Indulge bountiful feasts at The Carvery @ Park Hotel Alexandra

Author: Alexius Chua

If you want to pig out, you can consider doing so at The Carvery, Park Hotel Alexandra. This popular buffet restaurant celebrates the lunar new year with an abundant array of mouth-watering meats, seafood, sweets and treats that are worth every calorie. There’s also a chance to win a weekend stay at the hotel!

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I like my yusheng to have bursts of citrusy sweetness – bonus if its healthy – instead of being blanketed in sugar. The Carvery Golden Eight Treasure Yusheng with Cured Trout and Abalone ($68+) suits my palate perfectly. The combination of shredded vegetables, candied walnuts, fruits and generous topping of cured trout and abalone, all brought together with a slightly tart white balsamic and peach dressing.

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Following the tradition of abundant feasting, The Carvery has lined up auspicious marquee highlights of the signature roasts. From chicken, pork, lamb and beef – all these premium meat cuts are served at the carving station right smack in front of the entrance so you won’t missed it.
Using only top quality Australian prime rib further dry-aged with Himalayan salt to concentrate the flavour before slow roasting, the Angus Beef Prime Ribs (weekends only) is the piece de resistance at The Carvery. You just cannot go without trying it!

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The signature ones for this CNY includes the Pork Porchetta with Mushroom and Chestnut Stuffing, which is the Chinese Roast Pork made from Prime Grade pork belly with satisfying crunchy crackling skin, and the Spit-Roasted Char Siew Chicken. The bird possesses that sweet, savoury richness which probably came from Chef Ian Hioe’s own seasoning mix of hoisin, superior cooking wine and other condiments.

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Of course, you get to enjoy the all-time delectable like the salad and dessert spread, western and Chinese stations, with some given a festive twist. So if you came with a family everyone will surely will have their favourites!

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Here’s a bonus for those who dined during the first 3 days of the lunar new year (24 to 27 Jan 2020), will receive a complimentary ‘Golden Prosperity’ Welcome cocktail, and a Lunar New Year Lucky Bag containing a pair of mandarin oranges and a pack of Park Hotel Group angpows. Also, they will be entered into the hotel’s Lunar New Year Grand Draw to win a 2D1N Weekend stay at Park Hotel Alexandra*.
For those born in the lucky year of the Rat (those born in 1924, 1936, 1948, 1960, 1972, 1984, 1996 and 2008), The Carvery will also be giving away complimentary dining vouchers as well.

The Carvery at Park Hotel Alexandra
323 Alexandra Road, Singapore 159972
Telephone : +65 6828 8888
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ParkHotelAlexandra/
Check out the CNY Festive Dining schedule and pricing here – https://www.parkhotelgroup.com/en/alexandra/promotions/cny-2020

Prosperity Buffet to Wow at Swissotel Merchant Court

Author: Alexius Chua

To welcome the year of the rat – or metal rat to be more precise – Swissotel Merchant Court have prepared an array of festive dishes and takeaway treats to wow your family and loved ones.
Starting 10 January 2020, The Prosperity Buffet at Ellenborough Market Café will feature notable Chinese dishes such as Steamed Red Garoupa, Dried Oyster Fatt Choy, Fish Maw Soup and many more.
Known for its tantalising medley of Asian and International delights, with a view of the banks of Singapore delight and not forgetting durian pengat, I am piqued by how their CNY dishes would fare

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The first dish is the Fruity Lobster Yu Sheng, which possessed a delightful mixed texture of crunchiness from the veg and ‘bird nest’ made of fried yam ring, and slight chewiness from the lobster with every bite.
For the second dish, the Roasted Honey-Glazed Char Siew or Crispy Golden Pork Belly Platter, the char siew tastes divine with good fat/lean meat ratio and its roasted to perfection.

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Nobody would say no to the Braised Buddha’s Temptation Claypot. Brimming with exceptional sea treasure delicacies of abalone, sea cucumber, dried oyster and tiger prawns, every ingredient is artfully placed and tastes heavenly with that broth. The baby abalone is so tender and flavour, yum yum!

