Tin Gow: Start the New Year with Yee Sang

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Yee Sang, yusheng, lo hei, prosperity toss, Jimmy Low, Waterfront Cebu City Hotel and Casino, Tin Gow, Tin Gow Palace, Chinese Restaurant in Cebu,


Even if I am not Chinese, I can always feel the Chinese influence in our country especially here in Cebu.  This influence is so strong in me that I love watching dragon and lion dances, and the fireworks.  I even eat tikoy and wear red during Chinese New Year.  I also read my Chinese horoscope.  I am definitely not Chinese but I love celebrating the Lunar New Year with them.  This year, I will be celebrating the start of the Year of the Rooster at Waterfront Cebu City Hotel and Casino.  I recently previewed the Chinese New Year Menu at the hotel's Tin Gow Palace that featured Yee Sang or Prosperity Toss and I learned something that might just make me luckier in 2017.





Yee Sang for Prosperity, Good Luck and Health


Yee Sang, yusheng, lo hei or prosperity toss is a popular Chinese New Year Tradition among Chinese communities in Singapore, Malaysia, and Indonesia. It is served as an appetizer and it is basically like a salad.  It has several ingredients and each has their own meaning.  Before people can eat this dish, they have to toss it.  All diners will have to stand up with their chopsticks then toss the Yee Sang while shouting "Lo Hei" which it means scoop it up.  Tradition dictates that the higher you toss the Yee Sang, the luckier and more prosperous you will become.

Yee Sang, yusheng, lo hei, prosperity toss, Jimmy Low, Waterfront Cebu City Hotel and Casino, Tin Gow, Tin Gow Palace, Chinese Restaurant in Cebu, Cebu Food Blog, Cebu Best Restaurtants

Yee Sang: Meaning of Ingredients


There are so many ingredients for this dish and they actually have a meaning. A typical Yee Sang will have fish, fruits, vegetables, nuts, crackers, pepper, oil, and sauce.  Here are the meanings of each ingredient:

  1. Fish symbolizes abundance as the word for fish in Mandarin sounds like "Abundance".  Eat the fish to have a really abundant and prosperous year.
  2. Lime or Lemon is for Good Luck and Success.  Eating this will help you achieve everything that you aspire throughout the year.
  3. Pomelo means "Smooth Sailing. For a trouble-free Year of the Rooster, eat the pomelo.
  4. Pepper and Cinnamon to attract wealth and treasures. These powdery ingredients will make you a magnet for money and valuables.
  5. Oil is poured to the ingredients to bring money from all directions. It will bless you with 10,000 times profit with your capital. Your 100 pesos will turn into 1 Million if it happens. ;)
  6. Carrots mean "Good Luck is approaching".  The Chinese word for Carrot sounds like their word for red which also makes this ingredient a ward against bad luck.
  7. Shredded Green Radish symbolizes eternal youth.  You will be strong and energetic in the year to come.
  8. Shredded White Radish is for promotion at work and progress in your business. Bu Bu Gao Sheng meaning "Reaching higher with each step".
  9. Ground peanuts are sprinkled on the dish to symbolize a household filled with gold and silver.
  10. Deep-fried flour crisps shaped like golden pillows is added for more prosperity.  It means that your floor will be filled with gold.
  11. Sesame is added for a flourishing business. Sheng Yi Xing Long meaning "Prosperity for the Business".
  12. Plum Sauce is drizzled over everything which means "May life always be sweet".

Tin Gow Chinese Set Menu with Yee Sang

Yee Sang, yusheng, lo hei, prosperity toss, Jimmy Low, Waterfront Cebu City Hotel and Casino, Tin Gow, Tin Gow Palace, Chinese Restaurant in Cebu, Cebu Food Blog, Cebu Best Restaurtants

You don't need to buy and prepare all those ingredients to have your 2017 filled with luck and prosperity. All you have to do is go to Tin Gow at the Cebu City Waterfront and Casino from January 23-31 and avail of their Chinese set menu.  The Chinese Set Menu is good for 10 people.  These sets are designed by Chinese Master Chef Jimmy Low.


Set Menu A
Php 8,888.00
  • Chinese Yee Sang (Prawn)
  • Chinese Tikoy and Mango Sago
  • Golden Soup with Crabmeat
  • Steamed Live Garoupa with Garlic Sauce
  • Deep-Fried Spareribs with Salt and Pepper
  • Deep-Fried Prawns with Tomato Sauce
  • Steamed Beancurd with Minced Prok
  • Yong Chow Fried Rice 
Set Menu B
Php 11,888.00
  • Good Luck Yee Sang (Salmon)
  • Spring Roll and Siomai
  • Green Vegetable Beancurd Soup
  • Deep-Fried Garoupa in Ginger Sauce
  • Stir-Fried Malaysian Chicken
  • Braised Beancurd with Shrimp
  • Deep-Fried Pork in Sweet and Sour Sauce
  • Egg Fried Rice with Chicken
  • Ginseng and Longan with Radish
  • Homemade Tikoy
Set Menu C
Php 15,000.00
  • Chinese Yee Sang (Salmon)
  • Siomai, Prawn Roll, Cumbi Chicken, Asparagus with Shrimp
  • Double Boiled Fish maw and Scallop Soup
  • Pork Knuckle with Sea Cucumber and Abalone in Oyster Sauce
  • Steamed Live Crab with Garlic
  • Stir-Fried Bamboo Shoot, Black Mushroom, and Taiwan Pechay
  • Chicken Fried Rice with Asado in Hot Pot
  • Chinese Tikoy with Fruit Platter

Kalami Cebu Review


I was one of the fortunate bloggers who was able to have a preview of Set Menu B.  I really enjoyed every dish that was served.  Here are my thoughts for each dish:

Yee Sang, yusheng, lo hei, prosperity toss, Jimmy Low, Waterfront Cebu City Hotel and Casino, Tin Gow, Tin Gow Palace, Chinese Restaurant in Cebu, Cebu Food Blog, Cebu Best Restaurtants

Yee Sang

The Prosperity Toss gives the dinner a festive and interactive vibe.  The Yee Sang allows you to greet all the diners and wish them an amazing Year of the Rooster. Tossing it makes everything a bit messy but the fun factor is really high.  The salad actually tastes good and since all ingredients have a meaning, you try as much as possible to eat everything.

