From now until the end of July, Chef Charlie Tham will be showcasing his culinary skills inspired from his travels to the provinces of Fuzhou, Guiling and Kunming in China at White Rose Café @ York Hotel. He has specially curated 7 dishes during this period, as he invites his diners to rediscover the provincial cuisines of China.
The appetisers we were started with were of similar flavours – the classic combination of spiciness and sourness that really, at least for me, does the trick of opening up my palate for the rest of the meal. If you would be torn between the two, I would recommend going for the Spicy Tangy Octopus ($12++) tossed with slightly sweet dragonfruit for its chewiness; not to say it is cheaper than the Pork Belly in Spicy Sour Sauce ($15++) which is served with pomelo too. Because of how thinly it was sliced, the latter was not as satisfying as a whole. Freshness wise, I thought both were okay and on par.
One of my favourites of the night is the unassuming Oyster Biscuit Patty ($12++). The thick patty was neither cloying nor plain. In fact, the crust was slightly crisp, and when paired with the big and succulent oyster, it was quite a match. One dish I would definitely go back for. But on the other end of the spectrum was the photogenic Escargot with Orange ($12++). While the portion is generous (look at the number of escargots, and some hidden in the orange), they were lacklustre and far from the usual chew you would get from an escargot. The thick sauce also overpowered the taste of escargots. I thought it was a dish to miss.
Looking pretty is the Fish Noodle with Seafood ($18++), the other of my favourites of the night. A favourite amongst inhabitants of Fuzhou is the noodles, handmade with fresh fish, and served with a nutritious, rich and flavourful broth of seafood, including prawns, mussels, clams, oysters and crab. Whilst it was merely a small pot, it was sufficient for two to luxuriate in the broth and the abundance of seafood.
Two fishes, one hit, one miss. I did not like the Wrapped Fish in Beer Sauce ($15++). The dory fish wrapped in spinach leaves was to me, more form than substance. It tasted rather bland and forgettable. On the other hand, the Spicy BBQ Fish in Banana Leaf ($18++) was worth it; two sides of tender and juicy fresh Tilapia fish meat, cooked over fire with fresh herbs and bearable spiciness. For a whole fish at such an establishment is quite a steal.
I was pleasantly surprised to see the dishes reasonably priced, considering the restaurant is located just off Orchard Road, and is part of a 4-star hotel. Dining here is ideal for an affordable yet slightly atas zi-char. I think it is value for money. If you are going there by public transport, exit the train station and cut through the carpark beside Far East Plaza.
What’s worth ordering:
Spicy Tangy Octopus
Oyster Biscuit Patty
Fish Noodle with Seafood
Spicy BBQ Fish in Banana Leaf
Photos by Kathleen.
Address: 21 Mount Elizabeth, York Hotel Lobby Level
Telephone: 6737 0511 (takes reservations) / email@example.com
Opening Hours: 11.30m – 10.30pm (Daily)
This was a media session.