Paul Louey Chinese Restaurant in Rye brings back special memories for me. We had a family beach house in Blairgowrie for the majority of my childhood, and we frequented Paul Louey. We would grab the big table with the bay-marie at the back, and my beautiful Nan would supply us all with crayons and we would play noughts and crosses and paddocks on the paper table-clothes whilst feasting on Chinese food.
Even before I was born, Paul Louey was the go-to place for Chinese when my Mum and her siblings stayed at the house as kids. We have often heard stories about them taking a big saucepan to the shop and saying "Fill her up with Chop Suey!" and taking it home as take-away. To imagine that these days seems crazy, but I just love that story and although I am glad for food handling standards, would love to be able to rock up at a local takeaway with a pot and have it filled up with yumminess.
Nowadays, Paul Louey holds some nostalgia for us, and we go there to remember my amazing Grandparents and reflect on the fond memories we have there. And thankfully, it also has really, really good Chinese food. These days with Thai and Vietnamese food being such a big part of my life, I tend to stray away from Chinese food... but Paul Louey actually does GOOD Chinese food. I'm talking beautiful fresh, lean meats with the crunchiest, crispest vegetables, sauces that actually taste freshly made and the most cashews you will ever see on a chicken and cashew dish! The restaurant is also a bit more up-market than it was back in our day, looking quite nice with its fancy decor.
On this particular cold evening, Mum and I BYO'ed a bottle of white wine and shared two entrees and two mains. The service was attentive and pleasant.
The home-made steamed dim sims are very enjoyable, not as good as our local ones at Ocean Garden in Montmorency, but very good.
I love a good prawn toast, and these ones are just what you want in one- real tasting prawn meat on a beautiful crunchy toast with sesame seeds and a yummy dipping sauce.
The sizzling plate dishes here are a family favourite. My dad is OBSESSED with the sizzling beef dish, but because he was not there and has a prawn allergy, we decided to splurge and get the prawn sizzling plate. Its quite expensive but unlike other Chinese restaurants, you get a massive amount of beautiful juicy prawns.
Chicken and Cashews was my Nan's favourite dish, even though with her false teeth it was hard to eat nuts. So, we decided to get this dish in memory of her. And, as always we were not disappointed. The chicken they use at Paul Louey's is nothing like the gristly, fatty pieces of chicken you sometimes find in Chinese dishes, it is lean, tender, melt in your mouth. And the amount of cashews is so generous that there isn't any squabbling over the cashews- there are plenty to go round.
We also had a vegetarian fried rice. Whilst it had nothing on the amazing vegetarian fried rice I had at Binh Minh recently, it was a nice and simple accompaniment to our mains.
If you are staying on the Peninsula, I can whole-heartedly recommend Paul Louey's for some beautiful, fresh Chinese food. It is a little more expensive than your average Chinese takeaway but the quality seems worth it, and everything is more expensive down there. Don't turn up with your kitchen saucepan though, it seems unfortunately they won't fill it up anymore ;)