Saturday, December 01, 2007

Dian Xiao Er, Changi Airport Terminal 3

Running behind a wall of hanging greenery known as the Green Wall at the baggage collection area of Changi Airport Terminal 3, is a small mall space with restaurants call 3 Top. Dian Xiao Er which is known for their tasty herbal roasted ducks have gotten themselves a shot in that place and business looked to be pretty good already for an airport that has not yet begun operations. The airport is currently on open house and open to the public for tours and this would be one of the few restaurants that are already up and and churning their own crowd. It seems like most of the waiting/service staff in this restaurant are from China.

Fried rice with seafood and XO sauce ($10.80)

Dian Xiao Er does a pretty good fried rice with XO sauce. XO sauce is actually a mildly spicy seafood sauce made from dried chopped seafood like fish, shrimp and scallop that's cooked with onions, garlic and chilli. Some very usual suspects for flavouring in Chinese cooking. The flavour of the rice turned out to be slightly bland rather than saltish. I thought it was a little too greasy. Apart from what is seen in the picture, there were actually some prawns and squid in the fried rice.

grassland styled roasted lamb ($15)

I had thought that grassland styled roasted lamb sounded interesting, but it turned out to be disappointing. Firstly, the meat doesn't look roasted at all. In fact, one can tell that the meat was merely stir fried in some spicy sauce. And that meat was so marinated and well cooked to the point that it had become an unidentifiable meat substance. If you're into lamb for their flavour, you should just avoid this because I thought it was a waste of money.

duck roasted with 10 wonder herb ($12.80 for the small portion)

The roast duck here is one good. Good means that given the opportunity, I will definitely eat them again. The skin had enough crisp and fragrant duck fat underneath over meat that was quite tender. This option with 10 wonder herb contains codonopsis, foxglove and licorice roots and I actually thought that I detected a faintly sweetish taste of cinnamon in the sauce. I'm not generally big on Chinese herbal dishes, but this, I will come back for again.

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