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The rice in this Waxed Duck and Sausage Rice has that nice wok-hei flavour, and the smell floats down heavenly when the lid is lifted. I would definitely finish three bowls of this if not for the fact that my stomach space is almost to the brim at this stage already.

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The flavours of this Steamed Red Garoupa is textbook good. Traditional, expected and the fish tender to the bones. Coupled with the waxed duck and sausage rice above, it makes a powerful combo of clearing bowls.

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As mums usually say, you cannot be prosperous without eating Fatt Choy during Chinese New Year, and this Braised Dried Oyster Fatt Choy and Black Moss is so visually appetizing and easy to down there’s no need for mum’s nagging. I really appreciate the flavourful sauce which holds the individual elements really well.

Swissotel Merchant Court
20 Merchant Road, Singapore 058281, Singapore
Telephone : +65 6337 2288
Email: singapore-merchantcourt@swissotel.com
Instagram: @swissotelmerchantcourt #swissotelmerchantcourt

Prosperity Buffet at Ellenborough Market Café
10 – 31 January 2020
Lunch: $68 (adult), $34 (child)
Dinner: $88 (adult), $34 (child)
Weekend High-tea: $48 (adult), $24 (child)
*Items are available on a rotational basis.

Festive Feast @ The Square Restaurant, Novotel Clarke Quay

Author: Alexius Chua

The sumptuous spread artfully presented at The Square Restaurant @ Novotel Singapore Clarke Quay would have made even King Henry VII envious. Packed in 1 room are 2 buffet spreads – Christmas and Chinese New Year themes – all equally enticing and with sinful desserts to boot.

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It’s a merry little Christmas feast at The Square Restaurant from 1st to 31st December 2019. Starting the traditional xmas festive favourites with the proteins – 24-hour roasted brine turkey, roasted beef striploin and roasted lamb leg. There’s also A-la minute pasta with homemade salted egg sauce or Chef Kishen’s new creation – Mala sauce, which is not too spicy for me. Adding on the spread will be Seafood on Ice, Sushi and The Square Signature Laksa.

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Here’s something to loosen up your belt for – the desserts. Their homemade Christmas Log Cake, Fruit Cake, The Square Signature Durian Pengat, Chocolate Fondue and Tiramisu are some that’s worth the extra calories for.

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Coming in to the second festival which is just 2 months away, the Chinese New Year buffet would kickstarts from 8 January to 8 February 2020. Following the traditions, we have a toss of Yu Sheng to usher the new year with prosperity and start the year on the right foot. The Yu Sheng we had, of course is Novotel-style MEGA.

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The spread features assorted Chinese BBQ platter, Roasted Chicken & Duck, Poached Broccoli with Dried Oysters & Black Moss and Dim Sum. The roast is always my favourite, and its perfectly moist and juicy meats perfectly cut by a master carver are worth more than gold.

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For Lunar New Year’s eve, there’s the DIY Kong Bak Pau Station, Wok Fried Salted Egg Prawn, Wok Fried Sliced Beef with Fungus and Black pepper Sauce, and the not-to-be-missed traditional Hong Kong Style Steamed Pomfret. It’s freshest of the fish its not overpowered by the sauce, brilliantly executed.
Not to mention local infused pastries like Pandan Egg Tart, Taro Butter Cake, Bak Kwa Chicken Floss Swiss Roll and many other sensational desserts, to make your tummy and the year round and sweet, figuratively speaking.

The Square Restaurant @ Novotel Clarke Quay
177A River Valley Road, Singapore, 179031
Phone: +65 6338 3333
The Festive Buffet Lunch and Dinner are at S$48++ and S$68++ respectively for adults.
Check out http://www.novotelclarkequay.com/en/dining/the-square-restaurant.html for detailed pricing.
Facebook and Instagram: @novotelclarkequay

Elemen satisfies even more with its 1st Elemen Classic @ GWC

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Author: Alexius Chua

Despite being a hardcore carnivore, I must have eaten at all of the Elemen’s incarnations since 2017. This month, it opened its first ever Elemen Classic outlet at Great World City. While the food direction remains meatless dishes using natural and wholesome ingredients, this brand-new dining further elevates it with their own modern twist to it which I fancy.

