Thursday, 27 December 2012

The Grand Ni Hao, Flavor Bliss - Serpong

So that was Christmas.
Bebek goreng/deep fried duck (half portion pictured) - about IDR 99,000 ($10.5)

For me, it IS still Christmas. The merry vibe is still wafting heavily in the air, and for me it'll end just before New Year's Eve, because it will then be replaced with NY feel.

So what did you eat for Christmas? Any epic meal throughout the day? Amazing gift that makes you weep with happiness? For me, I'm so happy to spend Christmas with family and the boy, it doesn't get better than that!

Anyway, this is a review about my Christmas dinner. The Grand Ni Hao, a Chinese restaurant among a herd of restaurants at Flavor Bliss, was chosen for a big family dinner due to its spacious dining area and the family's penchant for Chinese food.

The Grand Ni Hao

They have two-story dining area, and we got a large table on the second level. The restaurant adapts modern Chinese design, and although they don't put too many Chinese decorations, the whole restaurant looks trendy, elegant, and not too simple.


After a few 'hi's and 'merry Christmas'es, the spread began. Unfortunately, my family and I came late, so I had to sit on the further side of the long table, which was probably the worst spot to take photos of the food. Most plates were already touched and/or half-eaten by the time it arrived to my side. Hence the unfocused photos, I'm sorry! And about the prices, apparently the food served (and pictured) is half-portioned, except the soup, because it's easier to distribute on the wide table. The bill is rather confusing to read as well, so the best I can provide you is the approximate price after some calculations.

The sup hipio seafood (fish belly and seafood soup) is belly warming, especially with yesterday's heavy rain. Among the crab flesh, mushroom slices and chewy, transparent fish belly can also be found.

Sup hipio seafood/fish belly and seafood soup - IDR 22,000 ($2.4)

My favourite of the night is the bebek goreng crispy (crispy deep fried duck) (first picture). The duck is so tender, with no funny smell and whatnot. The skin is satisfyingly crunchy, with pleasurable layer of fat beneath. Every slice is a heavenly piece of the bird, perfectly paired with the spicy chilli sauce.

We love deep fried seafood, and not ordering udang goreng gandum (oat-breaded deep fried prawns) would make us the bad children Santa won't give gifts to. A minus point is the fact that they don't peel any part of the prawns, which can make it troublesome to eat, especially to those who don't eat prawn shell. I'm not one of those, and was really happy to bite into crunchy shell and crispy oat batter, although the prawn isn't juicy enough.

Udang goreng gandum/oat-breaded deep fried prawns (half portion pictured) - about IDR 136,000 ($14.4)

Angsio tahu jamur Shimeji (tofu and Shimeji mushrooms cooked in Chinese alcoholic sauce (angciu)) is there to make the spread look healthier, and it is a perfect choice. The tofu is beyond silky soft, topped with (presumably) seaweed powder. On the contrary, the mushrooms are chewy, hence the interesting texture contrast.

Angsio tahu jamur Shimeji (half portion pictured) - about IDR 87,000 ($9.2)

Mie goreng (fried noodles) is the carb loader, the noodles are cooked and seasoned very well.

Fried noodles (half portion pictured) - about IDR 58,000 ($6,2)

We also tried kerapu tim ala Hongkong (Hongkong style steamed groper), brokoli & shitake BBQ (broccoli and shitake mushrooms in BBQ sauce), and hot plate sapi ala Hongkong (Hongkong style hot plate beef); all taste nice, but don't really induce applause.

Kerapu tim ala Hongkong/Hongkong style steamed groper (about IDR 42,000/$4.5 per kg) and brokoli & shitake BBQ/broccoli and shitake mushrooms in BBQ sauce [half portion pictured] (about IDR 78,000/$8.2)

The restaurant don't include pork or lard in their cooking, and I'm sure this is a good news for those who love Chinese cuisine but don't eat pork/lard.

Ni Hao signage: no pork, no lard

Bottom line, it was such a fun night, especially because I love catching up with the cousins for the first time since I got home.

In case you are curious about my Christmas lunch, it was an epic Manadonese feast at Roo's home. His mom's Manadonese cooking is unbeatable, and the chili still has me clutching my body in pain. So what did you have for Christmas? Do share!

Rating: 3.5/5 (Worth the try)
Great deep fried duck and more than decent menus, price is rather high but the original portion may be large, service may need some improvements but still acceptable, ambiance is nice and the area is spacious.



Flavor Bliss, unit 17 (in front of Gate 3)
Alam Sutera Komp.
Jl. Alam Sutera Boulvard Serpong, Banten

Phone: (021) 2900 5085

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