Ah Yat Abalone Forum Restaurant, for the juicy abalones.

Since young, my family loves going for good food to celebrate special occasions. And Ah Yat was one of our frequent dining places. This was where I developed my love for braised abalone, Peking duck and bird nest.
Ah Yat Abalone Forum Restaurant

Peking Duck: The skin is crispy and just enough to taste the texture. The slices are tasty, proportionate to the thin slices of egg wrap. The hoisin sauce and scallions further amplify the flavour of the duck skin.

Ah Yat Abalone Forum RestaurantShark’s Fin Soup: Accompanied with bits of mushroom and fish maw, the soup has an interesting biting texture.  The restaurant is generous with the shark’s fin and you can literally taste the intricate texture of each shark’s fin. I loved the slight tangy flavour that whets the appetite.

Ah Yat Abalone Forum RestaurantBraised Whole Abalone: The braised whole abalone is of the right firmness and not difficult to slice through. It carries such a smooth and springy texture that it I just want to keep chewing and not stop! Most importantly, the sauce brings out the freshness of the abalone. The dish definitely packs a wonderful balance of taste and texture.

Ah Yat Abalone Forum RestaurantSliced Fresh Clams with Honey Peas in Sichuan Sauce: This dish totally caught me by surprise. The clam is refreshingly sweet and tender on its own. The Sichuan sauce ties the dish together with its slightly sweet and spicy taste. Blown away.

Ah Yat Abalone Forum RestaurantSoya Sauce Steamed Soon Hock: Soon Hock or Marbled Goby, is a much sought-after table fish and my favourite! In this dish, the fish is fried first before steamed in light soya sauce. Absolutely fresh, the fish gives you a tasty white flesh with a fine texture that melts in your mouth. The light soya sauce is perfectly salty to complement the fish. Last but not least, the coriander leaves gives you the extra fragrance.

Ah Yat Abalone Forum RestaurantSeared Scallop: The scallop is pan-seared to perfection. Slightly crispy on the outside but tender and chewy on the inside.

Ah Yat Abalone Forum RestaurantYam dessert with Sago: Not your typical yam paste dessert, this has lower viscosity and more fluid. My brother and I are head over heels for the famous traditional Teo Chew dessert. So boy were we surprised with what this unique rendition could bring to our palettes. And the sago is just an added bonus!

With excellent service and located away from the hustle and bustle of the crowd, this restaurant would be a perfect place to treat your folks for a classical Chinese dinner.

Ah Yat Abalone Forum Restaurant
Hotel Grand Pacific
101 Victoria Street
#01-06/#04-00
Singapore 188018

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Beach Road Scissor-Cut Curry Rice, the rice with a disguise.

I was out on a quest to travel on foot from Farrer Park station to locate the famous Swee Choon Tim Sum Restaurant armed with an iPhone GPS and a foodie buddy. Just as we were about to turn into Jalan Besar road, we walked right into a signboard that got my friend hysterical. For years she have been searching high and low and we stumble into the place just like that. As the saying goes, miracles happen when its the least expected.

Do not be put off my the sight of the long queue, they move as fast as the customers add on.

Alright, let’s go straight to the food. Besides the rice and the curry, you have a variety of side dishes, such as chicken wing, fried egg and ngoh hiang to choose from. But one of the most popular add-ons would be the fried chicken cutlet. So after the side dishes have been furiously cut into pieces by a snappy scissors, 3 different sauces are poured over the plate. So what do you get at the end? A plate of aw-curry-some. The 3 different sauces work so well together to give a slightly curry-spicy, milky and sweet taste to complement the steaming hot rice and side dishes. My friend and I finished the plate in around 5 minutes. We were either super hungry or it was that good. Wait, make that both.

Yepp, that’s the man snapping away with his “japanese hand” scissors. You can hear the blades clanging away as you eat.

Beach Road Scissor Cut Curry Rice
229 Jalan Besar (Junction of Jalan Besar and Kitchener Road)
Singapore 208905
11am to 3.30am daily

Rose Veranda, bringing you 164 different tea blends.

Buffet restaurants are one of Singapore’s favourite dining choices. We want a piece of everything. From Japanese, High-tea to International. So if there are so many options out there, how do we decide?

Rose Veranda is a high-tea buffet situated at Shangri-La Restaurant. Do not mistake the lush and posh furnishing for another high-tea buffet available in a classy hotel. What sets them apart is the astounding selection of 164 premium tea blends available for tasting. From Geisha Blossom to Imperial Rose, you are spoilt for choices. I was here for Restaurant Week and they gave a limit of only one teapot per customer. However, if you were to be here for their high-tea buffet, you can try as many flavours as you want. That is if your body is strong enough for all that tea. Enough about the tea, what about the food?

