Crystal Dragon in City of Dreams Manila ushers in the coming Year of the Fire Rooster with a pair of special set menus and a host of ala carte dishes. Crystal Dragon was recently named as one of the Top 20 restaurants in Philippine Tattler’s Best Restaurant Guide 2017. Chef Boon Jung Choi, executive Chinese chef of City Dreams Manila prepared special limited dishes just for the auspicious occasion that range from P480++ to P1,680++.
Shredded Roasted Duck with Fresh Fruit Salad. I’ve tried duck salads very similar to this one, the difference with this is the use of melon and honeydew, for more crisp textures. This also includes strawberries, grounded peanuts and jellyfish for varying textures. An appetizer that gets you munching and prepares your taste buds for the next dishes.
Double Boiled Sea Treasure in Cordycep Flower Soup. I love double boiled soup and Chinese cuisine excels in making them. This slightly medicinal tasting soup is packed with nutritious items like dried scallops, sea cucumber and fish maw and is perfect for tackling the cooler weather.
Slow cooked Sea Cucumber with Abalone and Pork Knuckle in Pot. This is another hearty pot for the cool weather. The star in this pot is the fork tender pork knuckle meat at the bottom. I’m not too fond of sea cucumber so I skipped that in favor of the tasty abalone.
Oven Baked Marinated Cod Fish with fragrant Golden Garlic. Cod fish fillets topped with a light layer of cheese and various spices then baked just right with a light crunch to the outer layer but keeping the meat inside juicy. There’s a little chili mixed in the spice but this just gives it a nice punch to complement the salty and creamy cheese.
Wok fried Prawns with Supreme Soy Sauce Reduction. The back of the prawns are cut open so the sauce permeates the meat for better flavor. You can readily taste the woh hei/smokiness that skilled Chinese chefs impart, giving it wonderful aroma as well as flavor. This would go perfectly with white rice to sop up the reduced sauce.
Roasted Chicken Roll with Foie Gras and Wild Mushroom. Delicately rolled chicken stuffed with foie gras and wild truffles topped with a sliver of wild truffle. The are slow roasted to give the skin and almost pork skin crunc but healthier. This was a really great dish but we felt the foie was overpowered by the truffle.
Wok Fried Shanghai Rice Cakes with Seafood. This is a surprisingly good dish with rice cakes sliced into discs, similar in texture to Korean tteokbokki. I found the seafood just window dressing and superfluous as the rice cake is the star. The rice cakes are fried like noodles in a viscous and tasty sauce.
Three Flavor Chinese New Year Nian Gao Platter. Chef Bong gives the traditional tikoy a makeover and out came 3 different renditions. A steamed shredded coconut nian gao, deep fried rice net water chestnut cake and a cashew nuts red bean paste pandan roll. The coconut nian gao is the closest to traditional but with the added flavor of the coconut. My favorite was the water chestnut cake which had a softer feel but still has the fun chewiness and cover in a very crisp shell. The pandan roll feels more like a Malaysian dessert with the red bean and the crushed cashew nuts.
The special ala carte menu at Crystal Dragon is available until Feb. 11, 2017 so even if you miss out going on CNY you can still enjoy it for lunch or dinner.
Crystal DragonUpper Ground Floor, Crown Towers
City of Dreams Manila
Aseana Ave. cor. Roxas Blvd.
Entertainment City, Paranaque, Philippines
Contact No. (632) 800-8080
Operating Hours: 12 – 3pm, 6-11pm daily
Facebook Page: Crystal Dragon
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