On a recent girlie trip to the Wynn Macau, organised through Sassy Hong Kong, we had the pleasure of trying Macau’s only two Michelin-starred restaurant, Wing Lei. The full hotel and spa review can be read here, but I thought it only right to go into a little more necessary detail about just how delicious the food was…
We had informed the hotel in advance that both of us are sensitive to gluten, however when it came to Cantonese food, we were a little apprehensive about what we would be served at Wing Lei; either it wouldn’t actually be gluten free, we thought, or we would get food envy of all the dim sum dishes we would have to miss out on.
Perhaps we should have realised that Wing Lei earned its two Michelin stars for a reason and had a little more faith however, as every dish we were served was both beautifully presented and utterly divine.
A gorgeous plate of cold appetisers set the standard high. I adored the Chilled sliced sea cucumber and cucumber with spicy sauce, as it offered such a wonderful contrast between the delicate and strong flavours and textures. Next, the Drunken prawns, marinated in Chinese rice wine, were a tad too sweet for me, although I loved the adorable cucumber lattice they were perched on. Aubergine, when cooked to perfection, is definitely up there amongst my favourite vegetables, and the Marinated eggplant with barbecued duck supported this view. Last, but certainly not least, the Smoked beancurd with mushrooms and sweetened carrot was like a little Swiss roll of goodness.
Moving onto the selection of dim sum, although I would possibly never have picked out any of the three options we were served, I was completely wowed by the delicate flavours of all three. I have a friend who closes her eyes every time she eats delicious food; this dim sum was definitely eye-closing worthy. The Steamed Turnip Cake stuffed with Fish Paste and Osmanthus was evidently beautiful in appearance, topped with gold leaf. Yet to taste, it was even better, as the sweet, delicate flavour of the osmanthus flowers contrasted perfectly with the saltiness of the seafood. The Steamed layered bean curd skin with soy bean milk tasted like a warm hug, its flavours so light and soothing. My favourite of the three was the Steamed beancurd sheet wrapped with chicken and mushrooms – a divine little bundle of delight.
It was the two dishes that followed, however, that really made Wing Lei shine. Firstly, the melt-in-the-mouth Steamed codfish roll was incredible, stuffed with silky soft bean curd, swathed in a delicate broth and dotted with intensely flavoured preserved tree seeds.
Then, the Crispy crab claw with fragrant garlic flakes on fried crabmeat and egg white offered two contrasting, yet completely complementing halves: the light, fluffy egg white, infused with lovely, soft crabmeat encased in a leaf of crunchy iceberg lettuce; and the strong (perhaps a little too strong) flavoured crispy crab claw coated in crispy garlic flakes. Such a gorgeous dish.
To finish, a trio of desserts including fresh fruit, yoghurt and coconut and red bean hearts was presented before us, the latter of which was my favourite.
The contrast between delicate and intense that was so evident in the food seemed to be a recurring theme throughout Wing Lei; it is seen in the design of the restaurant, where subtle, traditional décor is juxtaposed with Wing Lei’s centrepiece, the flying dragon. Made up of 90,000 Swarovski crystals, this iconic dragon, symbolising happiness, luck and activity, fits in perfectly with the overall feel throughout the Wynn: a blend of opulence and that vital ‘Vegas-esque’ charm.
The average meal at Wing Lei apparently costs around MOP300, which equates to around the same in HKD – can you imagine ever being able to get an incredible fine dining experience in a two Michelin-starred restaurant for HKD300 here in Hong Kong?! Not likely.
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