10.258 Fried Fish in Special Sauce

10.258

20 (Fri) September 2019

Fried Fish in Special Sauce

3.5

at Fuyuan

-Legaspi Village, Makati, Manila, Philippines-

with the Family

Fuyuan is a Chinese restaurant.  Specializes in Hunanese cuisine.

According to Chinese colleagues in the office – who are mostly from Bejing – Fuyuan is their go-to place. 

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Indeed, most of the customers in the busy establishment appeared to be Chinese – like, fresh-off-the-boat Chinese – which seemed to augur an authentic meal.

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Even the manager behind the counter – I tried to ask him about booze options – couldn’t speak a lick of English, making me feel like I was in China.

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Cabbage (3.5): everyone agreed that this was the best dish.
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Dumplings (2.0): the only disappointing dish of the spread.
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Clam and Tofu Soup (2.5): fresh clams, fresh tofu, but otherwise kinda bland, probably will never order it again.
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Seafood Fried Rice (3.5): as good as fried rice served on a plastic plate can get.

The food was great.  Ingredients = fresh and immaculate.  Flavors = bright and punchy.  Even the dishes that we didn’t like exhibited a high level of quality to be appreciated.  Over the past few years, after nothing but Cantonese – which dominates in Manila – as well as Taiwanese renditions of Cantonese, the experience was refreshing.

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The fish appeared to be a parrot fish, which was a bit weird for DJ and me, because they’re very common to see when we dive in the Philippines, and they don’t look that tasty.
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But it was quite nice.

The highlight dish was the Fried Fish in Special Sauce.  Firm white flesh, perfectly deep-fried on the outside.  Topped with fresh chilies, garlic, scallions, ginger, and dressed in a sauce that seemed to consist of chili oil, soy sauce, and touch of five-spice, making for an explosive combination.

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DJ created his own dish by adding chili oil from the fish to the clam soup – a major improvement.

And items were served within minutes of ordering – like, 4 minutes – the way it should be in a Chinese restaurant, given that the cooking itself only takes seconds – even though most Chinese restaurants in Manila – most restaurants of any kind here – take 30, 40, 60 minutes or more for orders to be completed.

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