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2016-01-09 80 views
Located opposite the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple & Museum is this Chinese vegetarian restaurant that has been established since 2007. Step into this 3-storey shophouse restaurant and you will be warmly welcomed by its friendly staff and tasteful decor. As Chinese New Year (CNY) is just about a month away, the restaurant will be serving its CNY Set Menus from eve to the 15th day of CNY and I was one of the lucky Openricers to be invited for a food tasting of its $368+ set menu. What We Ate:There ar
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Located opposite the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple & Museum is this Chinese vegetarian restaurant that has been established since 2007. Step into this 3-storey shophouse restaurant and you will be warmly welcomed by its friendly staff and tasteful decor. As Chinese New Year (CNY) is just about a month away, the restaurant will be serving its CNY Set Menus from eve to the 15th day of CNY and I was one of the lucky Openricers to be invited for a food tasting of its $368+ set menu. 

What We Ate:
There are a total of 9 dishes for this set menu and we started with the Sharks' Fin with White Fungus & Wolfberries (发财素鱼翅).
Sharks' Fin with White Fungus & Wolfberries
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The mock sharks' fin was made from Konnyaku Jelly to give a crunchy and QQ texture. With a generous serving of the white fungus, mock ham, beancurd sheets, wolfberries and enoki in the soup, I couldn't really tell that it was a vegetarian dish. Not bad!
Following, the Fruit Salad Vegetarian Chicken (喜气洋洋 - 沙律素鸡) was served。
Fruit Salad Vegetarian Chicken
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How would one know that this was mock chicken when the dish looked so much like the real thing? 
 This was one of my favourite dishes as the deep fried "chicken" skin which was made with beancurd skin was really crispy. The beancurd skin was stuffed with potato filling, topped with vegan mayonnise and there was a generous serving of mixed fruits salad at the bottom too. 

Next, we also had a taste of the appetising Thai Style Vegetarian Cod Fish (年年有余 - 泰式素鳕鱼)
Thai Style Vegetarian Cod Fish
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Just like the chicken dish, this dish was as great as it looked and it's one of my favourites too.
 The Thai tom yam spicy flavour, an in-house specialty sauce on the vegetarian cod fish made from soy-fibre and wheat was tangy. It may be quite spicy for those who can't take spicy food, nonetheless this definitely whets the appetite! 
After 2 strong flavoured dishes, we had something healthier and greener - Vegetarian Abalone Mushroom with Tau Pau & Seasonal Greens (花好月圆 - 鲍鱼冬菇豆包时蔬).
Vegetarian Abalone Mushroom with Tau Pau & Seasonal Greens
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The shitake mushrooms and abalone mushrooms were placed in the middle of the dish, accompanied with red wolfberries and green broccoli for a nice colour combination. The braised in-house sauce was not salty and paired well with the mushrooms and broccoli. Thereafter, the Cereal Vegetarian Prawns (嘻嘻哈哈 - 麦片素虾) were served and we all looked in awe as it really looked like real prawns. 
Cereal Vegetarian Prawns
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This dish was a hot favourite amongst many of us. Although the "prawns" were deep-fried, they didn't feel oily. In fact it was very crunchy and tasty. Some even commented that it tasted exactly like the real prawn (I can't comment on that since I can't eat real prawns anyway haha). Regardless this was great!
Next up was the Fragrant Yam Ring (一家甜蜜 - 佛砵飘香). The ring was deep fried till crisp yet didn't feel greasy as we bited into it. There was generous fragrant yam filling topped with assorted vegetable and mushrooms too, so much so that I really feel bloated after eating this.
Fragrant Yam Ring
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Just like most Chinese sit-down dinners, the second last dish was Braised Yee Fu Noodles (幸福伊面).
Braised Yee Fu Noodles
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By this time, it was really hard to eat much carbo. Hence although the noodles were pretty tasty with no salty aftertaste, I could only eat a bit to sample the taste. Some of my fellow Openricers commented it was one of the best Yee Fu Noodles they had tasted.
Finally, after eating so many dishes together, we were presented with the Rainbow Yu Sheng (七彩鱼生) for our first safe Lo-Hei of the year (no fear of raw fish). 
Rainbow Yu Sheng
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As with the other vegetarian dishes, Konnyaku Jelly was used to make the vegetarian salmon slices and I applaud the delicate effort of the chef. It looked so real, even with the fish "lines"! Probably because of the jelly texture, the "salmon" was very chewy. Nice alternative for the traditional Yu Sheng especially amidst all the raw fish bacteria scares now.

The last dish, our dessert to end the meal, was a bowl of Fruity Mango Pudding (甜甜蜜蜜 - 芒果布丁) served individually. 
Fruity Mango Pudding
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Frankly, before the dessert was served, I hadn't pinned high hopes on it for most restaurants would be serving this dessert in a bowl of syrup with chopped mango slices and pudding bits. I had least expected it would come in such a lovely presented serving! The mango pudding texture was very silky smooth and slided down easily into my stomach haha. The cut mangoes were a tad sour but tasted very fresh. A great dessert to end the meal!

Surprise treat from the host:
Our friendly host Zenna offered to let us try the restaurant specialty - Honey Sauce Vegetarian Pork (蜜汁素东坡肉) that has been on the regular menu since the opening of the restaurant.
Honey Sauce Vegetarian Pork
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Gosh, the appearance of this dish definitely could be passed off as a meat dish in any Chinese restaurant! The vegetarian pork was coated with a tangy sauce and tastewise, it was as if we were eating real fatty pork. No wonder this dish has been a favourite for many customers and stays strong for the past 9 years.

Eight Treasures has proven that staying meatless does not mean that the meal will be tasteless. I would gladly recommend the restaurant to non-vegetarian friends who are looking for an alternative dining experience and vegetarian friends who are looking for quality vegetarian meals at reasonable prices. 
(The above review is the personal opinion of a user which does not represent OpenRice's point of view.)
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DETAILED RATING
Taste
Decor
Service
Hygiene
Value
Date of Visit
2016-01-06
Dining Method
Dine In
Celebration
Chinese New Year
Dining Offer
Tasting Event
Recommended Dishes
Fruit Salad Vegetarian Chicken
Thai Style Vegetarian Cod Fish
Cereal Vegetarian Prawns
Fragrant Yam Ring
Rainbow Yu Sheng
Fruity Mango Pudding
Honey Sauce Vegetarian Pork