Their philosophy and dedication to sourcing nourishing ingredients that aims to improve the well-being of diners is admirable. Even the sea salt used is from South Africa, known for its distinct natural flavour and ability to boost the immune system.

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I thoroughly enjoy so many things that puts on the table. The Classic Appetiser ($4.80) showcase a trio of salty (Chinese), sweet (Japanese) and sour (western) dishes. The konnyaku jelly transitions well with the Japanese cucumber and cherry tomato.

I like the Truffe Breadsticks with Blueberry Yoghurt Sauce ($3.80) tremendously, though I know these sticks are hit-and-miss for many people. Mochi-like texture with a hint of truffle from its butter, pairs perfectly with the yoghurt sauce with sweet-sour tinge. Highly addictive.

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Next comes the Double-boiled Cordyceps Flower with Peach Gum in Superior Soup ($10.80), which is excellent. The robust flavour of the soup only makes me desires for more.

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The Truffle Broth Ramen has all the signs of becoming a beloved legacy dish on the menu ($14.80). Possessing a creamy consistency reminiscent of tonkotsu’s, you will be utterly stunned that this is a vegetarian dish. The dumplings have that hint of smokiness with a good meaty mouthfeel. A dish I will definitely revisit to.

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Boasting wok hei, the stir-fried Brown Rice with Preserved Bean Curd ($16.80) features fluffy brown rice tossed with savoury fermented bean curd. Despite its appearance, the combination of the earthy taste of rice and the tardiness of king oyster mushroom and edamame is quite satisfying.

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All good things must come to an end, and the Purple Rice Porridge with Coconut Ice Cream ($8.80) rounds up the course well enough. Not overly sweet, the toasted grains have that sticky, chewy texture and topped with a scoop of ice cream. I bet it would be my parents’ favourites as well.

Elemen Classic at Great World City
1 Kim Seng Promenade, $01-122, Singapore 237994
Opening Hours: mon – sun, 11.30am – 10pm (last order 9pm)
Website: www.elemen.com.sg
Facebook and Instagram: @elemensg

Heralding Year of Pig with The Butcher’s Kitchen’s CNY Creations

Author: Alex Chua

Pig out this New Year at Butcher’s Kitchen to welcome the Year of the Pig. Known for using fresh, safe and healthy ingredients, Butcher’s Kitchen team of experienced chefs unveiled their latest CNY menu for all to ogle, salivate and go oink oink. The restaurant’s latest cutesy 3 Treasures Porky Yusheng comes in the shape of a pig, fashioned with roast pork belly, pork lard and char siew. The Instagram-able lo hei is generously lashed with a tangy house-made plum sauce to toss for a sweet new year. Also, freshly-made chips – Butcher’s Kitchen very own creation – is topped on the pig as the alternative to the traditional golden crackers. The generous portion of the yusheng is suitable for 8 to 10 pax.


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Besides the yusheng, The Butcher’s Kitchen has also introduced two pork-based pasta – Char Siew Pasta with Truffle, and Mala Pasta with Roast Pork Belly. I particularly fancy the Mala Pasta Pork Belly dish, which has that savoury roast pork belly with perfect meat-to-fat ratio which I can easily over-indulged! The crunchy crackling is not too hard with a heavenly mouthfeel to it.


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But for my personal favourite is the Herbi Hiam Pizza. Cormprising of cheese, fried crispy pork lard marinated with prawn chili, and heaped with snow of dried sambal prawn, it is sinful beyond the nth degree yet understandably delicious. To give that powerful spicy punch, prawn chili is drizzled on top. Great for dinner with friends or for supper, which I am still mesmerizing it as I was typing about it.


