Review: Harbour City’s Fu Rong Presents Contemporary Touches To Traditional Sichuan Offerings
The establishment welcomes guests with traditional wooden panels, followed by a main dining area that stretches and bends around the harbour view, an asset to restaurants on this extended wing of Harbour City. With earth tones and beige leather seating evenly scattered across the room, Fu Rong’s interior exudes a homely feeling of comfort.
Unlike traditional Sichuan menu which specialises in different levels of fiery hot dishes, Fu Rong’s approach skews more towards traditional flavours with Western cuisine execution. We began our meal with courgette noodles with sweet and spicy soy sauce, a refreshing starter where crisp courgette shreds are dressed and tossed tableside with a soy dressing. The Chengdu chicken consommé with chicken and Chinese yam is a traditional dish, reinvented with texture resembling a fine savoury mousseline, served in a rich chicken consommé.
The bon bon chicken was revamped with a chilli oil dressing served within a blown sugar globe atop the shredded bird. Upon breaking the sugar crust, the red oil drizzled over the cold chicken, adding heat and aroma to meaty dish.
Oil poached basa fish with fried chilli and Sichuan pepper is a standard Sichuan offering, although Fu Rong’s version looked the part while lacked intensity. The basa, a variety of catfish, was soft and creamy, was mild against the numbing Sichuan peppercorns. Braised shrimps with Chinese cucumber and pepper sauce is the night’s surprise, as the thick green sauce bears both tartness and heat that slowly ooze out in layers, adding complexity in every bite.
Sautéed sweet beans and Gordon Euryale may seem like an unfamiliar dish. Gordon Euryale is a white, slightly glutinous seed widely used in Chinese cooking. Its chewy texture also brings mild sweetness, which blends well with smaller green peas, although we preferred sugar snaps more than out-of-season garden peas. While carbs such as Chengdu dan-dan noodles may seem like an obvious choice, we preferred the sticky rice with steamed pork belly and sweet osmanthus over it. Unusual may it seem; the dessert was mild with a thin slice belly of pork melting into the warm glutinous rice. The quality of desserts varies, as some of the selection may be too cloyingly sweet. The signature fried rice cake with Sichuan red sugar was rather filling to be enjoyed after a meal of rich dishes. The shredded winter melon with crystal sugar, resembling birds’ nest, suffered the same sweetness issue, although the cool dessert made a wonderful treat to rid of fiery sensation on the palate.
Fu Rong’s wine list is impressive, with an abundance of by-the-glass options. Wines by the bottles are predominantly French, with a fine selection from New World regions as well. Guests who fancy Chinese high-proof spirits such as baijiu will be glad to find Fu Rong’s extensive selection as well.
Service at Fu Rong was on point, although a bit hectic with mixed orders and extended waiting time between menu orders. Members of the service team are mostly friendly with sound knowledge to introduce the restaurant’s concept and recommend menu highlights.
Fu Rong, Shop 201, 2/F Ocean Terminal, Harbour City, 3-27 Canton Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong; +852 2328 3302
A meal for two with wine and service: around HK$1,100
How we rate
Each of our reviewers score restaurants based on four main criteria: setting, food, service, and drinks, taking into account more than 35 different points of reference including manners of staff, usefulness of the wine list, and whether or not the restaurant makes an effort to be environmentally aware. 5/5 indicates an exceptional experience; 4-4.5/5 is excellent; 3-3.5/5 is good to very good; and 2.5/5 or lower is average to below average. Before visiting a restaurant, the reviewers will book using a pseudonym and do not make themselves known to restaurant staff, in order to experience the venue as a regular guest—if this is not possible, or if we are recognised, we will indicate this in the review.