Shopping for necessities at Guardian Singapore

Where do you usually shop for your beauty necessities?

For me, I try to shop for them at places near home because I tend to stock up a few bottles of each product at one go. Thankfully, Guardian can be found almost anywhere!

Here are some products that I got from Guardian which I am currently using on top of the usuals that you have already seen on my Instagram!

1) Facial Masks

If you watch my Instagram stories, you will notice that I mask very frequently. Almost once every 2 days. I literally buy masks everywhere and Guardian carries a lot of brands with one of my top favourite being Dr. Morita!

I have to admit that I stock the mask up even more when they have 30% off during Guardian Beauty Days 😛

Guardian Singapore

2) Aprilskin Perfect Magic Cover Fit Cushion

Aprilskin is exclusively available in Guardian Singapore stores only. I have previously tried 3-4 of their cushions and my favourite is none other than their Aprilskin Perfect Magic Cover Fit Cushion because of the dewy finish. They are currently available in a limited edition pastel pink packaging (usual packaging: Black)!

For just $49.90, you can get Aprilskin Perfect Magic Cover Fit Cushion,  Perfect Water Fit Make-Up Refresh Pad and Perfect Magic Kill Fit Tint. Quickly get your hands on them before they go out of stock!

Aprilskin Singapore

The cushion is also suitable for people with dry skin as it has a moisture serum base. Skincare in a make up product. What’s not to love?

Instead of the usual mesh, the foundation is sealed with a metal plate which makes it extra hygienic as the product will not come in contact with air directly.

Aprilskin Perfect Magic Cover Fit Cushion

Base and lip colour as seen below…. are all from Aprilskin!

Aprilskin Cushion Review

3) Antipodes Vanilla Pod Hydrating Day Cream

This brand is also exclusively available in Guardian only.

Antipodes is a New Zealand skincare brand that contains no nasties – safe for people with sensitive skin. The brand is also certified as organic and vegetarian. In fact, this is my very first bottle of Antipodes and I am pleasantly surprised by the results.

My skin feels very nourished and hydrated ever since I starting using the Day Cream. They have other products as well so do visit Guardian if you are keen to give them a try.

Antipodes Vanilla Pod

4) Pantene Micellar Water Pure & Cleanse Shampoo

We have heard of Micellar Water but shampoo? It’s a first for me! Guardian sent me 2 bottles of them and I am now a fan.

Just like the micellar water make up remover, the shampoo cleans the hair really well. It felt as though my hair was stripped off from greasy oil, hair sprays and dirts from the environment. Coupled with the treatment, it leaves my dry hair moisturised and slightly less frizzy.

Pantene Micellar Shampoo

5) Schwarzkopf got2b Volumaniac Bodifying Mousse

After every hair wash, I always end the day/night with hair oil or hair treatment. On most nights, I use their in-house brand Botaneco Garden Organic Chair Seed Oil & Honey on my hair. And because I love having extra volume on my hair, I will sometimes couple it with Schwarzkopf got2b Volumaniac bodifying mousse for that extra boost!

schwarzkopf singapore

Schwarzkopf hair products smell so good on my hair that I can leave the house without perfume. They have the Seborin series which can help with hair loss problems too.

Of course, there are too many products for me to list because I shop at Guardian a lot but I hope that you will find my little reviews useful!

Guardian Singapore always have new launches that I look forward to. Visit their Facebook and Instagram at @guardiansg to keep yourself updated or you can also shop at Guardian Online at guardian.com.sg!

Filling up the loss of volume at Halley Medical Aesthetics

I was all along very concerned about the loss of volume at the cheeks and under eye areas because I always look tired and old despite having enough sleep.

Even though I mask everyday, it doesn’t really help, as the masks can never recover the volume loss. Take a look at the picture below to see what I meant.


selfie


When I finally decided to do something about it, I went to Dr. Terence Tan from Halley Medical Aesthetics as I used to visit him regularly.

I was very surprised when he recommended me to do fillers for an area that I had not thought about, which is the area towards the back of my jaw and between my cheekbone and jawline. I thought I already have a square face to begin with and adding more volume to that area will make me look fat. I also told Dr. Terence Tan that I don’t want to look as though something was done to my face.

