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madamechewy
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madamechewy  Level 4
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Good Restaurant Week Experience Smile Apr 13, 2016   
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Categories : Cantonese/Hong Kong | Hotel | Dim Sum | Seafood

For pictures and full review, pls visit:
http://madamechewy.com/2016/03/26/jade-fullerton-hotel/
Located in the iconic Fullerton Hotel, Jade is beautifully decked out in regal hues of gold and silver. It simply looks like no expense has been spared to make this place look as opulent as it can be.
We tried the Restaurant Week set lunch which allowed us to sample a good variety of dishes at this fine dining Chinese restaurant for only $40++ per person. Aligned with Singapore Restaurant Week’s theme “Feasts of the Ocean”, Jade’s menu focuses on seafood.
Awake your taste buds with Secret of the Deep Sea, a platter of 4 appetizers. From left to right, there’s Poached Scallop and Seaweed Dumpling wrapped in chewy skin accompanied with piquant preserved vegetables, followed by perfectly fried Crispy Prawn with Spicy Sesame Dressing. This is certainly a welcome twist from the common wasabi dressing pairing. My vote goes to Jade’s rendition of the well-loved fried shrimp dim sum. Moving along, is a well-played creation of silky Steamed Squid Ink Tofu with stir-fried squid and crispy sesame tuile. The final item, Deep-fried Foie Gras Salmon Roll in Sweet Vinaigrette with pops of Tobiko, was rather disappointing as the former’s presence was rather faint.
The main dish, Steam Crab Roe with Sautéed Sliced Grouper, sits in a pool of robust XO chilli sauce. Take a bit of everything in one spoon and let it mingle in the mouth. Yummms!
Carbs can never be absent in a Chinese meal! Jade’s Simmered Ee-fu Noodles are flavoured with truffle, then topped with sliced abalone and morel mushrooms. Its hard to go wrong with that distinctive woody aroma of truffle, which added an umami punch. I’m not a fan of the foam though, as its texture was too dense.
Sweet endings, Breeze At Sand Beach, was a visual treat. I can see this being a hit with kids too! This is the most innovative dessert presentation I’ve come across so far at a Chinese restaurant, where the last course tends to be an afterthought. Shaved Coconut Ice and Mango Puree, a classic combination, takes centre stage. Its accompaniments, chewy Coffee Dumpling,Butter Cookies and Sago Custard Ball lie on a bed of biscuit crumble.
On the whole, this was a satisfying meal. Jade’s service deserves a mention too-it was flawless and attentive.
 
Other Ratings:
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 3  |  
Environment
 3  |  
Service
 3  |  
Clean
 3  |  
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 3

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Categories : Japanese | Seafood

For picture and full review, pls visit:
http://madamechewy.com/2016/03/27/umivino-seafood-wine-bar/
Umi+ Vino, a contemporary European-Japanese Seafood Wine Bar, is one of Emporium Shokuhin’s 8 dining concepts. The focus here is on fresh seafood, which comes directly from the Japanese gourmet grocer’s live seafood market.
The restaurant’s interior is modern and spacious; your conversations would not be easily overhead by others as tables are well-spaced. Service was attentive; staff are prompt to clear the used plates, bring out the next course and refilling our drinks.
We began with a complimentary amuse bouche, Salmon and Leek. Beneath the mountain of fresh leek, lies appetizing marinated raw salmon, on bed of fried leek. I love how the flavour and textures worked-harmoniously.
A La Plancha Hokkaido Scallops. Plump and juicy scallops, enhanced sprinkle of pepper, swim in a pool of Konbu Seeweed broth. The scallops were expertly grilled, and mad delish! A handful of leek is thrown in for that added dimension and textual variation. It was altogether a wonderful warm starter to line the tummy and whet the appetite.
Little Neck Clams in White Wine Broth. Here, fresh clams soak up the intense white wine broth which invigorates the senses. I never knew fennel and rocket could go so well with white wine broths. Great stuff!
Onto the mains! The 65 Degrees Chicken Roulade, with herb potatoes, was somewhat disappointing. Although the chicken breast was tender and moist, it was not sufficiently marinated, resulting in bland meat. The onion thyme jus does add some flavour to the meat; we also advice cutting a piece of the chicken and eating it together with some roasted fennel. You’ll be surprised at the results. Still, this could have been a better dish if the chicken wasn’t so plain.
I’m all about Umi+Vino’s Pan Seared Salmon. The generous slab of fish was skilfully seared to a beautiful pink hue, and its skin, rubbed with various peppers and herbs for that irresistible taste. Its accompaniments, mushroom ragout, polenta cake and juniper form, were enjoyable too. I’m so glad that this gem is part of Umi+Vino’s set lunch (more details towards the end), as I would like to have it again!
I was looking forward to the Homemade Tiramisu with biscotti but sadly it was a letdown. Wayyy to sweet, such that the coffee and alcohol notes were overwhelmed.
Umi+Vino’s Restaurant Week Lunch Menu is priced at $28++ and to be honest, I came without high expectations . However, I was blown away by the substantial portions, quality of ingredients and the execution of most dishes. If you missed Restaurant Week, fret not as Umi+Vino serves 3 and 4 course set lunches for $28++ and $34++ respectively.
 