Rose Veranda offers a wide spread of dishes and cuisines but mostly Asian. While the dim sum and sushi failed to meet expectation, I was blown away by some of the steaming hot dishes. Not to mention, there is a self-service laksa station. I was happily spamming away the laksa leaves. Another station to take note, is the dessert station nonetheless. Chocolate fondue, ice cream, cakes and puddings, Rose Veranda is out to give you diabetes.

Laksa from the self-service laksa station. Go and pile on the fresh shrimp and fishcakes. Yummy.

Cheese Lover? There’s a station with an array of cheese for your pleasure.

 Dessert galore.

If you’re looking for first-class TWG tea, excellent service and the perfect tai-tai experience, Rose Veranda is the perfect place for your afternoon tea.

Rose Veranda
Mezzanine Level, Tower Wing
Shangri-La Hotel
22 Orange Grove Road,
Singapore 258350

Chit’s Bar and Restaurant, food with a seaview

When my friend told me the name of the restaurant that we’re going for her birthday lunch, I was like “chit what?” Still a little unknown to the dining scene, I was eager to check it out. The most striking thing about Chit’s Bar and Restaurant was the seaview that the outdoor dining has to offer. Besides being able to dine just inches away from the water of Changi, they house seats in pretty little resort-looking huts for a placebo getaway feel.

So here are some dishes that we tried that very day.

Chit's Bar and RestaurantOriental Fried Rice S$8.50: This cocktail of fried rice, ham dice, prawn, egg bits and lettuce slices is the best of the bunch. Strong flavour, grainy rice, fresh prawns. Most importantly. all the ingredients in the dish work together so well as a team that every spoonful provides a firework to your taste buds.

Chit's Bar and RestaurantBeef Hor Fun S$9.50

Chit's Bar and RestaurantSeafood Hor Fun S$8.50:

Chit’s do a neat version of the two different types of Hor Fun. Not bad, but not fantastic. The sauce was a little too watery and the Kway Teow could be a little more overcooked.

Chit's Bar and RestaurantIkan Bilis Fried Rice S$8.50: Like always, if there is a spicy dish, I would most probably take only a few bites. But that one single bite was enough to tell me how much punch this dish can bring. Spicy and tantalizing.

Chit's Bar and RestaurantCalamari S$11.50: Did we just pay over 10 bucks for a meagre portion of oily breaded squid? I felt that it could be more chewy and crispy. Otherwise, I will avoid ordering this dish the next time and maybe make my own.

This place does give an exquisite seaside alfresco dining experience. Give a call and you can reserve seats under the beautiful huts. But do pray for good weather. Not only is Chit’s insanely inaccessibly remote, this place is still fresh in the dining industry. More misses than hits in its menu, maybe time will help the restaurant to improve.

Chit’s Bar and Restaurant
11 Changi Coast Walk  Singapore 499740
6214 9168

Poulet

Poulet (pronounced as poo-lay) is a new French casual dining restaurant tucked away at Bugis +. Besides their speciality dish, the restaurant is also known for its braised duck, escargots and oxtail de Bourguignon. If you are looking for affordable (under $20) and reasonable French cuisine, look no further and try Poulet.

Poulet

Poulet Roti, which simply means grilled chicken, is the speciality dish that we have to try at this up and rising French bistro. Tearing the flesh away from the bone may not be as easy as compared to the braised duck, but it is definitely easier then usual. At first bite, I could easily taste the savoury marinade of the meat which is surprisingly tender to chew. Not forgetting the restaurant’s home-made mushroom chardonnay sauce. This was what made the dish so interesting and addictive. Maybe because I have a thing for mushroom, but this dish got me wanting for more. In my opinion, the chicken meat and the special sauce had a seamless partnership to satisfy my taste buds and tummy.

Poulet

Most would know that duck is not the speciality dish at Poulet. But this dish, Braise de Canard, struck me the most. The duck is so soft and tender, a few gentle swipes of your knife will de-bone the duck leg, making it easier for you to enjoy the meat with the sweet wine sauce. Accompanied with cranberry and glazed shallot, the sauce brings out the best in the duck meat. I may not know much about French cuisine, but this dish is winning me over.

PouletDo not be deceived by its sweet and innocent appearance. This Soy Bean Panna Cotta is just almond jelly with longan in disguise. I was pretty disappointed with the dessert. I’m sure I can make something like this, or even better.

Poulet
201 Victoria Street
Level 4 Bugis+

 

Ippudo, ramen with class

Ippudo: one wind hall

Named during a period when there were dark clouds over the Kyushu Ramen industry, the founder CEO of Ippudo, Kawahara, wanted to “blow wind and revolutionise the era”.

So did they revolutionise the ramen arena in Singapore? In recent years, our local scene has witnessed a sudden surge in Japanese Ramen restaurants. Besides Ippudo, some may have heard of Santouka and Tampopo. Can they really stand the competition in the long run? Guess we will leave the talking to the ramen, after you have queued for at least half an hour first.