Dr. Terence Tan explained that I have a concave or crescent moon face shape, which would require a filler augmentation technique different from people with a convex face shape. He also highlighted that I have a prominent, high sloping jawline. That feature, combined with some superficial fat near my jawline, made the hollowness between my cheekbone and jawline even more obvious. And this issue, together with the loss of volume at my cheeks, was making me look tired. The nasolabial fold (line coming down from the side of my nose) and the marionette or smile lines (from the side of my mouth) are also making matters worse.

In answer to my concern, Dr. Terence Tan assured me that he won’t be adding a lot of filler to the side of my face but “just a tiny bit to smoothen out the hollow”. He also explained that the filler in that area will help to lower the angle of jaw, making it less harsh and angled but feminine and gentle sloping.

After his professional advice, I went ahead with his recommendations. He recommended doing dermal fillers on four different areas – my cheeks, marionette lines, nasolabial line, and the hollow cheek area between my cheekbone and jawline.


6. Consultation_Marionette Lines Left


He prescribed a combination of soft and firm fillers from Algeness. It is my first time hearing about the US brand and trying out Algeness fillers but Dr. Terence Tan told me that the fillers are natural and organic as it is made from purified agarose gel. The plus point is that agarose gel is biodegradable and biocompatible with our human body and their website says that the fillers are 100% natural and safe.

Dr. Terence Tan also told me that he chose the Algeness brand as it will address my other concern about fillers: that it will spread and make me look unnatural. He explained that Algeness is a cohesive filler, which reduces the chance of filler migration/spreading.

As I have pretty low pain tolerance, he also recommended injecting the fillers with his “Magic Needle” technique to reduce discomfort and bruising.


13. Consultation_Algeness Fillers and magic needles


This is me before fillers. Excited and scared at the same time. Just take a close look at the hollow areas under my eyes 🙁


24. Maybeline excited for treatment


Prior to the treatment, Dr. Terence Tan mixed lidocaine, an anaesthesia, with the Algeness fillers so I did not really feel anything during the treatment.


31. Treatment_Left Jawline


28. Treatment_Left Marionette Lines


Fillers were injected via a Magic Needle. Although he calls it a needle, the Magic Needle is actually a cannula which helps to distribute the filler more evenly as it is blunt and extremely pliable. You can read more about his method for the micro-cannula here: http://blog.halleymedicalaesthetics.com/the-art-of-injecting-dermal-fillers/

I think I scared myself too much because there was almost no discomfort and Dr. Terence Tan was very assuring throughout which made me feel really comfortable.
I left the clinic within 50 minutes (including consultation, numbing and treatment). I can safely say that this can be a quick lunchtime procedure! There weren’t marks or bruises on my face so I could resume work after that.

I really love the results because I don’t look tired anymore! The results are so natural and I think I just went back in time.

Take a look at the before & after photos below for comparison.


halley medical aesthetics


From the front, the depression on my mid cheeks are instantly lifted and the face does not look that bony anymore.


fillers singapore


And for the side profiles, I look like I have a better jawline and my chin no longer protrudes out anymore. Even the smile lines are visibly reduced!


fillers in singapore


If you are keen to consult Dr. Terence Tan on facial enhancements, you can find out more below:

Halley Medical Aesthetics
Address: 277 Orchard Road, #03-15 Orchard Gateway, 238858
Telephone: (+65) 6737-8233
Email: info@halley.com.sg

Here are some quick links for you to check out the details for yourself:

Halley Medical Aesthetics Price List | Website | Blog | Facebook | Instagram | YouTube

Unagi Ichinoji: Tasty Unagi with a 125-year History

Author: Alex Chua

When you’ve got warm company and unagi what more do you need. Opened by one of Tokyo’s most well-known unagi restaurants with a stellar 125-year history, Unagi Ichinoji surely can satiates your unagi wants with ease. Located at EAT At Seven at Suntec City and Riverside Village Residences, the premise looks like an izakaya with traditional wood panelling, superb customer service and authentic Japanese vibe. It is probably the next best place to dine and unwind if you don’t have the luxury of time to fly to Japan.