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Beyond the pork dishes, the restaurant has also launched the Original Fresh Chips. Fried daily, these all-natural, freshly made and highly addictive chips come in beautiful designed bottles for you to share and gift the goodies to your loved ones for a perfect CNY crunch. Better keep this away from me or else my new year resolution dissolves in bubbles.

The Butcher’s Kitchen
#02-472 Suntec City, North Wing, 3 Temasek Boulevard
Operating Hour: Tuesday to February 19, 10am to 10pm daily. Closed from February 4 to 6
Seating Capacity: 120 pax

Celebrate Chinese New Year at ParkRoyal on Beach Road

Author: Alex Chua

Pig out this Chinese New Year at Ginger, Park Royal on Beach Road as Executive Chef Vincent Aw serves up extensive auspicious culinary delights. The all-day dining restaurant features an array of delicious dishes up for kiap-ping like Braised Pig Ear Terrine with Chinese Herbs at the Salad station, Baby Lobster with Abalone Sauce, Abalone Fried Rice, and Braised Dried Oyster with Sea Moss on the Hot Food isle. What is special is the D.I.Y Yu Sheng station. Perhaps the first in Singapore, you can create your own Prosperity Yu Sheng at the Yu Sheng counter to toss up a good fortune.

Here are a few dishes that I’ve kiap-ed (or grabbed) and enjoyed thoroughly, so if you’re here for the CNY buffet you can go straight to hog these yummies out.

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As an unrepentant carnivore more often than not I will just fly towards the meat station, but the pot of Broccoli with Dried Oyster is just visually desirable. The green broccoli possessed that nice crunch, soaked in a rich oyster broth to give off that distinct umami taste; very flavorful and back of my mind patting myself for being a healthy picker for a change.

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Priding themselves on serving consistently good quality crabs throughout the year, this Baby Lobster with Rich Abalone Broth is a dish I will indulge over again and again. Cooked a la minute at the live station, the lobster meat is fresh with a good springy bite, and pretty easy to peel off the fresh from the shell. Just remember to drink it hot as the taste will be slightly off when it’s cold.

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Other Chinese favorites I raved includes the very tender, very juicy Braised Pig Trotters, Abalone Fried Rice (wok-hei power strong in this one), as well as the Pineapple Salad with Sliced Bak Kwa and Braised Pig Ear Terrine with Chinese Herbs at the Salad station.

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Besides these yummy CNY specials, also available at the hot isle are the surefire hit Baked Salmon topped with deep-fried fish skin – a good source of protein and omega 3 which I have many helpings.
Chinese New Year is never complete without stuffing yourself aplenty with decadent treats and delicacies. Make Ginger the go-to restaurant for your CNY indulgence and book today!

Park Royal on Beach Road – Ginger Resataurant
7500 Beach Rd, Singapore 199591

Available from 21 January to 19 February 2019
Lunch: 12pm to 2.30pm, from $48 – $68 (for adults) | from $22 – $34 (for child)
Dinner: 6pm to 10pm, from $68 – $108 (for adults) | from $34 – $54 (for child)
Dining reservations at Ginger can be made at dining.prsin@parkroyalhotels.com or call at +65 6505 5710

Herald in CNY with Delicious Feast at Park Hotel Clarke Quay

Author: Alex Chua

Christmas and the new year celeb (hello 2019!) just zoom us by and before you know it its CNY again. If you’re totally unprepared or just wanting to amp up the festivity with gastronomic delight, then you might want to book Park Hotel Clark Quay’s 6-course Harmony Menu ($378++ per table of 4-5 pax) or 8-course Ultimate Success Menu ($658++ per table of 9-10 pax). You won’t regret it. Here’s a glimpse of what you will be getting.

Yu Sheng – the only dish that requires us to bottoms up and splatter around with chopsticks while chanting auspicious words. The Auspicious Abundance Yu Sheng contains flown-in yabbies (lobsters) which are easy to pop into the mouth. The dry-cured Jinhua ham is something not to be wasted after the rowdy tossing because, besides the appealing ruby color, it’s just so tasty.


