We came here because:
we had heard General Kai was not your “typical” Dominion Road restaurant.
The restaurant was quite busy for a week night, and had attracted several tables of young Asian professionals, as well as us. We noticed that several orders with Ubereats went out the door while we were there.
The décor was:
Simple but stylish! Simple wall treatments, mid-century type chairs with cobalt blue velvet seats and jazz playing on the sound system. All very calming. Proof that pleasant restaurant decor need not be extravagant.
The food was:
Pan-Asian with a Taiwanese bent. The Five Spiced Duck Roll Taiwanese Pancake ($16) and the Sizzling Lamb with Cumin ($22) have become popular, so we ordered these. Our friendly server recommended the Har Gow (4 shrimp dumplings/$9) and in an effort to balance out the protein, we ordered the Asian Wok Greens ($14).
We started with the Pancake which the kitchen had fortunately cut in half for us to share. It had an Asian slaw that featured a pile of crunchy mung bean sprouts, slivers of cucumber, coriander and crushed peanuts. The morsels of duck were meltingly tender with a lovely five-spice fragrance. We tried to wrap our half of the pancake around our share, but it was a challenging exercise. A dish best shared with a friend.
Our Lamb soon arrived from the kitchen – not sizzling, but tempting nonetheless. I was expecting pieces of crunchy lamb, but these were very tender pieces of meat extravagantly coated with cumin seeds (my favourite spice).
Our Har Gow soon arrived on the most stunning blue dish. The price may seem high for four shrimp dumplings but these were quite generous in size and perfectly cooked. The chilli sauce really made the dish – the chef’s secret recipe but I found out it does contain cinnamon. It’s ok to lick the plate, right?
Our Asian Wok Greens (baby boy choi) appeared in a beautiful pale blue dish. Whoever is responsible for the serving dishes in General Kai deserves applause. The bok choi were slightly crispy and drizzled with oyster sauce and topped with chopped peanuts. I have often had bok choi that is stringy and difficult to eat but these were perfect. A good counterpoint to our other dishes.
To accompany we shared a pot of Jasmine Green Tea ($6) which we had refilled with hot water several times. There are lots of beverages to choose from, including cocktails and wine and beer.
both the decor and the food. I would buy the chilli sauce that accompanies the Har Gow if they bottled and sold it. And those gorgeous serving dishes!
If I could change one thing it would be:
Not much really. I would probably order rice to accompany the lamb and greens to round out the meal.
General Kai adds a stylish, friendly and delicious Pan-Asian food destination on the Mt Roskill end of Dominion Road.