Monday 7 December 2009

Yangzi Jiang

We were rather excited to finally check out the 1.5 year old Yangzi Jiang ("Yangzi River") Cantonese Restaurant. Having previously been to and really enjoyed its' older-sister restaurant, Mei Jiang ("Beautiful River") on Changklan Rd several times, we thought Yangzi Jiang would be a sure bet for Thailand's Father's Day dinner.

Yangzi Jiang is situated in an elegant home in the trendy Nimanhaemin Area. It's quite famous for dim sum/yum cha, and authentic Cantonese dishes. Having grown up with Cantonese cuisine in Sydney, it was exactly what I have been craving! We were even more excited when we overheard someone on the next table say, "Everything here is good!", exactly our sentiments about Mei Jiang.

So there we were, pouring over the rather large menu and interesting sounding dishes. Finally, we settled for:

Salmon Spring Rolls - what a great start! This turned out to be my favourite dish. The rolls were filled with salmon fillet, celery stick, and something white and creamy - perhaps mayonnaise. The Salmon Spring Rolls were served with more salty/sweet tasting creamy mayonnaise which complemented so wonderfully with the salmon. The celery gave each bite a crunch. Scrumptious!

Stir-fried Squids with Morning Glory and Chilli Shrimp Paste - this was also a rather interesting dish. I think the "Chilli Shrimp Paste" used here is Belachan paste, or at least tasted very similar to it. The squid was very nicely cooked - firm but not tough to chew, and the morning glory was delicious with the salty, rich and aromatic flavour of the shrimp paste, garlic and a hint of ginger.

Yangzi Jiang's roast duck was also quite good - in the sense that we could tell that the duck was of good quality - great texture and nice crispy skin, and not much fat. Unfortunately though, it tasted rather bland. The best thing about it was the bed of chewy peanuts and the tasty sauce under the duck! We soaked up the sauce with a very lovely mantou (Chinese bun), right out of the steamer.

As an aside, I would put Yangzi Jiang's roast duck at number 3 so far in Chiang Mai. The best was at Mandarin Oriental's fabulous Chinese Restaurant, Fujian, and my second favourite, a little local eatery owned by the chef at Shangri-la Hotel.

Fried Eggplant Stuffed with Mashed Shrimp with Chilli and Salt. The golden coloured stuffed eggplants looked pretty good, but oily. The first few bites were quite nice, especially if eaten with the very lightly fried garlic (which still had the raw taste), chilli and salt mixture. The spiciness of raw-ish garlic and chilli helped to breakdown the oiliness a little, but unfortunately not enough. We couldn't finish off the dish and I felt like needing a good cup of tea afterwards!

Finally, the last dish, Fried Yin Yang Vermicelli with Roasted Duck and Sichuan Pickle. It was an interesting dish, and tasted rather good too, but a shame that it was also too oily.

All in all a bit of a mixed-bag experience. Some of the dishes were great, others not so. The service was quite good in the beginning, but became a bit more inattentive as they got busier. That's understandable though, because they pretty much had a full house - being Father's Day and also having long weekend tourists coming up from Bangkok.

I will go back again - I think they deserve another try!

The price worked out to be about 300 baht per person without alcohol.

Yangzi Jiang (Cantonese Cuisine)
10 Nimmanhaemin Soi 5
Suthep, Muang, Chiang Mai 50200
Tel: 053 225 313
Open: 11:30am-2:30pm and 6pm-11pm.
Booking recommended.

Or, if you'd like to try Mei Jiang (Hong Kong Style Rice, Noodles & Congee)
191/17-18 Changkhlan Plaza (near Shangri-la Hotel)
Changklan Rd
Changklan, Muang, Chiang Mai 50100
Open: 11:30am-2:30pm, 5:50pm-9:00pm
Tel: 053 821 112
Does not take booking.

*Update: 13th March 2011

Yesterday we went back to Yangzi Jiang for dinner. It was still a mixed-bag experience! The restaurant was full again. The service was pretty slow and mostly inattentive again.

This time we ordered:

Peking Duck (800 baht + 7% VAT) - I must say the Peking Duck here is excellent! Possibly my favourite in Chiang Mai. The skin was light and crispy, and all the fat has pretty much been scraped off. The pancake was very well done too - the texture just right, soft and supple enough not to break. The pancakes didn't stick to each other either. I noticed almost every other table also ordered the Peking Duck.

We also had a choice of what to do with the meat and chose the noodles - stir-fried. It came a long time later. The waitress explained to us that so many people ordered Peking Duck it was taking a while to carve. When the noodles finally arrived, we were quite excited. However, this turned out to be nothing special and flavourless. The duck meat was quite tough and chewy. The noodles turned out to be 100 baht extra - this wasn't mentioned in the menu.

The stir-fried vegetables was also excellent - very fresh crispy vegies, but very expensive at 120 baht as the serving was very, very small.

Bookmark and Share


KennyT said...

Salmon spring rolls sounds yum to me, and I want that Fried Yin Yang Vermicelli with Roasted Duck and Sichuan Pickle too!

EatTravelEat said...

This place seems like some fancy place am I correct? The plating style makes everything look so pretty. The fried eggplant and the salmon spring rolls are probably the most interesting things in my opinion. Haven't seen eggplant in that form before, all puffy.

charlie @ best Hotel Bangkok said...

You can't go wrong at the Yangzi I think, although sometimes the size of the menu can be a bit overwhelming as you said. All in all it's one of our favourites in Chiang Mai.

foodbin said...

can see the salmon spring rolls are real crispy.

Ju (The Little Teochew) said...

Aarrrgh! The food looks soooo gooood!!! And I agree with Kenny - salmon spring rolls = yum! So unusual. The squid ... dear me ... I wish I was having some now. Great one, Alice!!

Unknown said...

Thanks everyone for your comments! : )


Blog Widget by LinkWithin