Wendy’s parents recommended this restaurant for a recent family dinner since it’s one of her and Wendy’s favourite dim sum spots (see Wendy’s review here –sad to say that apparently they no longer have the food carts though). I wasn’t planning on a review since it had already been done…until I saw an especially interesting menu item: snake! I’m always up for trying new and exotic foods and this was both to me.
The snake comes in a soup, Snake Meat with Bamboo Shoot and Fungus Thick Soup ($18.80 or $6.80 per head) to be exact. You can season the broth with white pepper but it had enough flavour on its own for my taste buds, including small amounts of preserved orange peel. The fungus and bamboo shoots were present along with a few morsels of pork and little slivers of ginger for a bit of kick. There was cilantro and some type of airy wonton crisps which immediately changed texture when added to the soup and were a welcome addition. As for the snake meat, the white portions tasted like chicken and the darker pieces where you could see the spine indentation like the one top right reminded me of eel. Overall a dense, satisfying soup that was nuanced in flavour and texture.
The Bean Curd Sheets with Veggie in Fish Broth ($9.88) consisted of bok choy and mushroom along with the bean curd in a fish broth. I always find these fish broths a bit bland but it did make the otherwise unappetizing bean curd taste pretty good when soaked in it, and it enhanced the flavour of the bok choy without smothering it.
The Pork Soft Bone with Bean Curd Sheet and Pickled Veggie in Hot Pot ($12.80) was an interesting dish, and one that not everybody liked. Had the bland, milky pork been served on its own I wouldn’t have had more than a bite, but when combined with the strong taste of the pickled veggie it worked to an extent. For me it was hard getting past the texture of the soft bone, which was somewhere between a tendon and a bone in firmness. I thought it was the actual rib bones at first since that’s exactly what it looked like, but turns out it’s just cartilage that joins the ribcage to the spine. Either way…meh.