Sunday, August 14, 2016

Lai Heen 麗軒 [ Ritz Carlton Hotel, Macau ] - Sister Restaurant to Michelin 2 Star Tin Lung Heen in HK

 Macau Ritz-Carlton Lai Heen 麗軒 Restaurant's Head Chef Bill Fu,  was one of the main Chefs instrumental in assisting sister Restaurant Tin Lung Heen in Hong Kong to become elevated into the coveted Michelin 2* Status.   Having headed over to here now on Macau side,  I noticed that Chef Fu has started to create his own accent on his love for Chinese food.   It is almost slightly French Degustation like in both presentation and even cooking techniques,  yet simultaneously not diluting any of the fundamentals of mostly Cantonese food traditions.  In 2015 the restaurant opened slightly behind schedule and subsequently it still received a Michelin Guide mention.  Come end of 2016 for the 2017 Michelin Guide,  I fail to see how this won't receive at least 1* inaugural Michelin Star finally - the food is convincing,  the Concept strong.  It is only a matter of being in the right place at the right time...

The Decoration inside Lai Heen 麗軒 is Exquisite -
It carries a mixture of both traditional Chinese Elements,  but if one notices carefully,  you might also catch glimpse of their Blue & White Patterned elements especially on their Portuguese 'Azulejo' Tiles inspired designs.  This symbolizing the amalgamation between the past Portuguese influence as well as remembering the past Chinese Culture which prevailed here over the many historical years.  Very thoughtful in Design.

Tasting of Innovation - MOP $1388 
Currently,  they are doing a French Brittany Homard Bleu,  Blue Lobster theme.  The prestigious ingredient incorporated into Chinese cuisine by Lai Heen,  Ritz-Carlton Macau.

Pickled Kumquat as Appetizer - 
Very refreshing and about perfect as a starter for the Summer weather, this was both tangy sour as well as slightly salty and reminds me of our traditional Salted Plum.  8/10

House Made XO Sauce, with Toban Jiang "Fermented Beans Chili" at the Back -
The XO Sauce has a lot of Conpoy and some seafood elements,  rather elegant and not overly distractedly bold.

Trio of 法國籃龍蝦蒸蛋白, 蜜燒西班牙黑豚肉叉燒, 鮮蟹肉釀磨菇
- Steamed Brittany Blue Lobster with Egg White
- Barbecued Iberico Pork Char Siu in Honey Sauce
- Baked Mushrooms with Crabmeat
The Lobster Egg White was steamed perfectly and smooth.  The BBQ Iberico Pork is a staple Signature Dish within the Ritz-Carlton camp,  over at here,  I thought the Charsiu was slightly more savory still yet less tenderized than it's Counterpart in HK's Tin Lung Heen.  I have to say I preferred this version here on a subjective scale,  as I prefer it to be less tenderized natural, but both version definitely carry similarities.   The Crabmeat Mushrooms were very well executed and petit,  resting on a piece of dark seaweed for contrast.   Overall ~ 9/10

法國籃菌炒星班鮮貝 -
Sautéed Garoupa Filet and Scallop with French Blue Mushrooms 'Pied Bleu'
Comes with a pretty Fried Nest.  The scallops I enjoyed a lot,  because they weren't overly thinly sliced.  The Blue Mushrooms do lose their bluish color tinge after cooking but not their earthy flavor,  the Garoupa fish were silky smooth and with just the right amount of thin starch coating for lubrication.   ~  9/10

麗軒梅菜扣腩肉 - Chef’s Special Braised Pork Belly with Preserved Vegetables
This is another Signature Dish here,  and I didn't try it this time.  It was a substitute dish for someone on the table who has a Crustacean seafood allergy.  Ever so thoughtful...

