Saturday, October 29, 2011

Loong Foong at Paramount Garden

It was a family get together for no particular reason. Just a makan makan and to catch up. The place was selected by SP, and since it was my first time there I thought it would be a good subject for another blog posting. Loong Foong Seafood Restaurant is located at the cross junction between Jalan 20/13 and 20/14 in Paramount Gardens, PJ.

There are 2 Loong Foongs in Petaling Jaya. The other is in Taman Mayang beside the St. Ignatius Catholic church. I do not know if they are related. In any case, this Loong Foong appeared to have a makeover not too long ago. It has a large nice air conditioned dining hall and a equally large but more humble unconditioned area outside. I have passed by the place many times and noted that it was always very busily packed. That night was no exception.

The restaurant is apparently famous for its roast duck. They have a stall outside with 2 or 3 workers busily chopping up the birds. As I took their pictures, I saw quite a numbers of customers ordering and waiting to tar pau (打包 - take away) the ducks.

So the duck was naturally in our order. And it turn out to be very good. We had half a bird. It was freshly roasted and for this reason, the meat was soft and succulent. The skin was nice and crispy. The half bird was not much to go around the 7 of us. I was not sated and nearly ordered another half but resisted.

The duck stall also had some boxes of Chinese acar meant to be taken away. I am a great fan of this spicy pickled vegetable mixture, and could resist picking up a couple of boxes to eat there and take home. But sadly, it did not turn out to be nice. Chinese acar is flavored with generous sprinklings of grounded peanuts. The problem with this acar was that they pre-mixed this grounded nuts into the vegetables. And they became soft and soggy. The sauce was also not great.

This was an uniquely silly seafood dish. It was braised seafood in a pumpkin. In it were generous portions of fresh and dried scallops, fish maw, clams, sea cucumber, mushroom, etc. I do not know why they put everything into the pumpkin. The flavor of the seafood was quite ordinary. I do not mean that it did not taste good. Just that I did not think the pumpkin added any additional flavor to the dish. Also, I disliked the way they wrote the number 28 on the skin of the pumpkin with a whiteboard marker. Not that we would eat the skin of the pumpkin. But it was still food. To me, the possibility of marker ink permeating into the seafood was a real turn-off.

The yam ring (佛砵 or fatt put) was very ordinary. I cannot think of any thing good or bad to write about it. It had a number stir fried ingredients (chicken, prawn, mushroom, etc) and some crunchy cashew nuts in it.

This was the claypot tofu. It was the local tofu with an assortment of vegetables and some pork in a thick gravy. Again, it was ordinary. Nothing noteworthy. Another yawn.

The vege dish we had was a stir fried "chen long choy" (青龙菜). It is a new type of green that is popping up at restaurants recently. I quite liked the texture and enjoyed this simple dish.

The final dish was the steamed fish. It was a "leen fish" (鱼). This is a fresh water fish that is becoming popular in restaurants. It is also expensive. The fish was split into 2 halves and steamed in a simple light soy sauce. I did not find it fantastic. There were too much fine bones and eating it was a chore.

The meal was mediocre. Except perhaps the roast duck, none of the other dishes had any wow factor. It was ok for a simple dinner but the cost was not that simple. At the end of it, Peter got up and quickly went to the cashier to pay the bill. We got a shock when we asked him about the damage. It was nearly RM350 for such a mediocrity. The fish was at an unreal RM120. We very strongly suspected that because Peter is mat-salleh (white), they had jacked up the price. Because of this, I do not think we will return. Good bye Loong Foong.

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