Unagi Ichinoji

One can’t say they have stepped into Unagi Ichinoji without tasting unagi – that’s what they are specialized for. The Unagi Kaisen Hitsumabushi Set (small S$25.80 and Medium $33.80) comes with a slab of freshly grilled unagi fenced by a chirashi-style array of fresh sashimi including salmon, tuna, squid and octopus, all air flown from Japan. It is absolutely a gratifying experience chopping down the luscious piece of fish. Even the fluffy rice is well taken care of. The Japanese Hokkaido rice is coated with a special in-house marinade to give off that exquisite flavour.

unagi ichinoji

The Unagi Wagyu Set (S$36.80) uses A5-grade wagyu imported fr Kagoshima Japan & restaurant’s signature freshly grilled unagi. Accompanied with unagi chawamushi and Japanese pickles. Tender charcoal grilled beef & umami unagi, a bowl I would surely grab when I am feeling indulgent.

unagi ichinoji singapore

For the non-unagi lovers (is there any really?), there is the Chicken Hitsumabushi Set ($26.80). Fresh organic chicken (Sakura Chicken) is used to give it a more succulent texture. Charcoal grilled elevates the palate with a smoky note. For me, however, it would be unagi anytime.

unagi ichinohi singapore

Now, if you don’t know what is Hitsumabushi, there are actually 3 special ways of eating it to experience different flavour profiles. First, divide the bowl into four portions. Enjoy the first portion on its own and relish the depth of flavour of the eel. Then, for the second portion, add nori (seaweed), wasabi and green onions to the Hokkaido rice and eel. For the third portion, add the clear dashi to the abovementioned mix. The final portion can be enjoyed however you fancy. Personally, I very much prefer to enjoy by its original form without any condiments.

Unagi Ichinoji
Address: 01-05 Riverside Village Residences, Robertson Quay Singapore 238251
Operating Hours: daily 11.30am to 3pm; 5.30pm to 10pm

Packaged Tour for Honeymoon to Europe – Is It Worth It?

A lot of you have been asking about our honeymoon and all. So here you go! In total, we spent about $8,500 for this trip (excluding our own shopping and food). So is the trip worth every penny we spent on this trip? Read more below!


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To be honest, I have never been on a packaged tour since the age of 7. Sadly, I cannot really recall those before I turned 7.

Like what James always say: “We should enjoy hard after we have worked hard enough!”. Thus, we went straight for a good looooong holiday! This round, we took up a 13-Day, 11-Night Italy, Switzerland, Paris, Germany + 2-Night Dubai Trip with euHolidays.

I was initially very worried & scared but at the same time, excited. Worried & scared because I am more of a conservative person. I kept having thoughts like “What if there are delays”, “What if I get robbed or pickpocketed?” and just many “What ifs”! All these concerns were real because they were shared to me by close friends and relatives around me.

Having been to Europe a couple of years ago, the pickpocket issues there were very real. I went there with my university mates and some of them got ‘preyed’ upon! I almost experienced it first hand when one of my uni mates who was sitting right next to me got preyed upon by them…. I have to admit that I just developed “Euro-phobia” since then. Therefore, this is also simply the reason why we decided to go with a tour group. As much as you would think “bigger group means bigger prey”, it meant more peace of mind for us especially if you have a good mama-san there!

Thankfully, we had a great mama-san during this trip. She is actually the tour manager, Susan. Being a conservative person, she kept reminding and keeping a lookout for us. Must say that the trip wouldn’t have been the same without her!

We flew in with a stop over at Dubai airport. Fortunately, we only have to wait for a short one hour during the stopover; thankfully not much time was wasted during the flying portion! Our first stop was Italy – Rome. We visited the Colosseum and the price of the ticket was included in the trip so we did not have to top up for the entrance.

