Gilded Chopsticks; my review to this food-themed palace drama.

‘Gilded Chopsticks’ is a 2014 palace drama by Hong Kong’s TVB that starred Wong Cho Lam, Ben Wong, Nancy Wu, Joey Meng, Louis Cheung, etc. The 25-episodes series follows the adventures of a lazy but gifted “golden-tongued” imperial chef Ko Tin-po (Cho Lam), whose clumsy activities lead him to befriend Emperor Yongzheng (Ben Wong).


This drama somehow reminds me of another TVB series produced over a decade ago which sets in a dynasty and revolves around food and palatial chefs. The drama had Bobby Au-yeung in it. I couldn’t remember more. Of course, this ‘Gilded Chopsticks’ is on similar theme but with different storytelling. This 2014 drama tend to focus more on the political fight while Cho Lam’s character as the chef only acts to support the development of the main story and also to put a little comedic touch here and there. Quite a vital role also.

I am also surprised of how the story had Tin-po met Yin-Zhen (4th prince) before his innocence and kind heart helped the latter to rise to the throne over the rival, 8th prince. A very interesting plot to keep us engaged all along. Due to that particular emphasis in the plot, I find the need to look into more food-related issues. Perhaps, adding few more episodes to this drama with inclusion of more of such content would make it much better and stays true to the food theme.


The casts generally did a very good work here. I felt like ‘Inbound Troubles’ (a successful modern drama last year) was transported few hundred years back to Manchu-led Qing dynasty for this ‘Gilded Chopsticks’ because most of the casts from the former were here (Cho Lam, Joey Meng, Louis Cheung, May Chan, etc). Looking at Stephanie’s role as Mai Siu-yu here reminded me of Ivana Wong’s character from ‘Inbound Troubles’ too. Their first acting role, and some may find them performed very well, while some may get annoyed easily by the over-acting and fake expression. I’m on the latter side. Ben Wong contributed another outstanding performance here too as the 4th prince and later as the emperor. Also not to forget Power Chan’s great performance in the first few episodes.

Whenever Cho Lam is around, there must be many hilarious scenes going around. Yes. I’m happy he is here. But I had something in mind that Cho Lam’s acting couldn’t excel any further. Anyway, I had just watched its’ ending and I’m quite satisfied. The only bit of disappointment is that I can see TVB is trying to pull off some unpredictable twists particularly when the series nears its end, but it is quite obvious to know what they are planning. Hence, in the end, there is still no surprise or shock. But I still appreciate the effort on doing so to get things more interesting and climax-reaching. Generally, this is one of the very few good dramas by TVB in recent time. Out of 10 points, I rate ‘Gilded Chopsticks’ a total of 7.4.

(Images in this post are from various sources throughout the world wide web)


One Response to “Gilded Chopsticks; my review to this food-themed palace drama.”

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