Authentic is a word that crops up a lot when the owners of Canton Flavor talk about their new restaurant that has opened on the Orewa Boulevard.
From the custom made Chinese furniture, decor and table settings to the menu designed by head chef Raymond Tang the emphasis has been on creating a genuine Chinese dining experience.
Owners Verne Zhang and his wife Joanna Tang, of Red Beach, believe there is nothing like it elsewhere on the Coast, or even Auckland.
“The bedrock of Cantonese cuisine is yum cha, which literally means ‘drink tea’,” Verne says. “It involves small portions of steamed, pan-fried and deep-fried dim sum dishes served in bamboo steamers, which are designed to be eaten communally and washed down with tea.
“The beauty of yum cha is that it can be eaten throughout the day.”
A lot of thought has been given to the design of the menu, which sets out both the price and a photo of each dish, so diners know exactly what to expect.
During the day, the yum cha will be presented steaming on specially designed trollies, which move around the restaurant. Evening diners will be given two menus – one for yum cha and the other with a selection of other mains and desserts to choose from. The restaurant is fully licensed.
Joanna says the food is made fresh and always with local ingredients, where possible.
The couple, who also owns Canton Flavor in Silverdale, say they are delivering a fine dining experience without a fine dining price tag.
“In China, dining is a very social occasion, where sharing food is the norm. Our restaurants are designed to encourage Kiwi diners to enjoy this experience.”