Monday, January 08, 2007

Ocean City Restaurant

Attended a wedding dinner on Sunday night at Ocean City Restaurant at Apollo Centre. A rather small place to cramp 30+ tables I should say. Coupled with a dull and poorly finished interior, it can hardly be considered the perfect place to host a wedding. Okay I'm being mean. Its rude to talk bad about people's weddings, so I'll just hold my tongue.

Before I proceed, please allow me to wish the married couple a blissful marriage! And on to the food.

Cold Dish Combination

What better way to start off the meal than with a cold dish? I haven't had this for a long time so it was pretty exciting for me. There were no surprises as to the variety though. The usual suspects - Fried Egg with Shark's Fin, Prawns with Mayonnaise and fruit salad, Cured Pork Shank, Jellyfish and Deep Fried Silver Fish were all present. I personally found this to be the best dish of the entire meal, with the Cured Pork Shank and Deep Fried Silver Fish hogging the limelight. This is not to say that the others weren't good. It's just that these two shone through. The Cured Pork Shank was very crunchy in the fatty areas so much so that you wouldn't realise that you were actually chewing on pork fat! I did find the meat a wee bit too salty for my liking though. The Deep Fried Silver Fish was a simple yet masterful piece. The silver fish were coated in thick layers of flour and deep fried till crispy. The result is a cracker like crisp which is extremely flavourful (The flavour evidently comes from the tons of MSG added). Unhealthy, but simply delicious.

Crispy Yam Ring Stuffed with Scallop

The inside

Coming from someone who fancies Orh Nee quite a bit, this dish was a let down. Although the yam was smooth, it was tasteless to me and so was the scallop, which was too soft as well probably due to the lack of cooking time.

Steamed Live Prawns

This dish was quite well done with the prawns being fresh and cooked just right. A pleasing dish, but no surprises here.

Braised Shark's Fin with Dried Scallop and Crabmeat

A closer view

This was a bummer really. Although the fins were of decent quality and quantity, the soup was rather bland and thus marred the entire dish. If not for the fins, I wouldn't have known that this was Shark's Fin Soup!. I personally found it a little too watery as well.

The deboned Steamed Live Red Snapper Fish in Hong Kong Style

I didn't get a chance to take a picture before the lady skillfully deboned the fish. The meat was a fresh, a little chewy but not particularly sweet. Great cooking skill but without a top quality fish to boot.

Braised Sliced Top Shell with Green Vegetable

I try to avoid Top Shell as often as possible because I simply detest the strong raw aftertaste. This one was no exception. The rawness almost made me puke. I didn't like the vegetables that came with it either because they were too soft and starchy for my liking. But hey, its meant to be cooked that way, so its just a matter of personal preference.

Deep Fried Crispy Chicken

You can seldom go wrong with chicken, especially deep fried ones. This one was decently done with the skin being crispy and salty just the way I like it. The meat was not as succulent as I would have liked it to be, but it was fairly alright. One thing lacking though, was the fragrance. It probably could have used some fried garlic.

Braised Ee-Fu Noodle

Another dish that I don't really fancy because its very soft and makes me nauseous after consumption. However, this dish was quite the opposite of the usual ones. The noodles were dry, too dry in fact and tasted very flat. I gave up eating after 2 spoonfuls.

Well no bill to speak of as it was a wedding dinner, unless you want to consider the Ang Pow money we gave. Honestly, I wouldn't pay more than $40/pax for the above dishes, especially when the service was less than desirable. Initially it was okay and the dishes were spaced out at appropriate intervals. But as it neared 10pm, the dishes started landing on our table in rapid succession, as if beckoning us to finish up and leave. My guess is they wanted us out by 1030pm, which happens to be their official closing time.

Final Verdict:
Food:6.5/10 (7.5/10 for the cold dish)
Value for money:/10 (Can't comment cause I didn't get to see the menu)


Address: #02-01 Apollo Centre, 2 Havelock Road

Contact: 65386601

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