One of the things that I like being in Manila Chinatown is the opportunity to feast on Chinese yummies randomly in unpretentious restaurants. You get to eat in a little glamorous above carinderia style, with no airconditioning, no fancy chairs and tables, and other variable and fixed overhead that probably explain why the food are reasonably priced. Chuankee, which is manned by the same people behind Eng Bee Tin and Mr. Ube, is one of them.
Their beef noodles is reliable. I don’t know why, but this time I wish it were a little spicy. I also noticed that it’s sweet for my current taste. Probably, that’s a tiny adjustment to come up with a “Pinoy” taste. Or maybe it is there all along but I didn’t notice it much until I had the exact basis of comparison, i.e. after trying those prepared in the Traditional Noodle House in Hong Kong.
I’m fond, too, of their asadong tainga ng baboy (pig’s ears). I know some people don’t eat this part. This brought me to that day when we didn’t let a former officemate to know exactly what we were ordering. As they say, what you don’t know won’t hurt you. We addressed her concerns psychologically.
A perfect match would be the kyampong or kiam pung (Chinese flavored rice). The one being served in Chuankee is basic, which is good as it complements the other dishes. One serving may seem small, but if you actually quantify it, it’s good enough for two people.
We also tried goyong and kikiam which almost look like the same once they’re cut into pieces.
But these are actually cooked and presented in an embutido form.
I liked kikiam more because it’s tastier. The sauce and achara served with these look alikes are really yummeeh. Probably the secret ingredient is there.
Their most marketable drinks are black gulaman and almond shake, which are not too remarkable but better than the others that I’ve tasted.
Though we know that the ube (purple) siopao asado won’t differ much with the regular siopao, we still tried it just to experience eating a purple pao. Lol. And yes, regardless of the color, it’s delicious.
Chuankee is along Ongpin Street, near Binondo Church.