The Eight are part of the group who bring you the popular Zilver restaurants. They are masters of modern Chinese cuisine, specialising in modern fusion and traditional Chinese cuisine, with a special focus on live seafood. We sampled a few dishes from their “Sichuan Banquet for 4” menu which encompasses 2 appetizers, 1 main, 2 sides and a complimentary dessert. Some dishes were very familiar, some completely new to us, but our taste buds were singing for the whole duration. With hearty portions and an abundance of flavour, the banquet is definitely our pick for a fabulous winter dinner.
The first dish was the sliced bean curd with coriander. The texture of the thinly sliced tofu was stunning and quite unlike anything we’ve eaten before. And the flavours from the sesame seed oil and coriander were the perfect combinations. Both healthy and delicious, you’ll find yourself constantly reaching for more!
We then tried the drunken chicken with Shao Xing Wine. This very traditional dish was beautifully fragrant with a lot of herbs. The poached chicken is pink and perfectly cooked. That poaching process results in very soft, tender and juicy meat.
Next was the king prawns in sweet and chilli sauce. This was another favourite. Plump meaty prawns, perfectly cooked and coated in a sweet and spicy (only mildly spicy!) sauce. This dish will have you smacking your lips together!
We then tasted the diced chicken with chilli and Sichuan peppers. Perfectly deep fried morsels of chicken that were crunchy and yet juicy at the same time. Despite the abundance of Sichuan peppers, it wasn’t an overly spicy dish. In fact, just the right level of heat.
We absolutely loved the wok seared diced beef fillet with black pepper sauce. We’ve tried this dish in many a Chinese restaurant and always find the meat over cooked. Not here. A perfect medium rare! So pink on the inside and very very juicy. And then tossed through the black pepper sauce. A must order!!!
We wrapped up with the complimentary red bean dessert (a classic and all round favourite), fresh fruit and cookies. Those cookies are buttery and delicious too!
The Eight are renowned for their yum cha with a constant but fast moving queue during their peak lunch time service. But with their banquet menu, you can now dine here without the yum cha queue! If you’d like to sample quality Chinese food from a restaurant whose patrons are majority Chinese (definitely a good sign!) then drop in during their dinner service and try their banquet menu. Or simply dine a la carte. From fresh lobster and crabs to your every day fried rice, there’s something here for everyone. And all the dishes are quite hearty in portion, so bring your appetite!
The Eight Modern Chinese Restaurant
9-13 Hay Street,
Haymarket, NSW 2000
Contributed by Susan who dined as a guest on behalf of 2 Hungry Guys