Posts Tagged ‘prawns’

Covelli Italian Bistro at Orchard Central

*Media Invite*

Orchard Central is very much the quieter kid on the block as compared to the bustling 313 Somerset Mall. Or perhaps I should use “was”, as I’ve no doubt that people have been thronging the mall since the opening of Dean & Deluca on the 4th Floor? Do check out the 2 basement levels if you go to Orchard Central. There’s a whole row of shops selling quaint little trinkets. And did you know that there is an underpass that connects Centrepoint Mall to Orchard Central?

Apart from Medz Restaurant, where my friend held her daughter’s 1st birthday, there is also Covelli. Covelli Italian Bistro and Wine Bar is a pretty posh looking Italian Restaurant. It has a cosy stonewall entrance, and a black and white themed decor. When you see it for the 1st time, you might assume that it would cost a hefty penny to dine there, but the reality couldn’t be further. Most of their pizzas cost between $20 – $22, which is very reasonable price. The reason why I’m even mentioning pizza even though I didn’t get to try it for dinner is because the people at the next table ordered a pizza. It was so humongous, it was almost covered the entire table.

Covelli Italian Bistro - (9)

Covelli Italian Bistro - (21)This is part of the separate bar area tucked away in a quiet private corner.

My dining companion and I got to sample a few signature dishes at Covelli. The pictures shown here are smaller than the size of the dishes you would get as a paying customer.

Covelli Italian Bistro - Antipasto Fruitti di Mare (Tataki Tuna, cured Salmon, Crabmeat and Avocado topped with Avruga Caviar & Balsamic Reduction) (2)

Antipasto Fruitti di Mare (Tataki Tuna, cured Salmon, Crabmeat and Avocado topped with Avruga Caviar & Balsamic Reduction) $18

For those of you who want a bit of everything, this might just be the dish for you. There was a lot going on in this dish, as you can see from the picture and the descriptive text. For my 1st mouthful, I made sure to get a bit of everything. It was a little overwhelming as the taste of the crab and the caviar were most prominent. Subsequently, I prised everything apart and enjoyed the layers individually, and found the dish to be more enjoyable. I could at least finally taste the lovely cured salmon, which is something I love very much.

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Jia Wei Restaurant at Grand Mercure Roxy

*Media Invite*

After our cocktails by the pool and tour of the hotel, we were treated to a sumptuous dinner at Jia Wei Chinese Restaurant. We had a cosy little private room all to ourselves. The private room seats 20 (2 round tables of 10), and when not in use, the sliding walls can be removed so that there is more space for for the rest of the restaurant. I liked it one of the walls was made of glass, which allowed us to overlook the hotel lobby. Private dining rooms can be very claustrophobic, with their stark white walls and dim lighting, but this one at Jia Wei had a nice warm ambience to it.

Jia Wei is but one of the 5 restaurants available at Grand Mercure Roxy. Featuring contemporary oriental design and décor amidst a fine-dining ambiance, Jia Wei Chinese Restaurant offers both exquisite fusion and authentic Chinese cuisine created by the award-winning Chinese Executive Chef Lee Tuck Seng . Opened in December 2007, the cuisine specialties at Jia Wei include the Traditional Hong Kong Dim Sum ( 香传统港点心), Peking Duck (北京烤鸭), Live Seafood (活海鲜) and Double Boiled Soup (炖汤).

I’m always slightly apprehensive about big blogger events if I’m going alone as I always fear I would be left alone with no one to talk to. I’m not the most extroverted of people although I pretend to try, but really I’m a scaredy cat inside ha! Thank goodness Melvin of A Winsome Life was next to me. Met him at the Greenwich V event just 2 weeks ago! Janet of OMY was at my table too so that was a relief. As usual I worried for nothing because conversation flowed freely and it was a wonderful evening.

Mercure Roxy - Jia Wei (2) Lovely table centrepiece

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The chef here to welcome us as well as to introduce Jia Wei’s signature dishes.

Mercure Roxy - 4 Dim sum Delight)

Deep-fried Seafood Roll with Mixed Fruit
Steamed Scallop Dumpling
Siew Mai with Cordyceps Flower
Deep-fried Prawn Dumpling with Shark’s Fin

It was great to have dim sum for dinner. I’m the type of person that can have dim sum any time of the day. I was really pleased to find out that you can even order dim sum as late as 5pm! I know you can always go to the hawker centre types for late night dim sum, but the standard there is really terrible! For me, good dim sum is made with prawns, not pork! The dim sum at Jia Wei is pretty good, although there is room for improvement, such as in the skin of the prawn dumpling, which was slightly thick.

