Tuesday, 17 November 2015

Review of Chung Ying Cantonese Restaurant

Chung Ying Cantonese Restaurant.  For years its presence has dominated Birmingham’s China Town area, it’s the restaurant that everyone knows -  almost acting as a point of reference or a tourist landmark with its red and gold exterior armour beckoning you in.
Chung Ying Cantonese
Photo:  Word In Veg Ways

Including myself as one of the ‘everyone knows it’ people, I have been going to Chung Ying Cantonese for years myself.  When I walked in on the night of my recent visit, I felt that sense of familiarity which was particularly comforting. 
Chung Ying Interiors
Photo:  Word In Veg Ways
Being seated at a table in the downstairs area, I took a cursory glance around and thought back to all the occasions I’ve been here in the past – everything from work dos, hen parties to Chinese New Year feasts – I think I must have sat in each part of the restaurant over the years and even done a stint on the karaoke stage upstairs – quite a lot of memories if I’ve honest.

On this occasion it was myself and My Carnivourous Husband (MCH) dining, we were having a ‘date night’ (if you will).
Vegetarian Crispy 'Duck'
Photo:  Word In Veg Ways
Chung Ying Cantonese are always good on the vegetarian side of things and as usual, there were lots of options to choose from which was great.  Trying to branch out from my go-to fail-safes of veggie yuk sung and chow mein, I saw that they had Vegetarian Crispy ‘Duck’ on the menu as starter for two people.  I thought this was a perfect way to start our night, MCH happy to forego meat on this course and I was keen to see how they would do this dish veggie style.
Hoisin Sauce & Chinese Salad
Photo:  Word In Veg Ways
Pancakes with Crispy 'Duck'
Photo:  Word In Veg Ways
Made from bean curd (tofu), it was presented in a way that was similar to how duck would be, cooked to have a crispy coating and served with hoisin sauce, pancakes and Chinese salad so you could make up pancake rolls.  The sauce gave it a sticky texture and the salad made it refreshing.  Definitely a portion for 2 people and we devoured it completed – really enjoyed it.

Scallops with King Prawns
Photo:  Word In Veg Ways
For our mains MCH opted for the Scallops with King Prawns.  A good medley of both but he felt it need a little something to boost it, perhaps a sauce or additional seasoning.

Sizzling Japanese Bean Curd
Photo:  Word In Veg Ways

Again, steering myself from ‘the usual’, I had the Sizzling Japanese Bean Curd with Chinese Mushroom based on our waiter’s recommendation.  This dish did indeed come out sizzling!  The bean curd/tofu was quite fluffy and a little marshmallowy which I didn’t enjoy as much as hoped as I thought the tofu would be harder (which is how I prefer it) but it would suit those that prefer softer consistencies.  The mushrooms within were delicious.

Chinese Vegetables
Photo:  Word In Veg Ways
We had Egg Fried Rice to share which had a nice nutty texture to it and also a side portion of vegetables which worked well and had a good mixture of different vegetables, although I felt it came with too much sauce so I should have asked for it to be served ‘dry’ – but that’s just a personal inclination.
Photo:  Word In Veg Ways
For dessert, MCH had the Tiramisu which was a bought-in ready-made ice-cream based dessert and performed as a palette cleanser to finish the meal with and all very pleasant.

Lotus Seed Buns
Photo:  Word In Veg Ways

I continued with my vain of keep it traditional and so I had the Lotus Seed Buns, something I hadn’t had before.  A very mallowy, soft, gooey bun which had a slither of lotus seed paste inside (acting like a very dry jam).  The portion size came as 3 buns and I would’ve liked to have had 2 buns with a scoop of ice cream to add variety to the dessert and to give a little contrast to the buns.  Would ice cream added to lotus seed buns be uncouth?  I don’t think so, I think it would give it a different dimension which would have been welcomed.  It was interesting trying them and I enjoyed something new to experience.  
Lotus Seed Buns when cut open
Photo:  Word In Veg Ways
All in all, the menu is extensive and vegetarians have a dedicated page with a wide selection to choose from – the Vegetarian Crispy ‘Duck’ is definitely a new favourite of mine and one to order again in the future.  Plus the staff are super helpful in guiding and explaining a little more about each dish to ensure you get the most out of your visit.

Chung Ying Cantonese is definitely loved by Brummies, the evidence of full to capacity was there on the night to see and from my point of view, I will always be extremely fond of it with my memories of events gone by and knowledge I’ll always be looked after there each time I visit.

Disclosure:    This post has been written following a kind invitation from Chung Ying Cantonese to sample their menu.    This review was conducted honestly without bias and I was not required to produce a positive review.  For further details of my PR policy, please see the Press, PR & Food Writing page of this website. 






1 comment:

  1. Hi Anna, just remembered your blog, hope you're well my dear. I myself went to this splendid restaurant on a quiet lunch time with some colleagues from Grand Central Birmingham, during the summer run up to our launch. I've never been before and the menu was quite intimidating. We ended up having some dim sum for starter and in various hot dishes for a main course. The variety and genuine Chinese options available is really impressive. Like a lot of Chinese restaurants the presentation is fairly minimal but they focus on the quality of the actual food. I was amazed at what good value it was and we ate absolutely everything, all extremely nice. Trying to get the wife to go there with me now. Danny