Thursday, 18 June 2009

Tai Wing Wah

2 On Ning Rd, Yuen Long
Visited 11th June 2009

Why haven't I written up Tai Wing Wah before? As a good Yuen Long boy I should have at least acknowledged the existence of a restaurant that many see as the as the pinnacle of dinning in my fair town. Tai Wing Wah is the domain of Leung Man To otherwise known as the massive TV chef Toto. For the restaurant of a celebrity chef it really does look like your average, slightly worn, Canto joint; I like to think they're just staying true to their roots. Tai Wing Wah doesn't just serve Cantonese food or even Hong Kong food, but specialises in 'walled village cuisine'; a form of local fare that takes it roots in the original farming villages of the New Territories. There's always a range of house specialities on offer, but the rest of the large menu changes according to the season and the availability of local produce. The four of us ordered a feast including roast duck, squid with water spinach, barbecue pork, tofu with bok choy and crab noodles. The fat and juicy roast duck was a highlight, as was the tender squid and thin noodles delicately laced with delicious crab. To accompany all this we had the speciality 'clay pot rice'; this rustic dish is the equivalent of English bread n dripping with soy and freshly rendered pig fat poured over baked rice. Your average New Territories Cantonese place serves pretty average wine, and while the selection at Tai Wing Wah isn't massive it's based on quality wines rather than the usual unrecognisable cheap Bordeaux and Aussie critter labels. We got stuck into Faustino VII Rioja that went beautifully with the roast duck and was a steal at $110.
It's probably apparent by now that I'm a fan of Tai Wing Wah. Fresh ingredients are used to create delicious dishes that are rich in flavour and texture, while pouring pig fat over rice makes it obvious that you're experiencing a unique style of cuisine. So how much do you expect to pay for all this? Well at Tai Wing Wah it's pretty simple; everything is priced at a lowly $52. The wine is even more keenly priced and dinner for four of us, including two bottles of wine, came to a bargain $560. The staff are pretty on the ball though not much English is spoken. The constantly changing menu is in Cantonese only, but they do have a booklet with their signature dishes in English. Tai Wing Wah is simply fantastic.

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