Since I had a little bit of time today and since everybody was talking about it, I decided to pay a visit to the $2.4m Kay Lee Roast Meat. I thought since it was still early and not yet lunch time, I probably don’t have to wait too long. How wrong I was!
I reached the place at about 11am and there was at least 20 person in the queue plus 2 person from some media doing filming. I waited a long time, 40 minutes to be exact. But it was an interesting wait. There was no roast duck at that time so I was kinda disappointed but by the time my turn came, out came the ducks. But more interestingly, was observing the behavior of the people in the queue.
One lady tried to order only roast meat and got a shelling from the dynamo lady boss. She, the lady boss, was so indignant that someone has the audacity not to order the char siew that she insisted that the lady takes the char siew as well otherwise no sale. Another lady who had ordered ahead for her colleagues also got ticked off. She had placed a telephone order which apparently was not allowed during this period but one of the helper went and took the order anyway so when the came, she kena scolding. She got so flustered that she paid up hurriedly, all $92.00 worth of meat and left quickly without taking along the soups! When the ducks came out from the kitchen, some of the people who had ordered earlier and were eating rushed up to ‘re-order’ the roast duck. That led to a jam as they became sort of “queue jumper” and the lady boss ranted on and on.
When my turn finally came, I meekly ordered a mixed serving for 2 and quickly went to my table. Was the meat really worth the wait and more importantly the $2m price tag for the recipe?
The house specialty of Kay lee is of course, like the lady boss so proudly and fiercely defended, is of course the char siew! But to a casual observer, the char siew should be badly burnt cos it was really blackened and not red like all normal char siew available else where. The interesting thing though is that while it may be black, it certainly didn’t taste burnt. In fact, it tasted damn good. Char Siew is my least favourite roast meat but this was good! The meat was a little bit fat and not totally lean, it was cut thick and not thinly sliced. The caramelized skin tasted heavenly.
The roast duck came straight out of the kitchen and it was still hot which means the meat was really tender. Most time, the roast duck I took had been hung to dry for a while and the meat had dried up a bit but this one was really moist and tender. Problem is, I didn’t feel that it was as good as some other roast duck that I have tried. It just wasn’t fragrant enough.
|The black char siew
My favourite type of meat is roast meat and here, the meat was cut in big chunk unlike some places that slice it so thin that I have to take 2 at one go to appreciate the favour. But while the roast meat was tender enough and the skin crispy, again I felt that there was better roast meat available.
My platter for 2 including 2 rice and 2 lemon tea came up to a whooping $25.00! Probably the most expensive meat I have. Was it worth the money? And is it worth the $2m price tag? Me think $25.00 is too much but yes, if I have $2m spare cash to play around with, I would certainly put my money down. The way I figured, it is a sure bet judging from the crowd. According to press report, the single stall makes a profit of about $2,000.00 a day and that is selling only up to 4pm. Assuming that whoever gets the recipe goes on to open say another 2 outlets and say net profit is conservatively estimated at $1,000.00 per stall per day, the investor will make $1,095,000.00 per year, a 50% return on the $2m in just 1 year! Unfortunately I don’t have $2m so I shall just contend myself with going round trying out all the famous roast meat stall.