What exactly is Macanese food? Just ask Abraham Conlon and Adrienne Lo, a pair of Chinese and Portuguese business partners who used this question as their inspiration. With good authentic Macanese cuisine honestly hard to find nowadays, Conlon and Lo was determined in bringing this dying cuisine back. Travelling thousands of miles from America to China and Macau, the duo was on the hunt to discover the culture behind Macanese cuisine. After indulging in classic meals consisting of Portuguese chicken, coconut curry, and pig’s ears stew, the duo found that Macanese food is basically a kaleidoscope of culinary influences and cultures, ranging from Portugal to India to Malaysia. The result of their adventure? The creation of Fat Rice. fat-rice-interior-1       Walk into Fat Rice, and you’ll be welcomed with wooden chairs, high counter tops, and a rustic eclectic ambiance. Filled with friendly waiters, cultural props, and an Asian infused menu, Fat Rice is definitely the perfect example of East meets West.  Although the space gives off more of a trendy Western vibe, it’s evident that Conlon and Lo certainly did their homework with their menu. Filling the page, are classic Macanese dishes such as pepper flamed fish head, Goan cauliflower curry, and Sichuan styled bacon and peppers. With their minimalist menu broken down into simple sections, ordering was definitely made easy.    Let’s start with one of their most popular picks, the pot stickers. I’ve got to say, I’ve never seen pot stickers made quite like this. Hiding beneath a huge crispy layer of fried dough, are dumplings stuffed with Lo’s family recipe, a filling of pork, shrimp, European cabbage, and chives. Chewy, meaty, and infused with a little zest of Dill pickles, the taste of these dumplings was just as unique as the way they were made. dumplings-2 dumplings-1 Cooked with mushrooms and scrambled eggs, are the Macanese rice noodles. Rice noodles are definitely a highlight of Asian cuisine, with the consistency of the noodles making all the difference. If you like your noodles more chewy with a touch of spicy, Conlon and Lo’s recipe will be for you. rice-noodles Of course, it wouldn’t be Macanese without Portuguese chicken. Using Macau’s traditional melting pot approach, the Fat Rice version consists of roasted chicken, Chinese sausage, croutons, and a tea egg all sizzling together in a thick layer of curry. Sweet and spicy, this unique approach reminded me of Cajun cuisine with an Asian twist. portuguese-chicken Last but not least, is another Macanese favorite, the Portuguese tarts, a traditional custard pastry baked in a puffy crust. Make sure to not miss out on these caramelized treats that are offered for brunch. egg-custard Thanks to Conlon and Lo, Macanese cuisine is immersing into American culture, giving the other half of the world a taste of a cuisine that’s rich in flavor and history.  Conlon describes their Fat Rice mission as, “Showcasing the traditions of Macanese cuisine, as well as presenting our own take”, which is incredibly true. Conlon and Lo definitely add their own style to the definition of Macanese cuisine, adding a little “modern” into the “traditional”. After my own personal visits to Macau, I have to say that the dishes at Fat Rice aren’t exactly what you’ll find on the streets of Asia, but Conlon and Lo’s style gave unique surprises, a different perspective, and a refreshing twist that was definitely well worth the try. fat-rice-interior-2 Grade: B Fat Rice 2957 W. Diversey Ave. Chicago, IL. 60647 773-661-9170  

Summary
Reviewer
Wenna Pang
Review Date
Reviewed Item
Fat Rice Restaurant
Author Rating
3
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A writer and photographer who's in love with new experiences, visual art, and the written word. Born and raised in Chicago, I've also spent time living in New York City, Hong Kong, and traveled throughout various places. A travel enthusiast by heart, I love roaming new places and exploring the people & food that comes with it. As an avid story teller, I love sharing my discoveries, whether it be my latest travel experience or newest food adventure. Simply put, a camera, a cup of coffee, and anything sweet is enough to keep me smiling.

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