One of the many things that my classmates and I have long wanted to do, but not actually achieved is a Yumcha Lunch. With our regular group outing scheduled in last Saturday, we thought that it was about time to go. With our meeting at Carindale, we headed to Yum Cha Cuisine for lunch.
We made a reservation for 11am, and were advised that we only had enough the table up until 12.15pm as it was booked by another group. Luckily, we ate pretty quickly as we were on a tight schedule that day. An interesting note, the setup was unorthodox in that no bowls were provided and we had to ask for them. But what a friend of mine immediately noticed was the way the tea cups had a handle attached to them. It was novel yet definitely an interesting twist to a familiar experience.
Menus were provided. We noted the standard Yum Cha dishes as well as some lesser known dishes – more on that in a moment. There was also a selection of rice and noodle dishes for those who have been on heavy lifting duties.
Being rather traditional, we ordered Jasmine and Tie Guan Yin tea (also known as Iron Goddess) which was served in these fancy tea pots. Traditionally Tie Guan Yin is a semi fermented tea which supposed to aid in digestion and is considered a healthy tea to drink during Yum Cha whereas Jasmine is renowned for its unique taste and strong fragrance.
As is customary of Yum Cha establishments, diners hail one of the trolleys that rolled around the restaurant if they saw anything that piqued their interest, compared to other Yum Cha establishments, where the diner needs to order at a counter or place a paper order. Yum Cha at Carindale had both trolleys and waiters on hand to take down our orders. From the first trolley we ordered quite a few steamed dishes, including BBQ Pork Bun, Steamed Prawn and Beancurd Skin Rolls, Steamed Pork and Shrimp Dumplings and Steamed Prawn Dumplings. I found most of the dishes to be standard fare, but a the the Steamed Prawn and Beancurd Skin Rolls were done surprisingly well. Usually this dish is coated in a large amount of sauce, instead, rather than the usual thick gelatinous texture one would expect, I found the sauce to be quite fluid and tasty. The roll was itself soft and overall quite tender. It was also noteworthy to mention that despite the menu showing three prawn dumplings and pork and shrimp dumplings, we were actually served with the standard four.
What I enjoyed the other dumplings, the most enjoyable was the Deep fried Taro Dumplings. What made this dish the standout is the fact the tar was crisp light and fluffy, whilst inside the ground pork was juicy. I judge it by (not soggy, crispy taro etc). The fact the pork juices did no seep into the crispy taro, was what made it very enjoyable.
We also ordered the Pan Fried Turnip Cakes which were well done. Which were crisp and well fried. We also ordered Mixed Beef Tripe, which is a comforting dish. I found the flavours of the beef tripe to be standard and not as tender as I would have liked, although the chilli oil was very strong.
The Scallops Dumpling in Soup is as the name suggests, a large dumpling in soup. My friend was surprised Yum Cha at Carindale had this dish as few restaurants in Brisbane make the dish despite it being a Chinese specialty. Inside was a mix of seafood and pork and most noticeably bacon pieces. To finish we had ordered a dish of Custard Tarts, to my delight a serving of three instead of two was offered (as you can see one of my friends could not resist eating one before I took the photo >w< ). The tart was firm and the skin was extremely flakey which made it very delicious.