JUST when we think that we’ve already tasted all kinds of Chinese food that could ever be served to us, a casual restaurant in Robinsons Place Manila is introducing us northern China’s well-kept dining secrets. Mai Wei Fang is currently serving authentic northern Chinese style of cooking that focuses on using wheat flour ingredients.
Mr. David Lim, co-owner of the new restaurant in the Metro, was proud to tell the BusinessMirror that Mai Wei Fang restaurant is the only one of its kind that serves the sumptuous flavors and unique cooking styles of the northern Chinese cuisine.
The restaurant’s most famed dish is Sheng Jian Bao, a combination of pan-fried and steamed cooking of dumplings filled with a mass of meat. It is also accompanied by a mouth-watering, über-tasty soup, by the way.
Along with this offering are other wheat flour dishes that Mr. Lim meticulously chose after combing through most restaurants throughout northern China. He made sure that the dishes they have chosen are northern Chinese delicacies and dishes that will surely get Filipinos hooked.
Mr. Lim shared, “I know I am the first one to bring the northern Chinese cooking here in the Philippines. I searched the whole market first here in the Philippines. Everyone that has the siopao style [referring to the Sheng Jian Bao]—that’s the Taiwanese version. We want to go back to the roots of this unique Chinese region and bring their delicious recipes here.”
Close to heart
Northern China is known for its cold climate, which is why planting rice never became its farming potential. Its people focused on growing wheat instead.
Mr. Lim’s vision of making wheat the main raw ingredient of his restaurant is inspired by his mother’s birthplace. His mother came from the northern part of China, Shandong province.
He wanted to share the dishes he has always loved since his childhood. His mother’s cooking had grown on him so much that he wanted to bring his “home” to the Philippines.
“My mom’s in the north, so we eat a lot of bread products. Steamed, fried, a lot of noodles, flour noodles and a lot of paos,” he added.
The Chinese food options that have been in the country for hundreds of years are mostly from the southern cooking of China, such as canton noodles and stir-fried rice, to name a few.
“Most people here understand Chinese food that is southern cooking, that they are from Cantonese right? Dimsum, any types of stir-fry, rice and egg noodles—that’s all Cantonese cooking. So what we wanted to do is research thoroughly. Every dish we have here, we researched it. And we went around to figure out what we wanted. So for example, this Sheng Jian Bao, our fried soup dumpling, is from a very famous restaurant in Shanghai,” Mr. Lim said.
“There’s always Chinese influence in Filipinos’ food preference. I mean, our pan-fried soup dumpling is crunchy, porky, soupy and they go well with the Filipino palate. I believe Filipinos will easily love the northern flavors of Chinese cuisine, too,” Mr. Lim proudly said.
Indeed, the Filipinos’ love affair with Chinese cuisine is here to stay. And with these unique sumptuous new discoveries from the north that make Chinese cuisine even more irresistible, we are sure to love Chinese food even more. Mr. Lim is just happy to share a part of his home in China to the Philippines through their unique Chinese palate offerings. And that legacy, introducing the northern Chinese cuisine to the Filipinos, is something more irreplaceable than just building a random dining business.
Situated on the first-floor level of the Adriatico Wing at Robinsons Place Ermita, Mai Wei Fang is open from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. from Sundays through Thursdays and 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. Like them on Facebook and follow them on Instagram @maiweifangph for daily updates on their catering promos and services.