My first trip was in 1993! Who can forget the 'Hor Chien (oyster omelette)' where the oysters take centre stage over the cornstarch and eggs! This trip was as exciting. Just thinking of the good food get me salivating! With good buddies the trip and food will be doubly good no doubt. Mostly good roads also make the trip a pleasure taking away the pain of negotiating tight trunk roads with slow traffic.
There are many restaurants. Take your pick. Just go for the one with the most customers. That's my advice when our favourite was closed for lunch. A tip here for those who can't resist food any food. Its the buy, buy and buy mantra one has when on holidays. There will be peddlers going around selling fish balls. Already cooked and still steaming as you can see the condensation inside the plastic bags. Tasted really good and fresh! Don't but too many as it can spoil your appetite!
The ordering part can be tricky especially the fish. Make sure that you are armed with some names of fishes to bandy around and also some knowledge on how it should be done. But anyhow fresh fish can be done just one way, "steamed"! From there the imagination takes over. "Teochew", Cheong Cheng (with soy paste), Dry Chili variant, Ginger Puree, Julienne Ginger with Soy Sauce and etc.
I was testing the waters and bantering (don't try it in the city as they can be impatient) with the "captain" and trying to dig out some information to make the crucial call. This can be a miss and hit thing. The keys are freshness, it matches with the rest of the orders (i.e. building your other orders around the fish), the size and for the pocket's sake, the price.
The proof is in the eating. Proofing whether my decision was good or off-target. Sweet to the point of being milky, just want to chew and chew to savour the goodness from the sea. The flesh was fantastically fresh. No wonder the Chinese love to feed pomfret fish meat to their young!
Unbroken chain of beauties!
When it is fresh and of premium quality the calibre of the chef can make another big difference to the dish. A tad overdone!
Fresh crabs. Would have preferred larger ones but then it is seasonal esp the ones with roes.
Mantis Prawn. Average but then this is one dish that not many can get it perfect. The batter for the prawn and the sauce is crucial.
Enough baby oysters to satisfy our cravings. Another winner.
The cook looked somewhat inexperience or tardy and it showed.
Lettuce on the side.
Our appetizers before the food arrive. Mind you do not be taken in and succumb to the desire to over-order.