Golden Phoenix

Update: This business has ceased its operations.

My department's teambuilding event includes lunch at Golden Phoenix in Equatorial Hotel. Located near the hilltop of Bukit Jambul, Equatorial Hotel is a luxurious urban getaway next to the only 18-hole golf course on the Penang island.
Golden Phoenix (金凤楼) the hotel's Chinese restaurant. It serves a good variety of dim sum dishes during lunch hour. As the price implies, the food is of premium quality. We selected this pork-free restaurant in order to accommodate our Muslim colleagues.
As we were told to order as much as we want from the extensive menu, we did not hesitate to try a number of exquisite dim sum dishes today.
Starting with the Fei Chor Har (翡翠虾), the steamed dumplings contain premium prawn fillings which are really succulent indeed. The dumplings are topped with some shredded ginger for added flavor.
Dim sum meals should not deviate from the crowd-favorite Fresh Prawn Siew Mai (鲜虾烧卖). This dim sum is made from minced prawn with a dash of crab roe. Unlike cheaper restaurants where there is more flour than prawns, this dish is really delightful in taste.
Moving to another delicacy Yee Chee Kau (鱼翅饺), the dumplings is also made from minced prawn but with a generous amount of sharks' fins.
We ordered the Kao Choy Kok (韭菜角), which are translucent dumplings containing chopped Chinese chives. Chinese chives give a breath of leafy-freshness to our dining experience.
The Char Siew Pau (叉烧包) are dumplings filled with barbecued minced chicken with sweet savory sauce. The chicken works fine in this dish, but I prefer pork as the taste is more pronounced.
We tried a small plate of Fried Lor Mai Fun (炒糯米饭). Using glutinous rice, this is another popular dish in dim sum restaurants. The rice is quite filling, so we only ate a little despite the nice taste.
Moving to something based on bean curd, the Sin Jok Kuan (鲜竹卷) is made using minced chicken, mushrooms and bamboo shoots rolled in bean curd skin. The dish is served with flavorful oyster sauce.
Although the prawns used in the Sin Har Choong Fun (鲜虾肠粉) are fresh and succulent, the overall feeling is too salty. The rice flour is also too thick, which gives a starchy sensation beyond our desired range.
The Salad Har Kok (沙拉虾饺) is a made from prawns coated with bean curd skin, then deep-fried till crispy. It is served with some mayonnaise. We find this dish slightly oily for comfort.
The next dish Char Wu Kao (炸芋角) is a true delicacy. Taro paste is made into round shapes while barbecued minced chicken acts as fillings. Taro balls are deep-fried to give highly-delectable crispiness on the surface. As taro acts as a heat reservoir, the chicken filling is piping hot when consumed.
Pot Stickers (锅贴) is up next. Using thick flour dough with filling made of minced chicken and chopped vegetables, the dumplings are deep-fried to golden perfection. The dumplings are best eaten with shredded ginger for a nice tangy flavor.
A short detour to something green, we ordered a plate of Fried Yau Mak (炒油麥). This waxy-like leaf vegetable is lightly stir-fried with garlic for a pungent yet modest sensation.
Another popular dim sum dish is the Fried Lo Pak Kou (炒萝卜糕). This dish is primarily a type of "cake" made from rice flour with shredded Chinese radish. The "cake" is chopped into smaller cubes and deep-fried with eggs, garlic and soy sauce. Overall, the dish is acceptable in taste, although not particularly memorable.
Last but not least, we ordered the Golden Phoenix Fried Meehoon (金凤招牌炒米粉) to conclude our meal. The rice vermicelli are light and soft, while the tomato-based sauce gives it a mild tangy flavor.
Overall, Golden Phoenix has a number of good dishes of premium quality. For the price tag, we certainly got what we paid for. By "we", I mean whoever footed the bill.

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