Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Panxi Restaurant (泮溪酒家)

When my friend showed me the magazine article on this restaurant, I am sold.  Look how cute the porcupine dim sum is!  Dim sum is one of my favorite food since it usually comes in small bites and I can order a variety of them.  (Likewise, I love tapas and sushi for similar reasons.)

Weekend Trip - Guangzhou (2)

Next morning, we woke up quite late (and it was another cloudy, gloomy day).  By the time we were ready, it's time for lunch already!

It was so gloomy outside so I just applied a sepia filter.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Bing Sheng (炳勝品味)

My friend has been talking about this place when she was telling me about her plan on this trip.  I can tell how much she misses the black "char siu" (叉燒) just from the way she describes it.  So I wasn't surprised when a line formed in front of the shop when we got there around 20:30.


Friday, March 22, 2013

Bei Yuan Cuisine (北園)

Bei Yuan Cuisine (北園) is known as one of the three garden restaurants in Guangzhou, China.  The other two are Panxi (泮溪酒家) and Nan Yuan (南園).

Founded in 1928 by the then President (Dianbang Zou  鄒殿邦) of the Chamber of Commerce, the restaurant was previously a private villa owned by the President's grandfather.  Since the restaurant is located in the northern suburb next to Yuexiu Mountain (越秀山)  with a flowing stream passing the front of the restaurant, people used to describe it with the phrase "山前食肆,水尾茶寮".  You can read more about this history of the restaurant here.  (Sorry it's Chinese only!)  Over the years, the restaurant has catered diners from all walks of life.  In the 1950s, it's earned the title of "Foreigners' Cafeteria" and in 1998, it was named as one of the Nation's top restaurants.

The Entrances:


Weekend Trip - Guangzhou (1)

Ever since I moved back to Macau, there has been talks on a short weekend trip to Guangzhou with a few of my friends.  Eighteen months later, we finally went.  Guangzhou is only 3 hours away from Macau (by bus), most people there speaks Cantonese, and we only plan to stay 1 night...  Why it took us so long?  I really don't understand.  Anyhow, Spring is a good time to visit Guangzhou.  The weather is nice and the flowers are blooming.  Too bad it was cloudy the weekend we picked but overall, it was a good trip.


It's a pretty simple itinerary.  (It's only a weekend trip!)  My friend planned it.  It's a nice change since I can just follow and not to have to worry about a thing.  Our focus was mainly on good food and bookstores.  (Both of us are bookworms?)  If this sounds like your kind of Guangzhou trip, read on~

Black Chicken Meatballs, Oysters, and Lettuce Congee

I hurt myself on the bus on my way to work Wednesday.  At first I thought it was going to be yet another bruise ("PK" is nothing new to me) until I see a pool of blood.  It was quite frightening but I was more shocked at myself that I didn't even know I was bleeding until like 10-15 minutes after the accident.

Luckily, I work next to a hospital so after I put my lunch in the fridge and briefed my co-worker what happened (She now calls me "tofu-woman"), I went to see the doctor...  Apparently, my accident is a lot worse than I thought... there is a deep cut in my left leg even though my pants are not torn.  (The doctor and nurses and passersby were so amazed the keep asking me how the accident happened.)  I also ended up with my first stitch in my life...  and the doctor gave me 2 sick days to rest at home since I am not supposed to put pressure on my left leg...  (Yippee!!!)

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Heat (熱火碳烤BBQ)

Update: (5/24/2013) As of 5/17/2013 (last Friday), it's been re-opened! Yay!!!

Update: (5/9/2013) The place is under-going some reconfiguration because the neighbors complained about the BBQ smell.  I am not sure when it will be re-opened and I can't wait to return.

One day after work, my friend called and asked me to join them at the newest Taiwanese-style BBQ place in town and I gladly obliged.  When we arrived at the restaurant, the owner informed us they were fully booked and were unable to accommodate us :(  (But he was very nice about it.)  Consequently, we made a reservation the following week so yes, a reservation is highly recommended.


Amber Walnut (琥珀核桃)

The other day, one of my co-workers gave me a huge bag of walnuts (uncracked and raw).  Everyone knows walnut is healthy for you but how many ways can you cook walnuts?  Thanks to Google, I found a whole list of recipes that uses walnuts.


Zhu Yuan Farm (竹苑農莊)

My friend took me to a restaurant in China a while ago.  Minus the questionable surroundings, the food is quite good.  Even though the location is secluded, the restaurant is busy!  I was surprised when I spotted a Caucasian couple came and order a take-out!