It was very hard to get a good shot there as the place is crazily packed! Still, this is not to be missed by first timers to Rome! Having been there for countless times, Susan knows where and which angle so she helped us with some photo-taking there! I was even guilty to say she took even better photos than we did! Haha! That was not the only merit of her; Susan is definitely very well read as she knows every location inside out from its rich history, heritage, local practices and so on. For James, this is definitely a plus point as he really love to know a place inside out! He always say that is the point of travelling!

For this, another plus point for euHolidays!


rome colosseum euholidays
Picture taken in Rome


We also visited St. Peter’s Basilica, Trevi Fountain, Pantheon and even visited our first Christmas Market at Piazza Novona! We were very lucky because it was the Christmas season so we had a lot of Christmas markets to shop and experience. Even more lucky as we met the Pope himself! That very day we visited the St Peter’s Cathedral, he was giving his blessing to the visitors! What else can I say, we are blessed to be on this trip LITERALLY!

Personally, I love Siena the most when we were in Italy. I love the peace and the structures of the building! They have the oldest building in whole of Italy. If you know their artistic history, that was the gothic period. From structures to food, everything is good! Even a simple pizza there taste super good! According to Susan, Siena is not somewhere easily accessible without a coach. You can make a day trip there but it will cost you a few hundred bucks to book a cab to and fro.


euholidays singapore honeymoon
Picture taken in Siena


Next up, we went to Florence and Venice. Needless to say, they are very beautiful too!! Beautiful in a different way. Venice was so pretty that I look as though I was photoshopped in all the photos! We also saw how figurines were made by their masters using murano glass there. We wanted to buy wine glasses back but they were so expensive. 2 for SGD300-400 (I can’t remember the exact price)? Nonetheless, we still manage to get a glass horse which is now part of the accessories at James’ drinking corner in the house!

Fun Fact: Do you know that there are no land transport in Venice? You will have to take a water taxi to reach Venice and also when travelling within all the small winding channels of Venice.


singapore venice honeymoon
Picture taken in Venice


singapore europe honeymoon
Picture taken in Venice


Of course, I love my outlet shopping at The Mall in Italy too 😛 I bought a Gucci and Prada bag there! We were only given 2 hours to shop. I wished we had more time though. Queueing to enter the different boutiques took up 1/3 of the time already 🙁 I also regretted not getting the YSL bag that I saw. It was only $1,800 at the outlet mall and that was nearly 40% off the retail price!!!

The bags were so affordable that I find everything in Milan expensive when we were there 😛

For Germany, it was a 1-Day trip and we only visited the famous Black Forest so not much photos were taken there. It certainly is nice to know that the stuffs at Germany are really cheap. Cheapest in fact, as compared to the other parts of Europe. We bought winter beanies for 5 euros each!

Probably our most favourite activity – ‘Sledding’ in Switzerland. Sledding at Wetterhorn Mountain is only exclusively available to euHolidays so if you are keen to slede there, I would suggest you to give euHoliday a try!


switzerland honeymoon
Picture taken in Switzerland


P/S: Traveling up to the mountain is very expensive. The Cogwheel Mountain Train cost us more than SGD$300-400 (if I didn’t remember wrongly). Do note that the tickets are not included in the package. You will have to top up for this as an optional tour.

If it is your first visit to Switzerland, I would strongly suggest you to go for it. I enjoyed the beautiful view of the mountains and Alps but I wouldn’t spend the money again if I were there for a second visit.


switzerland honeymoon euholidays
Picture taken in Switzerland


Sledding was so tedious but fun though!! We did like some training before the actual 2 rounds of sledging. It was freezing like crazy because it was a mad -16 degree celsius. Our ears, fingers and toes almost broke!!! I would still pick the cold than the weather we have right now though! I love layerings!! Good for a different type of OOTD though! Haha!


euholidays honeymoon
Picture taken in Switzerland, Wetterhorn


Food and transportation are VERY VERY expensive in Switzerland. But if you are a Rolex fan, do shop for one here! James was definitely looking out for his sports range Rolex during this trip. They have slightly more designs available in Switzerland but…. not the biggest range. Read on to find out more about Rolex shopping.


europe honeymoon package
Picture taken in I-Forgot-Where because we were having too much fun


It was my second visit to Paris and I had a very different experience. I was not on a packaged tour so I focused more on shopping the previous round. I felt that my trip to Paris this time round was more thorough – they covered the place with a city tour (We roamed around the city in a coach and in a boat ride). We had a day of free day so we roamed around the places that were introduced to us.

