I discovered Binondo when I was in college, at a time when independence was celebrated and was based on the number of places that a sixteen-year-old has reached via commute. It was all the more exciting that Binondo was very historical and of course, a grand haven of Chinese food. Above the myriad of dumplings and handmaid noodle soup to be found along its streets, it was Wai Ying Fast Food that got me hooked. Their classic siomai served as the official benchmark for the long list of gastronomic delights on their old and tattered menu, it being the most familiar dumpling to the common foodie. Every mouthful of their succulent meatball of a siomai encased a juicy shrimp inside, and believe me, the experience was UMAMI personified! I’ve just had a meal but my mouth is restarting to water at the thought.
Also in the house is their interpretation of the oriental Lemon Chicken that fools the eyes for appearing to be boring and dry. But lo and behold, once you put in your mouth, for it meets the perfect balance of being crispy on the outside, yet chewy and flavorful on the inside. How you will burst when you decide to dip it in the lemon sauce! Based on this description alone, I leave you to imagine the feel of their Creamy Fish Fillet melting on your tongue, their White Chicken heavy in your tummy, and the giddy splash of sweet-and-sour of their Beef in Tomato Sauce in your mouth. And oh, have I mentioned the warm soup and smooth texture of their handmade noodles, be it chicken or beef? Have I come to mention their cold cuts, or their Peking Duck?
Being their top specialty, they also offer a wide assortment of dumplings: Ham Koi Sok, Hakaw, Meatballs in Curry Sauce, Chicken Feet, Kuchai, Spring Rolls, Century Egg Siomai and Japanese Siomai, in an attempt to name a few. Yet they are not limited to entrees – they extend to Chinese desserts! My favorites would have to be their deceiving radish cake, special egg pie, and demure milk tea.
With two branches located on Salazar corner Benavidez, Binondo, Manila, you need not fret about the commute if you aren’t the adventurous type. Two parking lots can easily be found in the area, to be paid with reasonably cheap fees. And have I mentioned that the quality of the dishes served in Wai Ying Fast Food does not give service to their even cheaper rates? Their superb crew does not even demand for a service charge. Why, really does sound heaven to the Chinese food lover, doesn’t it?