Over the weekend, we had a banquet for 12 at R&G Lounge. Given the few negative comments given to it from a while back, I thought I will report our positive experience.
I didn't want to order their set banquet menu, their manager Angle was really helpful on the phone and worked with me many times to revise my menu to my liking.
winter melon soup with crab and dried scallop
fried salt and pepper crab
black mushroom with gai lan
whole steam cod
R&G special beef
shrimp and scallop in XO sauce
birthday peach bun with lotus paste filling
I have to say most everybody LOVED the fried salt and pepper crab. A while back Ryan said he didn't see the point of frying crab, well everybody else at the table sure did. The frying soften the shells so we didn't really need a cracker. The process of extracting the meat was made more enjoyable by the batter, which was a delicious combination of salt and green onion and pepper. Though it was slighly greasy, it was none the less delicious.
I also was very impressed with the steam whole cod, so fresh was the fish, just the simple soy and ginger scallion sauce was enough to set off its natural sweetness.
The much contested R&G special beef was actually not bad to us. It was a bit bland, a little more hot and sweet sauce would have made it perfect, but my husband really enjoyed it. Granted he is a big fan of orange beef and most none-authentic Chinese food, I never the less saw some merit in the R&G special beef and wouldn't mind ordering it again.
The soup was not served in a whole winter melon, Angle said it's not melon season so they can't get a good size melon for that purposes. The soup was delicate. Not too heavy, enough to whet the appetite.
Their famous stuffed chicken was impressive. The skin was really crunchy, expertly deboned, the chicken was stuff with a sticky rice mixture. I found the stuffing to be bit under salted but over all the dish was good.
The only thing I found lacking was the birthday peach bun. The dough was too tough and not heated through enough.
I was happy with the overall banquet. The service was as good as you can expect from a Chinese restaurant (it was super busy that night). More than half of the table had never had food like that before, and they all enjoyed it. For special occussions, I would definitely go back to R&G again.
Thanks Melanie for all your suggestions!