I met another 2 couples in the group who were there for Honeymoon as well so the 6 of us traveled together all the way. We visited Louvre Museum and died after that because we literally walked a few stations and combed the city by foot. These people here are so nice to travel with and I am so glad to have them with us!!


paris tour group singapore
Picture taken in Paris


P/S: We attempted to take a night train to Zurich when we were in Switzerland, Horgen (where we stayed there for a night). We succeeded but it took us 40 minutes to get our train tickets because we couldn’t understand the language. Nonetheless, thanks to the friendly locals, we still made it! We came to a conclusion why we took up a tour package for our honeymoon. LOL!!

We topped up some euros and took a boat ride around Paris too. The view was fantastic but again, we were freezing like crazy.


paris honeymoon package singapore
Picture taken in Paris


euholidays europe package
Picture taken in Paris


We had a free day in Paris and the entire tour group decided to spend that free day at the outlet mall so all of us chipped in and paid extra for the coach and Susan’s arrangement. As compared to Italy, Paris outlet mall has more brands but lesser variety in a brand. I would pick Italy, The Mall anytime!

After spending 13 Days and 11 Nights in Europe, we flew to Dubai for a 3 Days 2 Nights trip. The change in weather was drastic. Imagine going from a -16 to 34 degree celsius in 2 days. OMG! And you can imagine our luggages, we had to pack both Winter & Summer clothing!

We took a water boat taxi to the Gold Market which they called it a Souk. Not Zouk ok! It was a very different experience and it felt as though I have been to the place before because of the show Running Man where they would played games in the show. The places looked exactly the same!


dubai euholidays


As we did not comb Dubai thoroughly, I do not have much to share except the Desert Safari Tour, which the 6 of us booked privately. It was a good experience and if you are planning to travel to Dubai, do head over for an experience too. It is not expensive. We booked the tickets online for $59/2 pax, inclusive of transportation to and from your hotel.


dubai singapore holiday


Like our Garden by the bay, Dubai has their own Miracle Garden too. The Dubai trip was pretty much free and easy except for a half day tour with Susan and the local tour guide. It was very cute in there but the sun was seriously too hot for us to enjoy 🙁


Dubai Miracle Garden


To our surprise, Dubai has a lot of Rolex models that are always out of stock in Singapore. We went to a few shops in Switzerland and were told that the few models were always out of stock too. The price of the watches (after tax rebate, exchange rate and credit card charges) are almost comparable to the retail prices in Singapore boutiques. Only difference is that you still get a chance to buy a two tone sports model there whereas in Singapore, you could be waiting for a lifetime to get a new one! If you are keen to get a sports model, do visit the biggest mall in the world, Dubai Mall. They have a three storey Rolex there!

We flew back to Singapore after Dubai and there were a lot of hiccups with the airline. Families with kids were separated and so were James and I. My seat was repeated. Another guy and I got the same seat number and the staff at the airport refused to help us rectify it; neither did they accept our request to put us together.

Luckily, Susan was there to manage the situation for us; otherwise, flying back would have been a disaster! I can’t imagine the kids sitting by themselves without their parents :O

All in all, I had a wonderful honeymoon all thanks to euHolidays; there is minimal conflict of interest as we paid for the trip but the trip did meet our expectations and it met our objective of “we just want to relax this honeymoon so let’s leave the itinerary planning to someone else”. For the places that were touched-and-go, we will certainly be back to experience them now that we have a good idea of what to do and where to explore now.

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.


butchers-kitchen-singapore


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.


buthers-kitchen


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.


butchers-kitchen


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

YOTEL unveils unique dining experience with chic drinks, KOMYUNITI

Author: Alex Chua

Tucked on the 10th floor of YOTEL is KOMYUNITI, a venue where people connect over nice food and drinks. It is a bar, restaurant, alfresco terrace and a co-working space combined together. KOMYUNITI means ‘community’ and this is evident in the furnishings and layout that invites guests to network, socialise, co-work, eat and drink. Helmed by Head Chef Mark Tai and F&B Manager, As’ad Isnin, expect yummy modern Jap creations crafted via their very own culinary and mixologist experiences and interpretations.

