Monday, July 3, 2017

Tin Lung Heen 天龍軒 (Hong Kong, CHINA) ★★★★☆

My best pal, St Paul is making his annual trip back from Los Angeles this week with his lovely wife and little queen. Originally, we thought we won't be able to catch up this time around since he's only staying in Hong Kong for 3 days. But then we managed to work out our schedule so now I have a daunting task of finding a respectable place to treat my buddy for lunch.

Despite the recent run of bad weather, I was keen to find a restaurant with a view and Tin Lung Heen (天龍軒) would fit the bill perfectly since we both wanted some dim sum but with less than a week ahead, it's not going to be easy to get ourselves a table. Thankfully, the good guys at Tin Lung Heen helped me out.

After all the thunderstorms and showers in the morning, one could only dream that the sky would clear up just in the nick of time and you know what, miraculously it did!

This amazing view will sure get my VIPs pumped up.

There's been a lot of changes to the dim sum menu of late which saw some of my favorites (including soup dumpling with fish maw and bamboo fungus in supreme stock 龍軒瑤柱花膠灌湯餃 and "Dragon and phoenix" pork dumplings 龍鳳燒賣皇 etc.) disappear off the menu.

Steamed shrimp dumpling with bamboo shoot (筍尖鮮蝦餃) ($95) - One of my favorites here that didn't get removed from the menu. This was very good and juicy as usual.

Steamed spotted garoupa dumpling with coriander (香茜星斑燒賣) ($95) - With their Dragon and Phoenix pork dumpling off the menu, this becomes the replacement. They're obviously paying homage to the popular street food, minced fish siu mai (魚肉燒賣). At least, that's what I thought they were doing but honestly, it's pretty bad idea. I'm sure they were using premium ingredients (such as spotted garoupa) but none of us could tell the difference between these and the ones we got from some inexpensive dim sum place.

Baked barbecued pork buns (雪影焗叉燒包) ($95) - Another one of my personal favorites got bumped off the menu. Their baked barbecued pork and pineapple bun with crispy crust (酥皮焗叉燒菠蘿包) was one of my go-to dim sum here but now, just one kind of baked barbecued pork buns going forward.

This was actually not bad but I did like the other one with the crispy crust and diced pineapple in the middle a little more. I'm sure a lot of fans here would agree.

Poached pork dumplings in chili oil (川汁紅油抄手) ($88) - Everyone wanted something a little hot so this was right up the alley. Pretty good.

Barbecued Iberian pork with honey (蜜燒西班牙黑豚肉叉燒) ($320) - Just looking at the color, I knew it's a little off. It didn't have that perfectly charred surface (or color) and
the excessive sweetness also suggested that they have over-done the honey glaze. Disappointing.

Tin Lung Heen Peking duck (片皮烤鴨) ($458) - This was much better.

My only complaint was that it's a little on the lean side but that's just my personal preference.

The succulent duck meat did work well with the pancake and hoisin.

Stewed vermicelli and bean sprouts in goose sauce (鵝汁銀芽炆米粉) ($218) - Things got back on the right track with the two noodles starting with this stewed vermicelli and bean sprouts. The sauce made with goose meat and bones provided a very lovely touch. 

Pan fried noodle with scallops and mushroom (帶子草菇煎脆麵) ($302) - Equally impressive was the pan-fried noodle served with vegetables, mushrooms and scallops. I don't normally see Hokkaido scallops being commonly used in Chinese restaurants but this were just perfect to go with the crispy noodles.

Traditional baked egg custard tart (傳統酥皮蛋撻) ($85) - Had to wait 15 minutes for these and to be brutally honest, didn't live up to the hype.

The dessert soups were so much better. I'd go for these over the pastries on any given day.

I had a feeling that they have someone new in charge of dim sum here, which would explain all the changes in the menu and thus the (pretty obvious) drop in quality. I guess I will find out a little more when I visit the restaurant again some other time but this afternoon, I was simply too preoccupied having my buddy and his family visiting us.

Food Rating: 6.5/10
Price: $$$$
Address: 102/F, The Ritz-Carlton Hong Kong, International Commerce Centre, 1 Austin Road West, Tsim Sha Tsui, Hong Kong
Closest Metro Station: Kowloon
Tel: +852 2263-2270

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