Jade Garden reopens in the New Glorietta after almost a decade, their location was still in the old Greenbelt. They are now located across Landmark and Raffles hotel. The restaurant is operated by the group that also runs Peking Garden and Luk Yuen. A couple weeks ago, I got a chance to try some of their signature dishes with a couple of blogger and media people.
Jade Garden occupies the ground floor space at the corner of Palm Drive and West Drive in the New Glorietta but their door are situated on the Palm drive side. You can also access the restaurant thru a doorway in Ayala center before the bridgeway to Landmark. This is also the same walkway when Peking Garden and Kimpura were sharing the space.
There’s a winding stairwell before you reach the 2nd floor dining area. You get a view of the nice chandelier but I of course skipped the stairs and took the elevator.
For those parking in the basement, you can access Jade Garden thru the disabled friendly elevator right beside the basement entrance to Landmark. I used this on the way down since I missed it earlier.
If Peking Garden is known for peking duck, the specialty of Jade Garden is Roasted Suckling Pig. It is served with little flour pancakes but the advise is to eat the suckling pig sans any sauce or addition. Then after savoring the first crispy and meaty flavor, only then do you add the sauces or the pancake which can lessen the oiliness. This is a superb dish, super crispy skin but the meat is the real find, every piece is flavorful to the bone.
The Prawn & Dried Scallop with Beancurd Soup was a surprise for me, it was really plain looking except for the reddish hue of the prawn. The taste was a different matter, it was light and refreshing yet packed a lot of umami flavor because of the dried scallops and fresh prawns.
Mini Fortune Poon Choi (P350/person, min. of 4), a celebratory dish composed of many different ingredients layered on top of each other. Fresh Suahe, Black mushrooms, Sea cucumber, barbecue pork, soy chicken, vegetables and beancurd stick are braised so all the flavors meld with each other. I suggest getting some plain rice and topping it with the sauce from the poon choi.
The Sauteed Shredded Lapu-Lapu with French Beans is another interesting dish. Located in the business district, Jade Garden offered this dish especially for those business people who want their fish but are wary of deboning it and making a mess. Shredded pieces of fish are cooked in superior stock and topped on crunchy french beans.
Jade Garden has some menu items that showcase Chiu Chow cuisine which has taken a backseat to the more popular Cantonese. The Steamed Diced Chicken in Egg White Wraps are an example of this lighter and healthier cuisine. The egg white wraps are sturdy enough to carry generous amounts of flavorful chicken and mushrooms. Sweet fragrance will waft up as you pierce the egg white wraps.
When I saw the “Foo Kien” Seafood Rice with Abalone Sauce in Casserole, I was expecting the usual rice with saucy topping dish. When the dish was revealed, it was quite a bit different, it looked more like a cross between fried rice and kiam pung filled with diced seafood and a delectable abalone sauce. It was a struggle to limit myself to one cup of this.
Dessert was Hot Sweetened Almond Puree with Dumpling. My companions really enjoyed this hot dessert but I was not really fond of black sesame so did not enjoy this as much.
Jade Garden reopens with a vengeance, offering many dishes that are quite new to the market and they are set to add more dishes to their menu as time passes. The inclusion of Chui Chow dishes is also welcome development as more people look to eat healthier.