Wo Peng Cuisine is a quaint Cantonese restaurant located conveniently at Furama City Centre, a quiet aged building complex spared from the endless hustle and bustle of Chinatown and Clarke Quay, yet a short 3 minutes walk away from either.
My family and I decided to try the 10-Course Abalone, Peking Duck and Seafood Meal, which includes the following dishes:
Baked diced abalone in goose liver cream sauce 鵝肝醬焗釀鮑魚
Roasted Peking duck 北京片皮鴨
Double boiled spare rib soup with black garlic 黑蒜肉骨湯
Chilli crab 辣椒蟹
Sauteed "peach resin" with egg white with vegetable 碧綠炒桃膠
Deep fried soon hock in light soya sauce 油浸筍殼
Blanched seasonal vegetable in bouillon 上湯浸時蔬
Sauteed duck meat in ginger and onion 薑蔥炒鴨件
Steamed glutinous rice with prawns in bamboo basket 小籠荷葉鮮蝦蒸糯米飯
Steamed Chinese sponge cake in durian flavor 榴槤馬拉糕
We made our reservation for lunch and fast-forward to the lunch event, we reached Furama City Centre, and passing by the attractive hotel lobby, florists, and Chinese medicine shops, and making our way up to the third floor, we were greeted by the huge signage of Wo Peng Cuisine.
After confirming our reservation, we were quickly escorted to our table by the attentive waiters. The restaurant's interior has a timeless charm to it - the perfect setting for a Chinese meal. Spontaneously, two of them offered extra chairs to place our bags, which was a very nice first impression. A waiter then asked us for our preference of Chinese tea from a long list of choices. We settled on Chrysanthemum Tea (without sugar), which was placed nicely on a stand with a tealight candle. Salted peanuts were also served.
We didn't wait long before the first course arrived: Double boiled spare rib soup with black garlic. Nicely portioned up for our dining party, it certainly smelled of a strong brew! There were plenty of chewy black fungi (my favourite) and little divine melt-off-the-bone spare ribs. I am not a fan of potent herbal soups, but found this one very much to my liking. The soup had a slight bitter aftertaste to it at first, but a few sips later, my tongue got accustomed and I was slurping everything up for that warm good feeling it was giving me. It certainly whetted my appetite for the subsequent courses.
Service was very well-paced because we were enjoying the soup, the waiter informed us of the Peking duck he brought out and asked for our permission to slice it. He then carved the duck in front of us, in traditional style. Another waitress wrapped the sliced skin neatly in crepes. The plate of neatly rolled Roasted Peking duck crepes was served just as we finished up our delightful soup course.
For this dish, I won't sing praises but who wouldn't appreciate the juicy bite of roasted poultry skin coupled with thin strips of spring onions and a dash of sweet sauce! I truly enjoyed the combination of savoury and sweet flavours in this dish.
For our party of five, each person could enjoy two of the delicacies.
The next dish has to be my favourite. Again, it was served very promptly by the attentive waiters: Sautéed "peach resin" with egg white and vegetables. It wasn't love at first sight for sure: it looked somewhat... gooey.
Taking a cautious nibble revealed subtle sweetness accented by the runny egg white. When paired with the blanched broccoli, it was the potent combination of the gentle glutinous medley with the crunchy broccoli that won my heart with each bite. My sister googled on her phone (don't be doing that at the dinner table, kids) that peach resin contains a lot of collagen and so, it was a scramble at the dining table to finish the dish that Cleopatra would perhaps, have killed for.
Following this dish, the remaining dishes came in quick succession. Firstly, it was the blanched seasonal vegetable in bouillon. Again, a very healthy-looking dish; with little goji berries and crispy whole garlic embedded like gems in the thick nest of green spinach. The broth was light and flavourful. My granny approved of this dish and I would too.
The rest of the Peking duck earlier was transformed and served: Sautéed duck meat with ginger and onion. Tender duck pieces detectably stir-fried with spring onions and ginger in a dark sauce certainly brought out the carnivore in me.
Next on the table was the Deep fried soon hock (marbled goby) in light soy sauce. The fish was huge - about 1 feet in length! Though crisp and I appreciate the crisp wisps of deep-fried ginger that complemented the fish meat, it was a tad too salty! To tackle the massive fish, I was thankful for the prompt refills of Chrysanthemum tea. Thumbs up for the attentive service.
Part of the menu's highlight, we were served individual portions of Baked diced abalone with goose liver cream sauce. They were beautifully presented in their original abalone shells. Unfortunately, its rich creamy taste didn't appeal to my palate too much.
The second highlight of the menu didn't disappoint though: Chilli Crab! This iconic Singaporean dish was cooked to total perfection! Like the fish earlier, the crab was huge and meaty, and we were lucky in that our boy crab had some milt inside its fearsome carapace. Creamy as its milt was, it appealed to my tastebuds. Though we were stuffed by the earlier dishes, this handsome crab didn't stay pretty on the dish for long!
To round up the hearty meal was a huge serving of steamed glutinous rice with prawns in bamboo basket. Aside from large tasty prawns, there were black fungi (again, yummy!) and sliced Chinese sausages, After all the earlier courses, we were very full and the waitress very nicely packed it to take-away for us. Excellent service!
The finale was the Steamed Chinese sponge cake in durian flavor. It was so moist and if you love durian, you will enjoy the its rich king-of-fruits taste. Oh-so-good.....
And the verdict? This 10 course meal for five was a lot of food - thanks to the huge portions of everything. I was honestly surprised at the size and quality of the crab. We couldn't finish and even had to take-away one of the courses in its entirety. Service was very attentive, with dishes promptly served, and tea was topped up regularly. When we arrived at noon, it was quite quiet but soon tables were filled and the restaurant burst to life. I enjoyed very much some of the dishes, and others, less so. I would go back, though, as I quite liked the sensory culinary experience of diverse flavours offered by the menu.
Thank you for reading this review by FlightTravels.
Wo Peng Cuisine
60 Eu Tong Sen Street
#03-01/02 Furama City Centre Hotel
Reservation: +65 65342282