When we think of Chinese food, we think of greasy takeout, food with high levels of MSG, drunk food after a night of partying, you name it. But have any of us actually tried authentic Chinese food? It’s nothing like its greasier cousins, and we finally have a new delicious eatery serving up the real stuff.
Restaurant JCer doesn’t serve up the usual Cantonese or Szechuan cuisine we’re used to. Instead, their specialty is Huaiyang cuisine, food originating from Eastern China in Hangzhou. The food at JCer is authentic and not Americanized in the least. If you’re not well versed in Chinese food (neither were we), then we strongly suggest you give Restaurant JCer a try.
If you ask the manager or the waiter what their specialties are, definitely take their word for it. That’s what we did, and we got to try things we likely never would have ordered on our own. One of those dishes is the Hangzhou style tofu with ginger and anise. The tofu is sliced paper thin and piled in layers with vegetables and happiness. It is such a unique dish we’re sure everyone will love.
If you’re a soup lover, definitely try their mushroom soup, absolutely filled with a variety of mushrooms: Chinese mushrooms, shimeji mushrooms, and button mushrooms. They’re very generous, and this soup is packed, unlike many soups at other Chinese restaurants.
For a main dish, we adore the shredded pork with garlic sauce. The dish has plenty of pork filet, bamboo shoots, mushrooms, and green onions. The flavours are spectacular, and we can’t wait to go for more. This is nothing like you’ve ever tasted at a Chinese restaurant.
Another not-to-miss dish is the beer duck. The plate comes to your table sizzling, the tantalizing sauce calling your name. The duck is sautéed in beer and mixed with red and green peppers. Don’t be afraid to get messy and eat with your hands for this one!
Restaurant JCer will open your eyes to authentic Chinese cuisine and teach you a thing or two about Huaiyang food. The chef, who comes straight from China, is a pro, and we bet that after trying his food, you’ll never crave take-out Chinese again.
Photos by Dahlia Merlo (@dahllii) and Restaurant JCer.