January 29, 2019
Turning a full 12 months old this Lunar New Year, Fook Yeah marks the milestone with its first official CNY set menus, celebrating cherished classics with a splash of contemporary flair. Helming the kitchen at one of PJ's most distinctive destinations for Chinese fare, chef Eddy has crafted a selection that's as satisfyingly sumptuous as the setting, promising everything from Hokkaido scallops with XO shrimp to stewed hasma with sliced ginseng, served in spacious surroundings capped with an original Warhol silk-screen portrait of Mao Zedong on one end and a soaringly verdant view on the other.
Fook Yeah has four multi-course festive menus available, clocking in at RM588 nett for six persons, and RM888, RM1,288 or RM1,888 for 10 persons. Portions are substantial; five of us struggled to finish the six-person menu, launching with yee sang that's tasty and textured, spruced up with lusciously thick cuts of salmon, buoyed by fruits at their ripe prime - spanning naturally vivacious grapes to dragon fruit, apples to oranges to pomelo - balanced by the crunch of arrowhead chips and the earthiness of nuts. We've sampled nearly a dozen yee sang platters ahead of CNY 2019; this ranks among our favourites.
While servings prove hearty, the cooking is rewardingly soulful; the chicken soup is a labour of love that's as time-honoured and traditional as it sounds, slow-boiled with Oriental herbs for consummate comfort, gently mellow with a simple, soothing elegance, each spoonful sipped steaming-hot - the sort of spirit-nourishing recipe perfected and passed through generations.
It also takes passionate, painstaking craftsmanship to produce poultry pleasures like Fook Yeah's flagship roast duck - surfacing whole at the table, the sheen of the skin foretells a crackling-crisp experience, the outcome of being confidently air-dried and glazed, while the flesh is sweet and tender to the bone, cleanly marinated with hints of hoisin and five-spice to focus on the rich, pure savouriness of the fowl. With a bird this delightful, 2019 could easily be the Year of the Duck instead.
For customers who test their chef's capabilities based on fish, Fook Yeah's is masterful - the red snapper regally retains its firm smoothness and flaky moistness from head to tail, steamed not a minute too long to preserve its inherent virtues, rounded out with a light soy sauce that conveys the right measure of umami, dressed in crisply fresh coriander for herbaceous sprightliness. The kitchen takes pride in a variety of fish, with dragon grouper and tung sing grouper offered on the other sets.
The abalone and dried oysters with mushrooms are from the RM888 menu, as auspicious as they are alluring, marshalling some of the most prized ingredients for a reunion feast, bringing together a mad-for-mollusks bevy of oceanic brininess in golden-hued abalone and dried oysters (symbolic of healthy fortunes), silky black moss (for prosperity) and juicy shiitake mushrooms (for longevity), the ideal extravaganza for ushering in a new year with all its accompanying hopes and wishes.
Prawns, another quintessential CNY temptation, emerge in the butter-fried preparation that’s can’t-fail catnip for everyone who's young at heart, glorious in their crustacean plumpness, garlanded in a moreish heaping of fluffy egg floss for a calories-won’t-count decadence that befits significant celebratory spreads.
Bundles of joy: Glutinous rice, wrapped in lotus leaves, conceals a treasure trove of chicken, chestnuts, salted egg yolk and more; part of the set menus north of RM888, this is a tantalising alternative to typical fried rice, putting a special-occasion spin on the carb component of lunch or dinner with loved ones.
Contrasting flavours and temperatures ring in a duet of desserts: There’s no better conclusion to this memorable meal than the fried glutinous rice cakes, sticky but not sickly sweet, their light, thin batter blanketing creamy layers of purple sweet potato, coupled with a reinvigorating chilled tong sui of sea coconut with nectarous longan - long-time staples, expertly executed.
All in all, Fook Yeah could be an interesting choice for customers seeking a relatively under-the-radar restaurant for their office get-togethers, family reunions and friendly soirées this season. Advance bookings by at least a day are recommended for the CNY set menus (it takes that time to prepare the duck, for one).
UG-89, Ground Level, MyEG Tower, 8, Jalan Damansara, Empire City, Petaling Jaya, Selangor. Tel: 03-7621-2080
Open Monday-Saturday, closed Sunday. Will be closed for dinner on eve of Chinese New Year; closed on first two days of Chinese New Year.
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