Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Ginger & Spice, Neutral Bay (2)

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I know, I've blogged about Ginger & Spice plenty already. But when Ellie suggested that we meet up with a larger group so that we could order more dishes one night, I could not say no. And of course, the first thing I had to order was my favourite lemon iced tea (which had grown in size, score!). It's like a slushie version of a strong flavoured ice lemon tea, but more sweet than sour.

Ginger & Spice is a very interesting restaurant in many ways, the food is authentic if you ignore the tamed down North Shore dishes (do NOT order sweet and sour pork), it's not cheap by Asian restaurant standards but it's quite cheap by Neutral Bay standards. But the food here is usually some of the most consistent and the service is always slick. I've been coming here (mostly for lunch) for nearly 10 years, and that says a lot.
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Ngoh Hiang ($18.80)
We start off with the ngoh hiang, deep fried five spice rolls of minced pork, prawns and water chestnut in bean curd skin. It's a dish I don't normally order but the skin is very crisp and they have a strong flavour from the five spice. It also comes with a dark, thick dipping sauce which I quite like. A little on the pricey side for what it is though.
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Hainanese Half chicken ($20.80)
Rather than getting a combined set of chicken rice, we order a half chicken to share, and a big bucket of chicken rice for the whole table. Exxxxcellent. Usually I think Ginger & Spice has one of the better chicken rices in Sydney, with a very slippery skin and quite tasty rice. They don't get that lovely gelatinous layer between the skin and the flesh but I can live without it. It's a little disappointing today, though the skin is as smooth as usual, the flesh is a little on the chewy side. It's a surprise because I can't remember the last time I was disappointed by their chicken.
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Fried Hokkien Mee ($16.80)
I quickly overcome my disappointment with the sight of my favourite dish, the Singapore-style hokkien mee. It's rare to find a restaurant that does this version, braised noodles with seafood, egg and bean sprouts in a rich prawn stock. I absolutely adore the sauce, it's got such a great depth of flavour. Usually I stir in all the sambal on the side without any problems, but it is surprisingly fiery tonight and everyone at the table suffers a little from the heat. Sorry girls! The surprising spicyness of the sambal is confirmed when I take a serve home for A and he exclaimed after tasting some of it.
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Squid Kecap Manis ($21.80)
Another rare dish to find, and also one of my favourites is the kecap manis squid. Lightly battered squid is deep fried and then tossed with my favourite thick sweet soy, chilli and tamarind to produce a very tender squid with beautifully crunchy/sticky exterior. The sauce is so tasty, and you find your fork making its way back to the plate for more without even realising it.
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Cuttlefish Kang Kong
The cuttlefish kang kong is one of the dishes available on the 'merry-go-round' that they always have on the menu. I stupidly forgot that it comes covered in peanuts so I wasn't able to taste the dish myself, but most people say it's a pretty tasty dish. The cuttlefish is that sort of sweet, almost pickled-looking version, which has a texture that you might find strange if you've never had it before. But I looove kangkong and could eat a whole plate of it on my own, so I'm a little bit sad about that.
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Singapore chilli prawns ($22.80)
It's around this time that we realise we ordered far too much for our table, but we all have to try a little of the chilli prawns. Huge, fresh prawns are doused in that eggy, tomato sauce that usually comes with Singapore chilli crab. I always love the big prawns the serve at Ginger and Spice, and while their chilli sauce isn't exactly mind-blowing, it's not too bad. I've definitely had worse.

So we end up paying about $30 pp which is pretty normal for Ginger & Spice, and not bad considering that we had wayyyy too much food and probably could have skipped one of the dishes entirely. Though I was a little disappointed by the Hainanese chicken and annoyed that I made the hokkien mee too spicy, I'll definitely be back again because Ginger and Spice is just one of my comfort restaurants. One of the restaurants that will cheer me up on a bad day :)

Ginger & Spice
240 Military Rd

Neutral Bay NSW 2089

(02) 9908 2552

Mon-Sun: 5.30-10pm

Tue-Sun: 12-3pm

Ginger & Spice Singapore on Urbanspoon
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10 comments:

  1. It was a great evening despite a little disappointment. Kecap manis squid was no doubt the winner! Bravo ice cream at crows nest afterward was the best finish for the evening :)

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  2. AHhh I haven't been in too long! Miss the chicken rice mmmmm pity about their chicken but as you said, normally it is good. And the hokkien mee too spicy? Never :P!

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  3. I avoid westernised sweet and sour. Too many years gagging at the chicken tonight stuff from the jar

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  4. That kecap manis squid was awesome - def worth driving to Neutral Bay for! Thanks for finally showing me G&S!

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  5. ahh so bummed i couldnt make it! the prawns looks so awesome!

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  6. The kecap manis squid looks amazing, and how cool that your favourite drink had grown in size! That never happens!

    It's funny, when I read "do NOT order sweet and sour pork" it looked like there were quotation marks around "pork" because my monitor badly needs cleaning, and I got quite concerned about what the "pork" actually was until I realised I should be more concerned about the state of my monitor.

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  7. this post makes me wanna fly to singapore and just EAT EAT EATTTTT!!!

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  8. Looks like you guys had a great time! So sad that I couldn't make it but I'll have to go and try the chicken someday!

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  9. I can still remember the awesomeness that's the squid kecap manis. It was so good that I think I ate the majority of it, hehe sorry guys

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  10. Ellie - Totally agree, had an awesome time as always :)

    FFichiban - Go!! Haha I agree, I love the chilli!

    Fiona - Good! That stuff should be banned.

    Karen - Oh good! Glad it was worth it :)

    chocolatesuze - I know!! Next time

    Conor - Haha I know right?? Umm time for some spray and wipe!

    VoN - Same here!!

    Jacq - We were sad you couldn't make it too! Give it a go sometime, it's worth it

    linda - :) glad you enjoyed it!

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