Mercure Roxy - DOUBLE BOILED FISH MAW SOUP WITH CORDYCEPS FLOWER, ABALONE AND CONPOYDouble boiled fish maw soup with cordyceps flower, abalone and conpoy

For those of you who feel like you need some nourishment, this is a very good soup to order. It is loaded with good stuff and you can tell that the liquid has been infused with the nutrients from the ingredients as it makes your lips sticky when you press them together. That’s collagen that’s causing the stickiness! Soup that just happens to be thickened with starch will not make your lips sticky. Try this trick out.

Mercure Roxy - Peking Duck Peking Duck

The Peking Duck elicited lots of excited “oohs” and “ahhs” from our table. Seriously, who can resist this? The skin was crispy and the flesh tender. Paired with the pancake and some sauce, it tasted really wonderful.

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Indulge at Grand Park Hotel City Hall

No I’m not telling you to indulge at Grand Park Hotel. The name of the Hotel’s restaurant is called Indulge at Park. Indulge at Park was where we chose to have our very last department dinner of the year for 2011. Yours truly, being the non-closet foodie, was arrowed with the task of finding a suitable restaurant to spend our remaining pot of money. May I say it was not an easy task since I had to take into consideration the budget of about $55/pax, reputation of restaurant, quality of food and also the location. Due to the Christmas period, a number of restaurants were also fully booked!

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I was glad I eventually secured a table for 8 at the Grand Park Hotel. The buffet is only $53+++ and with a DBS/POSB credit card, one enjoys a 20% discount! (The company should reward me for saving money!) We once visited Indulge to celebrate a colleague’s promotion a few years ago when our office was just opposite the hotel. It was a pretty enjoyable affair the last time so I thought I was safe. Until a friend decided to google Hungry Go Where to read the reviews on the day that we were to dine there! Turns out that the reviews for Indulge at Park were mixed. Quite a number slammed the restaurant for not topping up their oyster counter and the lack of freshness of the food, although some rated the restaurant quite highly.

Personally, I think the sashimi and oyster bar were well worth the money, while the hot food section was pretty forgettable. I didn’t encounter any stale food thankfully. In the end, the buffet cost only $53, lesser with the seemingly perennial 20% discount.

If you’re expecting the likes of Melt Cafe at Oriental Hotel or The Line at Shangri-La, you would be in for a big shock. But you shouldn’t expect so, because you pay double the price there. You might however be able to get more bang for your buck if you are able to get your hands on the 50% discount at The Bar & Billiard Raffles Hotel or at TripleThree Mandarin Orchard Hotel. Those would be more worth it and they seem to have ongoing promotions.

Grand Park City Hall - Fresh Canadian Oysters, Assorted Clams, Black Mussels, Tiger Prawns, Flower Crabs (2)

Sashimi, oysters and crab station. Have to say that all the sushi I took tasted very fresh. No complaints for me at all. I haven’t been eating oysters for a very long time, but my colleagues were having seconds of those, so I think no complaints either. The food was topped up consistently so there was plenty of food to go around, unlike what some readers complained on Hungry Go Where.

Grand Park City Hall - Baked Whole Salmon with Rock Salt and Herb

This humongous whole salmon greeted us at the door and elicited quite a number of oohs and ahhs from the colleagues. I thought it was a little dry though. I like my salmon to be lightly cooked, with a hint of pink in the middle.

Grand Park City Hall - Tom Turkey & Maple Syrup Glazed Ham & Roasted Beef Striploin

The Christmassy carving station. Unfortunately, most of the stuff here was a tad dry.

Grand Park City Hall - Christmas Turkey and Roasted Beef Striploin (2)

I was lucky and managed to get some turkey thigh upon request. It was dry but still delicious so I polished it all off. The bits at the back were the turkey. The bits at the front were the roasted beef striploin. It too suffered from dryness. The splodge at the front of the plate was me trying to be creative with the gravy, and failing.

Grand Park City Hall - Stir-fried Prawn with Salted Egg Yolk Sauce

Stir fried prawns with salted egg yolk and curry leaves. The batter coating the prawns was a bit thick. The salted egg yolk flavour didn’t really come through either. There were numerous other hot dishes, but most of them didn’t really appeal to me, as they had been sitting in their pots stewing away for a while. I mostly focussed my energies on the sashimi counter as well as the dessert counter. To be fair, I tend not to eat that much of the hot food section for most buffets, especially if common Chinese dishes are featured.

Grand Park City Hall - Opera Cake with Blackcurrant

The desserts fared much better at the buffet. Took pictures of all the desserts at the beginning of the buffet before anyone else managed to dismember them. The Opera cake was my favourite dessert of the lot. It was rich and chocolaty, with enough layers of cake such that I didn’t think I was just eating mousse.