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 4  |  
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 3  |  
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 4  |  
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 4  |  
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 4

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Hits and Misses Smile Apr 13, 2016   
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Categories : Australian / New Zealand | Bars/Lounges | Hotel | Restaurant | Steaks and Grills

For pictures and full review, pls visit:
http://madamechewy.com/2016/03/27/opus-bar-grill/
Opus Bar and Grill, located at Hilton Hotel, prides itself with it’s marbled dry-aged meats, which are aged from 14-36 days. At the dining area, is a show kitchen, where the meats are dried on a specially commission Himalayan salt tile cabinet.
Opus’s minimalist décor is neat and focuses on warm hues. In the evenings, the lights are dimmed to create an intimate, romantic atmosphere. Service here is unobtrusive and generally fine.
Our meal stared with complimentary fluffy Onion Loaf and butter.
The Amuse Bouche, Seaweed Soup with Smoked Fish tasted…peculiar. Nuff said.
Hokkaido Scallop. A single succulent scallop, paired with blood sausage lies on a bed of smooth green pea cream, capped with miso espuma. This is a combination I’ve never tried before and I’ve gotta say that the chef definitely hit the spot on this one.
The Crustacean Bisque, with a hint of cognac, is superb! I can’t stop helping myself to it.
Oh yes, a nice steak dinner. Opus’s Grain Angus Rib Eye has a seductive smoky char complementing the mouth-watering beefy taste. Perched prettily atop the beef is a huge king prawn, grilled to perfection. A drizzle of black truffle and mushroom sauce elevates this main course to another level.
I’m not a fan of pineapple hence understandably, the Grilled Honey Pineapple didn’t appeal to me. I had to make do with the sidekicks, vanilla ice cream, buttery crumble and rum. Sadly, this was the only dessert option available on the Opus’s Restaurant Week menu. On a side note, most of the dishes reviewed here part of Opus’s main menu.
On the whole, we had a pleasant experience at Opus.
 
Other Ratings:
Taste
 3  |  
Environment
 3  |  
Service
 3  |  
Clean
 3  |  
Price
 3

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Afternoon Tea @ Portico Prime OK Apr 13, 2016   
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Categories : European

In such a frantic city and during such fast-paced times, it’s comforting to know that everything can still stop for tea. Located on the tranquil Dempsey Hill, Portico Prime has recently launch an afternoon tea that will engage the senses and revitalise weary soul.
Diners can choose to enjoy their tête–à–tête session in Portico Prime’s gorgeous interior, or at the patio, amongst lush greenery.

Its evident that much dedication has been put into the conceptualisation of the afternoon tea menu, Portico Favourites, a collection of well-loved dishes amongst Portico’s regular customers, staff and owners. Every item is made from scratch in house, using sustainable ingredients. The fresh herbs and edible flowers are harvested from Portico Prime’s gardens.

Right off the bat, Portico Prime wowed us an appetizer trio of fine dining standards. The Chilled Truffle Scented Angel Hair Pasta is utterly divine! Not only is the truffle flavour prominent, the capellini is topped with a generous portion of avruga caviar and a crunchy kawa ebi shrimp. The Crostini of Asian-cured Salmon Gravlax with coriander creme fraiche was a refreshing change to the usual smoked salmon item typically present in afternoon tea sets. Another exceptional starter is the Skewer of Tiger Prawn, where the crustacean’s natural sweetness is highlighted by compressed melon sheet, tobiko roe and brandy sauce.

The rest of the treats are presented on a pretty wooden stand, complete with faux grass.

Savoury morsels include Chilli Crab Meat Eclair with a spicy kick, fluffy Fish Otak Otak Toast with crispy edges and Squid and Salted Egg Croquette that boast a delicious creamy core encased within a well-fried exterior which remained crisps despite a long photo taking session.

Petite sweets are aplenty, in fact, they occupy 3 of the 4 tiers. The soft, yet dense and smooth Chilled Cheesecake comes with dollops of mango gel and mini passion fruit spheres that pop in the mouth. The Mini Deconstructed Blackforest and Baked Apple Crumble Tart with sweet basil cream were delightful too.

Bandung Rose Cream fills up the buttery short crust pastry in the Strawberry and Lychee Tart while the White Chocolate Bark studded with pistachio nuts and cranberry, captivates with it’s dreamy soft consistency. I’m usually not a fan of carrot cakes (encountered too many dry, boring ones in the past) but Portico Prime’s Homemade Carrot Cake won my heart with its light, moist texture, and interesting pairing of maple cream cheese frosting.

The homemade peanut butter and confetti cookies may look ordinary, but took us by surprise with its marvellous buttery and crumbly texture. I certainly wouldn’t mind having this on a daily basis for breakfast! The Marsala Chai Tea Cake with honey ginger cream and orange confit also left a lasting impression.

