As the year of the Fire Rooster ignites, Johnnie Walker partners with two fine Chinese eateries to flame up exclusive menus that blend well with the luxurious multi-layered flavors of the Johnnie Walker Gold Label Reserve. We were treated to two exclusive menus at the Golden Dragonboat Restaurant and Auntie Sim Kitchen to experience for ourselves if the liquor’s pairing with Chinese cuisine would truly live up to its versatility.
Johnnie Walker Gold Label Reserve replaces the Gold Label 18, a whisky of superior blend discontinued due a shortage of 18 year old malts. The taste of the Gold Label Reserve is extremely accessible. Those whisky drinkers that do not enjoy peaty flavors, or the occasional drinker who enjoys mild smoky flavors will find this whisky very easy on the palate.
Just before the dining started we were treated to several rounds of the amber liquid diluted with a few ice cubes. The taste and color of the Gold Label Reserve resembles a premium oolong tea with medium bitterness. There is smokiness of dried tea leaves and hints of dried citrus fruit that dissipates as you wash the whisky on the tongue. It is a pleasant drink that is so easy to drink that one can forget to sip that cup of Chinese tea on the table. In fact, one might just have too many even before the Chinese New Year feasting begins.
If you are looking for a special menu that’s created to pair well with the Gold Label Reserve, or just looking for an excuse to drink more during this festive season then consider Golden Dragonboat and Auntie Sim Kitchen which has extensive menus depending on how deep you want to dig into your pocket.
Fortunately, we weren’t made to race to our dining table on dragonboats. The Golden Dragonboat is a popular venue for those seeking large spaces to hold their events, as informed by our hosts. Indeed, the venue was certainly large with 2 floors and plenty of parking space.
We were treated to the Golden Dynasty Set RM1,688++ for table of 6 persons.
Abalone is a symbol of wealth and prosperity – a must-have at any Chinese feasts and festivities. The abalone and fish maw were succulent and plump. Firm in texture and the flavors of the sea was apparent but not overwhelming. Our only complaint, was that the dish was drowning in sauce.
The fresh water prawn would have been an enjoyable treat if it wasn’t overcooked. Moreover, we are not fans of cheesy dishes in Chinese restaurants so this dish wasn’t our favorite.
Next, a generous hunk of roasted pork knuckle landed on our table. Two of these golden hocks arrived on the lazy susan so you can imagine the ensuing spectacle of excited, slobbering adults, fawning over this great specimen of pig.
As beautiful as the pork knuckle looked, the meat was unfortunately dry. A result of over-baking we assume. Fortunately, the dipping sauces provided the consolation, as it added some moisture and flavour, back into the dry meat. We were not briefed on the dipping sauce ingredients. One was more like a mayonnaise based sauce and the other, vinegar. Most of the diners preferred the clear vinaigrette.
This next rice dish was surprisingly good. Though simple looking, this thin porridge contained delicate seafood flavors with many tiny morsels of prawns and scallop swimming in it. Superb.
Golden Dragonboat Restaurant
Address: 10, Jalan Kampung Pandan, Kelab Golf di Raja Selangor, 55000 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
(A little further away from TREC)
Phone: +60 3-9281 1313
Auntie Sim Kitchen has been in business for a while now. Initially, they were famed for their Teochew dishes served at the ground floor shop, but currently, they have increased their fare to fine chinese cuisines, served on banquet tables on the first floor.
The Golden Feast Menu RM1288++ for table of 6 person.
Instead of one abalone, we received two sumptuous treats. Lovely texture. We only wished that they were bigger in size.
Double referring to the two treasures of stirred fried pork belly and sea cucumber. Sea cucumber is an acquired taste and thankfully, this dish was prepared well. If you’re not a fan of the taste or slimy texture, then eat it for its nutritional properties which helps improves arthritic ailments!
A decadent dish that had us craving for more. This quality Angus beef had been grilled medium-rare (unusual in chinese dishes) with black pepper seasoning then stir fried with vegetables. Tender spicy meat and crunchy vegetables. Perfect.
After two, full-on flavoured dishes, this delicate vegetable dish almost did not register on the tastebuds. However, fresh spinach, wolfberries and the resplendent bamboo fungus, though somewhat tasteless, would undoubtedly benefited our well-being!
This is Aunty Sim’s signature dish and it’s not difficult to see why. As explained by her goodself, instead of the usual very wet Cantonese style broth synonymous with the dish, her version created by her own talented Chef, consisted of specially imported Hong Kong egg noodles (yee mee) infused with the intense prawn flavor and stir fried with large fresh water prawns.
This was indeed a supremely tasty dish. The prawn meat wasn’t overcooked and was such a joy to devour. Those wanting to avoid carbs would have had a hard time resisting the addictive al dente smoky ‘wok hei’ prawn flavored noodles. We certainly had to loosen our belts after this dish!
Auntie Sim Kitchen
Address: 24, Jalan SS 21/58, Damansara Utama, 47400 Petaling Jaya, Selangor, Malaysia
Phone: +60 17-336 4199
All in all, the whisky-food pairing worked well in both restaurants. Johnnie Walker is definitely a good match for Chinese Cuisine!