Category Archives: Chinese

West Villa Restaurant

I took a wine course at Berry Bros. & Rudd earlier this year. After a long morning of lectures and tastings…

..we go to lunch at West Villa which is just on the other wing of Lee Gardens mall.

So glad we had a private function room. The dining room outside was chaotic because the place was packed!

We had a red and white selection for lunch (an addition to the 11 other wines we were tasting that day).

Our young instructor.

Starting off with Char Siu, or barbecued pork. The server tells us it is Jackie Chan's favorite dish here! So ofcourse everyone savors it down to the last bite.

Fish. I forgot what it was. Good!

Peppered beef. So tender I wanted more!

Noodles with prawns and crab fat.

Forgot what this was as well..

Nice soy chicken.

Ending with the usual fried rice.

Dessert, my least favorite part of a meal. Here, I eat my words. This is an almond cream bun that completely blew me away. Light, crisp exterior encapsulating a warm almond filling with gummy bits to chew on.

They reminded me of Tim Ho Wan's famous Char Siu buns. AMAZING! The meal could not have ended on a higher note.

Well done!

West Villa
28 Yun Ping Road
1/F Lee Gardens Two, Hong Kong
T: +852 2882 2110

Leave a comment

Posted by on March 12, 2012 in Chinese, Hong Kong, Wine


Golden Hall

After our massive meal in Sha Tin, we stop for dessert on the way home.

The first thing we tried seemed like normal cocoa coated mochi balls..

But no. There was a Malteser crunch surprise at the center! Genius.

More balls.

With sesame this time.

Some watermelon dessert.

We shared everything so we could try everything.

I forgot what this was because I didn't enjoy it much.

Last to arrive was green tea shaved ice with a drizzle of condensed milk. Very clean flavor with no overwhelming sweetness. The perfect ending we could've easily eaten more of.

Enjoying the desserts despite the freezing cold outside.

Manila has no dessert culture. Most people consider "froyo" as the usual go-to after meals. There are too many already and it's hard to tell em apart. I wish we had something like this in town.

Golden Hall
G/F 6 South Wall Road
Kowloon City, Kowloon, HK
T: +852 2383 3102


Tai Ping Koon Restaurant

On a cold and rainy day, we go to this 150 year old restaurant for lunch to try something different.

Old photos on the walls.

Even the servers are old. Hihi...

Our friend Dennis who is a local gets the set menu so we can have a variety of their dishes. First up was a bisque that had very clean flavor. I loved the thick consistency, without being creamy.

Mixing long flat rice noodles coated in the silky sauce the tender beef and vegetables were cooked in. The type that is perfect to slurp and get your chin covered in its sauce.

THE BEST. I could have stopped here and be fully satisfied.

Then flew in the pigeon. This may have been the best I've tried. Meaty and not greasy with a sweet-savory sauce to dip it in.

Our tabletop getting tighter...

Next up were the oversized Swiss Sauce Chicken Wings.

Just falling off the bone!

This seemed to be everyone's favorite.

SO juicy!

Putting our meal to a close with a warm milktea.

What it looked like in the 70's.

What it looks like now.

The food here was like an ensemble of French and Chinese cuisine. Flavors and cooking techniques must have been modified for the Westerners who weren’t accustomed to down right Chinese food. It would explain the French flag outside.

Tai Ping Koon Restaurant
6 Pak Sha Road
Causeway Bay, Hong Kong
T: +852 2576 9161


Chinese New Year Dinner

I attended ANZ’s first quarter conference at the ballroom of Makati Shangri-la which doubled up as a Chinese New Year dinner.

While the speakers were going on about interest rates and laguishing markets, the food began to flow.

For starters we had the Yusheng with Salmon. Composed of raw shredded vegetables such as bell peppers, carrots, radish, and a lot more, with slices of raw salmon. It is an interesting interactive salad that requires you to toss it as high as you can. This reflects your personal growth for prosperity. So everyone had a go at it. Bits and pieces were flying everywhere.

Suckling Pig Combination.

Sauteed Prawns and Asparagus in XO Sauce. Win!

Braised Dried Seafood Soup.

Deep Fried Spare Ribs with Fragrant Garlic. I didn't have any, it looked deadly.

Braised Beilinzhi Mushroom with Sea Cucumber and Black Mushroom in Lettuce.

Steamed Lapu-Lapu - Old Style.

Roast Duck. Orgasmic!!

Braised E-Fu Noodles with Three Kinds of Mushrooms.

Two Kinds of Sweet Dimsum Pastries.

Chilled Sago with Diced Mango.

After the bankers gave their outlooks for the year, we had master Chau give his Feng Shui predictions and blessings for the year of the rabbit. Check out his funky shoes.

Kung Hei Fat Choi!!!

Leave a comment

Posted by on February 12, 2011 in Chinese, Dumplings, Lauriat


Shi Lin

Early dinner after work with one of my favorite eat-mates.

These aquariums are becoming more and more popular. You'll find the show kitchen right by the restaurant's entrance.

Nice clean lines. This lay out is great for servers. By standing where we were seated, they get a good peripheral of both sides of the restaurant.

