Award-winning Chinese cuisine

Carving on the side of arched doorway at entrance to
Qing Palace, Pulai Springs Resort
Qing Palace at the award-winning Pulai Springs Resort has been voted one of Malaysia’s Best Restaurants by the Malaysian Tatler magazine for six consecutive years from 1999 to 2006.  Its menu of Szechuan, Fuzhou and Cantonese cuisine, remains consistently good and has expanded with Hainan and Teochew specialties as well as seasonal Chef’s Recommendations.  Dining here is also a visual treat as its deco is reminiscent of an ancient imperial dining hall, featuring genuine antique furniture, paintings, carvings and silk lanterns. 

At the entrance you walk along a corridor bordered by a water garden and an antique arched door adorned by intricate carvings.  Look closer at the carvings finished in gold to see various pictures that seem to tell a story.  On the top left of the archway, you will find a very apt scene of people meeting and greeting each other.

Signature dish, Camphor tea smoked duck with fried mantou

As you select familiar favourites from the menu, whet your appetite with Qing Palace’s own blend of Chinese tea called Lok Po, created with a mix of Jasmine, Pu Er and Kum Cho (liquorice) quality teas. 

While you are assured that the meal will be prepared to Qing’s quality standards by Executive Chef Lim Meng Chong, Restaurant manager, Brehme Wong, is happy to help you with your orders.  Chef Lim, who has helmed the kitchen for the last 11 years, is a hands-on chef who insists on superior quality ingredients, taste and service.

Prawns with pumpkin and yam sticks sauteed in cheese
Signature dishes like the Szechuan Hot and Sour Soup and Camphor and Tea Smoked Duck, continue to rank highly in quality and taste.  The flavour balance in the soup remains both appetizing and soothing while the smoked duck is simply tender and tasty.  

Both these dishes are served with fluffy, fried mantou or Chinese buns for you to dip in the soup and to slip in a slice of tender smoked duck, smothered in sauce and savour in delicious sandwich-like bites.

Delicious Hainan style Stewed Mutton soup
From September to October, the Chef’s Recommendations include Braised Goose Web with Dried Seafood, Fried Prawns topped with Chicken Floss and Ostrich Steaks pan-fried in Barbecue Sauce.  Stewed Chicken with mui choy preserved vegetables is a veritable comfort food that goes well with steamed rice.  Wong said that it’s popular among golfers who are keen on such home-cooked flavours especially after a good game.

Another recommendation is Hainan style Stewed Mutton, a rich broth fragrant with spices, simmered in a claypot with ingredients like dried soya sheets and crunchy moke yee fungus.  This stewed local grass-fed mutton is tender and very palatable.  De-shelled prawns with yam and pumpkin sticks sautéed in cheese, is an interesting combination and this dish minus the prawns, is also a favourite with vegetarians.

For a sweet ending to your meal, the oni or warm yam pudding and mua ji dumplings are great choices.  Do allow these freshly-made dumplings, coated with peanut powder and filled with peanut paste, to cool a little before you sink your teeth in them.  If you prefer a cool dessert, then chilled mango pudding or lychees with almond jelly cubes are just nice.

Qing Palace at Pulai Springs Resort is located at 20km Jalan Pontian Lama, 81110 Pulai, Johor.  For reservations and enquires, Tel: 607 – 521 2121 and Fax: 607 – 521 1818.  For more info on this Halal certified restaurant and resort, visit:

A version of this article was published in The New Straits Times, Johor Streets on 2 November 2011

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