Wednesday 26 February 2014

TungLok XiHe Peking Duck – The Royal Duck

TungLok Xihe Peking Duck

TungLok Xihe Peking Duck ('TXPD') is a collaboration between TungLok Group Singapore with XiHe Group from Beijing. The collaboration presents the diner with the traditional Chinese dishes with innovative cooking method and modern plating. Of course not forgetting, Peking Duck as the signature dish of this restaurant.

We were looking for a place at the very last minute for gathering with our friend for our regular makan session and since it is Chinese New Year, we decided to make it a Lo-Hei session as well. TXPD got our vote due to its location and the appeal of their Lunar New Year Menu. Little Devil ('LD') and I visited TungLok quite regularly in the past, we just did not notice we have not step into TungLok restaurant for more than 2 years after they closed down Tung Lok East Coast and Humble House.

TXPD is located facing car dealers section, opposite side of the football field. The dominant red colour, Chinese traditional red lantern and the Chinese graphics of Peking Duck on the outer wall, made the restaurant easy to spot. Upon entering TXPD, you welcomed by the Peking Duck and bright red brick duck oven on the left side. You definitely won't miss it.

Reception / Cashier Counter

Peking Duck & The Oven

We decided on Lunar New Year Menu 10. $468++ for 10 person. As we have about 16 person including children, we are split into 2 tables of 8. As it was getting late and some of our friends have not arrive, we ask them to serve the Peking Duck first and postpone the Yu Sheng.

The Set Up

As a signature dish of the restaurant, the Peking Duck received the royalty treatment. Once a duck is ready to be serve, someone will sound the GONG!! and you know there is Peking Duck on the way to a table. A chef will carved the duck in front of the table and divided into three plates. The breast skin, or I prefer to say it is the prime cut that normally eaten with sugar; the dark meat (from the thigh) and the breast meat. The condiments such as spring onions, sugar, Peking duck sauce and the wrap/pancake are served on a partition platter with bowl of hot water in the centre to maintain the moisture in the pancake.

Slicing the Peking Duck

Peking Duck - Skin Prime Cut, Breast Meat & Thigh Meat
The Condiments

The breast skin is crispy and melts in your mouth. The rest of the duck skin is crispy and the meat are tender. The duck and the wrap/pancake was maintained warm by using the hot water and charcoal pouch (a Japanese technology). By keeping the dish warm, it helped in retaining the moisture in the pancake and preventing it from hardening and the meat of the duck to maintain its juiciness. Kudos to them for coming out with this innovative idea.

Hot Water and Charcoal for moisture retention

We then proceed to the Lo Hei session. The Yu Sheng ingredients are very generous, with a little twist of raisins in the dish. Two plate of salmon for 8 people. The vegetables are fresh and crispy, while the sauce has the right sweetness in it. Huat Ah!!!!

Yu Sheng

Next come the Double-boiled Soup with Sakura Chicken and Ginseng. Chinese version of Chicken Consommé. A beautiful clear soup, with robust ginseng taste and chicken essence. The Live Prawn with Vermicelli in Black Pepper sauce has a little Thai flair in this dish. Served on the claypot, the black pepper taste quite prominent, covering the sauce of the vermicelli and fresh prawns. It is a pity that the vermicelli tasted a bit dry.

 Double-boiled Soup with Sakura Chicken and Ginseng

The Live Prawn with Vermicelli in Black Pepper sauce

Tan Jia style Crispy Fish is just delicious. The Garoupa fish fried until crispy on the outside but moist and tender on the inside. The robust stock gravy, helps to soften the fish a bit while still deliver on taste. For Braised Spinach Beancurd with Monkey Head Mushrooms, the tofu is soft and smooth and it just melts in your mouth.

Tan Jia style Crispy Fish

Braised Spinach Beancurd with Monkey Head Mushrooms

If you ever wonder what happen to left over meat from the duck, it was shredded and cook with braised Ee-Fu Noodles. The condiments are quite generous and the noodle is springy, full of flavour but not soggy. The Sesame Glutinous Rice Balls in Sesame Paste is quite ordinary as most of us did not finished the desserts.

Ee-Fu Noodles

Sesame Glutinous Rice Balls in Sesame Paste

Service here is inconsistent. Our table got a very good service, while our friends table with the kids seems to get less attention. Plates are not clear properly and service is quite poor. When I was finished this review, I just realised that they forgot to give us our Complimentary Nian Gao ha..ha.. For TungLok standard, we find this service issue need to be ironed out. In a typical Chinese Restaurant, they will normally serve Peanuts and Pickles as appetizer. During the CNY period, TXPD served bak kwa. What we don't know apparently they charged $2 per person and we end up with $30 extra bill just for this little plate of Bak Kwa. Lets just say the amount serve is not equivalent to 1/2 kg of bak wah worth. Wow, talking about hidden charges.

The decoration in the restaurant consistent through out. The use of modern red colour are quite prominent. Instead of using all round tablets, TXPD incorporated modern square tables and boot seating as well.

Square Dining Tables

Boot Dining Table

Overall, we are quite pleased with the quality of the food served here. The presentation of the Peking Duck is very distinct and creative. Although it is not the best Peking Duck that I ever ate in Singapore, it can be considered one of the good ones. The rest of the other dishes are good and worth the TungLok standard. Hopefully we have a chance to try out their ala-carte menu in the near future. Cheers!!!

Food & Drink: 7.5/10
Value: 7/10
Service: 6.5/10
Ambiance: 8.5/10
Budget per Person: $51 - $80

TungLok Peking Duck
(previously TungLok XiHe Peking Duck)
200 Turf Club Road
#01-23/26, The Grandstand 
Singapore 287994

T: +65 6466 3363
OH: Daily 11.30 – 15.00 (LO 14.30); 17.30 – 22.00 (LO 21.30)

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