Time Out Says
From the moment you enter Tse Yang, you are mesmerised. Guided through a corridor of mirrors illuminated with a red glow, you arrive at the impressive bar area en route to the main restaurant. Overlooking the Pearl, the bar is decked out in black leather, dimly lit and welcoming. Behind the bar are some jaw-dropping drinks cabinets stretching from floor to ceiling, only accessible by a large ladder. The whole scene is surreal, made more so by being bathed in a rosy tinge, courtesy of several sparkling pink chandeliers.
The restaurant itself is another visual experience entirely. Luxurious in its décor, its central feature is a large mirrored column topped with an amazing red chandelier constructed entirely of crimson tassels. Illuminated in this radiance, the black leather seating seems to almost glow. The restaurant is circular, with walls fronted by an unusual wrought iron mosaic design, and topping one wall is a large Chinese village scene in silhouette, depicting angry skies and rolling clouds; the overall concept and design is inspirational.
We perused the beautiful, silk-covered menus with expectations of a sumptuous dining experience. Set menus vary from QR300-500 and include a range of Chinese favourites, or alternatively diners can select from a menu littered with dishes guaranteed to intrigue your taste buds. There’s a superb selection of dim sum, including steamed shrimp dumplings, fluffy barbecue chicken buns and mini egg tartlets, or select the ubiquitous sweetcorn or crabmeat soup. Hot or cold appetisers feature such delicacies as barbecue-roasted duck or deep fried squid. After much deliberation, the honey roasted chicken and prettily named autumn and spring rolls were the order of the day.
Hot towels were offered as we waited for our dishes to arrive. A small appetiser, a delicate triangle of prawn toast, arrived with three dipping sauces. It was exceptional and piqued our appetites. Six spring rolls were then served with a sweet dipping sauce. They were crisp and exquisite; three containing a mixture of tasty vegetables and three meaty and flavourful. The sliced honey-roasted chicken was served with roasted peanuts, creating a delicious assortment of tastes and textures, all at once moist, sticky, sweet and crunchy, an absolute delight.
Given the kitchen’s obvious capabilities, we could not resist the Peking duck. Expensive at QR298, but definitely worth the investment, it was served as a whole duck, and carved before our eyes into delicate slices, releasing mouth-watering aromas and heightening every sense in anticipation of the imminent feast. Using only chopsticks, the waitress expertly dipped the crispy duck in sweet hoi sin sauce, wrapping it in pancakes filled with fresh sliced cucumber and spring onion. We felt quite decadent as we devoured each perfect little pancake while another materialised. They were addictive, the duck beautifully cooked, and the pancakes among the best we have ever tasted. The remainder of the duck can be either wok-fried with black pepper sauce or served with rice vermicelli. We decided to go with the pepper sauce, and the duck was spirited away to be transformed into another delightful dish.
In addition to the duck, we chose fried rice ‘Yang Zhau’ style, and crispy Cantonese noodles with beef and black bean sauce. However, there was a tempting seafood selection that included wok-fried mud crab and braised sliced abalone. For meat lovers, the wok-fried Black Angus beef in pepper and garlic sauce, or the roasted lamb rack in barbecue sauce, are begging to be sampled. If you are feeling daring, you could jump at the chance to order frogs’ legs fermented in black bean sauce.
A portion of each dish was served, and we tucked in with gusto. Even the accoutrements smack of sophistication and class here, the chopsticks heavy and silver-topped. Our duck, now under another guise, had unbelievably improved from the earlier dish, and was coated in a robust peppery sauce with sautéed peppers and onions. The rice was light and fluffy, packed with cubes of meat, prawns, fresh diced spring onion and delicately fried egg. Thoroughly addictive, the noodles were crispy round the edges of the platter and moist in the centre, soaked in heady black bean sauce and besieged with melt-in-the-mouth slices of tender beef.
Desserts are never a necessity when dining Chinese-style, but there’s a small selection available. We were recommended the black sesame ice cream in an almond tulipe. It was light and refreshing, unusually flavoured yet pleasant. The chocolate ice cream was rich and creamy, but actually not quite as tasty as the sensuous sesame.
Tse Yang works wonders with the wok. The fare is as sophisticated as it is satisfying, and the atmosphere is very pleasant. A truly exceptional dining experience featuring the most authentic Chinese cuisine, it’s a definite culinary force to be reckoned with.
The bill (for two)
1x spring rolls QR35
1x roasted chicken QR55
1x Peking duck QR298
1x rice yang zhau QR48
1x Cantonese noodles QR50
1x sesame ice cream QR30
1x chocolate ice cream QR30
2x Acqua Pana QR60
2x Coca-Cola QR40
Total (incl charges) QR646
By Time Out Doha staff | 26 Jul 2010
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