The restaurant sign to guide diners off the main road to the restaurant.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Don Quijote de La Mancha (唐吉柯德)

In addition to Namie's concert, I also went to Joanna Wang's (王若琳) concert last week.  (What a cultural weekend!)  The concert was very good!  She even did an encore for us!  woo-hoo!  I can't wait to go to her concert again in May!  (Hopefully the Rightful Heir will be released on iTunes then~)  Anyways, my friend and I had a quick dinner at a nearby Spanish restaurant prior to the concert and I thought I would share with you my experience.

Sharing the same name as the novel written by Miguel de Cervantes, Don Quijote is one of the very few Spanish restaurants in Macau.  In fact, this is the only one I have been to.  I am surprised there aren't more of them since most residents here are used to eating Portuguese food.

Since I haven't been to Spain (it's been on my wish-list forever), I can't certify if the food is authentic.  However, I remember I enjoyed the food on my first visit (December 2011) so I was slightly disappointed on my return visit.  The food wasn't bad but it wasn't how I remembered it.  Oh well...


Mr. Bing (老金煎餅)

Went to Hong Kong this past weekend for Namie Amuro's 20th Anniversary Concert (it was superb! Namie was only 20 steps away from me~~~~~) and met up with my travel mates for the upcoming Wuyuan trip.

We had lunch at Taco Loco in SoHo and I have to say, that was one of the worst meals I have had in a very, very long time.  It's nothing like the beef tacos I am used to.  The meat was dry and bland.  The tortilla chips taste like stale Doritos.  Even Toxic Cow's (aka Taco Bell) tacos taste better.  My friend jokes that bad food exists so that I can appreciate good food... okay... :S

Needless to say, I was hungry after this unsatisfying lunch.  Thus, I stopped by Mr. Bing and got myself a Peking Duck Bing.  Bing is just like a Chinese-style burrito and I am glad that it taste a lot better than the taco.  Remember to tell your server if you want one of the specialty flour and/or youtiao!

Mr. Bing is located at the corner of Wellington and Cochrane Street
It's easy to miss if you are not paying attention.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Kui Kee Seafood Restaurant (駒記海鮮大排檔)

Finally a meal in this food marathon where I don't feel like a waste of my precious stomach space...  The quality is pretty average, as in "I don't need to come all the way to Hong Kong for this".  It's good if you are in the area and have nothing better to eat but it's not a place I would make a trip.  It's only a few blocks away from Time Square, which is pretty interesting.  What a drastic difference in just a two block radius!


Chez Patrick Deli

Nice location, nice decor, nice presentation...  the praise of this restaurant abruptly stops here.  I shivered when I read the comments on foursquare...  All of which came true... Slow service, poor customer service, average food... that pretty much summarizes the whole experience...  should have gone to Classified instead...  I would have happier with a simple bagel and coffee.

Chic interior, the space is open and modern.

Chong Fat Chiu Chow Restaurant (創發潮州飯店)

Went to Hong Kong in January for a good friend's birthday marathon.  I only did a half marathon as I only joined 3 of the many meals they had... all in a span of 2 days...

Their full itinerary include buffet lunch @ Inakaya (田舍家)*, afternoon tea @ Cafe 103*, Chiu Chow style dinner @ Chong Fat (創發) (this post!), brunch @ Chez Patrick Deli, coffee @ Mandarin Oriental*, and finally dinner Kui Kee (駒記).

* denotes places I didn't join... that's too much eating for a weekend, even for me!!!

Cold seafood on display

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Inner Palace: Zhen Huan Biography (后宮 甄嬛傳)

Some of you might wonder how come there are so many blog posts lately (or finally)...

Well, I finished watching the super popular Chinese drama series Inner Palace: Zhen Huan Biography “后宮 甄嬛傳” and finally have time to catch up on the blog posts I planned...  I don't watch TV drama much so this 76-episodes marathon is an achievement for me...  I thoroughly enjoyed this series and even suffered a withdrawal after watching the final episode...  It was so popular that rumors said the English rights was sold to the US...

Wuyuan, Canola Flower Trip (江西婺源。油菜花) (1)

Call me a butterfly (!!)... but I do like flowers, especially pretty flowers...  Ever since I saw a picture of this place last year, I promise myself I will come here one day and the day has come.

Wuyuan, Jiangxi
Picture found on Google, no copyright infringement intended.

