Ruby, Amblecote, Stourbridge

Ruby Cantonese Restaurant stands on a prime spot in Wollaston Road on the approach into Stourbridge and boasts a roomy interior decorated in a tasteful Eastern style.

Ruby Cantonese RestaurantRuby Cantonese Restaurant stands on a prime spot in Wollaston Road on the approach into Stourbridge and boasts a roomy interior decorated in a tasteful Eastern style.

Although some Oriental restaurants tend to over do the Chinese influence and end up looking tacky, the Ruby has a more considered style and classy decor.

A particularly impressive attraction is the green ceramic roof and window allows a view of the hard-working chefs cooking up a storm in the kitchens.

Allowing the clientele to spy directly on the kitchen is a bold move - but the energetic work on show and proof of clean, hygienic preparation is a novelty that pays off.

Because he fancies himself as something of a Chinese gourmet chef himself, I decided to take my father along for a Cantonese-style meal and one famed aspect of the Ruby became immediately clear.

Apart from a vast menu, the restaurant has a reputation for lightning-quick service and this was certainly in evidence as our hot appetiser combination starter was on the table within minutes of it being ordered.

Costing £5.50 per person, the dish included spare ribs, won ton, chicken satay, sesame prawn on toast and seaweed.

An early contender for highlight of the meal included the superbly-presented sesame prawn on toast which showed real skill in its preparation and included chunky prawns to boot.

I was also impressed by the generous amount of succulent meat on the spare ribs, which were marinated in a tasty sauce, and the fat won ton parcels.

The chicken skewers were tender and the seaweed accompaniment was crispy and full of flavour as well.

With a host of successful elements, our only super-critical comment about the first course was the price tag - a hefty £11 for two people proving as meaty as anything on offer on the plate.

On the drinks front, the £2.10 per glass house white wine featured a Vin de Pays de l'Ardeche Blanc. Trumpeted on the menu as a crisp and medium dry tipple, the wine did exactly what it said on the tin with a clean, cool flavour.

Moving to the main course, my father plumped for one of the Ruby's most successful dishes - the king red king prawn dish marinated and stir-fried in garlic chilli and wine sauce on a sizzling platter for £8.80.

Inside Ruby Cantonese RestaurantContinuing the theme from the starter dish, no expense had been spared on the prawns which were real meaty specimens sitting in a thick sauce.

Taking a different tack, I opted for a quarter of aromatic crispy duck with pancakes, cucumber and onion, priced at £9.

Although scripted in the menu as a starter, the crispy duck is a real leveller for Oriental restaurants as it tests a variety of techniques from producing delicate pancakes to providing quality meat.

Served at the speed of light as per the Ruby's style, the duck was carved as it arrived at the table and ticked the boxes for a respectable piece of cooking.

The pancakes were also delicious having been lightly dusted with flour and thick enough to hold the duck and salad without disintegrating - a bugbear of mine at many other Oriental restaurants.

One slight disappointing note was struck by the cucumber, which I felt was lacking the fresh crunchiness needed to balance the tender meat and soft pancakes.

On the side, we ordered mixed vegetables and egg fried rice and found the dishes to be completely contrasting in their levels of success.

In comparison to the disappointingly bland rice, the vegetables arrived crunchy and tasty with a lingering buttery aftertaste that was really impressive.

My dad finished with a good strong coffee to help the ample portions settle and we felt the final bill of just under £40 was a fair reflection of the fare on offer.

Good food at a good price - the Ruby proved a real gem.

ADDRESS

Ruby Cantonese Restaurant, Woollaston Road, Amblecote

Tel: 01384 444661

By Mark Walsh 

Comments for: "Ruby, Amblecote, Stourbridge "

Martin Cook

I have been using the Ruby for several years for family occasions and take away service.

The takeaway meals are still up to the standard of the main fayre and never disappoint.

It has always been a pleasure and will no doubt be a favourite of mine for years to come.