Sherman's Food Adventures: Sing Yee

Sing Yee

In Richmond, it goes without saying that you will find some of the best Chinese food (especially Cantonese) in the world.  I personally think the food in Hong Kong is also good but not any better than what we find right here in our backyard.  However, as we move forward, the trend is more expensive and more deluxe dining experiences.  Hence, the good ol' family Chinese (Cantonese) restaurant isn't as easy to find in Richmond as it once was.  Although, there is this small little place best known for its late night "da lang" menu, yet boasts a very comprehensive regular menu as well.  Sing Yee, located in Continental Shopping Centre, still offers their "woh choy" build-your-own multi-course dinners that are reasonably-priced.

We made the trek out there with the fam to order from that menu, including the addition of pre-ordered Peking Duck and Pork Patty & Salted Fish Clay Pot Rice.  We did start with the aforementioned Peking Duck and it was really good.  In a beautiful shade of dark mahogany red, the skin was crisp and light where it wasn't chewy at all.  There was some fat underneath, but not excessive.  I liked how they left a decent amount of meat with some of their cuts.  As for the crepes, they were medium-thick, yet still delicate and remained moist throughout.  The second course consisted of the usual Duck Lettuce Wrap.  Despite being rather pale in colour, there was still decent wok heat that there was caramelization and a nice smoky flavour.  There was plenty of tender chunks of duck as well as crunchy bits of vegetable.  I guess they could've used more dark soy to give a nicer appearance.

Moving onto the other dishes, we really enjoyed the Sweet & Sour Pork.  Yes, this poor dish doesn't get a lot of love due to its association with places like Manchu Wok and Flaming Wok, but rest assured, it is a legit dish and when done right, it is delicious.  Of course one of the few places that did it authentically with hawthorne was the retired Hoi Tong.  With that in mind, the version at Sing Yee was still solid where there was just enough sauce clinging to every morsel of tender (not refried) pork that had a slight crispy exterior.  Solid dish.  The same could be said about the Deep Fried Fish with cream of corn sauce.  Normally, the fish is tossed in the sauce, but we preferred keeping the fish crispy and got it on the side.  This was a huge portion of flaky basa with a thin crispy seasoned exterior.  We found the sauce to be watered-down a bit, but the dish still had enough flavour.

Sporting large butterflied prawns, the Satay Vermicelli Prawn Hot Pot was texturally sound.  The noodles were chewy, yet not clumpy while the prawns were fried just enough that the meat was still bouncy and sweet.  Interestingly, they didn't devein them despite going through the effort of butterflying them.  One thing we wished for was more satay as the dish was very mild and lacking in impact.  For our veggie dish, we got the simple Wok-Fried Pea Shoots with garlic.  Another great value as this consisted of a large mount of perfectly-prepared pea shoots.  They were cooked through while still crunchy and vibrant.  The ample wok heat ensured that the dish was not watery and the caramelized flavours came through.  They were easy on the grease too.

At the end of the meal, we were served the Pork Patty & Salted Fish Clay Pot Rice.  This is one of their signature items and it didn't disappoint.  On top of the chewy and nutty rice, we found a large pork patty that had the salted fish chopped into it.  As such, there was the unmistakeable briny saltiness interwoven with the natural sweetness of the processed pork.  It was manipulated enough as well consisting of just the right amount of fat to create a luxurious tender and delicate bounicess.  The meat was so moist, there was very little need to chew, yet at the same time, there was a certain meatiness that was retained.  There was also the requisite rice crust stuck to the clay pot.  A fitting end to a solid meal as we were satisfied while not paying an arm and a leg.  This was actually better than the meal we had at Jade a few weeks prior.

The Good:
- Reasonably-priced
- Food is solid
- Has the build-your-own dinner option 

The Bad:
- Very busy, service is fine, but hard to flag down
- Seating can be tight


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