Saturday, July 9, 2016

[Media Invite] Kay Lee Roast Meat 琪利珠江燒臘 @ Tanjong Katong Road

Kay Lee made the headlines two years back in 2014, when it was sold to Aztech Group for a cool sum of $4 million Singapore dollars. Fast forward two years later in 2016, Kay Lee's outlets have grown to 7 in total. Located at various parts of Singapore, these outlets aim to bring Kay Lee roast meats closer to the people. There's one at Upper Paya Lebar, Suntec City, Ubi, Tanjong Katong, Singtel Comcentre, Bedok North and the latest at Bukit Batok WCEGA Tower. Expect difference in ambiance, price points and promotions at these different outlets.

Was invited for a tasting and rounded up a few others to try Kay Lee's famous roast meat at its Tanjong Katong outlet. If not wrong, this outlet was launched in 2015, and nestled amongst the many other restaurants along the stretch of Tanjong Katong food street.

Kay Lee Roast Meat @ 283 Tanjong Katong Road
This is a self-service outlet, so just go ahead and place your order at the counter located at its entrance. The menu is shown prominently at the counter as well.

hmm, char siew, roast pork or duck, or triple combo?

The place is airconditioned and has plenty of seats for diners. Whether you're a single diner or in groups of 8 pax, this outlet could accommodate.

spacious and clean
wall of fame (spot Gordon)

Since I've not tried Kay Lee before, was pretty curious to know how it'll taste like. The primary focus is still the dark char siew, roast duck and roast pork but its parent company has also invested in R&D to add variety to its F&B line-ups.

We tried the Kay Lee savoury meat roll, or otherwise also known as wu xiang. Small compact and well-fried. Suitable as light bites. The meat was soft, strongly flavoured and slightly moist. Best eaten while its hot.

Kay Lee savoury meat roll  潮州五香 @$6.90

For drinks, one could choose from its $1.50 range that has Ice Citrus (which tasted like plum), the healthy red Roselle Tea, homemade barley or a favourite of mine, the Honey Plum. Honey Plum (桔子梅) is priced at $2. Stir well before drinking. The Roselle Tea was nicely sweet with an attractive dark red hue.

(left to right) Roselle Tea, Ice Citrus, Homemade Barley and Honey Plum

If you don't feel like eating too much meat, one could opt for the wanton or shrimp dumpling noodles instead. As usual, we left the noodles out for far too long and by the time we wanted to eat it, it was clumped up. Not to worry, as a few spoonfuls of soup and liberal tossing around, the noodles became nicely separated and as good as new. I liked mine with some chili. The shrimp dumpling was rather good. Firm, crunchy and sweet.

wanton noodles 云吞面 @$5
shrimp dumpling noodles 水饺面 @$5
housemade chili
Next, of course was the 3 Combi Meat Platter. This combi platter comes in Small, Medium or Large and priced at $24, $36 and $44 respectively. Tanjong Katong's outlet current promotion include free rice for each of these platter with the 2 free rice for small, 4 rice for medium and 6 rice for large.

3 Combi Meat Platter 烧味三拼 (Large) @$44
important step

One of the important step to elevate the enjoyment of roast meats, is to drizzle those deliciously dark savoury sauce over the steamed white rice grains. Kay Lee's dark sauce was not overly sweet nor too salty. The dark char siew was well caramelized and the only lament that we had, was that the meat was overly lean! Unfortunately, the fattier cuts were all sold out. Do come early, if you want to try the fattier cuts.

The roasted pork was pretty good too. Would've preferred a thicker cut to maximize the taste. Its skin was crackling and the ratio of fats was good too. Those who had tried original Kay Lee mentioned that the roast duck looked very different now. The current version has meat that's more moist and the duck skin colour is no longer black but restored to a shining sheen of brownish hue (like peking duck skin).

If you're dining alone, I'd recommend getting a dark char siew rice with double boiled soup. That's because this outlet is having a Super Deal promo and you could get those for just $6.90. Rather good deal as the savings is about $2.10. One could add a drink for just $1 when you get this deal. Hence, total savings is potentially $2.60.

We tried the Salted Vegetable and Duck Soup. Portion was just right for 1 pax. This heat reducing soup was slightly sweeter than other places and pleasant to drink.

Tanjong Katong outlet promo
salted vegetables and duck soup (ala-carte) $4.50

As this was a food tasting, we had the privilege of trying Kay Lee's desserts that are only available at its Suntec City Mall outlet.

Tried the Red Bean Cream, Ginger Tea (both with glutinous rice balls) and the Yam Paste. My favourite was the Ginger Tea. Strong ginger taste. Can be less sweet though. The Yam Paste has no lard, and suitable for vegetarian. It was smooth and sweet.

Available at Suntec City Mall: Red bean cream with glutinous rice ball @$4.50
Available at Suntec City Mall: Ginger tea with glutinous rice ball @$4.50
Available at Suntec City Mall: Yam paste (orh nee) @$5.90

Thank you to Haysen, Noelle, Christine and Kay Lee for the invite and hosting the tasting. It was great to explore the Tanjong Katong Road area with my fellow foodies.

view from across Kay Lee

Kay Lee Roast Meat @ Tanjong Katong Outlet

Address: 283, Tanjong Katong Road, Singapore 437066
Business Hours:
Monday to Friday: 12:00pm - 9:00pm
Weekends / Public Holidays: 11:00am - 9:00pm


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