IppudoAs expected, I went for a non-spicy ramen dish. Akamara Shinaji, is Ippudo’s original tonkatsu broth enhanced with special blended miso paste and fragrant garlic oil. And believe me, the garlic oil really provides another dimension to the dish as it instantaneously stimulate your sense of smell upon serving. Do not be apprehended by the red paste sitting atop of your bowl, its just the miso paste. Stir your soup nice and well before you start to devour the dish. The 2 key elements to a ramen dish is the soup base and the noodles. Ippudo has them nailed down on the head. The miso soup is tasty, heavenly and definitely of top-quality. I heard they boiled the bones for more than 20 hours. And of course, the noodles are springy and smooth, going exceptionally well with the soup. The simmered pork belly was tender and soft. However, it is good to take note that since the soup is so thick in flavour, you might start to feel overwhelmed nearer to the end. But I have the solution for this. Make sure your friend orders a spicy ramen dish.

IppudoMy friend ordered Karaka-Men, Ippudo’s original tonkatsu broth with special spicy miso and ground pork. I was expecting the soup to taste extremely spicy but to my surprise, not only was it bearable but the soup was actually addictive. Carrying a slightly tangy taste, the soup was a contrast to the non-spicy soup base. Instead, it is refreshing and whets the appetite. After I got bored of my own soup base, I started to pair off my noodles with my friend’s spicy soup base. It is that good.

Generally, I’m impressed with this restaurant. The service is good, waiters are attentive and friendly. Usually they say, “there wouldn’t be smoke without a fire”. And this is a pretty strong fire.

Ippudo @ Mandarin Gallery
333A Orchard Road
#04-02/03/04
Singapore 238867

Gurney Drive: Penang Fried Kway Teow

Penang is famous for its local authentic delicacies. So when my friend told me that I could get some Penang lovin’ at Ang Mo Kio central, I was thrilled. The menu was overwhelming but I decided to follow my craving, Fried Kway Teow.

Gurney DriveIf this is what they really serve in Penang, I’m going to fly there and gorge myself to death. Its savoury, tasty and not oily at all. I actually prefer this rendition of the fried kway teow as compared to the dark and sweet-tasting ones of our local hawkers. My dish took longer than my friend’s Assam Laksa, but when it was served up hot and smoking, I guessed the wait was worth it. The portion is pretty small though.

Gurney Drive is a famous food heaven in Penang for its local hawker food. And this is what the eatery is named after. Tucked away in a little corner at Ang Mo Kio Central, Gurney Drive aims to bring a little piece of Penang to Singapore. An impressing menu to boast, you will be spoiled for choices. I will be back for sure, to try out another of their speciality dish, Assam Laksa.

Penang Fried Kway Teow S$6.90
Jubilee Square
61 Ang Mo Kio Avenue 8
#01-07 to 10 (next to Blk 722)
Singapore 569814

Sembawang White Bee Hoon

When I first heard the phrase “White Beehoon”, the first thing that came to my mind was “Isn’t beehoon white in the first place?” I am that technical. Only when I saw the dish for my own eyes then I could understand the famed title, “Sembawang White Beehoon” Tucked away in a little corner of Sembawang, you can spot the queue for You Huak Restaurant from afar during peak periods. It can get as bad as an hour wait. Well, you cannot not order the speciality dish after all the queuing.

You Huak RestaurantThis is a large plate of wholesome goodness. Like hokkien mee, beehoon is cooked with a flavourful and thick gravy with bits of egg. Remember to squeeze the lime provided to inject some tangy and appetizing taste to the dish. The prawn is fresh and the veggies are tender. What more do I need to say about this? If you’re in the north side of Singapore, be sure to queue at this restaurant.

There are other side dishes that you can order along with your white beehoon.

You Huak RestaurantFried Sotong: the oriental version of calamari. These babies taste great with mayonnaise. Forget about the tummy and live the moment.

You Huak RestaurantPrawn Paste Chicken Wings: strong and deep marinade. Every bite brings a savoury taste.

You Huak RestaurantPrawn Omelette: Fluffy, thick and tasty. This is my favourite type of omelette.

You Huak RestaurantSambal Kang Kong: I do not eat spicy food but people never fails to order this there.

You Huak RestaurantNgoh Hiang: bite-size wonders. Crispy on the outside, they are fried to perfection. Do not forget the sweet chilli.

You Huak Restaurant
22 Jalan Tampang
Singapore

Old Airport Road Food Centre

A list of dishes to try at the reputable food centre.

1. 51 Soya Bean   2. Western Barbeque (Chicken Chop)Western Barbeque   3. Albert Street Prawn NoodlesOld Airport Road Food Centre   4. Lao Fu Zi Fried Kway Teow   5. Lao Ban Soya Beancurd (so you won’t be the sua ku one)   6. Hua Kee Hougang Famous Wanton MeeHua Kee Hougang Famous Wanton Mee  7. Xiang Ji Lor Mee (#01-8, 8am-3pm)

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This list is definitely not exhaustive. The more I try, the longer it will get.