Last updated on December 28th, 2022 at 10:32 am
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Summer Palace is a Cantonese restaurant located inside the Shangri-La hotel.
The whole vibe was extremely luxurious with its high ceilings, chandeliers, and colour theme.
When you come here for lunch, the server presents you with two menus: a dim sum menu and a main course menu.
The dim sum menu is only a page long so take a look at the main course menu for more food choices.
Summer Palace Dishes
1) Deep-Fried Shrimp Toast with Truffle Pesto
The deep-fried shrimp toast with truffle pesto caught my attention because it’s not exactly a typical dim sum dish you see at Chinese restaurants.
I was curious as to what both pesto and truffle mixed together would taste like since I’ve never had that before.
I’m a huge fan of fried shrimp, pesto, and truffle separately. All three together sound killer so I had to get it.
The restaurant served generation portions for the shrimp toast. I expected only 3 little toasts but we got double the amount.
Although the menu clearly stated there was pesto, it was the truffle that stood out both in scent and taste. Where was the pesto in this dish? I couldn’t tell.
The shrimp was very fresh while the toast was crunchy and crispy. It was beyond delicious and definitely something I would order again in the future.
Summer Palace also offers truffle peso spring rolls or dumplings. Boy, this place certainly likes to mix these two ingredients together.
2) Rice Rolls with Deep-Fried Crispy Shrimp
Yes, another shrimp dish but there was a good reason behind it.
Their crispy shrimp rice roll had a signature dish logo on the menu. It’s supposedly one of their best dishes.
Again, the restaurant had generous portions. The food was also very fresh. However, the one downside was there wasn’t enough soy sauce.
Isn’t it preferable to have more soy sauce than less? Even if you wanted less soy sauce on your cheung fun, you can control how much sauce you want poured over your dish.
There is always the option of asking the restaurant for more soy sauce but it would be one less thing the customer asks for during their meal.
Despite this, getting this seafood dish was absolutely worth it.
Which Shrimp Dish Should You Get?
For shrimp fans, you’re probably going to be tempted to get both but other people might not love shrimp as much.
Those who are looking for more authentic dim sum should get the shrimp rice roll. Many dim sum restaurants do serve something extremely similar like at Yat Tung Heen.
Also, not everyone is going to like truffle and/or pesto.
For more adventurous eaters, I recommend getting shrimp toast with truffle pesto.
It’s the perfect fusion dish between Western and Chinese cuisine.
I would choose shrimp toast because it’s more unique. Although there are probably other restaurants that serve this, I don’t know where else to find it.
For that reason only, shrimp toast wins.
3) Steamed Glutinous Rice with Assorted Meat Wrapped in Lotus Leaf
Glutinous rice wrapped in lotus leaf (otherwise known as sticky rice or lo mai gai) is a very traditional yum cha dish.
When you eat at a local dim sum restaurant, there are usually three servings per dish. At Summer Palace, they only had two lo mai gei.
Thank god for that because surprisingly, this was the worst thing we had eaten here. The meat filling that was supposed to give the dish flavour lacked taste.
Don’t bother ordering this. You’re better off eating sticky rice at another restaurant.
I guess Summer Palace specializes in fusion dishes rather than traditional dishes.
4) Fried Rice with Seafood and X.O. Sauce in Stone Hot Pot
The three dishes weren’t filling enough so we agreed on getting a rice or noodle dish.
Nothing stood out to us on the menu so we asked our waiter for a recommendation. He suggested the seafood fried rice. When I think of a stone hot pot, I thought of the Korean dish bibimbap.
Maybe Summer Palace also has Korean food? They did have other fusion food so it wouldn’t be completely surprising.
As most nice restaurants do, the waiter scooped out the rice so we each had our bowl.
When it was in front of us (they had little scallops in the rice), my dad commented and said you know it’s good fried rice when it’s not mushed up together. You can see every grain of rice clearly and that takes professional skill.
Does anyone know if that’s true? It makes sense to me.
But we haven’t taken a mouthful yet and until we did, I was still doubtful. Looks can be deceiving.
I’ve certainly had a lot of fried rice since moving back to HK that wasn’t good.
What was unexpected was that the rice was spicy. I know it’s weird because the name clearly states that the chef uses XO sauce as an ingredient. However, there have been dishes like XO sauce fried rice at Dim Sum Bar that weren’t spicy so I was still a little caught off guard.
The spice did add flavour to the rice but it would have been interesting in trying the rice without the spiciness.
Would the dish still taste as good?
Honourary Mention – Island Gourmet Bakery
This isn’t a part of the restaurant but I thought people would be interested to know about it.
There is a bakery across from Summer Palace called Island Gourmet. They sell pastries including
madeleines, macarons, croissants, little cakes, fancy chocolates, etc.
We tried their almond croissants and vanilla macarons.
The almond croissant was enjoyable but it wasn’t anything to rave about. On the other hand, the macarons were amazing. Not only were they freshly made but the filling was also really creamy.
Macarons can be quite pricey but I found out why when my best friend, Michelle booked us a class on my 25th birthday. They’re pretty hard to make. No wonder they were so expensive!
The next time I eat at Summer Palace, I will definitely visit Island Gourmet to eat their scrumptious macarons.
If you’re craving something sweet, you can head on over to the bakery. The two places are super close to one another.
Final Thoughts – Summer Palace
Generally speaking, restaurants inside a 5-star hotel should be pretty good because they hire the best chefs and have high standards for every aspect.
In this case, this rings true because the price does reflect the quality.
Summer Palace is perfect for those looking for a luxury dim sum restaurant with a twist on traditional dishes.
If you do come here, book a reservation in advance. HK locals love going for yum cha with friends and family, especially on the weekends.
We were lucky to get a table but it was only because we arrived at the restaurant before noon. The restaurant probably wouldn’t have any available times had we arrived at a later time.
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