Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Happy Cook

Location: 156 Springvale Road, Nunawading
Cuisine: Chinese

Crispy grilled lamb

Very crispy and aromatic, tasted great when hot but extremely oily once it went cold. It could have been drained a little better.

Steamed spring pancake

Fried spring pancake

These pancakes were basically the same thing, except one was steamed and the other was fried. The inside is what separates these from other buns and pancakes - the inside is formed of noodle-like strips of dough so that when you pull the pancake apart, you can pull out little strips of pancake. It went well with the lamb.

Salted-egg-yolk fried tofu

If ever a dish was supposed to be salty, this was it. Unfortunately, it wasn't anywhere near salty. In fact, I highly doubt that the egg-yolk was from a salted-egg. It tasted more like normal egg-yolk, mixed with a bit (but not quite enough) salt. When we alerted the waiter, he had the chef make us another serving - which was only just a slight bit saltier than the first.

A message to the chef: If you don't have salted-egg, just tell us and we won't order it. Don't try and make it something it is not, because I have a better sense of taste than you have a sense of 'brains'...

Chinese broccoli with garlic sauce

Ironically, this was my favourite dish of the meal, despite me being a carnivore at heart. Light and fresh, with a strong garlic sauce, the vegies were a good way to break up a meal largely consisting of fatty or fried foods.

Special combination noodles on sizzling plate

I was a little disappointed in this as my parents had spoken very highly of this dish the last time they went but when I tried it for myself, it just tasted like normal fried noodles anywhere else. The only thing the sizzling plate did was keep the noodles warm - there was no smokey BBQ flavour at all!

Salt and pepper fried fish

This wasn't too bad, but I've had better. The fish was perhaps a little over-cooked, with some parts of the fish being crunchy, and therefore edible, through to the bone. The topping of salt, chilli, capsicum, garlic and onion was particularly tasty.

Menu was overpriced for the quality and amount of food we were given. We paid $95 for 5 people at this place, whilst paying $85 for 7 people at Tan Tan in Box Hill (review to come). Service was friendly though, and they tried to be helpful despite their failings.

Overall Impression: 7.5/10
Happy Cook Peking Chinese on Urbanspoon


listress said...

Jen! You've got to add me as a writer of this blog :D

Anonymous said...

you got the entire menu wrong!, im a regular there and your comments made me laugh!!! get the names of the dishes right before reviewing them and it may make more sense to why the dishes didnt live up to your expectations..

and comparing vietnamese to peking (chinese) food.. makes no sense to me

jenster said...

Anonymous - I don't know when you started visiting this place, but the review is dated well over a year ago. It may have changed ownership or chefs by now.

As for the menu, they are literal translations of the menus at the time of the post.

The comparison was merely a comment with regards to value for money, you are welcome to your own opinion.

In any case, please feel free to provide your feedback on the place in the comments.

Anonymous said...

Whilst I'm yet to visit happy cook, your comments clearly show that you're not qualified to critique northern Chinese food. That comment about salted egg yoke tofu made me laugh! Salted egg yoke aren't that salty, its the egg whites that turn out really salty. Please don't just ASSume, if you're not sure then ask around. Won't take this blog as being reputable for dinner suggestions.

I agree with anonymous above. You can't compare prices between restaurants that are so different.