雪棗薑味雙色鴨肝  Fried Mash Potato and Red Fermented Beancurd sauce,  Accompanied with Duck Liver with Snow Date Puree, Sugared Ginger and Shredded Fried Potatoes -
This was interesting.  It's almost like a French dish,  but half of the elements are as Chinese as they are French such as the Ginger or Potatoes.  I also noticed some Pink Grapefruit on top of the Duck Liver,  which helps to cut back on the grease.  Very smart modern Chinese dish but without treading over the fusion cuisine line for me.  Afterall many cuisines in the world do have Overlaps anyway...  Well Done and very Sensible.  ~  10/10

Some Chinese Tea to alleviate the Greasiness of the above Livery Dish -
Thoughtful again,  and Completes the Package of the Dining Experience...

Bake Salted French Spring Chicken -
This was another intelligent dish.  A French Chicken baked in a French 'En Papillote' parchment method,  and upon scissoring the bag open the aroma fills the dining space.  Yet this remained as Chinese in Concept deep in its core.. 

鹽焗紙包法國春雞 - Bake Salted French Spring Chicken
Some Chinese wine flavor within was apparent,  but so were the aromatic Vegetables such as Leek,  and especially Purple Onions.  The Chicken meat was moist and fragrant,  and at the bottom of the 'Papillote' lied the chicken essence.  Slightly oily in a good way and also soupy,  we were saying if this came with some steamed Artisanal Flat Rice Noodles aka 陳村粉 to soak up the sauce,  this would be one of the best recent Dishes re-inventing Cantonese cuisine with a French twist...  ~  10/10 

法國藍龍蝦湯擔擔麵 - Tan Tan Noodles in Lobster Bisque, Topped with Brittany Blue Lobster
Whilst the Soup was addictively great and sweet, with a hint of Brandy which is again slightly French influenced,  I personally thought the noodles were cooked a bit too soft.  I overheard that previously this came with another type of noodle,  and I haven't checked what it was before but according to my past experiences this kind of dish will go better with Japanese Inaniwa Hand-kneaded then Air Dried Udon ~  6.9/10     

藍莓紅釀無花果 Fresh Fig soaked in Chinese Wine, Jelly, stuffed with Blueberry Puree -

This came highly recommended as a new Dessert Dish.  It was actually quite alcoholic,  but innovative in that all components balanced each other off rather than just for gimmicky reasons.  Lovely... ~  8/10

香芒桃膠奶酪 Panna Cotta with Mango and Peach Resin Puree - $88 Extra
This is an additional Dessert we ordered.  The Peach Resin is said to be a new alternative Healthy food which can even replace Fish Maw.  At the time I wasn't sure how to translate this into English,  as technically speaking this is called a Resin - the same material which traps and preserves a mosquito from the Jurassic periods.  Quite milky and unique,  this is also one of the must order desserts here as it will be rare to find outside...  ~  8.5/10

Black Sesame 'Film' Roll.  Also some Pastries with Lotus Seed filling,  and Osmanthus Pudding 
Fairly traditional Petits Fours to finish off the night,  and again ever so thoughtful as this completed the meal from Start to Finish,  much like a French Degustation Menu.

Personally speaking,   the Food Recipes and Executions were among the most Elite of Chinese -Cantonese cuisine I have ever encountered.  The subtle sensibility behind each and every single dish was on the surface humble yet innovation was aplenty within these boundaries..  I remember back then,  I predicted that sister Restaurant in HK Ritz-Carlton will ultimately receive a Michelin 1* ( ,   and subsequently at least 2*  ( , and I haven't posted all of my intermittent visits to there yet.  For Lai Heen in Macau 麗軒,  my prediction for the future expands even further.  I can hardly remember another Chinese-Cantonese restaurant I have eaten at which was so balanced from Start to Finish,  to the point the Customer could take it for granted and probably didn't notice the attention to every single detail behind them.  I expect Lai Heen to build up over time and a Michelin 2-3* is certainly not out of the reach. especially when compared to its peers in HK, Macau or even within Guangdong Region.  This is truly one of a kind ..

Price: HKD $1388 + 10%
Food: ♕♕♕♕ 1/2 to ♕♕♕♕♕ 1/2

Address: 路氹城澳門銀河綜合渡假城, 澳門麗思卡爾頓酒店51樓
51/F, The Ritz-Carlton Macau, Galaxy Macau™, Coloane-Taipa
Ph: +853 88866868

No comments:

Post a Comment


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...