Grand Park City Hall - Christmas Yule Log Cake

The log cake looked quite festive but unfortunately I was not able to try it. By the time I was ready for dessert, the log cake was more of wood pulp cake thanks to the diners before me.

Grand Park City Hall - Crunchy Hazelnut Feullitine Gateaux

The Crunchy Hazelnut Feullitine Gateaux was nice, chocolaty and not too overly sweet.

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The Garden Slug

I found out about The Garden Slug only a few weeks ago and I had this impression that it had opened just a while back. The 2 guys at the next table thought the same thing too because I overheard one guy boasting to the other that he likes to take his GF to new places. Turns out, The Garden Slug has already been around for almost 5 years! Such a pity that I only knew about it recently!

The Garden Slug

I love the Al Fresco seating along the row of shop houses. It’s extremely close to the road, but hardly any cars drive by so it’s totally fine. Love this place and love dining by the road! It kind of gives me the Holland Village / myVillage vibe for some reason, even though this is the only cafe along this stretch, with veterinarian clinics flanking both sides I think. When we were there, it kind of drizzled a bit. Made me feel like I wasn’t in Singapore!

The Garden Slug - Chunky Asian Seafood Broth

Chunky Asian Seafood Broth – This is pretty hearty, thanks to the chock a block ingredients! The Partner opted for just soup, without the pasta, yet he could hardly finish it. I love the taste of the soup. It has an Asian zing to it, and is the type of soup where you keep wanting to have spoonful after spoonful. The ingredients tasted very fresh, and the tomatoes were particularly sweet. Love the burst of sweetness in every bite. Although it is a bit pricey at $17+, I would most definitely order this again. In fact, what I would do the next time would be to order mains and have the soup to share amongst 4 people.

The Garden Slug - Juicy Shrimp and Roast Pumpkin Pasta

Roasted Pumpkin with Prawn Pasta – My pseudo vegetarian mother ordered this. Being tomato based, it’s a damn healthy pasta dish. She liked the tomato sauce and the al dente pasta. The prawns weren’t so fresh though.

The Garden Slug - Ultimate Fish Sandwich

Ultimate Fish Sandwich – For some reason, I have been in a fish and chip mood for the longest time! I didn’t want to have to order fish and chips again, so I thought I’d settle for a fish sandwich. The fish did satisfy the fried fish craving in me, but I did think the fish was over fried. Also, the fish to bread ratio seemed a bit miserable. And lastly, too much mayo. The veggie sticks look pretty dry and unappetising, but I can appreciate their efforts to provide something healthy on the side.

The Garden Slug -Pan seared shrimp zucchini and pesto aioli

Pan-seared shrimp zucchini with pesto aioli – My father ordered this and enjoyed his sandwich. He said the combination of shrimp and zucchini with pesto aioli was delicious and hit the spot.

The Garden Slug - Cafe Latte

Cafe Latte – Quite nice, but not quite up there with the big boys. A bit too milky and not strong enough in my opinion.

The Garden Slug - Kitty

One reason why I like the place so much is because there are quite a number of resident kitties roaming around! If you’re not a cat lover, don’t worry lah, the cats don’t stop to chat at all, although I wish they did, but they just totally ignored me. It seems this kitty knows the trick already. Sit there and look pitiful until someone notices. The box on the stool seems to be a “kitty bed”. So cute!

The Garden Slug - Man pats kitty

This is a different cat from the one above. He crossed the road and hit pay dirt with the gentleman who was really very generous with his pats.

The Garden Slug (3)

The Garden Slug, for once, not a pest.

Definitely going to return again for the wonderful seafood soup. The menu is quite extensive too. I spotted a number of items I would like to try out the next time, and it seems their breakfast/brunch dishes are rather popular. There is air-conditioned seating inside but I think it’s more relaxing to sit outside, watching whatever that goes by.

The Garden Slug – Eat Drink Don’t Think!

55 Lorong L Telok Kurau, #01-59/61 Bright Centre, Singapore 425500 [map]

Tel/ Fax: 6346 0504

Open Daily: Mon – Tues 6pm-10pm    Wed – Thur 10am-10pm  

Fri – Sun 9am-10pm   Public Hol 9am-10pm

http://thegardenslug.com/

justask@thegardenslug.com

Go to their website for the full menu with pricing.

