The buzz: The newly-opened Mandopop promises to change your perception of Chinese restaurants, from the décor to the food. Chef Adian Chua, from Singapore, says he’s looking to modernize Chinese cuisine in terms of presentation while maintaining authenticity through the use of traditional recipes and techniques.
The décor: Set in the luxury Oriental Residence, the décor is equally impressive if even more opulent. The modern, moodily-lit design still carries plenty of Chinese touches like carved wood details and screens, yet there’s a striking blue theme throughout, from the lighting to the furniture. A long bar runs along one side of the spacious dining room, half of which is dedicated to the open kitchen.
The food: Expect traditional Chinese dishes, just with minor tweaks, such as the steamed prawn dumplings with spinach skin (B140), foie gras puree with scallop wonton dumplings (B250) and stir-fried vegetables with homemade spinach tofu (B200). There are also heartier dishes in the form of beef tenderloin in black pepper sauce (B550). Lunch-time sees some single-dish options like fried-rice with egg, conpoy (dried scallop) and seafood (B200) and stir-fried glass noodles in black bean sauce (B230 for seafood, B380 for beef). The set lunch and dinner ranges from B850-B2,050, with variations on dim sum, soups, main courses and desserts.
The drinks: The Mando Royale (Amaretto, blue Curacao and lime juice, B555) is their signature cocktail and features a big ball of ice, while another recommended option is the Ruby (Absolut Raspberri, raspberry and passion fruit, B385). Draught beer is Heineken (B285 for 0.5 liter) with bottles starting from B195. Wine by the glass starts from B99 for now.
The crowd: Foodies curious to try the new concept Chinese food, and families of Chinese expats in the private rooms upstairs.
Mandopop aims to change your perception of Chinese restaurants, from the décor to the food. Chef Adian Chua, from Singapore, still uses traditional recipes and techniques, but the presentation is as edgy as the interior design. Set in the luxurious Oriental Residence, it is opulent, modern and moodily-lit but carries plenty of Chinese touches like carved wood details and screens. A long bar runs along one side of the spacious dining room, half of which is dedicated to the open kitchen. There, you’ll see the staff whipping up dishes ranging from classic mains to dim sum, ostensibly one of the main draws. Their steamed dumplings are mostly traditional versions with minor tweaks, such as the steamed prawn dumplings with spinach skin (B140). Though pleasant in taste, we can’t help but feel that the spinach is a bit soggy. Their steamed rice skin roll with scallop (B200) isn’t too impressive either, coming with a dipping sauce that’s pretty bland, watery even. Though their dim sum aren’t particularly exciting, the heartier dishes are generally satisfying. The seafood hot and sour soup (B235) strikes a nice balance between its two namesake flavors with a heady aroma courtesy of the Chinese spices. Likewise, the pan-seared foie gras with crispy duck skin (B450) is a dish to savor, with its superbly rich dark soy sauce and crispy duck skin that’s bordering on melt-in-the-mouth. Also tasty is the beef tenderloin in black pepper sauce (B550), even if the sauce lacks a little punch. When it comes to dessert, the place doesn’t restrict itself to traditional Chinese treats with Western options like creamy avocado ice-cream (B200) and the rewarding chilled mango pudding (B180). While Mandopop caters to families and friends, its quiet atmosphere is well suited to couples seeking a candlelit dinner, too, with their delectable, though pricy, signature drinks such as the Mando Royale (Amaretto, blue Curacao and lime juice, B555). Mandopop largely achieves its aim of authentic flavors and sexed-up presentation, but with its slightly steep prices and small servings it’s probably best left to special occasions.
|Address:||Mandopop, Oriental Residence, 110 Rd., Bangkok, Thailand|
|Open since:||July, 2012|
|Opening hours:||daily noon-2:30pm; Sun-Thu 6:30-11pm; Fri-Sat 6:30pm-1am|
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