The freshly baked California Natural Raisins and Citrus Peel Scones were served with homemade Kaya, seasonal preserves and clotted cream. The highlight here would definitely be the sugar-free Kaya, made using honey that is locally produced. I could do with some plain scones though, as the raisins and citrus peel in the scones distract the taste buds from enjoying the Kaya to the fullest.

Portico Prime’s afternoon tea is available from 3pm-5pm daily (except Monday), is priced at $48 per pax (min 2 to dine) and includes free-flow Twinnings Tea or Dutch Colony Coffee Co. Anyone looking for an extra oomph of luxury can opt for a glass of Torresella Prosecco Brut NV Italy bubbly for an additional $10. Reservations are highly recommended as there are only 30 sets available each day. From now till 30th April 2016, book via Chope to enjoy the afternoon tea at only $38 per person.

Supplementary Information:
Portico Favourites Afternoon Tea
 
Other Ratings:
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 4  |  
Environment
 4  |  
Service
 4  |  
Clean
 4  |  
Price
 4

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Champagne Afternoon Tea Buffet OK Mar 14, 2016   
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Categories : English | Singaporean | Multi-Cuisine | Hotel | Restaurant | High Tea | Seafood | Buffet | Brunch

For pictures and full review, pls visit:
http://madamechewy.com/2016/03/14/champagne-afternoon-tea-buffet-colony-ritz-carlton/
After a grandiose renovation, Ritz Carlton’s Colony opened in September last year, replacing the luxury hotel’s all-day buffet restaurant, Greenhouse. The décor, in hues of black, brown, gold and pops of pastels, is undeniably grand. Dining in such a handsome setting is an experience in itself. You won’t be disappointed with the top-notch service standard here.
Enjoying some leisurely time, albeit temporary can be really therapeutic. Every afternoon from 3.30pm to 5.30pm, sans Sundays, Colony offers 2 types of Champagne afternoon tea: British 3-tiered set where warm pancakes with French vintage caviar take center stage, and smorgasbord high tea. Since both are priced $49++, we went buffet afternoon tea, which we felt gave us more bang for our buck. If you don’t take alcohol, you can swap your flute of Moet & Chandon Brut Imperial Champagne for a glass of freshly squeezed juice.
The savory buffet table comprises of 5 different varieties of open faced sandwiches and a small selection cooked finger food.
Sandwich selections include: Smoked Salmon, Mozzarella and Tomatoes with Guacamole Spread, Asparagus & Cucumber, Crabmeat atop Sautéed Mushrooms and Tuna. My favorite was the succulent crabmeat and fragrant mushroom sandwich.
Other warm savory nibbles are flaky Chicken Pie, Crispy Seafood Fritters, Chicken Floss and Vegetarian Quiche.
Let’s move onto the riotous collection of desserts~
On this plate, there’s Strawberry Textures, Ricotta Cheese Vanilla Mousse with Cinnamon Apple & Pineapple Compote, Cream Horn and Chocolate Banana Tart.
The next plate features Tiramisu, Vanilla Crème Brulee, Lemon Tart with Meringue, and Mixed Berries Compote with Guanaja Chocolate Cream.
My top pick is the Vanilla Crème Brulee, which was smooth and well-balanced, being neither too eggy nor too sweet. It also possessed an exterior which has a resounding crunch of burnt sugar.
Sweet treat’s I didn’t manage to try (because I too stuffed) were the Brownie with Coffee Cream, Carrot Cake, Green Tea Mousse, Orange Caramel Cake, Champagne with Cassis Mousse, Vanilla Cheese Cake and Lychee Tart. Not pictured in the review, are Scones with clotted cream and various condiments, as well as a selection of Nonya Kuehs.
The house made Earl Grey Gelato stole our heart the moment we took our first lick-its flavor is intense and its silky texture glides down the throat like a dream. This is a must try, DO NOT miss it! Other options to vanquish the heat are Gula Melaka Geleto, Rum & Raisin Ice Cream, Vanilla Ice Cream and Mango Raspberry Sorbet.
Free-flow beverage selections include coffees, hot chocolate and teas from Tea Bone Zen Mind.
Colony is an up-market spot for afternoon tea and I was expecting to be blown away, however only a handful of items made an impression. What’s more, there were no labels on the food items; hence you’ll have to guess what they are based upon their looks. One could ask the staff, but it will be much more convenient if there were tags so that guests could make informed choices and select items according to their taste preferences. In a buffet, I’m sure everyone would prefer to save precious stomach space for items that they like.
 
Recommended Dish(es):  creme brulee,crabmeat sandwich with sauteed mushrooms
 
Table Wait Time: 0 minute(s)


Date of Visit: Mar 02, 2016 

Other Ratings:
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 3  |  
Environment
 5  |  
Service
 5  |  
Clean
 3  |  
Price
 3

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