When In Manila For real, heavenly Chinese food that is craved for by people who know what is really Chinese cuisine- head on over to Tung Lo Wan Greenhills. After all, Greenhills is like the second Chinatown in Manila- next to Binondo of course.Tung Lo Wan used to be Red Prawn but when they changed their name and with some changes made by the feng shui expert, business seems so much brisker!
Tung Lo Wan is actually another name for Causeway Bay in Hong-Kong but this Wilson Street in Greenhills; a road famous for small Chinese and Japanese eateries and groceries which caters to the affluent Chinese Filipino community.
Yours truly with Wilma Lee and Pebbles Lee
Reggie Lee and Wilma Lee own the place. They certainly know the restaurant business inside and out because they used to own the Sun Moon Garden crab restaurant formerly located in Shoppesville Greenhills and Shaw Boulevard in Mandaluyong. Ask any Chinese family in the Philippines about Sun Moon and I am sure they remember the place well. It was located on the basement of Shoppesville Greenhills. My grandfather actually loved Sun Moon so much that he would eat in the Shaw Boulevard branch so often since it was a stone’s throw away from his Lee Street office. Wilma Lee happily informed me that she knew my grandfather well since she was his lunch companion and he always ordered their Buddha soup.
Buddha Soup (P250 per bowl)
A little background about Buddha Soup: this very delicious soup that is a meal in itself was named such because legend has it that monks in a nearby monastery jumped over the fence of someone’s home to eat Buddha Soup. They smelled the wonderful aroma from the house next door, got very tempted and “jumped over the fence”. Mind you, monks were not allowed to eat meat but it was that good that they had to have it. Buddha Soup contains quail eggs, bamboo shoots, scalopps, abalone mushroom, shark’s fin, chicken, Jinhua ham, pork tendon, ginseng and taro. Very high in calcium and other nutrients.
Chopping Station ala Hong Kong
Fried Prawns with Salted Egg (P250)
Steamed Local Seabass “Apahap” (in Tagalog) with Tauso (P1,200 / kg. + P50 Tauso/ serving)
Haianese White Chicken- Whole (Imported P750, Local P500)
Fried Squid with Salt and Pepper
This one is the best!
Crab with Chili (Singapore Style) (P1,800/ kg.)
Nice presentation with the head
Stuffed Lotus Chicken (P600)
Notice: Have to order this one day in advance
Inside of yummy Lotus Chicken; the table next to me saw it and ordered one for her mahjong group.
Braised Oxtail in Pot (400)
Roast Pork/ Lechon Macao
Men out there: This is THE Perfect pulutan with beer! This was not fried but roasted to perfection!
Crabmeat Lomi (P350)
Steamed Live Boneless Eel with Black Beans (Seasonal Price)
Chinese Food Feast fit for a Queen
Tong Po Ro that goes with Steamed Buns (P250)
Pair the Lechon Macao with Mustard
Sauce for Haianese White Chicken
Mustard from Unimart (I think)
Flocks of Chinese and Filipino families would converge here, especially during weekends. I myself have seen the former President Joseph Estrada twice, enjoying his favorite Haianese White Chicken with special sauce. I was informed he dines there very often with his friends and family. My mother found it funny when I even rang her just to say that the former President and maybe future mayor was seated across our table. She finds my delight in seeing famous personalities kind of off but then I digress.
There is ample parking in Tung Lo Wan Greenhills as it is located in a building right across Santi’s and it is within walking distance from DEC, the favored grocery of the Chinese. There is also basement parking available so no worries. Upon entering, there is a chopping station on your left which Pebbles, the daughter of the owners shared that the feng shui expert they consulted recommended it be located at since it will bring luck.
Wilma Lee, the owner, is a very vivacious, spriteful warm person who is always dressed to the nines. I think she lights up the whole place! She loves to share little stories here and there which makes everyone laugh their hearts out. Furthermore, she is very helpful and openly shares her knowledge about Chinese cuisine and what goes well with each. I think she has great public relation skills which is a huge asset when you own a restaurant. Plus she has a good heart; maybe that is why good fortune seems to follow her, too.
The interiors of Tung Lo Wan Greenhills are nothing fancy but this does not matter. What is very important is that the food is delicious and indeed they all are! Tung Lo Wan Greenhills is very consistent in quality and presentation and Wilma Lee and family are usually there to oversee everything. Their waiters are old timers who are not irritatingly all over you unlike in some restaurants I have eaten at.
Tung Lo Wan Greenhills serves authentic, super fresh food seven days a week. If you are with children, Wilma suggests ordering their tempura and roast chicken with Yang Chow fried rice. My son loves their Yang Chow. They do not close after lunch so merienda is always an option. You may order Lomi or Pansit Canton or whatever you fancy. This was one unforgettable meal! Everything tasted fantastic. I give it an excellent rating! When In Manila
Tung Lo Wan Restaurant Greenhills
199 Wilson Square, Wilson Street
Greenhills, San Juan City
Call 723-9201 or 661-7794
Hours: 11 a.m. to 10:30 p.m.