Friday, December 09, 2005

New Eatery - Qun Zhong (群众)!!

Yes!! Another new eating place! My elder sister treated me this northern China cuisine at Tanjong Pagar today. Called Qunzhong, literally means mass population (I think). When I stepped into e place, I was quite appalled by how little decor they have inside. Basically, it felt bare but the whole place was fully occupied!! Eventually we had to share a table with two other guys! So you can guess how popular it is!

We ordered a total of five dishes as follows:

1) Zha Jiang Mian ("Fried" Sauce Noodles)
This dish appeared as a normal dish of thick noodles with a generous helping of the meat with sauce and a tidy sum of cucumber! Generous when compare the bowl, which was quite small by my standard. Lol. The main ingredient was of cause the sauce, which was just right, without being too salt-ish but to me; it’s the cucumber that made the noodle tasted good. Just imagine the crunchy and fresh taste of cucumber with the tasty, flowy meat sauce~~~ Can imagine or not? hehe.
Price at $4.00 a bowl.
Rating: 9/10

2) Guo Tie (Fried Dumplings)
When I first saw this dish, I tot it looked over fried. It was like chao tar (burnt)!! The initial bite was a bit tasteless with only the generous ginger and vinegar flavor. However the second one was much better (without my generosity). The other skin looked black, did not taste burnt and was in fact, crunchy. The ingredient comprised of more vegetables compared to other guotie I have eaten. The overall combination made u want to eat and eat and eat!! The more I ate, the more I liked this dish!!

Price: i forgot… I think $7.00 for 10.
Rating: 10/10

3) Xiao Long Bao (Small Dumplings)
This dish was often my most favorite dish in those Shanghainese and Beijing restaurants and I normally take reserved my best regard for this dish. To tell you the truth, the xiaolongbao here was really nothing…….. Yes, nothing!! I prefer crystal jade at any time~! The most important thing to eat this dish was the soup or sauce that is found within each dumpling! And the one here had a funny taste and lacked the special meat taste that all soup in xiaolongbao should have!! I was utterly disappointed with this dish though I have to admit they are not the worst I have eaten.

Price: Forgot again but i think its $7.00 for 10.
Rating: 5/10.

4) Tang Yuan (Soup Balls?) Haha.
This dish was actually quite novel since it was the first time I tried tang yuan with two different soup (do u call that soup!?!) base. One was rose and the other was guihua (also a type of flower). The best thing was that the soups dun taste sweet and was instead very thirst-quenching. The tang yuan were a bit routine (with the normal sesame paste, peanut) and small… But I have to mention that there was tang yuan with the lotus paste filling. Surprisingly there was a nut within the lotus paste (presumably walnut). Luckily I bit using my back molars instead of my fake front tooth; would definitely have broken it!!

Price: $3 per bowl.
Rating: 8/10

5) Dou Sha Guo Ping (Bean Paste Pancake)
As with xiaolongbao, I have great expectations about this dish. I tried it at yum cha and crystal jade and I love both of them!!! So, while I eagerly wait for the dish to come, with the overflowing emotions of thinking how tasty it should be, it finally arrived on my table. For one, it looked burnt. With a bite, it tasted burnt!! Thirdly, it was too expensive!! Sigh, another disappointing dish.

Price: $9.00 for a plate.
Rating: 4/10

The service was not good although the last auntie who gave us our change was very friendly and had a really nice smile. There’s one who complained to us (the customers) haughtily:"if you want to order, can order all in one go so that it’s easier for us?”

Luckily, the nice lady came last so my impression of this place was somewhat damped.. Lol. To me, i find this place a bit expensive with the lack of ambience and service (we spend $40 odd). But do try the guo tie, I love it!!!The place is at neil street!!

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