Friday, July 08, 2011

Claypot Hot Pot 農場火鍋 - Dim Sum


I haven't been to Claypot since new management took over, so I went today to try their newly implemented dim sum menu. My favourite part of the meal was the individual tea, as each of us could pick our own preferred tea. Usually everyone has to share the same pot of tea at dim sum, but this place offers a choice which makes the $1 tea charge worth it.


The tea menu reminded me slightly of traditional afternoon tea, but no fancy pastries here!


The food menu was double-sided with a lot of options ranging from regular dim sum to congee and noodles.


While waiting for the food to arrive, I started brewing tea with the traditional Chinese teacup called gaiwan (蓋碗) which literally translates to "lid bowl". After letting it steep for a couple of minutes, I poured the tea into the tasting cup using the lid to filter out the leaves. The tea wasn't particularly good, but it was definitely better than the non-individual tea at other dim sum restaurants.


A family friend recommended the mix and match noodles for 2 (百撘湯米線) ($13.99) with fish broth and thick rice noodles. We picked 5 toppings including fish fillet, fish tofu, pumpkin, soft tofu and seasonal vegetables. Additional toppings are $3 each, but we figured 5 toppings should be enough. It turned out to be just like hot pot. The server brought out a large pot of fish broth and turned on the fire.


The noodles and toppings came raw and were served separately on a dish. Unfortunately I forgot to take a picture and just excitedly dumped the whole thing into the broth. We waited for the broth to come to a boil before digging in. The toppings were adequately portioned, but there were very little noodles that weren't even enough for one person. We talked to the restaurant owner about this, and he was very accommodating and immediately offered an extra plate of noodles.


We tried a couple of dim sum dishes as well. The steamed Chinese sponge cake roll (第一馬拉卷) ($3.95) was supposed to be for dessert. But as is the common practice in dim sum restaurants, the food is served as it's ready, so our dessert arrived in the middle of the meal. We enjoyed the soft and spongy cake nonetheless. It wasn't too sweet and it was still piping hot from the steamer.


Our savoury selection was the steamed turnip cake (砵仔蘿蔔糕) ($3.85) which was served with soy sauce and pepper on the side. It tasted ok but there was an excess of water and not enough filling.


The food was not bad, but there is room for improvement in terms of service. The owner and the waitresses were quick and friendly, but the managers were stuck up and didn't do anything other than socialize with certain customers. One of the younger managers left an especially bad impression. When we asked for napkins, he did not acknowledge that he had heard our request either with a response, a smile or a nod. He simply turned around, grabbed a few napkins and slapped them on our table with absolutely no expression on his face. He just looked like he didn't want to be there, and I think this type of negative emotion really rubs off on the customers.

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4 comments:

Janice on July 12, 2011 10:53 pm said...

Oh wow, I've been to Claypot once since new management. I didn't know they implemented dim sum. I'm surprised you noted the waitresses were polite, since I didn't have the best customer service that one time. Mind you it was at night, so it was probably much busier.

The rice noodles are an interesting concept -- I think it's quite similar to So Hot So Pot. Makes sense, since they use the same stuff for hot pot at night anyways!

Janice on July 12, 2011 10:55 pm said...

btw, nice blog! I swear I've commented here before, but I can't seem to find it.... I guess maybe not, I just secretly stalked it :)

krispymilk on July 13, 2011 3:14 am said...

The waitresses weren't particularly polite, but at least they got the job done and didn't ignore me. They were pretty busy when I was there too because the managers weren't doing anything other than chatting.

Haha yes you did comment before, on Michi waffle and Cipriano's! You're no longer a secret stalker :P

Janice on July 13, 2011 9:02 pm said...

oh! hahaha i was a stalker at heart then! :D

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