BENGALURU: Pan Asian restaurant Shizusan Shophouse and Bar launched its latest Travelling Bao Festival recently - a festival dedicated to all things bao. With ten baos on the menu - both vegetarian and non-vegetarian – the festival takes inspiration from local flavours and ingredients used in the cuisine of various regions.
We tried the Smoked Duck Bao, inspired by Cantonese cuisine, and was possibly our favourite on the menu. The smoked duck was paired with green apple slivers and topped off with mayo, and the sweet apple complemented the rich flavours of the duck perfectly.
Another bao we absolutely loved was the Teriyaki Glazed Tenderloin Bao, which had chilli honey glazed chicken, kimchi and was topped off with gochuchang mayo. For chicken lovers, and also those who can handle a little spice, the Korean Pulled Chicken Bulgogi bao is a good choice, which has thinly sliced meat with spicy cucumber and kimchi slaw. Pork lovers can give the Gua Bao a try, which is a Taiwanese steamed bun filled with braised pork belly, mustard greens and crunchy peanuts.
Vegetarians, fear not, as the menu has interesting non-meat options too. We especially loved the Banh Bao Chay, a bun stuffed with wild mushrooms, glass noodles and cilantro. The flavours were mild and the filling had some amount of crunch to it, giving it a pleasant texture overall. The Filipino Steamer is another great option for vegetarians, and was actually our second favourite bao after the duck. The shredded veggies were mixed with sweet soy sauce, seasame and chilli mayo, and tasted just as good by itself.
End the meal with the Nai Wong Bao - Cantonese steamed custard buns - the perfect end to this bao journey acorss Southeast Asia. However,if you’ve had too much bun after all the delecious savoury options, go for any other of Shizu San’s desserts. We had our personal favourite - the Tender Coconut Cheesecake - a light and fluffy cheesecake that balanced the heaviness of the rest of the meal perfectly.