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When this dish is presented someone murmured ‘oh this is the Fa Guo Piao Xiang ah’. Usually I don’t take Yam Ring due to personal preference but this one I would. Encased within the Stir-fried Seafood with XO Sauce in Crispy Yam Basket contains succulent ocean delicacies such as squid, scallop and prawn. But what’s amazing is the yam basket – so crispy its like munching into nicely just-fried chips. Quite a memorable dish I must say.


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While the fish head is a little bit daunting to look at, I wouldn’t want to skip this Steamed Red Garoupa with Jinhua Ham. The precious ham are inserted into each evenly sliced section of the fish meat, giving it an extra oomph. Who knew fish and pork go so well together.


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If you want to huat (be prosperous) for the new year you must eat this. My favourite dish in the menu, the Money Bag contains generous amount of tender Jinhua ham full of juiciness which explodes into your mouth. The broccoli, which are soaked in the delicious broth, are distinctively crunchy and inviting. I adore the mouthfeels.


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The feast ended with Chilled Coconut Pudding for dessert. Deceptively plain and simple, this light, cooling dish balances different level of sweetness pretty artfully. Yes I am bias because I love anything coconut.
Overall, Chef James Wong does an excellent job serving dish after dish of memorable deliciousness. While the spotlight falls onto the Jinhua ham (half of the dishes contain this savoury wonder from Zhejiang), it weaves in and accentuates the dishes without being overwhelming.

Park Hotel Clarke Quay
1 Unity Street, Singapore 237983

Perk Up Your Palate this CNY @ Song Garden

Author: Alex Chua


Known for its dim sum and mouth-watering egg tarts, Song Garden has been a favourite for many families. Located on level 2 of Mercure Singapore Bugis Hotel where Bugis Street meets Bras Basah in one of Singapore’s more authentic areas, Song Garden offers a trove of auspicious modern Cantonese dishes to user in a prosperous Year of the Pig. Reunion feast anyone?

What can be more celebratory than a toss of Yu Sheng? The Prosperity Salmon and Fresh Fruit Yu Sheng has all the tried-and-tested essentials of Yu Sheng inside the giant bowl of auspicious red. The wooden chopsticks are much longer than usual to accommodate such a big bowl.


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The simmering Lobster with Pumpkin Puree served in Hot Stone Pot with Bacon Scallion Pencil is popular with the diners. The delectable pumpkin puree is now enhanced with generous amount of lobster meat. It was so delicious that I slurped up every last drop. Careful don’t touch the rim because it is scalding hot.


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Nothing shouts more CNY than Pen Cai. The Song Garden Supreme Fortune Pot is braised full of delectable delicacies like 8-head Abalone, Roast Duck, Crispy Pork Belly, Dried Oysters, Sea Cucumber, and the naturally sweet Scallop – which I fell in love with. One sip of the thick gravy will bring you to taste bud heaven.


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Don’t leave without giving the Golden Pillow White Pepper Pork Ribs Bun a try. An absolute crowd-pleaser, this savoury peppery pork ribs suits perfectly with the white bun custodian of pillowy texture. Brought back childhood memories of my great-aunt’s version of this irresistible dish.


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For those with a sweet tooth, a great end to the meal is the Double-boiled Peach Resin with Fungus and Red Dates. Cooling and refreshing, this traditional dessert screams Cantone-sia. You’ll find it hard to stop at just one sip.

Song Garden @ Mercure Singapore Bugis
122 Middle Road Singapore 188973

Weekdays
Lunch: 11.30am to 2.30pm
Dinner: 6pm to 10pm

Weekends/ Public Holiday
Lunch: 11am to 3pm
Dinner: 6pm to 10pm

Usher in a Prosperous Year with Din Tai Fung

Author: Alex Chua

Spring is here. Toss to a prosperous year of great success and wealth this Chinese New Year with Din Tai Fung! Din Tai Fung 鼎泰豐 – a name synonymous with quality Chinese cuisine is arguably the most successful, internationally-acclaimed Taiwanese restaurant in Singapore and even in some other countries.

