Monday, May 23, 2011

Hong Kong - Sun Tung Lok Chinese Cuisine 新同樂魚翅酒家

Finally hit the highly touted newest 3-star Michelin Chinese restaurant in the latest version of the Hong Kong/Macau guide.  Oddly located in a mass-market mall in TST, decor was comfy, and reminiscent of a brighter T'ang Court.  Comfy chairs and tables that aren't too close to each other like in most Chinese restaurants.  Service was efficient and professional even if impersonal.  And the food?

生磨杏仁露 Fresh-ground Almond Broth
It's not often I start a review with dessert.  But this was actually the star of the show.  Possibly the best bowl of almond broth I've ever had in my entire life, and believe me I've had quite a few since it's my default dessert of choice.  The quality of the almonds used was undeniably high.  And just like all good Chinese restaurants, dessert was prepared table-side.  And as the broth heats up, the aroma of the almonds fills the room.  The broth itself was extremely smooth, and with none of that chalky taste of lesser versions.  Pleasantly sweet but not cloying, it made for a nice finish to an unspectacular lunch.

梅菜扣肉包 or Stewed Belly Pork with Preserved Vegetables
This is a classic dim sum special.  I do love 梅菜扣肉 or belly pork stewed with preserved vegetables Hakka style.  So I never pass up on an opportunity to eat it, not even if it's just one serving slipped into a steamed bun.  Taste was pretty authentic, although I would have been happier with a smoother piece of pork.  This was a tad dry, and the separation of the fat from the meat too distinct.

鵝肝芋角 Yam Pastry with Goose liver
As far as dim sum went, this was by far their best performance of the meal.  A smooth yam paste with a piece of liver enveloped in a fluffy pastry and deep fried without a trace of oil.  So important especially since it could have gone really wrong and turned out a be a whole grease bag.  Deserving of applause here.

鮑魚批 Abalone Pies
Decent but nothing to write home about.  Bits of abalone visible on the inside but without much abalone taste.  Pastry was mediocre so overall, it made for a forgettable course.

鮑汁鵝掌意粉 Linguini with Goose Web in Abalone Sauce
This was by far the biggest disappointment.  The goose webs were tasty enough but for some reason the noodles were as tasteless as tasteless can be.  I think their choice of a linguini was flawed since it could not pick up the supposedly abalone-based sauce.  So I ate the goose web and left the noodles.  And split by 4 people, I was surprised we barely got one goose web each...

黃橋燒餅 Northern Style Yellow Bridge Meat Pasties
These pastries weren't bad but by no means the best.  Even Victoria City's version was comparable if not better.

My conclusion: Sun Tung Lok is probably just not a yum cha place.  Perhaps I gotta do the un-PC thing and just have their sharks' fin and suckling pig dishes.  Maybe I might agree with the 3-star rating then.  Otherwise, it's just a very comfy place to have above average Cantonese food.

Shop 4D, Miramar Shopping Centre
132 Nathan Road
Tsim Sha Tsui
Tel: +852-2152 1417

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