Natural treasures from the mountains

By Xu Junqian | China Daily | Updated: 2017-08-29 08:03

Natural treasures from the mountains

Free range black pork and fungus [Photo provided to China Daily]

Over the past two years, a growing variety of restaurants, ranging from Shanghainese to Cantonese and even Western style restaurants, have been putting Yunnan fungi on their menus.

Malaysian chef Otto Goh, who runs The Cook at Kerry Hotel Shanghai, is one of those who has been attracted to put yunjun on his menu.

A popular dining destination for local expats, his all-day dining restaurant usually sees a dip in business in summer as the foreign staff of multinational companies head out of town on their summer vacations. Therefore, after three trips to Yunnan during the fungus season, one made last year and two this year, the 44-year-old made a rather bold decision in order to drive business: pan-fried matsutake buffet style at the price of 298 yuan ($45), plus another six to seven fungi dishes he learned from locals during his trips.

"The philosophy is simple: offering the best at the lowest price possible during the worst season. There is a Chinese saying the good wine can be found even deep in the alley," says Goh.

He says with their unique earthy aroma and fleshy texture the mushrooms are becoming more popular with young Chinese who are more aware of healthy eating than the older generation.

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