Pearl Castle at Richmond Centre has finally opened and Boyfriend and I took the chance to visit it on a weekday for lunch. Boy it was packed. But we still managed to get a seat right away. Oh it’s located in the same corridor where McDonald’s is, at the space that was previously Richmond Farm Market.
The lighting theme at this location is a bit darker than the one in the Golden Village, but it’s not dark-dark. On the other side of the room, is a wavy-patterned wall that has lights that changes color. Quite cool.
First a funny story. The couple that sat next to us were an old caucasian couple and the whole time I was doing a Sherman (here and here). It seemed like it was their first time for Chinese food and they each ordered a Ginseng Chicken Hotpot plus an Oolong Tea to share. When the server stuck the printed order sheet to the table, the old man read it and said “Bubble oolong tea?! When did we order bubble oolong tea??”. Also, when their hotpots finally came, they were just HORRIFIED and the large size of the meal as a whole (I guess the pot looked tall and with all the extras like rice and the dessert it looked huge) and he was just annoyed that he wasn’t informed that one hotpot was enough for sharing. Later, he kept picking pieces of legitimate chicken and saying “They just put every part of the chicken in this! Even the inedibles!” and I thought “to us, they are edibles…” Besides, the pieces he was holding up, while not looking particularily appetizing (if you’ve been to Pearl Castle you’ll know how some pieces are boiled grey), are legitimate pieces of actual meat. I was so annoyed. He was talking about how there were INTESTINES in there!!! They never put chicken intestines in anything!!! All this time though, the old lady was silently eating everything.
Now while I commend him for trying new foods, he didn’t really try new foods. I was so extremely annoyed. But in the end, something funnier happened. As we were paying, I think he saw that we left very little tips (that was in his opinion, we actually left the usual 10%). What he saw was that I put in an extra quarter and then took it back. So he asked Boyfriend how much tips was needed. We told him 10%. He was so shocked as he says he usually does 20%.
Anyways now back to the food.
For drink Boyfriend chose the Green Milk Tea with Pudding to share. This is supposed to be the large size ($5.50) but it really didn’t seem that large to us. It was good though. Their normal drinks are always on par. We especially love their pudding. Taste is the same as the original locations.
As Boyfriend had already eaten breakfast earlier he opted for something small and simple. It was only when it arrived that he realized he ordered the wrong thing. Instead of the one with the fluffy crusty topping, he ordered the Thick Toast with Condensed Milk ($3.50) instead. It was still very good. The bread was fresh and fluffy, and it was loaded with butter so it was very aromatic and it was toasted just right, crispy and not too hard.
The Milk Seafood Hotpot had always been a favorite of mine at Pearl Castle. However, I’m not such a fan of the hotpot part with the flame burning my eyes and charring the milky soup. So when I saw that I could get the soup without the flame I jumped at it. This is the Milk Seafood Udon Noodles ($7.95) and it’s exactly like the hotpot only without the dreaded flame, the rice, and the sa cha sauce.
The soup was good as always, and it was loaded with things that aren’t exactly seafood (just like the original). The only real seafood were 2 prawns. Otherwise it was just the fish cake stuff. It had lots of pork slices though.
The udon was chewy and good enough. But the main attraction was still the soup. Now if they’ll only have the Soymilk version too I will be in heaven~
Dessert was a disappointment though. I’ve always liked to see what sort of jelly-concoction they’ve come up with next. Probably to cater to the non-Asian population that may come here, they’ve decided to use the Costco bulk pack of frozen-and-defrost-yourself mini cream puffs that sell for something like $10 for 108. It was good but it just doesn’t finish up the Pearl Castle experience for me. I only wish they’ll revert back.
But overall we liked our meal and this location is much more convenient for us too. I’m sure we’ll come back often.