It’s that time of the year again when dads are feted and fed. One restaurant offers traditional offerings with charming twist, writes Karen Ho
THEY say the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach, so one of the best ways to make dads happy on Father’s Day is undoubtedly a memorable meal.
If you want to spoil him with a glorious gastronomic experience that balances quality with simplicity, you wouldn’t go wrong at Zuan Yuan Chinese Restaurant in One World Hotel.
Known for its wide range of Cantonese specialties, Zuan Yuan has three special set menus (comprising eight or nine courses) fit for any father, especially those more health-conscious. The carefully selected combinations of soup, seafood, meat, vegetables and dessert may sound like enough to burst a few buttons, but in the hands of the resident chef and team, they are wholesome and hearty without the heaviness.
Zuan Yuan’s KL-born chef Chew Chee Pang feels that by offering classic dishes, the menu will stir up nice warm memories of home-cooked meals and strengthen that close-knit family feeling around the dining table.
While traditional Chinese staples like nutritious broths, clay pot specialties and roasted meats can be found on the special set menus, some of the dishes offer a little twist while retaining their familiarity.
For example, the vegetable platter of sauteed celery, peas and lily bulbs comes with crispy thin cuttlefish plus rarely seen fried lotus root slices stuffed with fish paste. And then there’s a double-boiled soup that offers a light nourishing chicken flavour. Plough into the chicken meat and you’ll discover a surprising shark’s fin and bamboo pith mix cleverly hidden inside!
Apart from the mainly Cantonese-style cuisine, some Hong Kong influences make an appearance such as the wok-fried tiger prawns that have been tweaked to suit local tastebuds.
The juicy prawns are given added bite and aroma, thanks to a crunchy topping of fried shrimp bits mixed with dried chilli to give a salty and spicy taste that can be quite addictive. Cast aside any qualms about de-shelling the prawns because the succulent flesh inside is worth the effort.
One highlight has to be the oven-baked cod that entices with its glistening flesh. Beautifully brown on the outside, the firm yet moist pieces of fresh cod melt in the mouth while the sweet but delicate teriyaki flavour hits the right spots and leaves me lapping up every morsel. It’s not quite your classic Chinese dish but it’s innovative.
No Chinese set dinner is complete without a refreshing end to wash down all the savoury flavours. The chilled Chinese herbal soup with eight treasures provides a light and lovely guilt-free dessert and is generous in its offering of edible gems such as longan, snow fungus and lotus seeds.
According to Chew, who has more than 20 years of experience in the industry, the special set menus are designed to offer a balanced combination of tastes, so that diners can enjoy variety, from strong or subtle to sweet or salty. The results are essentially traditional in nature and authenticity is preserved in many ways.
All fathers can take delight in a special complimentary tea set that comes with each reservation of the set menu.
Zuan Yuan Chinese Restaurant
1World Hotel, Bandar Utama, Petaling Jaya.
Tel: 03-7681 1159
Available for lunch and dinner,
Mainly Cantonese cuisine with Hong Kong influences
Oven-baked cod fish with Japanese teriyaki sauce & wok-fried tiger prawn
Classy and contemporary Oriental splendour with classical inspirations
Set A: RM428 for 4 persons
Set B: RM628 for 6 persons
Set C: RM1,088 for 10 persons
Go give it a try