Friday, October 12, 2012

Summer Palace

Summer Palace is one of those restaurants I've been dreaming to eat at but have not yet gone to because of my seemingly endless budget constraint. But since it was my sister's birthday and my older brother's paying, I finally got the chance to try this place out.

This restaurant is undeniably upscale. The place exuded a very intimidating atmosphere, and most of the people who are dining here look rich and, well, intimidating. Talk about feeling so out of place. 

Outside, you can see a hallway complete with flood lights and etched glass walls. 

And, inside, the place looked very clean and posh. 

There's also plenty to see...

... including this dining area here.

Overall, I'd say that this is probably one of the prettiest dining areas I've been to, and it's spacious too. But the place can sometimes be full, so I suggest making a reservation before going here. 

Anyway, after we were led to our table by their very efficient and friendly waiters, we were handed their menu, which contained an extensive list of Chinese dishes. I did give some recommendations on what to have, but my brother did all the ordering. As usual, just like in any Chinese restaurant, we started with the free peanuts before we made our orders.

Garlic and Chili Peanuts (Complimentary)

These, of course, tasted like Happy Peanuts.

The waiters served the dim sum next, which were, by the way, so lovely to look at. These dumplings were absolutely gorgeous! 

Steamed Pork Siomai with Shrimps (P 189.00)

The first dim sum we my siblings sampled is the Pork Siomai with Shrimps. I wasn't able to taste these tempting dumplings as I am allergic to shrimps. But the shrimps looked so plump and tasty, I almost ate one. Good thing I was able to prevent myself from doing so (although I had to withstand the unbearable pangs of jealousy I felt from looking at my siblings devour these tiny portions of happiness). 

Steamed Scallop Dumplings (P 178.50)

I did bring antihistamines though. However, I was reserving my dose of Claritin for the Scallop Dumplings, which, as I presumed, also had shrimps in it. There were only three pieces served so we only had one each, which I think was not enough because these were so delicious. Every bite of the chewy scallop made my heart skip a beat. It was love at first bite!

Steamed Siolong Pao (P 157.50)

But we saved the best for last - the Siolong Pao. This is by far the soupiest, tastiest, and most delicate Siolong Pao (Xiao Long Bao) I have ever tasted to date. The wrapper of these meticulously folded dumplings was so thin it literally melts in the mouth. And the soup inside is just pure delight. It's indescribable.  Plus, at P 157.50, it's definitely a steal!

"Yang Zhou" Fried Rice (P 370.00)

After wiping out all the dumplings on our table, we had the main course next. My brother ordered a small bowl of "Yang Zhou" Fried Rice albeit my insistence to pick something else interesting and "very Chinese" from the menu. I didn't really like this rice dish, but I had to compromise as, apart from the fact that my brother's paying, his aversion to "very Chinese" food is non-negotiable.

Surprisingly, this was not a bad choice after all. Although I think this is still inferior to Fookien Fried Rice, this is far superior to the fast food versions of "Yang Chow" Fried Rice. It is also worth noting that the serving size is huge.The small size is enough to feed four hungry people.

Sweet and Sour Pork (P 535.00)

The Sweet and Sour Pork was next. The dish was very pretty to look. However, I was expecting this to be ordinary as I have never been impressed with Sweet and Sour Pork before, but boy I was wrong! This is the crispiest and tastiest Sweet and Sour Pork I have ever tried. It's crunchy from the inside out. Everything in this dish is perfect - the breading, the meat, the sauce, heck even the garnish is to die for! It's unbelievable! This has instantly become another one of my favorites (maybe even on top of the Siolong Pao). 

Deep-fried Pork Spareribs in Spicy Salt (P 380.00)

We also tried the Deep-fried Pork Spareribs in Spicy Salt. It was not spectacular, really. It was good, but not something to rave about. Maybe I expected more out of it because the Sweet and Sour Pork was scrumptious, but this one's just okay. We weren't able to finish this anymore as we were so full already, and there's just too much food on the table. The serving sizes are really that big.

After tasting everything we've ordered, my brother didn't want to have dessert anymore, so we left the place and took away all the leftovers. However, one thing is for sure. We enjoyed our meal here and, though a return visit would not be an option anytime soon (because of the prices), we'd surely be back. The dishes here are fantastic and the service is stellar. Also, considering the serving sizes, the dishes aren't that expensive. This is a place that's worth visiting. Give it a try, and you won't regret it.

Ambiance - 5/5
Food - 5/5
Service - 5/5
Value - 4/5
TOTAL - 4.75/5  

Summer Palace, EDSA Shangri-La Hotel

(02) 633 8888
G/F EDSA Shangri-la Hotel, 1 Garden Way
Wack Wack, Mandaluyong, Metro Manila


suzette said...

THank God Sir Brian that I had my hotmail account back! yipee! =) After feeling rather annoyed to one of my work colleagues here in the office this morning,(my files were lost because of his ignorance, he did not even bother to say sorry), i thought of trying my hotmail account, and I became victorious! Checking my hundred unseen emails and to see any notifications from your blog because i miss seeing food pictures on your FB), it was a big relief for me to see those foods to which I literally forgot my being upset and depressed over my lost writing articles. The dimsum which were posted first ( I remember of mistakably guessing them as siopaos, hehe!) gave me a smile. Like you Sir, I also love chinese foods, thanks for featuring this resto. Yes, this luxurious place was really for the rich and elite, but I want to visit this place out of curiosity, if by chance I got the money and have a stable career someday (kelan kaya un?)=) Anyway, I may even suggest this to my relatives and friends if they happen to go to Shangri-La. Thanks again Sir for this nice feature article. I have to go back to my work now. Inspired by the Chinese cuisine, my eyes were happily contented to see the dimsum again!

By the way, Sir, do they have some dessert? =)

suzette said...

Thanks again Sir, for out of your exhaustion due to life's pressures, came out the sudden beauty of this featured article to which brought a smile to someone's loneliness, like me! =)

Ryan Maryland said...

Woah! cozy and Chinese this surely cost quite the fortune. Why not also check out this food hubs I stumble nearby Wack wack and update your foodie list.

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