Beijing's Best at Makan Kitchen

You don’t have to fly to Beijing to enjoy a taste of the best of Beijing’s la mian or hand-pulled noodles in beef or chicken broth and made-to-order dumplings because they are available at the Makan Kitchen in DoubleTree by Hilton JB, for a limited time.

Impressive display at the Makan Kitchen entrance
for the Beijing la mian and dumplings promotion 
The restaurant, which features live cooking stations, allows diners to watch as guest chef from Hilton Beijing, Chef Miles Chen, skillfully pull the noodles by hand and cook them before your very eyes.

At the entrance of the Makan Kitchen, I spot an impressive display of noodles that whet my appetite for a taste of hand-pulled noodles by a young chef who’s skilled in this art of pulling noodles.

The restaurant, organised with several sections for the Indian Kitchen, Malay Kitchen, Chinese Kitchen and European Kitchen, offers diners a wide range of interesting and popular dishes from each kitchen.

Chef Miles Chen in action!
I’m shown to a table close to the Chinese Kitchen and when I take my seat, I realise that from where I’m sitting, I have a clear view to observe Chef Chen in action!

I must express our Johor courtesy by at least greeting Chef Chen and because he only speaks Mandarin, I draw upon my limited language to say hello to him with, “Ni hau?”

While the Chef’s hands are busy with kneading and pulling the noodles, I’m delighted that I managed to elicit his response in a smiling nod!

From his dossier, I learnt that Chef Chen is a Beijing local who has more than 15 years’ experience in the art of hand-pulled noodles. 

He was a chef in the Chinese kitchen of Hilton Beijing for the past five years and his outstanding skills in Beijing hand-pulled noodles and dumplings is now being featured in the Makan Kitchen, right here in JB’s DoubleTree by Hilton hotel.

I join a group of diners standing around the Chinese Kitchen work station, watching in fascination as Chef Chen skillfully pulled knobs of dough into lengths of stringy noodles. 

A portion of la mian with toppings before the broth is added
As soon as the noodles are bouncing in strands between his hands, the chef steps over to the stove where soup stocks are boiling and he swiftly drops it in to cook and serve.

I rack my brains to find the Mandarin word for beef and come up blank so I turn to a Chinese person next to me to ask for help.  His reply sounded like, “New row” so I mentally added it into my Mandarin vocabulary.

I clear my throat to speak with what I think is a form of Beijing Mandarin and confidently say, “New row,” as I pointed to the noodles, indicating to Chef Chen that my order of hand-pulled noodles is the beef version.

Chef Chen serving freshly made noodles
I’m sure he understood me because when my bowl of noodles is served, it was in a rich beef broth with cubes of radish, topped with beef slices.

There’s no other way to enjoy eating freshly made noodles than to slurp it up with the help of chopsticks so I lift up the noodles to allow the steaming broth to cool a little before I dig in.

From the first mouthful, I can taste the light and airy smoothness of the noodles, unique to hand-pulled noodles made from high gluten flour.  

Eaten with broth made from beef shank and bones, it’s a perfect blend of rich flavours that is both delicious and comforting.  As soon as I finish my bowl of noodles, I’m already thinking of having another!

I look at the queue of diners waiting for their orders of la mian soup noodles and decided to wait until all of them are served before I went for a second helping.

The servings of made-to-order dumplings are presented in the dry version, drizzled with a dash of the Beijing style chillie-oil, while the other version is served in clear chicken soup.

Beijing dumplings also available for a limited period
In China, dumplings may vary from city to city and I’ve tasted my share while travelling in Hong Kong, Shanghai and Beijing, so I know what to expect when I receive my order of freshly-made Beijing-style dumplings.

When I sink my teeth into the plump dumpling, I recognise the distinctly Beijing taste from the bouncy texture of its pastry stuffed with a blend of shrimps, water chestnut, black fungus, Chinese chives, leeks and chicken egg.

A range of condiments including the very popular chillie-oil, are available for diners to use as dips to add more flavour to the dumplings.

These Beijing specialties are available for a limited time, from now to May 14, 2017 along with the Best of Malaysia Dinner Buffet on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 6.30pm to 10.30pm.  Rate at RM98 nett per adult.

The Beijing specialties are also presented with the High-Tea Buffet on Saturday and Sunday from 12.30pm to 4.00pm at RM88 nett per adult.

They are also available on Friday and Saturday, when the Makan Kitchen presents a Seafood Dinner Buffet from 6.30pm to 10.30pm at RM138 nett per adult.

DoubleTree by Hilton JB is at 12 Jalan Ngee Heng, 80000 Johor Baru. To avoid disappointment, please Tel: 607 – 268 6868 to make reservations. 

For more promotion details, visit Facebook DoubleTreeJB.

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