6.246 Tungpo-Style Braised Pork Belly


8 (Tue) September 2015

Tungpo-Style Braised Pork Belly


at Li Li (New World Manila Bay)

-Malate, Manila-

with MK+C, RK

The tungpo pork belly was exquisite.  Flawlessly executed, with a delicate amber skin — so perfect that it looked fake — the layer of fat underneath maintaining structural integrity but melting upon touch, the meat at the bottom so luxuriously tender that it pulled apart with a spoon.  Not really my kind of dish, but objectively I could appreciate its beauty.

Deep-Fried Spring Roll with Shrimp (2.25) — okay but disappointingly pedestrian for a restaurant of this caliber.
Broth of Garoupa Fillet, Chinese Parsley, Wild Mushrooms, Bamboo Pith (3.5) — the white stuff is milk, which provided a surprisingly delightful and delicate creaminess, balancing nicely with the woodsiness of the wild mushrooms.
Steamed Fresh Scallop Dumplings with Sweet Corn (2.25) — okay but disappointingly pedestrian for a restaurant of this caliber.
Scallops with Broccoli (3.5) — awesome as ever; on the florets to the left and right, the scorched tips show wok-char, which is good, but at center, the brown was a bit off-putting, though it didn’t seem to affect flavor.
E-Fu Noodle, Mixed Mushrooms, Vegetables (2.5) — though nice to have a relatively light noodle dish that isn’t loaded with meat/seafood; otherwise unremarkable.

In case you’re wondering about TEILL (Try Every Item at Li Li), it’ll never happen.  The menu has 128 items.  I’ve tried 22 of them.  Tonight was the 8th visit (see previously 6.230 Taiwan-Style Braised Chicken…).  At this pace, I’d need another 47.   No thanks.

I am, however, intrigued by the Braised Whole Japanese Ouma Abalone in Premium Oyster Sauce, which costs 18,880 pesos (about $400).  TEILL would be the only thing that could get me to try it.

Indeed, if not for TEITY, I wouldn’t have attempted to order Tao Yuan’s flagship 6,888-peso abalone dish (see generally 6.001 Braised Superior Whole Abalone).

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