Yee Sang, yusheng, lo hei, prosperity toss, Jimmy Low, Waterfront Cebu City Hotel and Casino, Tin Gow, Tin Gow Palace, Chinese Restaurant in Cebu, Cebu Food Blog, Cebu Best Restaurtants

Spring Rolls and Siomai
Tin Gow is an award winning restaurant and I expect a lot from them.  They did not disappoint as the dimsum offerings are just spot on.

Yee Sang, yusheng, lo hei, prosperity toss, Jimmy Low, Waterfront Cebu City Hotel and Casino, Tin Gow, Tin Gow Palace, Chinese Restaurant in Cebu, Cebu Food Blog, Cebu Best Restaurtants


Green Vegetable Beancurd Soup
It was rich and very balanced. It is the type of soup that you want to sip when you are having colds.  It is full of flavor and you know you can have as much because it is made from nutritious vegetables and beancurd.

Yee Sang, yusheng, lo hei, prosperity toss, Jimmy Low, Waterfront Cebu City Hotel and Casino, Tin Gow, Tin Gow Palace, Chinese Restaurant in Cebu, Cebu Food Blog, Cebu Best Restaurtants


Deep-Fried Garoupa in Ginger Sauce
The fish was cooked perfectly. It was crispy and I could have eaten more if I had it to myself.

Yee Sang, yusheng, lo hei, prosperity toss, Jimmy Low, Waterfront Cebu City Hotel and Casino, Tin Gow, Tin Gow Palace, Chinese Restaurant in Cebu, Cebu Food Blog, Cebu Best Restaurtants

Stir-Fried Malaysian Chicken
I love the way it was seasoned and it is another dish by Chef Low that has become an instant favorite for me. It is the gourmet version of KFC fun shots.

Yee Sang, yusheng, lo hei, prosperity toss, Jimmy Low, Waterfront Cebu City Hotel and Casino, Tin Gow, Tin Gow Palace, Chinese Restaurant in Cebu, Cebu Food Blog, Cebu Best Restaurtants

Braised Beancurd with Shrimp
This is a favorite of Michael Karlo Lim of Sugbo Mercado.   It is actually a pretty awesome dish if you are working out and you want an extra dose of protein without the fat.  The sauce is so tasty and the beancurd easily gets it flavor from it making this dish irresistible to many including me.

Yee Sang, yusheng, lo hei, prosperity toss, Jimmy Low, Waterfront Cebu City Hotel and Casino, Tin Gow, Tin Gow Palace, Chinese Restaurant in Cebu, Cebu Food Blog, Cebu Best Restaurtants

Deep-Fried Pork in Sweet and Sour Sauce
It was not my first time to eat this signature dish.  The sweet and sour pork is more like sweet and sour crispy bacon.  The pork is fried to a crisp giving it a different texture from the sweet and sour that we are used to. It really works!

Yee Sang, yusheng, lo hei, prosperity toss, Jimmy Low, Waterfront Cebu City Hotel and Casino, Tin Gow, Tin Gow Palace, Chinese Restaurant in Cebu, Cebu Food Blog, Cebu Best Restaurtants

Egg Fried Rice with Chicken
The only beef that I have with Chinese set menus is the fact that they usually serve rice late in the meal. The rice would have been perfect even from the moment they served the spring rolls.  I am one big Pinoy still and I would have wanted some rice with everything they served.  It would be a great idea for them to serve rice early so that more diners will order extra rice which leads to more income and prosperity for Tin Gow. ;)

Yee Sang, yusheng, lo hei, prosperity toss, Jimmy Low, Waterfront Cebu City Hotel and Casino, Tin Gow, Tin Gow Palace, Chinese Restaurant in Cebu, Cebu Food Blog, Cebu Best Restaurtants


Ginseng and Longan with Radish
It is an interesting concoction. I think this dessert is good for couples who want to have a baby in the coming year. :)

Yee Sang, yusheng, lo hei, prosperity toss, Jimmy Low, Waterfront Cebu City Hotel and Casino, Tin Gow, Tin Gow Palace, Chinese Restaurant in Cebu, Cebu Food Blog, Cebu Best Restaurtants

Homemade Tikoy
Tikoy or Nian Gao is the food of the new year.  This glutinous rice cake means "higher year".  People eat this for luck. I eat this because I really enjoy eating sticky rice cakes in all shapes and sizes. If you love Tikoy as much I do, you can actually buy it at Waterfront Cebu City Hotel and Casino at 164 pesos and it comes in four variants.


All in all, it was one great meal and it will surely give anybody an auspicious start of the year of the Rooster.  By the way, what is Chinese sign??? ;)

Visit Tin Gow Palace at the Gourmet Walk, Lobby Level of the Waterfront this coming week to enjoy these offerings.  They are open for lunch from 11 AM to 2:30 pm and for dinner at 6 PM to 10:30 PM.


See you soon and Gong Xi Fa Cai!!!!