Chasing Sakura - Japan (1)

It's cherry blossom season again!  If you have been following this blog for some time, you probably know I am making another trip to Japan (this coming April).  This time, we are going during the peak of cherry blossom season!

This is from my Washington DC trip back in April 2010.
I missed DC!  Maybe I will do some blog posts on past travels.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Lao Kee Congee & Noodles (老記粥麵)

Just want to do a quick post on a noodles and congee restaurant my friends and I went one night.  Lao Kee has been around for quite some time (like 20 years?).  Currently, there are 3 shops in Macau altogether.  All of them went through a grand renovation a while back.  From the moment you walk into the restaurant, you can see the thoughts invested in this place, down to the condiment jars.

Lao Kee opens late so it's a great place to go for a late night snack.  

Dragon Palace (金龍軒) - Dinner

My friends and I went there for dinner back in January - to celebrate a birthday and as a reunion dinner before the year of the Snake.  We are all regular here so we knew what we wanted to order before we even looked at the menu.  In fact, I don't think I ever looked at the menu here...  after all, it's one of your typical Cantonese style Chinese restaurant.

Pigeon in Soy Sauce

A very delicious dish - must-try!

Friday, March 8, 2013

Old Shanghai Shi Hui Li (老上海食惠里)

I come here a lot but I never knew their name.  I looked it up for this post and realize their name sounds a lot like food poisoning in Cantonese (食惠裡 / 食壞你)... lolz?  Thank goodness I haven't been sick from eating here... yet...  Maybe that's why they are now more commonly known as Shanghai Gold Medal Pan-Fried Dumpling (上海金牌生煎包).

I borrowed this picture from dianping.com
the mainland version of Open Rice.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Butao Ramen (豚王)

After several visits, I finally tried all the different ramens Butao has to offer (except the off-menu flavors).  So I thought I would write a post to summarize the different flavors I have tried.  Overall, the quality is good and very consistent but the queue is intimidating.  On average, the wait time is approximately 45 minutes.

Butao Ramen (Central)
This is the only location I have visited.
There are 3 locations in total, Central, Causeway Bay, and Tsim Sha Tsui.
I have heard the Central location is the best (taste-wise) among the three shops.

New Chongqing Restaurant (新重慶酒樓)

This was originally intended to be a lighthearted post on a Sichuan hot pot restaurant in Zhuhai, China that my friend and I loved.  However, as I was writing this post, I am not sure if I am recommending or warning my readers on restaurants in China.  Don't get me wrong, the food tastes good, it is cheap and it looks clean, but I can never be sure when I eat in China, especially these days.

Yuanyang Guo (鴛鴦鍋)The left side is not spicy and the right side is super spicy.
Rule of thumb: meat is better spicy and veggies is better non-spicy.
The authentic dipping sauce for this type of hot pot is sesame oil + minced garlic + hoisin sauce + cilantro.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Keung Kee Congee & Noodles (強記粥粉麵)

A few years ago, when you ask locals where you can find the best stir fry noodles, people will tell you to go to Hua Hin (華軒美食).  Ever since Susie Wong (a Hong Kong food critic / celebrity) advertised that restaurant, there was a ridiculous queue of Hong Kong and mainland tourists everyday and one day the boss (細龜) has had enough and closed the restaurant.  The morale of the story: Susie Wong, please don't come to Macau anymore.

Since Hua Hin is actually quite far from where I live, I don't go there much.  Instead, my favorite is Keung Kee.  It used to be really good but the quality has deteriorated these days while prices keep increasing.  Oh well... I can only hope that it will not suffer the same destiny as Hua Hin.  *fingers crossed*


Sky 21

If I have to pick a place in Macau for late night drinks with the best view in the peninsula, Sky 21 gets my vote hands down.  

view from Sky 21

Nam Kee Clay Pot Rice (南記煲仔飯)

Nam Kee is another favorite place of mine for casual dinners.  Although the restaurant is located in an inconspicuous lane in a residential area, it's quite famous among locals and tourists alike.  It's less than 5 minutes away from Keung Kee Signature Lamb Pot (強記秘製羊腩煲) so these two places work like supplements for each other when the other gets too crowded.


Friday, March 1, 2013

North (北方館)

North is one of my favorite places to go for lunch on a weekday.  It's within walking distance from my office, their noodles is one of the best in Macau at very reasonable prices, and best of all, I love the interior design of this restaurant.

I love sitting at the bar and watch the chef making noodles.
They made everything look so easy and effortless.


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