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China & Southeast Asia

'Come-into' Chui Chow Restaurant, TST - A faltering 'Michelin' Star


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Restaurants & Bars China & Southeast Asia

'Come-into' Chui Chow Restaurant, TST - A faltering 'Michelin' Star

Charles Yu | | Mar 7, 2013 08:26 AM

With an impressive credential that includes a perfect batting average (15 thumbs-up vs 0 ok or thumbs-down) from Openrice and a Michelin star under its belt, my dinner tonight at this restaurant was met with huge expectation!!

Greeted by a super high ceiling reception area and artful decor of Chinese calligrapy and paintings, large aquarium with rare fishes and gorgeous Orchid plants, this restaurant offers us a grand feel which is uncommon for a non-hotel establishment.

Friendly servers and management staff looked after us and took our order. They were smiling and couteous to the end, even though we did not order anything super exotic or expensive dishes.

Our party of six ordered the following dishes:

- One plate of Chui Chow Soy marinated goose meat, wings and web as well as a stand alone plate of soya goose liver.
- Duo of fried Prawns and Crab balls.
- Stirred fried boneless chicken pieces with Sichuan pepper corns.
- Sweet and Sour fried pork-neck meat
- Stewed four vegetables treasure, comprising of Chinese mushrooms, baby sweet corn, Nappa cabbage and Chinese mustard green with Hunnan Chinese Ham.
- Two-face fried crispy noodles to be eaten with sugar and black Chinese vinegar.
- Complimentary dessert courtesy of the manager - ' Mung Bean Soup with Chewy Jello'. This was offered after he noticed I was taking photos of every dishes and menu! Ha!

Unfortunately, what I am going to post next is going to disappoint! Some of the hits simply cannot stand up to the overwhelming number of misses!

Some of the misses include:
- A slight overcooked and non-velvety marinated goose liver. This type of treatment and mistakes should not have happened to a Michelin star calibre restaurant and to such a delicate ingredient! At $180, this was an expensive failure.
- An unexpectedly huge goose meat platter that were presented 'rough with an edge' and quite salty. This especially applied to the tofu condiments at the bottom of the plate which was cut super-thick as well!
- A very ordinary, run of the mill Sweet and sour pork that used a pretty chewy and tough, though expensive, cut ouf meat.
- A similarly boring Duo of Prawns and Crab balls. Though non greasy and crispy/crunchy, the two supposedly different morsel types were non-distinguishable from each other and dull tasting.

The hits include:
- A nicely executed stirred fry chicken with lovely charred and smokey flavour from the 'wok-hay'. Together, they formed a great taste combo with the pepper seasoning.
- A delicate and delicious combination of melt in the mouth tender Nappa Cabbage and Mustard Greens, crunchy Sweet corn and chewy mushrooms, augmented by slices of salty but umami filled Chinese Ham. Together they form some interesting textural feel and taste sensation.
- The crispy noodles were non-greasy and well executed.
- Kudos to the nice and refreshing complimentary dessert as well!

All in all, in my book, though excel in other less essentail areas, this highly acclaimed restaurant only bat a meager slightly over 50% for its food!! Is this enough for it to retain its Michelin star? Only time will tell?!