweet honey sauce. The small plate of peanut sprouts and tomatoes with sesame sauce, both served chilled, made good appetizer to start. 

After we had our Peking Duck served in their usual ways with several different cuts, chef sent us the rest of the duck meat done “Shelter Style”. The meat was cut into thick strips, seasoned, dipped in batter and deep-fried, then served with dried garlic, chilies and shallots on top. I reckon it would be a perfect bar snack with a glass of cold beer. A few other dishes were a repeat from my previous visits but they were great, including my favorite sweet and sour pork served with yau ja gwai (fried dough).

We made a special request for the house fried rice on the spot, and Chef Menex obliged despite it normally need to be pre-ordered a few days in advance. A gigantic ball of rice was wrapped with runny egg inside and coated in a crispy crust (think arancini but 10 times the size), then the chef gave it the finishing touch of frying in a red-hot iron casserole along with the special sauce and dried sakura shrimps. So you got this bowlful of rice with slightly crispy crust and lots of flavor. Similar to the Korean bibimbap dish but with a Chinese characteristic. Smoke filled the entire room while it’s being prepared but it was delicious. 

Tried a few different wine pairings in my previous visits, and this time I went for a bottle of Burgundy red. Young, easy to drink, with good red fruits and mild tannins. Worked reasonably well. 

At the end, apart from the sesame dumpling dessert we ordered, chef also sent us cute, animal-shaped sesame and coconut puddings – “cat and mouse” as he described – as mignardises. And I already started to think what I should order on my fifth visit next time. 

When? May 26 2020
Where? China Tang, Shop 411-413, 4/F, Landmark Atrium 15 Queen’s Road Central, Central, Hong Kong
Menu Highlights? Still Peking Duck
Drinks? 2016 Domaine De La Vougeraie "Les Marconnets" AOC Savigny-les-Beaune Premier Cru 

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