I’ve been feeding my cravings for oriental cuisine since I arrived in the States. It’s one of the things that I really miss living in Europe. One of the places we ate in the last time we were here was Red 8 at the Wynn hotel which just opened over Christmas 2005. Since then Malaysian chef Hisham Johari has become a friend of my brother-in-law so when we had lunch at Red 8 over the weekend, we got the red-carpet treatment.
The menu is predominantly Cantonese but with a strong leaning towards Malaysian influences and also includes some typical Southeast Asian specialties. During our recent lunch, we were treated to dishes upon dishes just coming straight out of the kitchen like a traditional Chinese banquet where many courses are served in just one meal, sort of like a Chinese-style tasting menu except the portions aren’t tiny. Everything was served family-style meaning they plonked the food in the middle of the table and everyone got a taste of whatever there was.
We started out with dimsum (steamed dumplings with different fillings): pork Shiu Mai, shrimp Har Gao, pork Char siu bao and Cantonese potstickers. My son also got his favorite vegetable spring rolls. One of the chef’s signature dishes followed – oxtail soup with potatoes and crispy shallots. The last appetizer to be served was the roast duck and roast pork combination which is a typical Cantonese dish.
Main courses soon came after: crispy calamari, a special wok-fried lobster with chili and garlic and deep-fried prawns. We also had the wok-fried water spinach with preserved bean curd along with a large portion of dried scallop and egg white fried rice to complement the meal. Desserts were shared as everything else was – chilled mango soup with sago, a fantastic coconut pudding and a large scoop of peanut ice cream.
The restaurants’ name Red 8 comes from the fact that both the color red and the number 8 are lucky for the Chinese. Maybe after lunch or dinner here you can try your luck at the casino but I think I would rather have a delicious meal at this lucky restaurant.