Mister takaw tingin.

Chilled PLASTIC glass for my beer. Haha! Nice glass nonetheless.

Our dumpling TOWER was eye level! Wild.

Started with the Mushroom & Vegetable Dumpling.

Failed to get a clear shot of the chopped mushrooms. This was very good!

Only P108 for six pieces. They were really good despite using local flour for the dough.

The short orders. Fried rice with Shrimp, Pork and Egg good for 3-4 was only P98??! Ang sarap!

Century egg with meat floss hidden in the middle. Great starter!

Spicy Shrimp and Pork Wanton. Very well cooked. It was so good I ended up dipping everything else in it's sauce.


Drunken chicken that I believe was a rolled deboned thigh. Legally bland!

Noodles with Braised Beef. Steady.

Chicken Chop wreaking of the Taiwanese spices I love. Super flavor but lacked crunch.

This shot demonstrates the dishes we enjoyed because they're gone.

The owner, Carlo Lorenzana, sent over some taro and red bean dumplings for dessert. Not bad.

Overall, we really enjoyed the food and the good service. I just found it kinda disturbing getting served by this dude in a mask and gloves. They should consider leaving the masks away from the front of the house.

Slipping a last dumpling before we have about half the stuff we ordered, wrapped in a doggy bag.

Shi Lin
3/F The Podium, Ortigas Center
Mandaluyong City, Metro Manila


Posted by on December 7, 2010 in Chinese, Dumplings, Food, Taiwanese, Xiao Long Bao


Lugang Cafe: Taiwanese Cuisine

Soft opening of the famous chain, Lugang Cafe – more popularly known as Bellagio in China.

A large well-lit dining room with high ceilings welcomes you.

On one side are the round tables for big groups. This is my favorite wall. The brick's arrangement creates this gorgeous illusion and texture that adds character to a plain white painted wall.

On the other side you'll find the long bench which provides a more casual feel.

In my opinion, this is the presidential table. I feel like the most important customer when seated here.

We start ordering and I see my first food shots in print!! 🙂

As soon as we finish ordering, we head to the show kitchen to watch our dumplings be made.

Boy is it hard to keep up with those fast Chinese fingers.

Hello roasts.

The cute servers all sport the same bangs and pearl earrings. Aside from the aesthetic appeal, I believe it's a good form of camaraderie among a team of servers.

Xiao long bao, the infamous soup dumplings.

After I take a bite to sip some of the broth, I take a shot to show how thin the skin of the dumpling is. It won't tear due to the dough's elasticity so none of the soup goes to waste!

Pork bun! A braised slice of pork with hoisin, some chili, crushed peanuts, a hint of tamarind and some coriander in between a warm pao. I really loved the combination of all the bright flavors!!

Three cup chicken was hella fragrant because of the fresh basil and the three sauces. Nice caramelized sauce enveloping the bits of chicken.

Pigeon, very classic.

The kung pao shrimp is another favorite of mine. A battle of sweet and spicy along with a strong whiff of the awakened aromas of dried Sichuan peppers.

The Hainan chicken disappeared before I could even pick up my camera! Very neutral chicken that gladly welcomes the spring onion and ginger topping.

Super tender pepper beef served on a modern sizzling plate.

This drink has gummy aloe, honey and lemon. A perfect cleanse after the intense flavors.

The operations manager, Katrina Chua, swings by to check how everything is. Obviously, also the peg behind the fringe concept.

We were bumped up to the second floor booths due to the unexpected crowd waiting to be seated.

Notice the hand painted dragon. It's found in each outlet!

Devil eyes!

This is one of the 2 tables in the private function room. Exquisite long planks of wood.

For dessert we have coconut and mango shaved ice. This is plainly genius, the fruit flavors don't get compromised.

This is where the magic happens. I'd love to have one in my house. Oooh the things I could make!!

The minimally angled blade ensures the wafer thin shavings.

Translucent slithers of ice bursting with fruit flavor.

Beautiful 18/10 by Sola from the Netherlands.

Elegant flatware with a good mirror finish are like gems in a dining room.

Another good combination is peanut and black sesame. They use Skippy peanut butter as flavor for the peanut, memories of childhood when I used to enjoy sweets. Notice how the sheets are layered and how they don't melt.

View from the second floor with the calming water wall on the right.

Love the makes of the massive door!

A round of applause to the Chinese chefs and servers who trained our locals!

Two thumbs up! This is a place done in good taste.

Imagine if this were in Makati??

Lugang Cafe
155 Connecticut St. Greenhills
San Juan, Metro Manila
T: +632 721 9100
+632 570 9011


Posted by on November 14, 2010 in Chinese, Dessert, Food, Milktea


THE Xiao Long Bao

To everyone seeking the best xiao long bao these days..

The search is over.

Soup pillows.

Black vinegar and ginger dipping sauce.

Beautiful thin skin that does NOT rip, keeping in all that fatty pork soup for you to enjoy.

Coming to Connecticut Street in Greenhills, VERY soon.


Posted by on October 23, 2010 in Chinese, Food