Shatin 18

Shatin 18
18 Chak Cheung Street, Shatin, Hong Kong
(852) 3723 7932

Famous for their Peking Duck, you have to book well in advance to dine at Shatin 18.  A restaurant with squishy sofas that sank a bit too low for my liking, the restaurant is dotted with cooking stations throughout so wherever you sit, you have a glimpse of the well run kitchen and chefs preparing food.

We had the Peking duck of course, which needs to be pre-ordered 24 hours in advance.  Peking Duck three ways is definitely the way to go here.  The three of us shared half a duck HKD$388 (AUD$50), which is made into three courses: traditional Peking Duck wraps, sang choy Bao (lettuce cup wraps) with minced duck and duck soup.

Although we ordered half a duck, a whole duck was presented to us for carving.  We secretly wondered what happens to the other half of the duck.  If you think that you would get huge chunks of skin, fat and meat in your Peking duck, you are wrong.  Normally in HK,  the chef expertly carved the skin of the duck only, and that’s used for the Peking duck wrap.  That being said, this time it’s a bit different.  We got to taste Peking Duck in an even more Traditional way.

First, the chef carved out the skin.  You were asked to have this with a little bit of sugar, so it has a crispy and melt in your mouth kind of flavour.  While I don’t mind this way of eating it, I find it a bit too sweet for my liking.

The next way to eat Peking duck according to the waitress is to have the breast (no skin), and add a bit of  soy bean sauce and wrap it up.  When I looked at the menu much later it did say have it with the normal condiments like cucumber and leek.  I love the warm thin wraps but found the duck breast a bit too dry- it might be better if I added the condiments I think.  Nonetheless the meat is quite tender and very lean, which is probably the healthier option.

The best way was duck thighs with the skin and meat with cucumber, leek, soy bean sauce and a hint of garlic paste.  Yum!  I think i liked it better because the cucumbers etc really freshen up the dish and adds complexity to the flavours.  Only let down of this dish is that the duck is really REALLY lean- a teeny bit of fat would have been great.

Next came the duck soup made with Chinese cabbage and bean curd.  The waitress warned us that it can be very gamey but we are quite used to that.  The soup has no visible fat at all- simply full of flavour.  I wish I can have another bowl.

The last Peking duck dish was the sang choy bao with minced duck.  It was sooooo good!!! My only complaint would be there’s not enough!  As I mentioned previously, the normal way of doing Peking Duck wraps in HK is to only use the skin, which leaves plenty of meat for the other dish, but because we already used some of the meat for the Peking duck wraps there’s not much of the duck left for mince.

Other than Peking Duck, we also order some Wok-fried choy sum, garlic, crispy pork fat HKD$118 (AUD$16).  Ohhhh yeah you heard right sista- crispy pork fat!  My healthy self hate to admit it, but porky fat makes EVERYTHING taste better, although I stopped myself from actually eating the chunks of crispy pork fat itself.

I couldn’t help but order the braised beef noodles HKD$95 (AUD$12) when I heard the distinct slapping of hand pulled noodles in the distant kitchen.  The noodle soup also comes with 3 types of chilli sauce- talk about decadent!  There’s an XO chilli sauce, black bean chilli sauce and I think a plain chilli oil to dump into your chilli noodles to your heart’s desire!  The noodles were yummy and the braised beef was very tender, although would I say it’s better than the good ones I have on the streets?  Probably not.

Red hot chilli stew fish was our last dish HKD$218 (AUD$28).  Super fresh fish pieces cooked to perfection in a large bowl of numbing hot chilli oil.  The flavours are infinitely better than bloody Dainty Sichuan.

Overall, although the prices of Shatin 18 is quite steep in Hong Kong standards, it’s really the normal crappy Chinese restaurant prices in Australia, and the quality is so much better.  If you are in Shatin, I would definitely recommend you to try this restaurant!  7.5/10

Also a big big thanks to Mrs PigMug and her cute daughter CH for buying us a cake for afternoon tea beforehand!  You guys are totally cute!  Thank you so much 🙂

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