Fisherman’s Market Seafood Buffet Restaurant

*Media Invite*

Normally, the only place where you can gorge on unlimited servings of seafood is at hotel buffets. Introducing the new Fisherman’s Market Seafood Buffet Restaurant. Need I describe more what they specialise in? Fisherman’s Market has its origins in Kobe and Yokohama, and this is it’s very 1st restaurant outside of Japan. The seafood buffet spread boasts over 90 dishes made with the freshest seafood flown from South Asia, Australia and around the world. The dishes include freshly made sushi, fresh oysters, sashimi, chilli crabs, bouillabaisse and more. Check out the photos from the wonderful evening my friend and I had.

Fisherman's Market (13) Fisherman's Market (26)

The restaurant is huge! This is but 1/4 of the restaurant seating area that you are seeing! As it’s located on the 2nd floor of Central, if you snag a seat by the window, you get to enjoy views of Clarke Quay and the Singapore River. There’s also a part of the restaurant that faces the huge ERP gantry. I don’t think I would want to sit close to that area, but just for laughs you definitely have to take a picture of it.

Fisherman's Market (29) Fisherman's Market - Sushi  Fisherman's Market (11)

The sushi and sashimi counter is definitely my favourite station in the entire restaurant. I have a soft spot for sashimi and sushi so I was quite happy to spend my energies on gorging on these tasty morsels. The fish served really is very fresh tasting and a feast for the eyes.

Fisherman's Market (10)

There was a whole oyster station complete with chef shucking the oysters right in front of you.

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Fisherman's Market (30)

Can give these 2 items a miss. The soft shell crab was very oily while the hot dog was nothing spectacular. Save your stomach space for the more “expensive” items. I wasn’t expecting much obviously, and I only tried these so that I could comment about them. The good thing though is that they only cook after you’ve selected what you want, hence the little clips on the plate. There’s also beef and pork teppanyaki to choose from but I didn’t as those would have filled me up completely.

Fisherman's Market (35)

Don’t bother with this cheese fondue. We thought it’d be fun to order one, and it was fun. Taste-wise, to be frank, the cheese mixture didn’t really have a cheese flavour.

Fisherman's Market (34) Fisherman's Market (2)-tile

Wide array of raw and cooked food. Check out the escalator in the 4th photo. You have to take the escalator from the ground floor to get to the restaurant on the 2nd floor.

Fisherman's Market (18)-tile

The crabs were a little too small for my liking. I found it hard to prise the limited bits of flesh out of the shell. The sushi and oysters on the other hand were very good.

Fisherman's Market (15)-horz

Big succulent prawns for the prawn lover.

Fisherman's Market (6)

Salmon, one of my favourite fish!

Fisherman's Market (8)

There’s a lot of cooked seafood to choose from if you’re not into raw seafood. The cooked prawns were really nice, and they’re peeled open so you don’t have to fiddle with the shells. There’s even seafood pasta.

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Oyster chef guarding over the pearls

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Fisherman’s Market has a few selections of wine for those who like to enjoy their food with wine. I happen to be one such person, tee hee hee. And it’s strange that only a few years ago, I didn’t really like to drink at all. How the taste buds change with age. Take note that the wine is at extra charge.

Fisherman's Market (37)

A surprising find at the restaurant. Soft-serve ice cream!!! I thought nothing of the ice-cream machine at first, until my friend brought back a cup of this creamy goodness. It’s really nice! I may sound deprived but I’ve never had this at 7-11 before, and it doesn’t taste the same as McDonalds. This ice cream here is sweeter and light. Really just the thing I wanted to end off my meal at Fisherman’s Market. I had 3 cups of the soft serve ice cream, can you believe it!

Fisherman's Market (36)

Free flow of soft drinks and tea/coffee, but not for the wine (obviously!)

Fisherman's Market

Here’s the pricing and full menu of Fisherman’s Market Seafood Buffet Restaurant. If you’re a seafood fan and you want to gorge on a full range of fresh seafood, here’s the place to come to. It’s a casual restaurant so there’s no need to dress up like you have to at the hotel restaurants. The place is quite convenient too, just above the Clarke Quay MRT station. Perfect for chilling out with your favourite pals. Only issue is, I do find the pricing to be a tad expensive, and for $10-$20 more, I would prefer to go to a hotel restaurant on a weekend.

*A big thank you to Ms Amanda Tan of Word of Mouth Communications for the kind invite!

Fisherman’s Market

The Central 6 Eu Tong Sen Street

#01-05 and #02-17, Singapore 059817

Mon – Sun: 11:00 am-11:00 pm

Tel: 6221-3177

From 10 September 2011 to 10 October 2011, get 20% discount by going to Fisherman’s Market Facebook, liking them and calling to make a reservation quoting the 20% discount!

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