Burnt Ends

Once in a while, I come across a gem of a restaurant that is so worthy of being mentioned and shared with the world that I’ve decided to bump it up the queue and write about it asap. Interestingly, if not for my foodie friends who organised this makan session, Burnt Ends would not have featured in my radar so I am really thankful for having made the acquaintance of Burnt Ends!

Burnt Ends is a modern Australian barbeque offering seating at the countertop table looking directly into the open kitchen. The reason why I said Burnt Ends would not have been my first port of call is because comfortable seating is extremely important to me. Food is of course important, but to be able to enjoy it in comfort, without having to fret about a confined space, and being able to face my dining companions, those are important factors for me too. Buttttt, having said that, we enjoyed the food here so much, I’m willing to say that I’ll forgo the comfort again for another chance at that lovely Pulled Pork cheese burger and the lamb!

Burnt Ends (1)

As you can tell from the name, Burnt Ends also specialises in barbequing, smoking, slow roasting and cooking directly on coals. Check out those said coals in the picture above!

Burnt Ends - Smoked Quail Eggs $6

Started off our meal with these Smoked Quail Eggs $6. 1 egg $1, not a bad pricing for a restaurant. You won’t believe these eggs, they look like normal quail eggs, but the minute you bite into them, this wonderful smoky flavour envelopes your tongue, it’s almost as if they’d injected smoky soup into where the yolk would have been!

Burnt Ends - Lamb and Carrot $14

Lamb and Carrot $14

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Gaia Ristorante at Goodwood Park Hotel

Today’s Straits Times’ article on Gaia by Wong Ah Yoke has reminded me that I really ought to push out my post as well on this hidden gem!  Gaia Ristorante is located at the illustrious Goodwood Park Hotel, and with a location like that, and an interior decor that spells fine dining, you would not be faulted for thinking that the prices are not wallet friendly. But depending on what you order, you could actually dine at Gaia Ristorante and have a good time without having to wash the dishes later!

If you stick to the pasta main courses, they are mostly in the $20+ range. A black cod dish costs $38, while the pork costs $35. If you go for the more expensive meats like lobster, veal, lamb saddle and pigeon, that’s where the prices start to become steep. Desserts cost about $15, once again, quite comparable to some desserts at brand name cafes these days.

For our media tasting, the Partner and I sampled the degustation menu, which comprises 5 courses at $98++/pax.

Gaia Ristorante Canapes

Assorted rice and potato crackers
Caramelised figs with Oscietra Caviar
Watermelon with black squid in and almonds
Parmesan bisquit with balsamic vinegar and Asian spices

One thing I love about dining at such restaurants is that they always try to surprise you with some small canapes to kickstart the meal. You never know what you will be served but usually the items are pretty good and the chef has the flexibility to be creative with the ingredients he has on hand. My favourite here was the figs with caviar, a sweet and salty combination that I’ve never tried before.

Gaia Ristorante -  Variazione cruda di gamberi (1)

Variazione cruda di gamberi – Raw red Sicilian prawn: warm ricotta cheese, oregano and Raw blue Caledonian prawn: peach, salt caramel

At Japanese restaurants, I do not flinch when being served Amaebi, aka raw sweet shrimp. And in fact, I am not one to shy away from raw foods, I love raw meats! I’m not exactly sure why I did a double take, save for the fact that the blue Caledonian prawn looked like a raw tiger prawn, and tiger prawns are not commonly served raw. But the fact is that the red Sicilian prawn as equally as raw, and once I saw that fact, there was no stopping me from diving into this dish.

If you have the opportunity, I really would recommend ordering this dish. This is where you can taste fresh prawns at their finest. They were so succulent and sweet that I feel as if I’ll never look at prawns the same way again. This is where you can savour the true texture of prawns that have not been marinaded in alkaline water (like in many chinese restaurants). They are firm but yielding with each bite.

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Best Lifestyle Blog – Finalist! (Singapore Blog Awards)

Got shortlisted as one of the 10 best lifestyle bloggers in this year’s Singapore Blog Awards 2014 Lifestyle Category! Wooooot! Please vote for me by clicking on the image below.

image

http://sgblogawards.omy.sg/2014/vote/fb-login-voting.html

Select Lifestyle Category – 365days2play Fun, Food & Travel

You can vote once per day! Thank you! Smile Smile

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Communal Feasting at Halia (Raffles Hotel)

Contrary to popular belief that dining at Raffles Hotel is only limited to the rich or for special occasions, The Halia at Raffles Hotel bucks this trend by offering value for money dishes which you can enjoy any day of the week.

In fact, Halia has always prided itself on a dining concept that encourages flexibility and communal dining, coming up with dishes classified as “big plates” or “small “"plates” instead of the usual “appetizers” and “mains”. And they are priced accordingly too, unlike many tapas restaurants I know of that sneak in main course pricing into their miniscule appetiser sized dishes. Yes, ever since I was served 3 chicken mid-wings (not the whole wing mind you!) for $20, I’ve almost all but sworn off tapas restaurants.

Halia at Raffles Comunal Feasting

One of the latest promotions to be dished up at Halia is their $260++ Communal Feasting set, which is essentially a set meal for 4 people. This is no ordinary set meal though, it has TWELVE dishes! Now is that value for money or what? 5 or 6 small eaters may even share this meal! Check out the photos of what we sampled for the Communal Feasting set.

Halia at Raffles - Chilli crab dip, toasted baguette (4)

Chilli crab dip, toasted baguette

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Pan Pacific Hotel Peranakan Afternoon Tea

Pan Pacific Singapore celebrates National Day with the introduction of a limited time only Peranakan Afternoon Tea at the Pacific Marketplace. From 16 June to 9 August only, you can order a 4-tiered tiffin carrier to enjoy dishes such as Kueh Pie Tee, Open-Face Otak Sandwich and Quail Egg, Nyonya Chicken Curry. For desserts, you have kueh lapis, tapioca cakes and Onde Onde. It costs only $58++ for the 4-tier tiffin carrier plus coffee and tea for 2. The portions are quite generous, so 3 small eaters may even enjoy this Peranakan Afternoon Tea set.

Peranakan Afternoon Tea Set

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