For the Year of the Dog, Din Tai Fung presents 3 perennial festive favourites, with special highlight on the restaurant’s signature Prosperity Smoked Salmon Yu Sheng 发财鱼生 (image above). Served with 3 colourful twirls of white radish and carrots, crispy yam strips, fresh pomelo pulp and Tianjin roasted chestnut. Topped with Norwegian smoked salmon and drizzled with a self-concocted sweet and tangy plum sauce, the dish is fragrant, refreshing and satisfying crunchy from the pulp and chestnuts.


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If you want more ‘huat’ this year, you can ‘Top-up’ your Yu Sheng order with succulent Fried Salmon Skin, Pine Nuts, and the premium Smoked Unagi is also available for a fragrant twist!

Prosperity Smoked Salmon Yu Sheng
Standard (serves 2-3): $32.80
Deluxe (serves 4-6): $48.80
Citibank Cardholders get to enjoy 10% off any purchase of Prosperity Yu Sheng. Do note that the discount is not applicable to ‘Top-up’ ingredients


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A new dessert addition to sweeten up your year’s journey, the Steamed Layered Red Date Cake oozes out the natural sweetness and luxurious fragrance of premium red dates in every bite. Free from any additives and prepared with simple ingredients, this smooth, chewy textured delicacy is bound to delight!

Steamed Layered Red Date Cake
Lunar New Year Festive price: $13.80 (U.P. $16.80), serves 6-8


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Filled with delicious golden-yellow flowy lava custard that oozes out with every bite, the Steamed Custard Bun is served to melt diners’ heart like mellowy sunshine. The salted egg yolk, quite a trend here, adds a savoury depth, resulting in a perfectly balanced sweet-savoury custard.


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Each Steamed Custard Bun is stamped with a golden ‘Fu’ which symbolizes prosperity to signify well wishes for the diner. While the custard bun is bigger than the regular ones, who doesn’t like their favourite dish to be mega-sized? No complain here!

Steamed Custard Bun
$2 per bun. Exclusively at Paragon Shopping Centre and Northpoint City


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Of course, besides the 3 new CNY menu, if you’re there do remember to order the pork chop. It’s THE signature dish that spells Din Tai Fung’s fame from Taiwan to across the world. Juicy, tender with a slight crisp, this is the must-have whenever I visit the place.


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Who can also not mention the Xiao Long Bao? The famous steamed pork dumpling in Din Tai Fung’s signature rendition consists of juicy meat filling wrapped in a melt-in-your-mouth skin with a minimum of 18 exquisite folds. It’s simply marvellous!

Do check their website for the list of locations and Lunar New Year operating hours

SCS Butter Blind Taste Test – Pineapple Tarts

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Honestly, I have been eating pineapple tarts from SCS for the fourth consecutive year and I even handmade a few bottles at their event 3 years ago and last year! Look how much we have grown with the brand..


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This year, instead of making pineapple tarts with the brand, I was invited for a blind taste test. The results confirmed my choice of butter – SCS Butter.

My favourite pineapple tarts from the blind test were made with SCS Butter instead of the other 2. In all honesty, I had no idea the one I like was made with SCS Butter. When asked to describe the taste and texture, I thought Choice A was more buttery and tastier just like how pineapple tarts should taste. It even brings back joyful memories of CNY for the last 3 years from the bite. Afterall, I really did have their pineapple tarts for so many years! Haha.

Choice B and C weren’t that bad either, but if we were to concentrate on the buttery and flavourful taste, Choice A was clearly the winner.

If I did successfully tempt you to stock up on some SCS Butter block, there is an on-going promotion right now..


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Get a free container with ever 3 blocks of butter purchased! You can use the container to keep your CNY snacks 😛

And lastly, conclusion From The Blind Taste Test:
SCS has proven to be the No. 1 butter again! With its distinctive taste like no other, this video is the best proof that you can never go wrong baking pineapple tarts with SCS Butter!

Watch the video below:




Thank you SCS Dairy Singapore for allowing me to be part of your campaign again!

For more information, please visit SCS Dairy Singapore Facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/SCSdairySG/