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Wednesday, May 4, 2011

[Markham] Fancy Chinese Cuisine (李嘉誠)

Review location:
7750 Kennedy Road
Markham, Ontario
(Major Intersection: 14th Ave. & Kennedy Rd.)

First off, I would like to commend this restaurant for their English name selection. I would then also like to commend this place more on their Chinese name selection, which is essentially named after the wealthiest business man in all of Asia. Not that it has anything to do with anything, just point it out.

This restaurant is actually a pretty big restaurant which was surprising considering the parking lot was small with very minimal spots. The plaza also isn't the most aesthetically sublime on the outside, I didn't expect much from the restaurant at first. Not only was the restaurant packed, it was actually one of the nicer Chinese restaurants I've been to. It was indeed very "fancy" inside. The decor had gold everywhere you looked, to a point where it was almost regal. Everything was very clean, including the washroom. More on that later.

In terms of food, we ordered a 3 pound lobster meal with a couple of dishes as add ons.

Chicken Feet Soup

Left: Chinese Wine Chicken, Right: Chinese style deep fried chicken

We ordered two different types of chicken and they were both quite good. They definitely didn't skimp on the wine in the wine chicken as the taste of it was very potent. The deep fried chicken was also very good. Crispy skin on the outside and moist meat on the inside.

Steamed minced meat

I normally like this dish, but didn't particularly like it at this restaurant. It had a lot of shallots in it, and a very strong ginger flavour, both of which I don't personally prefer. I think otherwise, the rest of the dish was fine.

Seafood and vegetables on Tofu
The ingredients to this dish are quite good. The tofu was smooth, the shrimps were a decent size, but the sauce was just way to salty. I guess since none of the other ingedients have too much flavour, they had to overcompensate.

Sweet and Sour Prawns
I didn't manage to get a picture of this before it was devoured, but it was hands down my favourite dish. The prawns were lightly fried, tossed in an appetizing sauce, and served on a bed of deep fried grains (similar to rice crispies). The crunchiness of the deep fried grains gave it a very interesting texture, and made this dish almost addictive.

Bowl of Rice
I know there is nothing special about rice, but here they serve it upside down in the bowl on a plate. I guess this way every bowl is exactly the same because you can't pile more on top of the bowl. Fair, and econocmical -- so smart!

Stir fried lobster
This was a 3 pound lobster that was cooked for just the right amount of time and had a lot of meat. I found that it wasn't cooked with enough sauce though. The meat was almost dry because of this, and made the overall experience less enjoyable.

Peking Duck Wraps

Peking duck lettuce wrap

There was nothing too special about the Peking duck dishes, but that's not to say it wasn't enjoyable. It's just hard to differentiate too much between restaurants. It's just so tasty always!

Beef and Vegetable
We ordered this dish at the end of the meal because we still had rice left and some of us weren't full. I guess that might be an indication of the portions you get here. Again the ingredients were amazing: beef was tender, vegetables were fresh, just that it was cooked in a very salty sauce.

Tofu dessert, Black seasame dessert, red bean dessert.
For someone who can never decide when there are choices, getting all three of the desserts was the best way to end the meal. It was nice because we had the option of mixing two or three of them together. The tofu and red bean desserts were very good, but the sesame was flavourless and thickened with lots and lots of cornstarch. A little disappointed with that one.

Aside from some salty dishes the meal was quite good. The prices were decent too! However, if you ever wanted to come here for dinner, you'd best make reservations. There is sign put outside on the doors that says "fully booked". Not sure if this is just put out every night regardless though.

Oh and one last point to add. Rob made the comment that he thinks this place is run by gangsters. There is a special VIP room and all the waiters that serve that room are young guys who have crazy dyed hairdoos. On top of that, there were security cameras everywhere. Because of this suspicion, we had a good laugh at the washroom signs, because at first glance it looked like the washroom sign people were holding guns.

Fancy Chinese Cuisine on Urbanspoon

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