You might not believe it, but it was actually my first time trying Imperial Treasure.
In all honesty, I don’t care for the rift between Crystal Jade and Imperial Treasure, but I would definitely have loved to see these two chains grow to fill their own niches instead of more or less copying each other. It’s gettin’ old, and here you are, busy proclaiming to be the original while you let your peers like Paradise and Tung Lok slip through your fingers.
I’m feeling a little runny nose and slight fever so I’m just gonna rush through this one.
La Mian with Scallion Oil
I’ve been feeling a more profound appreciation for blander noodles particularly when I’m feeling the urge to order things like dumplings and other side dishes. It’s hearty and tasty, plus the portion’s aren’t too big, so you don’t feel too guilty when you take the side dishes… especially since this next dish has been found to be very high in fat content.
Xiao Long Bao
Yes, according to the Singapore edition of Men’s Health, these delicious dumplings are high in fat content. I should rephrase. They boast a higher fat content than they appear to bear, particularly because of the soup inside. Yes, this little trick is actually, not really soup, but gelatin, which allows it to be comfortably rolled into the dumpling as a solid. At a certain temperature, the heating process begins and the pure gelatin melts into its liquid form, giving rise to the “soup”. In addition, the meat that goes into the dumpling tend to be on the fatty side – all to make your xiao long bao experience that much juicier, tastier and softer.
On the taste aspect, I must say that it’s a lot similar to Paradise Group’s version than Crystal Jade’s whose dumplings tend to be a tad more filling than its competitors.
Chengdu Saliva Chicken
This Sichuan delight is more than twice the price of the same dish Keidi and I had at Chong Qing Grilled Fish, but unfortunately, doesn’t taste more than twice as better. Whatreally pushes this up a notch is the amazingly tender drumstick which is used for this dish. Otherwise, it’s not terribly worth it at SGD 10. You’re better off going for the Chinese “Hua Tiao” Wine Drunken Chicken, which is SGD 1.50 cheaper.
Beijing Chives Dumpling
Of the four restaurant chains I’ve tried, only Din Tai Fung seems to suck at this. Maybe it’s something to do with the fact that Din Tai Fung is Taipei-based, and they can’t agree with a Beijing-origin dish? Whatever the reason, Din Tai Fung’s one remains the driest of them all. Imperial Treasure does a fairly good job at it, although having tried the actual thing in the Chinese capital, there’s still a way to go.
This one was an addition by my mom, and something I really didn’t want to eat, but tried one anyways. Perfectly crispy, but lacking in filling and a suitable dip, which is a real pity.