Friday, January 18, 2013

Wah Lok at Carlton

 Wah Lok has been around since 1970s and is renowned for its Cantonese cuisine and dim sum. After a recent renewal of the restaurant, the place now greets diners with stylish silver interior
I am not a keen fan of expensive ingredients and thus I cannot comment on the taste of some food but those who had them enjoyed the delicacies.

 
 
Cold dish of Pig trotters with clear sour and spicy dip

Barbequed Meat with Mustard- A Cantonese classic
 

Three-Head Abalone with oyster sauce and broccoli
 
Mee Sua with Crab in Huatiao Stock ($12) was originally with Mee Sua with Lobster($22) but with opted for crabs since they were cheaper and the stock base remains the same.
This was surprisingly simple but flavorful and mildly sweet. It was highly recommended by the staff and now by me because it is a nice change from the usual Yi Mian or fried noodles/rice.
 
 Steamed Bamboo Clams with Garlic


Braised Tofu with Spinach and Sea Cucumber(Per portion)
It was quite hard to find fault with this dish but nothing spectacular. Ignore the sea cucumber and you can quite easily cooked them or have them at local zi-chars. It chanced upon us that many Chinese dishes included oyster sauce. Seems like the Western brown sauce has found its long lost twin in China.
 
The signature XO sauce Cod Fish in Banana leaves ($12) was overrated. The small portion of cod sat on sliced  mushrooms surrounded by the  healthy fish oil. But the banana leaf did not seemed to fuse with the fish and neither was the xo sauce strongly distinguishable.
 
Hokkaido Scallops in Golden Sauce was better than the fish. The scallop was undeniably meaty and cooked to right doneness but the thin layer of fried flour batter wrapping the scallop was unnecessary.
The golden sauce still left me with question marks as it was described to contain some mustard but tasted more like mildly diluted salted egg yolk sauce with fresh scallions.
 
This deep fried golden brown Durian Tempura is an irresistible sinful must have for durian fans
One quite special dessert which is actually like a decorated dim sum is the Osmanthus Jelly with Custard puff pastry. The cashew-shaped puff called 美人腰, oozes of sweet flowy custard that is less filling than a salted egg yolk bun.
 
In short, the quality of Wah Lok's ala carte dishes truly lives up to its numerous awards and good reviews(even though most are for dim sum). However, what makes this place different from other Chinese restaurant here is the top-notched service by the service staff. It was not just simply our table that was lucky to be served extremely well but we notice how the staff attended to the needs of others and asked their opinions of the food. With such dedicated service,  how can one not return for its dim sum?
 
Wah Lok
Carlton Hotel 2nd flr


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