Being just recently launched on 1st November, I love the feel of having mod-Jap cuisines in these sleek, stunning surrounds.


yotel-komyuniti


To start, we had the Salmon Poke – marinated cubes of salmon served with crispy fried onion crackers on the side. Very Hawaiian-vibe, very refreshing with a hint of spiciness (house-made Chili Sauce), the salmon has to be really fresh to be served as poke.


yotel-komyuniti


Next, we had the Curry Corn Soup and Mama’s Tomato Soup. I particularly love the cream of corn, with its curry spices for a surprising touch without being too overwhelming. Comes in plate of 3 cups, these small plates are perfect for those having a small intimate gathering.


yotel-singapore


It is so easy to pop this plate of Buttermilk Fried Chicken. I love the mouthfeels when bite into the cornmeal crusted skin, it is not oily at all yet so juicy and tender. Would be good if the sweet potato mash can be a heap too!


yotel-komyuniti


Obviously, the high-quality proteins take the lead here. The pinkish Slow Roasted Duck Breast packs that meaty, flavourful punch even though they are thinly sliced, while the Roasted Pork Belly possessed a full-bodied taste, it is thankfully not salty but savoury. The meat-fat ratio is evenly distributed and the crispy crackling skin is a clear winner.


yotel-komyuniti


If you don’t drink you haven’t been to KOMYUNITI. Just kidding, but the bar does mix pretty interesting cocktails that suits the style of refined, contemporary Jap. KOMpliment, KOMYUNITI’s signature cocktail, is fruity and fragrant, and made with butterfly pea flower-infused gin for that delicate touch of iridescent purple. We’ve also tried tropical cocktails like the vanilla-infused gin Tiki Chin Chin, sours like vodka-based Chaussettes, and bittersweet Benjamin Button. The one kicker for me is Fat Roger. Perhaps I overindulged so the fat-washed bourbon suits that occasion. To drink you will need to first roll the smoked ham with dried cranberries, eat it and then wash it down with whisky.

To sum up, KOMYUNITI hosts quite an extensive selection of delectable dishes and fancy cocktails with a welcoming, feel-good environment.

KOMYUNITI
Level 10, 366 Orchard Road, Singapore 238904
Breakfast 6:30am – 10:30am (11am on Sat, Sun, Public Holidays)
Lunch & Dinner: 12pm – 12am (1am on Fri, Sat, Eve of Public Holidays)

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.

park-royal-beach-road

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.

park-royal-cny

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.

park-royal-cny

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.

park-royal-cny-img

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.


park-hotel-clarke-quay


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.


park-hotel-clarke-quay


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

Fine 8-course CNY Epicurean Experience at Shisen Hanten

Author: Alex Chua

Have a luxurious start to the year with Chef Chen Kentaro at Shisen Hanten – the highest Michelin-rated Chinese restaurant in Singapore for three 3 years in a row. Located on the 35th floor at Mandarin Orchard Hotel, this elegant restaurant, with its opulent chandeliers and dramatic flowers arrangement, is set to impress diners and guests alike. For the year of the pig the acclaimed Szechuan restaurant features seven auspiciously-themed set menus – from the eight-course Prosperity menu at $538++ for four persons, to the Splendour menu that features Braised Four-head Australian Abalone among its courses, at $2,588++ for 10 persons.

If you’re mesmerized by the 90’s original hit Jap TV show Iron Chef since young like me, be delighted to know that this swanky restaurant is started by the ‘Father of SzeChuan Cuision’ Iron Chef Chinese Chen Kenmin. You wouldn’t want to give this place a miss now would you?


