Si Chuan Dou Hua Restaurant at PARKROYAL on Kitchener Road reveals the first grand makeover since its establishment in 2011. To celebrate its new look, Executive Cantonese Master Chef Leung Wing Chung, who boasts over 40 years of culinary experience, has created new Cantonese-styled dishes.
The vegetarian lo-hei exotic garden with black truffle in osmanthus sauce ($98++, 2-6 persons; $148++, 7-12 persons) is made available all year round. It consists of white radish, carrot, cucumber, beetroot, mango, beansprouts, and salad greens – accompanied by a medley of truffle oil, black truffle sauce, osmanthus sauce, brown and white rice puffs, freeze dried pineapple as well as raspberry bits, cordyceps, black truffle, and homemade crispy soybean crumbs.
It tastes just ok to me. I miss having raw fish, which to me is an essential element of 鱼sheng. However, I heard that you can add raw fish during CNY period.
The newly created dish, steamed eel on pumpkin ($22, for 1 person), was the best and most interesting thing we tasted that night. The eel is rolled in a mixture of crispy soybean crumbs, conpoy (dried scallops), sakura ebi, and ebiko to give it texture. There is also spinach in between the eel and pumpkin, giving the dish a layered complexity.
Another new dish is a Cantonese classic seldom seen in restaurants because of the tedious effort put into it: the duet of traditional crispy chicken stuffed with glutinous rice, goose liver and waxed meat ($88++ for 6-8 persons). The chicken is served two ways, one as a roulade and one as a Cantonese “sushi” (it’s a joke).
The ‘roulade’ is made by deboning a chicken and flattening it to leave only the skin and a wafer-thin layer of meat – itself an arduous process – then layering five core ingredients (glutinous rice, brown rice, pearl white rice, peanut and sweet corn), chicken, chicken liver and goose liver, before rolling, steaming, then air-drying for at least an hour.
The other way, the Cantonese “sushi,” has the same five core ingredients with waxed meat under a blanket of roasted chicken skin.
I am told that I have “modern” tastebuds and personally, I don’t understand this traditional dish, but I can see how old folks may appreciate it.
Another new creation, crispy brown rice with two-head abalone in superior stock ($78++, 2-3 persons), otherwise known as 泡饭, consists of scallops, prawns, sakura ebi, conpoy, preserved vegetables, cooked white rice, coriander, spring onion, rice puffs and superior stock. With slices of braised 2-head abalone. It is nice and I enjoyed the abalone.
For their signature mainstays, stir-dried sliced pork with leek in spicy sauce 回锅肉 ($22/$33/$44) and signature beancurd medley ($26/$39/$52) are recommended. The former, a twice-cooked Sichuan dish–the pork is first simmered and then stir-fried—tastes like streaky bacon in mala sauce. It is ok.
The beancurd medley is better. It is a two-tier tower comprising one homemade beancurd and the other, deep-fried purple rice tofu, topped with homemade minced meat sauce. It is good on its own, perhaps better than most places’ versions, but I have eaten mindblowing tofu in China, and wasn’t as impressed as I should be by the restaurant’s namesake.
The desserts reuse soya bean as its motif. I think it’s smart to use the same ingredient for savoury and sweet food—it demonstrates the creativity of the chef. The almond beancurd is encased with osmanthus jelly ($6.80++ for 3 pcs), light and refreshing. Homemade purple rice bean curd with red bean ($6.80++, 1 person) is a twist on our usual bean curd.
On the whole, the food is lighter than elsewhere, and are suitable for older folks. Parents and grandparents may appreciate it.
Si Chuan Dou Hua Restaurant
PARKROYAL on Kitchener Road
181 Kitchener Road Singapore 208533
t: +65 6428 3170
11.30am-2.30pm, 6pm-10pm, daily
Decor / ambience: 7/10
You may be interested in…
–Long Beach, Robertson Quay: Old Name, New Outlet, Modernising the Menu
–Mott 32, MBS: Outrageous Prices for Global Cantonese Food with Beijing and Sichuan Influences
–Tang Lung Restaurant, Robertson Quay: Dim Sum Sunday Buffet & Other Dishes at New Modern Chinese Restaurant
–The Dragon Chamber, Circular Road: “You Know You’re Hungry for That [Crocodile] D***”
This is an invitation. Written by Dr. A. Nathanael Ho.