Green Tea Restaurant
Green Tea Restaurant may sound like an ice cream flavour but is actually the first overseas location of a large Chinese chain from Hangzhou. They're know for their Southern Chinese specialties.
The First Markham Place restaurant is sprawling with both curved booth seating for groups as well as more private nooks. Long crowds are a staple here during mealtimes, a testament to the brand’s reputation for great food and overall street cred.
Dishes from the southern part of China, especially the Zhejiang region where Hangzhou is located, often incorporate elements that add a sweet flavour.
This is especially evident in the Fried Fish in Honey Soya Sauce ($10.99). Fried fish is cooled and bathed in an addictively sweet-sticky honey glaze. Make sure to watch out for fish bones.
Another classic Zhejiang-style dish is the Steamed Lotus Root with Sticky Rice ($8.99). The light crunch of the lotus root balances the chewiness of the rice. The overall sweet tang makes the dish sing.
The Boiled Chicken and Pig Tripe Soup ($22.99) is a must order. Its pronounced peppery flavour might best be described as a gourmet Chinese version of a classic chicken soup.
I would also recommend the Deep Fried Boneless Chicken Wings Stuffed with Shrimp ($7.99 each). The wings are marinated for two hours, then reconstituted back together and deep fried.
The Fire Shrimp ($19.99) is skewered, cooked shrimp wrapped inside foil paper, lightly doused in alcohol and set on fire. It’s a bit gimmicky but the flavours are great.
Even a dish as simple as the Barbecue Pork ($16.99) gets elevated here, both metaphorically and literally. It's served on an elevated grill to keep it warm and comes with a side of addictive spicy salt.
The restaurant's specialty might just be the Barbecue Chicken ($18.99), also served on an elevated heated grill. It comes with a sweet chili sauce and more of that spicy salt. The meat is tender and the the crispy skin fantastically paper-thin.
The Pea Sprouts in Golden Soup ($17.99) are tender sprouts on a chicken-broth based soup that somehow pairs well together.
End the meal with the Bread Temptation ($11.99), Green Tea’s version of a golden honey toast. Sweet toasted bread, condensed milk, and ice cream spells win win win for everyone.