A few weeks back, I was at La Makaan with my usual group of friends for a play by Dramanon. After the play, we also had a movie lined up. But we had about an hour and a half to kill in between, and all of us were hungry. We wanted to try a something other than the food court and the restaurants in GVK and City Center. Impressed with the high Zomato rating, I picked Chinese Pavilion.
The place looks extremely unassuming from the outside, but the interiors were quite well done. We got a Bong waiter who was polite, knowledgeable and helpful. Among the four of us we ordered two soups (three portions split into four), two starters, two gravies, two main courses, and two desserts. Incredibly, with just half a portion per person, we struggled to finish our portions. The quantity in each serving is extremely generous, which makes Chinese Pavilion a great place to come in a group. However, if you are planning to visit alone, you better come starved.
Among the soups, the Spicy Crab Meat soup was average, and was missing the distinctive crab flavour that I love in the one served by Mainland China. However, the Jade Soup was brilliant though, and I relished it even though I am not a big fan of spinach. Both of the starters – Sea Wars and Chicken Banana Leaves – were fabulous. The Sea Wars is a combination of prawns, fish, and squid tossed in chilly and garlic. Other than the fried calamari preparations, I’m not a big fan of squids. However, I was happy to find that the squid in the Sea Wars was relatively soft and not too chewy. The Chicken Banana Leaves had tender pieces of marinated chicken wrapped in banana leaves. The chicken was extremely soft, and almost melted in my mouth.
For the main course, we ordered Pot Rice and Prawn Hakka Noodles, both of which were again wonderful. The Hakka Noodles was mixed with some pan friend noodles and bountiful quantities of veggies. The rice was a brilliant blend of Chinese spices with black mushroom and chicken. Both the aroma and the flavour of the rice were extremely enticing. As accompaniments we ordered Lat Chow Lamb and Chicken Sampan.The lamb was delicious, but the Chicken Sampan was so sweet that it could have been used as a dessert. I later learnt that one of the major ingredients of Sampan is honey, so the sweetness was perhaps justified. However, I wish that either the menu or the waiter had adequately warned us about the extreme sweetness in advance.
The desserts section of Chinese Pavilion is actually completely continental. We ordered the cheese cake and chocolate mousse. Once again, these dishes provided little room for complaint. The chocolate was intense and smooth with a slightly alcoholic after taste, while the cheese cake had the awesome flavour of blueberry.
The meal at Chinese Pavilion made each of our wallets lighter by a bit more eight hundred bucks, but we would have definitely ordered less had we known in advance about the portion sizes. Other than the Chicken Sampan, which was appallingly sweet, we had little to complain about the entire experience.