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The signature Foie Gras Chawanmushi with Crab Roe Soup is simply seductive and excellent. What is noteworthy about this is the subtle foie gras aftertaste which paired so well with the hot fresh crab roe chawanmushi soup. It is also a refreshing change from the double boiled shark’s fin soup that we see on so many menus nowadays. The Deep Fried Prawn Balls with Yuzu Sauce is executed superbly, crispy with a burst of mellow citrusy. You could definitely tell how fresh the prawn is from the first bite.


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The ultimate gastronomic experience I have is the sizzling Sichuan delicacy Wok-fried East-spotted Grouper with Shishito Pepper. The succulent flavors are accented by accents of Shishito Pepper and while mildly spicy it wasn’t overwhelming so. Bathed in golden broth that numbs the tongue and satiate the senses, this fiery signature is not to be missed.


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Have the best of both worlds with a duo of Braised Baby Abalone and Black Moss with Beancurd. A CNY must-have, the tender baby abalone is perfectly braised and the beancurd soaked up that rich umami broth. When eaten together with the black moss there’s a nice contrast of textures from the tender abalone, the slightly drenched moss and soft beancurd. Flavors well-balanced, this dish is purely a match-make in food heaven.


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What I am anticipating most is perhaps the Stir-Fried Iberico Pork with Spicy Sweet and Sour Sauce. The prized iberico pork slices are layered on one end of the plate, the sauce and accompany veg placed on another end. While the presentation of this dish has a touch of western interpretation, the taste of the savory pork is very much Szechuan.


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Ending the sumptuous 8-course dinner is the visually pleasing Double-Boiled Hashima with Yam Paste served in Young Coconut: a delight to look at, a delight to spoon it up and enjoy. I expect something light but the taste is much stronger. Nevertheless, to me anything coconut and creamy is addictive.

Shisen Hanten by Chen Kentaro
333 Orchard Road, Level 35, Orchard Wing, Mandarin Orchard Singapore, Singapore 238867

Hong Kong Sheng Kee: Scrumptious HK Food with a Contemporary, Truffle-licious Twist

Author: Alex Chua

The wallet-friendly Hong Kong Sheng Kee adds a contemporary touch to its tasty range of Hong Kong cuisines with the launch Truffle Wanton Noodle. Available from 7 Nov onwards, the new Truffle Wanton Noodle is a refreshing new touch to bring an already perfected dish to an elevated gastronomic treat. Helmed by the experienced Senior Executive Chef, Mr Chan Wing Kin, he had skillfully fused all the well-like qualities of the original HK Wanton Noodle with a contemporary ingredient in which Truffle-phile would surely approve.


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The Truffle Wanton Noodle uses fresh egg noodle which is springy and tastes quite eggy. Made with 8 ingredients including old hen, pork bone and sole fish, the Jinhua Ham Broth is both savory and refreshing. What I really love about this dish is the wanton – the hand-beaten meat is mixed with fresh prawns, premium tender kurobuta pork air-flown from Japan, and black truffle oil. Meaty yet with a tender bite, the wanton truly elevates this dish to a wanton-ful level!


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Besides staples like noodles and rice, Hong Kong Sheng Kee Dessert also offers many other delicious HK grub, including a Dim Sum menu featuring Fried Dumplings, Glutinous Rice Dumpling, Mini Yolky Custard Pau and Siew Mai. Affordably priced and not lowering the ingredient quality, the dim sum here is a decent treat for those who suddenly has got an urged to have a dim sum affair.


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Not to forget their desserts. First off I am biased towards their desserts as I am a regular diner there. But with the correct pricing, the numerous accessible location and the delightful desserts who wouldn’t? The SK Mango Pomelo Sago is one refreshing bowl in which I come time and time again. The mango taste is real, not artificial sweet, and the plating is simple, almost zen-like. My other go-to desserts include the Rice ball in Paste, Almond Paste and Yuan Yang Paste.

To get more bang on the buck, from 24 Oct to 30 Nov, diners get to enjoy $2 off HK Wanton Noodle or Truffle Wanton Noodle on the Plus app!

Hong Kong Sheng Kee Dessert @ The Centrepoint
The Centrepoint #B1-14
Timing: 11am to 10pm (Last Order 9pm)