mylifestylenews returns to LAI HEEN in the Ritz-Carlton, Macau – one of the most sophisticated Cantonese restaurants in this once Portuguese colonized island for Chef Bill’s signature new set lunch menu and indulge once again for the good RC Memories……
It is always nice to revisit to the same place when you have had some great experiences in the past. A few months back, our dining experience in LAI HEEN was in the evening, the ambience was a darker, moody experience and this time, we chose to dine in during the day.
We arrived on a bright sunny day and with so much natural light flooding in, the ambience seems to change quite a bit and we manage to see much more details on the chic and elegant décor with details.
As excited as it was, we had a seven course new set lunch menu to try out some dishes we had not had a chance to taste on the previous visit, plus we ordered a few other dishes for good measure.
Beautiful artisan work on wall decoration in LAI HEEN reflects the East Meets West inspiration from the past and present.
Broken vases porcelains are best well decorated to give a artistic mood while dining in LAI HEEN.
The Amouse Bouche served on a gold "plate" china stimulate your appetite as always
To begin our lunch-time journey, we started with a <Steamed Shrimp Dumpling with Bamboo Shoots and Asparagus> served together with a <Deep-fried Glutinous Rice Dumplings with Minced Chicken and Dried Shrimps> and a much treasured <Xiao Long Bao> (Pork Dumpling) as an add on.
Sounds quite a mouthful, but these are bite size portions with delicate flavours that shone the light on each individual ingredient, plus showing a deft hand with the casing that was just the right thickness and consistency. What a great start for lunch and first RC Memories ticked.
The second add on dishes includes a combination of assorted classic dim sum dishes: <Steamed Barbecued Pork Buns in Honey and Oyster Sauce>, <Crispy Spring Rolls Filled with Crabmeat> and <Steamed Assorted Mushroom Dumpling Stuffed with Yellow Fungus and Cordyceps Flower>. Incredibly tasty!
The next dish was a little more robust in flavours and texture: <Roasted Three Layers Pork Belly> and <Barbecued Iberico Pork in Honey Sauce>. The smart Chef Bill transformed the regular five layers of crispy roasted pork into three to reduce the excess fat for many aficionados towards this all time favorite dish. As expected, the traditional pork belly was so crispy on the top, you have to be careful that you do not break a tooth and such a smooth texture layer by layer as you bite through. Thumbs Up! The Iberico pork was incredibly intense and rich in flavor and the honey sauce adds to the overall richness. Both dishes were a delight and are an absolutely must try.
<Hot and Sour Soup with Shredded Abalone> is a quite signature dish in any Cantonese restaurant of note and Lai Heen executes this dish with great precision. There is not too much starch and the vegetables and abalone come through the piquant hot and sour flavor which is so clearly delineated that it is a joy to consume. What a triumph in contrasting flavours!
There is a choice for the meat, we chose the <Wok-Fried Garoupa Fillet with Ginger and Spring Onion> over the <Chef’s Special Braised Pork Belly with Preserved Vegetable> which we had tried during our previous visit that gave another dimension to the other pork dishes with extremely tender meat that still held so much promise on tasting with the vegetables a counterpoint to the rich meat flavor.The fragrant from the ginger and spring onion was a refreshing change and gives a touch of spiciness after the soup while the fish fillet was steamed to perfection that melt in your mouth without much bite to chew.
<Fried Rice with Sakura Shrimps and Iberian Pork> was a delight of juxtaposing ingredients, yet each melded together beautifully. The rice was perfectly light and slightly sticky, giving a counter-balance to the shrimp and pork - a welcome addition at this point of our lunch.
Dessert is always something to look forward to after so many rich dishes, so a refreshing yet classic must-have for Cantonese dessert is the <Chilled Sago Cream with Mango, Pomelo and Aloe Vera>. It sounds incredibly rich, but is definitely a sort of palate cleanser before heading out for the rest of the afternoon. Petit Fours followed, and as beautiful as they were, it was an anti-climax after all the other dishes, but enjoyable nonetheless.
With all that beautiful dishes carefully designed by Chef Bill, the Sommelier has also chosen a few wines to pair. The 2013 Joseph Mellot de Troncsec Pouilly-Fum e Loire Valley France and the 2011 Famille Perrin Vinsobres Rhone Valley France are best company. Once again, a triumph of cooking and presentation skills that never failed to please for one minute and the staff deliver each and every course with grace. With the product knowledge and the enthusiasm for what they are doing, it is a really treasure. No stop in Macau is replete without a visit to this classy restaurant as the sum of all parts means that this is such a highly consistent experience and Lai Heen has become one of our all time favourite Cantonese food destinations in this region.
Tried & Tested:
Design & Decor: 5/5
Food & Beverage: 5/5
Value For Money: 4/5
Deep-fried Glutinous Rice Dumplings with
Minced Chicken and Dried Shrimps
Barbecued Iberico Pork in Honey Sauce
Estrada da Baia da Nossa
Senhora da Esperanca, s/n
Tel: +853 8886 6868
Reviews are based on actual day of visit and experience. mylifestylenews reserves the right of final decision in case of any disputes. All images are photographed by mylifestylenews team without any photoshop enhancement and are the property owned by mylifestylenews unless otherwise stated.