The Smoking Panda, CBD

on Nov 15, 2014 in Asian, Bar, Chinese, Other

The Smoking Panda, CBD

The Smoking Panda at Hotel Coronation is a new player on the block offering a unique blend of suburban American Chinese as well as Western food and drinks. The small bar is conveniently located right in the middle of the CBD in Town Hall and is a relatively small venue with classy oriental inspired interiors. I have to note that they have a small tank of VERY rare jellyfish that are quite mesmerising to watch (ahem Miss K).

Southern rose julep, raspberry and rose soda & bourbon on the rocks

Since the bar has a good focus on cocktails, the drinks menu has pages upon pages of different drinks on offer ranging from the classics to The Smoking Panda house specials. Drinks were flowing throughout the night so it was a little bit difficult to keep track but they were all really good, asking the bartender for a ‘surprise’ drink resulted in a great bourbon on the rocks which was very smooth.

Georgia Peach & Coconut & Lychee Cooler

Strawberry ‘Milkshake’

Some of the other drinks we went through were the fruity Georgia Peach and Coconut Lychee Cooler, both were really good and also very fruity starters for the night. The strawberry ‘milkshake’ was a really refreshing special concoction made by one of the bartenders from a base of milk, crushed ice, strawberries and a few other mystery ingredients, it was non alcoholic for those wondering 🙂

Smoked ‘Whiskey Sour’ (Before)

Smoked ‘Whiskey Sour’ (After)

Although we never got a chance to try it this is the famous ‘smoked cocktail’ that is literally smoked!

Braised shortrib san choy bau

Fried prawn toast, sesame seeds, special sauce

Our favourite two dishes for the night were easily the san choy bau and fried prawn toast. The san choy bau is braised shortrib rather than duck which I think is actually a better variation. The prawn toast was one of the best I’ve had ever with a really delicious prawn batter and crispy bread to go with it.

Steamed XO soft shell crab sliders, asian slaw

Miss K and the others noted that the soft shell crab sliders were really nice, especially with the steamed buns. I don’t really like soft shelled crab so I can’t comment here but the majority of the table enjoyed it.

Crispy duck springrolls, plum sauce

Fried corn dogs, onion rings, special sauce

Tasty fried goods are always good at a bar.. I would have to say that the onion rings are best followed by spring rolls and then the corn dogs. The onion rings were a special favourite and I cleared these up before the other two had even gotten close to being finished!

Prawn har gow

Prawn (or pork) and chive dumplings

The har gow and dumplings were nice but as expected they were more of a bar snack to go with the drinks and didn’t exactly wow me, if you’re after good dumplings definitely head to a dedicated Chinese restaurant instead where you’ll have a better experience.

Green tea fried ice cream, coconut and rum affogato

The green tea fried ice cream was really nice, the fried portion seems to be a batter mixed with shaved coconut which was perfect in combination with the delicious green tea ice cream inside.

As you can see above, the venue is classy yet cosy. There are a few small areas that can be reserved for groups which I think is great for small parties or get togethers. The food menu isn’t anything extremely special (aside from the prawn toast) but the winning aspects would be the drinks and venue itself.

Definitely check out The Smoking Panda if you’re looking for a nice night out!

Mr C and Miss K attended as guests of The Smoking Panda and Wasamedia. All views and opinions expressed in this post are our own.

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