Monday, August 8, 2016

First Bite: Xiu Fine Cantonese Dining

Xiu has been making a lot of noise since it opened last week. Socialites and food bloggers have been posting their favorites on Instagram and I could not help but get curious. Luckily, I was not the only one eying this place. R's dad wanted to try it too and asked R to make reservation arrangements given that he knows one of the owners. But the place was fully booked on its first week so we had to wait for the following weekend. And finally, the wait was over! 
Hello, Xiu Fine Cantonese Dining!
R's family was already there when we arrived and they did the ordering and picked Roast Goose (PHP1,980, half | PHP3,800, whole), Tiger Lobster Baked with Cheese and e-fu noodles (market price, ours reached over PHP10,000), Mashed Taro Puff with Scallop and Truffle (PHP1,080), Fried Squid in Chili and Salt (PHP580), Sweet and Sour Pork (PHP480) and Mixed Mushroom with Truffle Paste (PHP680).
While waiting for our food, we were served some crackers and vinegar which we paired with... our Malvasia-Chardonnay. Odd pairing but it was better than being (h)angry. 
First dish served was the Roast Goose. Given its price, we expected it to be good. 
The skin was slightly crispy and the meat was fatty. The darker meat on the other hand was quite chewy and tough. 
Taste-wise, it was flavorful enough to be enjoyed alone or with minimal sauce but its fattiness and toughness made this dish a disappointment. R's mom even said that we should have just ordered from all-time favorite Summer Palace.
The Mixed Mushroom with Truffle Paste was served next and it was delightful! I loved the soft yet subtly crunchy bite of mushrooms and the heavenly taste of truffle. It was so good that I had to get three servings of this! 

While still in mushroom heaven, the Fried Squid in Chili and Salt was next to be devoured.
There was really nothing much to say about this one as I always believe that it would be hard to mess with a deep-fried dish, especially if you claim to be a good restaurant. The squid used was fresh and not tough at all. The breading was not oily and the dish was not overly salty. 
The most anticipated dish of the night, Tiger Lobster with Baked Cheese and e-fu, made quite an entrance. We were so lucky to be able to get the last lobster for the night as a bunch of diners seemed to have placed their orders in advance.
A huge oval plate of tiger lobster swimming in creamy cheese made us gulp in anticipation while each person gets a hefty serving. It took us a bit to get portions as the e-fu noodles were quite tricky to get and we do not want to simply yank it off the noodle tangle with the fear of giving ourselves and seat mates a cheesy facial. 
I took a huge mouthful after getting my portion and it was... not as good as I thought. The cheese was not as sharp as I imagined. In fact, R compared it with the cheese in Kraft's Mac n Cheese. It didn't have the sharp cheese taste that I love. 
I guess they wanted the dish to be less cloying given the abundance of the lovely yellow goo. But even the lobster itself seemed overcooked with its tough texture. It was close to being gummy. And for PHP10,000, I expected a lot more. At least the noodles were cooked well. 
The star of the night was followed by the taro puff with scallops which R liked. 
I liked it too but it was more of because of the fresh thick scallop
Last served was the sweet and sour pork and it was good. Again, this is a staple dish in Chinese restaurants and quite hard to mess up. 
Overall, the food was okay but not great. It was overpriced and sadly, did not meet my expectations. I won't be coming back anytime soon. If I do, I'll stick with the Mixed Mushroom with Truffle Paste dish. 

Xiu Fine Cantonese Dining Restaurant is located at 115 Connecticut Street, Northeast Greenhills, San Juan City.  

Xiu Fine Cantonese Dining Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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