A Golden Opportunity To Sample Hong Kong Fare
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Gary Lam still can recall working with his family in their Chinatown marketplace (which the Lams still own today) when he was growing up, and he appreciates how well his closely knit clan works together. So, when they opened Golden Palace Seafood Restaurant in 2001, a solid family dynamic and work ethic came naturally, and Lam, his parents and his brother handled every station, from the front of the house to the kitchen.
Fast-forward nearly 15 years and the family business is booming. With numerous staples on the menu that keep customers coming back for more, the restaurant also takes pride in creating new dishes (or revamping old ones) for customers.
The food at Golden Palace is a mix of Hong Kong-style and Southern Chinese cuisines, and a few of the restaurant’s spicier dishes hail from Northern China. Hong Kong fare, as Lam describes it, has adapted to a lot of different influences over the years, seeing as the harbor region is home to a lot of trade and commerce.
“There were always different people coming in and a lot of contact with different cultures,” Lam explains. “I would like to say that Hong Kong cuisine is always changing — a lot of good changes.”
Sizzling Platter Curry Chicken ($7.95) is in line with the diverse style of Hong Kong fare, and Lam, who admittedly is a big fan of curry, was excited to experiment with this new dish. It’s served with Chinese curry, boneless chicken, bell peppers, round onions and carrots. Normally, Chinese curry is lighter than Japanese or Indian varieties, so offering it on a sizzling platter brings out the flavor and aroma of the dish.
Those wanting a lighter entree — especially for lunch — can try Steamed Sea Bass with Ginger and Onion ($9.95).
“We have a lot of the office crowd that comes in (for lunch), and I know they don’t want something as heavy,” says Lam. “It’s filling, it’s healthy, it’s light and it will get you through the afternoon.”
Sea bass is steamed with ginger and onion, which ensures that moisture stays within the fish and natural flavors seep into every bite. Topping off the dish are shredded yellow ginger and house-made soy sauce.
Also on the menu is Pork Chops with Black Pepper Sauce ($6.95), which is marinated in a light batter. Atop the dish are bell peppers, green and round onions, and a homemade black pepper sauce.
What sets this dish apart from other fried pork chops is the way it’s prepared. Rather than separating the marinade and the batter, the recipe combines the two for a crispy, yet flavorful experience.
With dozens of items on the menu, it isn’t hard to find something to call your “new favorite,” which is good news for new customers and regular patrons alike.
“We have a lot of regulars,” says Lam, who manages the establishment. “We have our regular crowd that comes in every day, and we have the guys that come in every weekend with their families. It’s a must-do thing for them.
“We get a lot of chances to talk one-on-one with the customers.”
Golden Palace Seafood Restaurant
111 N. King St., Chinatown
Monday-Sunday, 7 A.M.-10 P.M.