There’s this old traditional thing about serving a noodle dish or the local “pancit”, in its many varieties during birthdays that’s said to signify a longer life and good health to the celebrant.
It’s a basic dish that’s almost always included in every birthday table so when good friend Leo took us out for dinner for his nth birthday, we went to Mr. Choi Kitchen Restaurant and ordered, among many other house specialties, the “Birthday Noodles”!
Famed for their all-time favorite Cantonese dimsun, Mr. Choi Kitchen, located inside Robinson’s Galleria Mall (one among many of their branches in the metro) serves the typical Chinese fare, but the menu offers a wide variety of dishes. When finding a table inside, you’ll notice a display of barbecued meats – pork ribs, pork belly and whole ducks–at the kitchen glass window after you enter.
From their specialty dimsum dumplings, breakfast congees, roasted dishes and a wide assortment of fish, pork, prawns and other delectable soup noodles, all are cooked and served in the all familiar Hongkong style flair. There were so many dishes to choose from so we let Leo do the choosing since he has dined here countless of times and knew what the “blockbuster” offerings were.
Here’s what he ordered for us:
Sihk faahn 食飯 (Bon appetit!)
The Birthday Noodles, ordered so as to celebrate Leo’s almost seven decades of existence on this planet is a mishmash of quail eggs, fish balls, chicken, pork, mushrooms and fish cutlets cooked with the typical pancit canton noodles, garnished with fresh vegetables and a little broth for those who want some soup poured into their rice. Truly yummy! May this dish add more quality years to Leo’s truly enviable life with Manang Sylvia.
The Assorted Chinese Cold Cuts tossed in light garlic sauce made an appetizing starter. However, this didn’t live up to my expectations. Though the century eggs was satisfyingly tasty and the jelly fish flavorful, the asado meat was fatty, lump and a little rubbery.
The Steamed Fish in Garlic Sauce was the highlight of the night! I thought i couldn’t love anything more than the Chicken Salad but this was delicioso! So tender, flaky, spread on thick sauce with just the right sweetness. Lavished with minced garlic and chopped spring onions, this isn’t something that i would normally eat with gusto but it was absolutely amazing that i couldn’t stop eating once i had it melting in my mouth!
The Beef with Broccoli was tender and succulent and it was the dish i really enjoyed eating with my rice. This is the only dish where i actually get to eat the broccoli!
The tender chicken cutlets is an interesting variation of a chicken dish. Called Chicken Salad, (sans potatoes and macaroni) these are pieces of tenderized chicken, coated in lustrous mayonnaise-like sauce, then garnished with a vegetable salad. Flavorful to the max!
To top everything was the Buchi dessert which was just perfect, not too sweet but very filling. Reminds me of Chow Kings’ version, only, this is bigger! This rice ball is simply perfection!
After a tiring long morning run, Mr. Choi Kitchen, in Robinsons Galleria, is a good choice to replenish energy and definitely one you should keep in mind if your taste buds seek for affordable Cantonese food!