Although Chinese restaurants are very commonplace in the UK (and have been for as long as I can remember) the traditional Chinese restaurant has been something of a mystery. You know, the ones where there’s a secret Chinese menu and where Chinese only diners get to sip at free Jasmine tea. In fact, it was only the other week that I went to Orient Express and on asking for a translation of the Chinese menu I was told that it was ‘not for me’. I stuck to my guns though and was served a gorgeous fish dish…. it seems that us Brits can like Chinese food too!
Anyhoo… all this is set to change, I hope, with The Three Corners of China. Situated where The Flying Pizza used to be on Glossop Road, it’s the newest addition to the ever growing number of Chinese eateries in Sheffield.
Decor is smart, service is excellent (in fact I remember one of the waitresses from another restaurant – she had impressed me then too) and the menu reads like a dream (for me anyway).
Split into three sections; Cantonese, Sezchaun and Hunan there is a page describing each of the three cuisines followed by about two pages of dishes. Options include Quick Fried Duck Tongue and Tasty Roast Frog. Oh yes… I am gonna like this place!
We received a free bowl of prawn crackers and a large pot of Jasmine tea before even making our order. The friendly waitress suggested some options to us, all of which sounded lovely, but we ended up going for Squirrel Looking Fish, Tasty Spicy Aubergine and egg fried rice.
Squirrel Looking Fish was battered in a light tempura batter and fried. It was beautifully light and free of grease. Although served whole, the fish was boned making it really easy to eat. Pine nuts were strewn across the fish which sat in a puddle of sweet and sour sauce.
It was unlike any Chinese dish I have ever had. Obviously the presentation was a talking point, but the inclusion of the pine nuts was another. Pine nuts and sweet and sour sauce don’t sound like they should go, but they did.
The Tasty Spicy Aubergine was exactly as described. Aubergine was perfectly creamy and there was enough chilli to make the dish tasty, but not enough to overpower and kill the dish. There was some fried mince in there too.
Egg fried rice was fine, and one serving was enough for the two of us.