Sing Yee Chinese Restaurant in Richmond. I think not many of you would have heard about them. I think if I mention the name Lam Chu Kee, it might ring a bell.
Lam Chu Kee closed a few months ago. It was such a sad thing because Lam Chu Kee was one of our go-to Da Lang (late night supper) places. In the same location today is Sing Yee … and Sing Yee doesn’t do Da Lang like Lam Chu Kee used to.
We decided to go check out Sing Yee. They have these poetic descriptions of what they serve written on the window.
Other than the name change, the insides does look the same as it was when it was the previously. I asked them how long they had been opened. It was about 6 months already. Wow, time flies. I swear that Lam Chu Kee had closed just a couple of months prior. 6 months seems way too long for us not to have noticed. I thought maybe the waitress did not know and just blurted out that answer.
The waitress also mentioned that Sing Yee is under a new management and does not have anything to do with the previous Lam Chu Kee management.
That night it was very busy. We were there on a Saturday at about 8PM. The restaurant, which was quite spacious, was almost full. So that is a good sign.
The restaurant is well staffed. It is … noticeable and a good sign. The only thing is that English seems to be a challenge here. At least it was with the waitress who served us. She spoke a kind of Mandarin which is different. It has a slang that is distinctive but of course us not being expert in Chinese dialects, are unable to say what it was.
The waitress asked us about us taking pictures. Just to let you know, we had started lying. We had been telling restaurants who ask that we are tourists or from out of town. We do not tell people anymore that we are local and we write about food. On top of that we had been increasingly using a point and shoot camera just so that we blend in better. We can’t avoid not having a camera but at least we don’t look like we are “working”.
Don’t get me wrong. Despite all these actions, I am very sure that people will still find something else to fault chowtimes. It comes with the territory, I guess. When chowtimes were just small fries, no one gives a darn about what we do and do not do. Now that we have 10,000 to 11,000 pageviews, there is always something that people will get jealous with us about. *shrug*
Back to food. Rather, back to the menu. At first we wanted to go with their combo menu. That is the far most right page of the menu above. For that combo, there are 45 dishes to choose from and the combo includes soup. Check it out. It works out like $11.00 to $12.00 a dish.
We changed our mind when we saw the posters of their specials on the wall. They are all in Chinese but the waitress was patient to translate it to us — dish by dish! It was from this poster above that we finally ordered our dishes.
There is another poster (no photo sorry) on claypot rice. It seems like it’s their specialty. It requires a 20 minutes wait. The wait wasn’t a problem to us. It was just there were so many choices! The claypot prices are like this:
- small at $18.80 good for 2 to 4 people
- medium at $28.80 good for 4 to 6 people
- big at $38.80 good for 6 to 8 people
Next time … next time we will order the claypot.
We thought that the dish that is called “Fish Dish Cooked Two Ways” sounded appealing. It is like ordering one dish and getting two dishes. It is not so much of a saving that we are looking towards … just fancying two fish dishes.
The waitress even brought the fish out to show us. So it is a “swimming” fish, not any frozen ones. However, the fish looked rather small. We were looking at one another thinking “would that be enough for all of us”?
The 1st way above was the Deep Fried Fish Head.
This was served in a sizzling hot in a clay pot. It has the usual green onion, ginger and Chinese sausage.
It tasted really good. Very crispy meatier than we thought. Of course the fins and skin adds to the crunchy texture.
The above is the second course of the fish. We had an option of having the second dish as fish porridge or steamed fish body. We opted for the steamed fish body.
It is topped with julienne ginger, green onion and cilantro and slathered with a good concoction of sweet soya sauce. It looked appealing and the fish was really fresh tasting. The down side is the small portion because the fish selected was really small.
Yeah, the best part is the jhup. It is really nice with steamed rice. We can all eat steamed rice with this alone.
I asked Suanne how come she can’t make jhup like this. What is the secret recipe? Anyone knows what makes this not so salty?
For some vegetables, we opted for something that has a name that appealed to us — Bay Foong Tong. That is Cantonese for Typhoon Shelter … a cooking style that makes famous the Typhoon Shelter Crab.
So on the poster, there is a Typhoon Shelter Eggplant ($11.80).
The eggplants were deep fried in light batter and stir fried with garlic chips, shallot and green peppers … the core ingredients of Typhoon Shelter cooking. You kn0w what we would love added on? It would be great if they fry some birds eye chilli in it for that extra kick.
We loved the fragrant garlic chips especially and there are lots of it. We even ate this with the rice alone (i.e. without jhup) and it was just as good.
I don’t know how this worked but they gave us free soup of the day. Since this is free, no questions asked. We did not even expect this at all.
The soup had pork and carrot. It looked dark in colour but actually there are not much flavour and was bland tasting.
We spied the table next to us. They ordered the Combo meal that we almost ordered. I stole that shot and Nanzaro was so worried I decided to take the shot so close to them. “Don’t do that Dad!”. He is chicken.
The dishes looked like a lot of food. The above two dishes were just like $24.00. I think the rice is extra but it included a soup. That is enough food to feed three people easily.
Sing Yee accepts credit cards.
Too bad there are no dessert for us. The free desserts are only if we ordered combos.
But anyway, this place is not too shabby. This is certainly a restaurant worth coming back again. Too bad they don’t serve Da Lang though.