When the words opulence, grandeur and Cantonese Cuisine are put into one sentence, XIU FINE CANTONESE DINING comes into mind. XIU which means elegance, gives its guests a taste of the good life. This new venture from the group that brought us Lugang Cafe, The Dessert Kitchen and Tuan Tuan, partnered with West Villa from Hong Kong to give it a unique and Hong Kong Styled Cuisine.
Bottomline, they want to bring Hong Kong closer to home in a relaxed and almost hotel like feel.
As guests enter the restaurant, they are greeted by live aquariums featuring fresh seafood catches of the day. A large light fixture, alongside different hues of gold and earthy tones, makes up the entire restaurant giving it a nice relaxed feel.
Not wanting to waste time, the kitchen created a storm by having delicious dishes brought out one by one. As with usual Chinese tradition, each dish is served one after another with rice at the end just before dessert.
Appetizers of Honey Glazed Prime Cut Char Siu and Cantonese Style Crispy Pork belly were brought out first. The Char Siu is a thick cut. Surprisingly, it wasn't dry but rather, it was tender and moist all throughout. The Pork belly had a nice ratio of fat to meat to crispy skin. Wonderfully done.
For the soup course, the DOUBLE BOILED FISH MAW and ALMOND SOUP was served. This was prepared and finished table side.
The Fish maw basically controls the buoyancy of the fish and is believed to be promote health when eaten. The liquid had the right balance of almond flavor that it was silky with each slurp. Other than the maw, different cuts of meat was also present and would be served separately.
Something delicious and different would be the BAKED STUFFED SEA CONCH cooked in a French Style. The conch was filled with a mix of its meat, curry, cheese and bacon. Right at the bottom would be mashed potato.
A crowd favorite, the STEWED US BEEF SHORT RIBS makes one beg for rice. Each bite would reveal a soft and tender beef cut. The sauce is slightly sweet that you would love to partner it with plain rice. This is extremely delicious.
To showcase their seafood mastery, the team brought out this BAKED LOBSTER with CHEESE.
The lobster meat wasn't overwhelmed by the cheese sauce. To put it plainly, you could still taste the flavor of the lobster distinctly from the cheese. That good.
Another seafood dish that must not be missed would be the STEAMED LAPU-LAPU. Cooked in a traditional style, the meat absorbed the flavors of the sauce making it more delicious. It wasn't overcooked as you could feel the meat melt in your mouth.
Chicken lovers would enjoy the PREMIUM SOY SAUCE HK Chicken in CLAY POT. The sauce has a sweetness to it making it enjoyable to both young and young at heart diners.
A Chinese meal will not be complete for Filipinos if there wasn't any Sweet and Sour Pork. At XIU, they figured out how to properly balance the flavors making it a delectable dish. Properly cooking it, XIU produced the right type of crunchy and tender sweet and sour pork dish.
Simple and straightforward, the CHINESE LETTUCE with shrimp paste was served tables side and in a clay pot. The lettuce was crunchy while the shrimp paste had a lighter flavor compared to the usual Filipino Bagoong. It wasn't as salty as one would expect and would give the taste buds a quick refresh.
A visit to XIU will not be complete without the WOK-FRIED CRAB with Garlic.
Cooked "Typhoon Shelter" Style, the crab is garlicky and would go well with rice.
Speaking off, the BAKED BLACK INK RICE was served. To make the experience complete, use the garlic bits from the crab dish and combine it with this black ink rice. This would produce the perfect meal ender.
For dessert, two dishes were served. The LONGEVITY BALL and the HOT RED BEAN SOUP.
One would hesitate to eat the Longevity ball as it is bigger than a tennis ball. This buchi like dessert is actually hollow and is basically pure skin. One must eat it immediately as after a few minutes, the shell hardens. On the other hand, the HOT RED BEAN SOUP gave a simple and didn't go over board with flavors. It was not sweet but just on the right side.
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Located at the former Lugang Cafe along Conneticut St. in Greenhills, XIU FINE CANTONESE DINING would start serving the public on July 29, 2016 Friday. The guests could expect a delicious and wonderful time experiencing Hong Kong right here in the country.
(Pronounced as Shoo)
Connecticut St., Northeast Greenhills, San Juan City, Metro Manila
Will open on July 29, 2016
Disclaimer: was invited to this event. wrote this based on my experience.