The Japanese like to drink their sake with Yakitori after hours while the Westerners prefers their beers with buffalo wings, fries or salted peanuts. The chef at Lai Ching Yuen Chinese Restaurant at Grand Millennium Hotel Bukit Bintang Kuala Lumpur was given a special task to create a special Chinese snacks menu which will go well with the pairing of any alcoholic drinks.
Given the task, the Chef set out to create the Xiao Shi Ba (snack for the bar) in total; 12 dishes which has a special snack fusion dish that can be ordered and cook ala-minute right in front of you from the bar while sipping your favourite drink.
Here are the dishes that you can also order as an appetiser if you wish to. The first dish is the Fried US Fresh Oyster with Tangy Sauce (RM12 per pcs). The oyster was coated in a batter for frying and is served with a topping of citrusy refreshing sauce.
Followed by the Crispy Bean Curd With Chef Yu’s Special Powder (RM12.00). The concoction of the of the special powder consists of dry shrimp with dry chilli powder. It has a nice crust feel and upon biting into the bean curd; soft melt in the mouth texture of the bean curd with a slight fragrant of the light spicy dry shrimp.
Next is the In-house made Salt and pepper Tofu Squares (RM12.00). A very simple dish that has the square Tofu smothered with salt and pepper before being fried to a soft crisp.
After that; we had the Man Tao With Chilli Crab Sauce (RM12.00) – the Man Tao are in-house made and is fried before serving with a sweet spicy chilli crab sauce.
For the next dish, the chef uses the Soft shell crab which is mixed in a batter with spring onion, julienne radish and yam. The dish is aptly named Soft Shell Crab and Vegetables Fritters (RM28.00).
For fans of Salted Eggs Yolk, this dish should be interesting as it is paired with Fried Fish Skin. The Fish skin is fried to a nice crunchy and added with the special egg yolk sauce. This dish is called Salted Egg Yolk With Crispy Fish Skin (RM18.00).
You probably have come across Nacho Chips but to have this Lotus Root Chip (RM 12.00) is a challenge to your taste buds. The lotus root is cut to a thin piece and battered with tapioca powder with a light sprinkle of salt and sent to the fryer. Should be eaten hot.
We have eaten quite a number of dishes that are wrapped with bacon, but to have an Australian Scallop Wrapped in Bacon (RM18 per piece) is a lovely change. Paired with a tasty sauce with the smoky salty aroma of the devilish bacon, this is a real treat to our taste-bud. We can eat a few more of these anytime.
Next is the Chinese Black Pepper Snails (RM18.00). Snails are usually served with Cheese and Garlic which is flamed but the chef uses these snails with a special black pepper sauce, we like the taste of the sauce but somehow find it difficult to be paired with the taste of the snails.
Another vegetable fritters that was dished out is the Pumpkin Fritters (RM12.00). These smashed pumpkin fritters are served with a special Butter Sauce with Curry Leaves. We like the taste of the butter sauce which has a milky and strong aroma of the curry leaves which blends well with the sweet taste of the pumpkin.
The second last dish is the special Braised Pork Belly Mini Sandwich (RM12.00). The sandwich is made with a wrap Man Tao and in it the special thin slice of braised Pork Belly with spring onion. Love the sauce that came with it.
The last dish is the Chinese Pork Sausage Corn Dogs (RM18.00). For us, we find this a unique combination to have a fried Chinese Sausage as we usually eat the Chinese Sausage either by steaming or frying it but have it covered with a batter to be fried was something new to us.
So, if you are around Bukit Bintang and yearns to have some special snack food (not the norm) with some cold beers or a glass of wine, you might like to give a try on these snacks at Lai Ching Yuen Chinese Restaurant, Grand Millennium Hotel/