Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Un-ordinary Richwell

This Chinese restaurant is obviously intended to be in direct competition with Green View in Section 19 PJ, for they are only a few doors away and they display a big lighted signboard that proclaims "Sang Har Noodle" (生蝦麺) which is the specialty of its competitor. 

San Har Noodle is not the name of the restaurant. Its actual name is Richwell. It is located several shops away from Green View along Jalan 19/3 in PJ, at the end of the roll of shop houses. It is unmissable  when you make the left turn along Jalan Harapan from Section 19 into SS2.

Somewhat like its intended competitor, this restaurant offers various level of dining ambiance - from outdoor...

... to comfortable but not posh...

... and a full blown fine dining environment...

... complete with a comprehensive selection of wines.

The menu offering at this restaurant was quite refreshing. They were not the traditional dishes found in most Chinese restaurant and we ended having a meal that was somewhat out of the ordinary.

Our first non-ordinary dish was the Chinese pak choy (小白菜) with yam in a claypot. It was un-traditionally nice. The smooth yam paste somehow blended very well with the pak choy making it a very pleasant dish.

The fish maw (魚鰾) was plainly stir fried with mushrooms, pork, spring onions and parsley. I enjoyed the fish maw very much. It was so simple and refreshing. I actually wanted more.

The Szechuan crispy duck was delightful. It was deep fried. The skin was crispy and the meat succulent and aromatic. It was obviously marinated with some spices. Another dish that I craved for more.

The Thai style fried choy tam (Brussel sprout leaves) was delightful. I expected the normal stir fried vegetable but was pleasantly surprised to find a very nice Thai flavor, which was a bit spicy and sourish, in the greens. It was again out of the ordinary. We all enjoyed the difference.

Finally we had the baked rack of lamb. It was so-so. The meat was tender and succulent. It was well marinated and tasty. However I found the meat sticking to the bones and was a bit difficult to eat. Also, I felt it was not gamy enough. I prefer a stronger taste of lamb.

We shared bowls of peanut paste (花生糊) for dessert. It was creamy and smooth and had obviously been made from original peanuts - not from peanut butter like how some restaurants prepare it. I like the rich creamy texture. Very delicious.

We also shared some o-ni (芋泥) - the Teochew yam paste dessert that was served with some gingko and pumpkin paste. But I preferred the peanut paste.

I found the food in Richwell original and quite innovative. They depart from the normal fares found in most Chinese restaurants. Unfortunately we did not taste the san har noodles (生蝦麺) that they promulgate to compete with Green View. I will return to see how they compare. Richwell may not be as well as established as Green View. They have only been around since 2009. However, given what I have experienced so far, I feel they have the potential to give the competitor a good run of the money.

1 comment:

  1. Tried once and do agree that the dishes are pretty awesome but too bad they can't sustain and has closed shop since! Its now a car wash! Pity!