It’s about two hours by plane from Hong Kong to Manila, but if you’re really hankering for food from this cosmopolitan city hailed as a “Gourmet Paradise,” take a drive to Connecticut Street in Northeast Greenhills, San Juan, where a restaurant masterfully captures the flair and flavor of authentic Hong Kong cuisine.
Chinese translation for “elegance,” Xiu gives guests a true taste of Hong Kong the minute they walk into this well-appointed fine dining restaurant. A marriage of Old World charm and modern aesthetics, this two-floor, 230-seater restaurant with five private rooms exudes luxury and ease all at once: note the striking indoor fountain, blend of earth tones, rich golds, and calming shades of blue, and refined details like lattice wood work, silk, and geometric and floral patterns. References to the Chinese phoenix (Feng Huang) in Xiu’s interiors reinforce this state of balance, as the creature, which is composed of the Yin and the Yang, symbolizes virtue, grace, and beauty, as well as the harmonious unity of opposite forces.
An array of traditional Cantonese dishes along with more innovative trends from the Hong Kong fine dining scene (focusing on live seafood) are the appetizing offerings of this restaurant that follows closely in the heels of Lugang Café, Tuan Tuan, and The Dessert Kitchen—three favorite food establishments brought to you by HTCG.
Known as one of eight major cooking styles of China, Cantonese cooking traces its roots back to the Guandong Province (formerly known as “Canton”). Today, the cooking style, largely responsible for shaping Hong Kong’s culinary scene, is characterized by its sparing use of spices, as well as the proper handling and preparation of ingredients to keep their freshness and enhance their flavors.
It’s a tall order, but one that Xiu achieves daily thanks to its fruitful collaborations with key players from Hong Kong’s vibrant culinary scene. Coming from a long line of respected restaurateurs, Lawrence Koo from West Villa, brings his vast knowledge of Cantonese cuisine to the table, while Executive Chef David Cheung boasts three decades’ worth of experience overseeing the action in the kitchens of Hong Kong and China’s premier restaurants such as West Villa and Lei Garden.
As Xiu’s chef de cuisine, Cheung leads a team of seven Hong Kong chefs, each with many years of training and exposure in a Michelin-grade restaurant. Cheung has also provided assistance in cooking up the menu for Xiu, bringing in the finest of Cantonese recipes to Manila.
The proof, of course, is in the pudding—or in Xiu’s case, dishes that are as much a visual feast as they are a gastronomic one.
Tease your taste buds with a Double-Boiled Fish Maw and Almond Soup, a specialty of the house that starts with ingredients placed in a ceramic jar or pot that is submerged in boiling water then steamed for several hours. Double-boiling, a traditional Cantonese cooking method, is clean as it does not let ingredients get in contact with boiling water, thus preserving their natural essences. One main ingredient, the rare and precious fish maw, teems with protein, collagen, complex carbohydrates, and other nutrients—but very little fat. It also possesses healing, energy-boosting, and anti-aging properties. Served with almond soup, which is good for the lungs and skin, and you have a filling dish that is both healthy and delicious.
Birthdays, anniversaries, and other special occasions call for a plate or two of Honey-Glazed Prime Cut Char Xiu. This savory treat promises melt-in-your-mouth tenderness and juiciness with its combination of prime cut pork with perfect marbling, secret marination, and meticulous cooking and roasting techniques.
Seafood lovers, meanwhile, have a large range of live and fresh catches that can be cooked in a variety of ways. Try Elephant Clams with Truffle, Deep-Fried Eel with Fermented Red Bean Curd Sauce, or Steamed Crab with Vermicelli, among others.
Extensive selections of pork, beef, chicken, rice, noodles, and soup, all artfully plated by the chefs, are yours for the picking.
Suddenly, Hong Kong just got a little closer to home.
- For more information visit 115 Connecticut Street, Northeast Greenhills, San Juan City.
- T: 650 7189 / 0977 100 5168
- Menu here: Xiu menu
- website: www.xiu.com.ph | instagram: Xiuph | #XiuPH