Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Peachy Keen

HM owed her father a Father's Day treat, so we decided to take Momma and Poppa out for a good meal. These being good Chinese people, we thought we should opt for a "safe" choice. Peach Garden seemed to fit the bill. Central location not requiring too much travelling? Check - the Novena branch is not difficult for us to get to. A cuisine familiar enough for conservative eaters? Check - modern Cantonese, hehe. Recommended by other Chinese people? Check - my parents like it. Case closed.

wasabi prawns

We chose the set menu for four persons ($168++) which started with Peach Garden's signature wasabi prawn dish. The prawns were excellent - plump and crunchy. HM wasn't sure she liked the wasabi mayonnaise but then again she's not a fan of mayo anyway. Momma though mopped up every last bit of it, and I liked it too, although I have to admit, neon green isn't exactly an appetising colour. The accompanying softshell crab was tasty but no match for the prawn.

shark's fin with bamboo pith

This dish arrived accompanied by some hooha. It had been whisked off to be "separated" into bowls. When the individual bowls returned, we were told that we should have been served more soup stock, and that the kitchen had been told to deliver more. Shortly after, a deep dish full of soup appeared. I would have preferred more ingredients, rather than more soup, but hey, at least they care about the quality of food served. Anyway, I hate to sound ungrateful, but I have to admit that I think Tung Lok does a better job with this dish...

steamed fish with mui choy

The steamed fish was excellent. I know that a Cantonese restaurant should be expected to deliver on the fish, but it was still a delight to find the fish lightly steamed to just the right amount of doneness and ably complemented by the mui choy.

crispy chicken with plum sauce

If the fish was good, the chicken was a big hit at our table. The chicken was crispy on the outside and yet juicy and tender on the inside. The plum sauce plus, we believe, orange peel were brilliant accompaniments. The topping left us baffled. The shreds were slightly crispy too but tasted very slightly of egg. Eventually we asked and were told that it was pork floss!

fried Japanese ramen with prawns and scallops

After the chicken, the ramen was a slight letdown. In a nutshell, it reminded us of Hokkien mee with prawns and scallops. It was decent enough but no big deal.

almond paste with tofu

For dessert, we were given the choice of a hot dessert, almond paste with tofu, or a cold one, mango pomelo. The mango pomelo somehow felt wrong, too Hong Kong cafe perhaps. The almond paste with tofu was the classier choice. We've had more spectacular desserts before, but this was good enough an ending to a fine meal.

Overall, I would say Peach Garden was pretty impressive. The quality and presentation of food was above average. The tea (we had pu-er) got the elders nodding in approval. The service was very good, and price-wise, it was cheaper than Tung Lok (although I suspect the portions and quality of ingredients are correspondingly more "premium" at TL).

P.S. We didn't get a chance to try Peach Garden's signature roast goose and roast pork; the roast goose was not in stock and the parental units did not have the capacity for an additional dish. What a pity... But all is not lost - watch this space for more developments...



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