22 November 2009

Hoi Seng Restaurant, Ipoh Garden

Hubby suggested that we invite his brother and wife out to dinner tonight. We decided to try the relatively new Hoi Seng restaurant in Ipoh Garden, just next to the post office.

I had seen the place come up next to the post office on my trips sending out packages and also when the kids and I have roti canai for breakfast. Seemed like a pretty big building for a restaurant. Fellow blogger Motormouth had already tried out the place and posted his review on his blog. So tonight I took some pointers from his blog and ordered 3 of the dishes he had tried - the Shanghai Pork Ribs, Deep-Fried Lotus Roots with Salted Egg and the Hoi Seng Bean Curd.

We got to Hoi Seng pretty early as the restaurant said we couldn't reserve a table for 6 as they had run out of tables that size and only had large tables. We were told to "walk in" preferably before 7pm. Actually, we needn't have worried. There were plenty of tables available. True, there weren't many small tables but no matter, we had our pick of any of the tables for 8. But the place filled up quite quickly after 7.15pm.

The Shanghai Ribs were tender, meaty with plenty of sauce to dunk the plain buns in. Funny thing was, the waitress called it "Wuxi Pork Ribs" in Cantonese. Now, we had been to Wuxi in China last year, where they serve their famed Wuxi Pork Ribs, and Hoi Seng's ribs is nothing like that. Well....maybe the restaurant just wanted it to be mysterious. The deep fried lotus roots were quite nice, but tonight, not as crispy as it could have been. The bean curd was good, and managed to actually suit my fussy 4-year old's palate.

We ordered bean sprouts (good) and black pepper fish slices (not peppery enough). Overall, the food was above average, and we would return to sample the other dishes on the menu. My kids had no problem with the ambience too, which is a plus point.

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