Dinner @ Peng’s Restaurant & Catering

April 27, 2018 in Chinese by thywhaleliciousfay

After our last enjoyable zi char session, my colleagues and I were off to another. This time, one of my colleagues recommended his favorite hunt; Peng’s Restaurant. A Teochew restaurant set in the neighbourhood of Hougang.

Making reservation for dinner on Wednesday meant we went straight from work. Reaching slightly after 8pm, we were able to find a parking lot easily. Though one should note the restaurant occupied a unit in the row of shophouses that’s nestled within a private housing estate. So yes, if one is taking the public transport, it would be a 15 minutes walk from Hougang MRT station.

And from the menu (pages 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7), my colleagues and I ordered:-

1) Peng’s cold dish $38 (small) (topmost) – Normally, I wouldn’t order the cold dish since it more of a wedding banquet dish to me. But the colleague who recommended Peng’s Restaurant strongly recommended this. And on the plate, we had jellyfish, baby octopus, prawn, ngo hiang and century egg. And I loved this dish for the ngo hiang!

2) Liver roll, $10 (small) (above) – My colleague again said this is a must order because it’s their signature, and so we did. Served together with the cold dish (item 1), I got to say this was impressive! I thought it was going to be just a (puny) roll of purely liver, but apparently it wasn’t.

3) Spinach (sauted), $15 (above)

4) Oyster omelette, $12 (small) (above) – Loved how fluffy the omelette was.

5) Chai-poh kway teow (pan fry), $15 (small) (above) – I would definitely recommend one to order this! My first in having this, and its texture is unlike any that I had before.

6) Teochew braised sliced duck, $12 (small) (above)

7) Traditional braised pork with steamed buns, $15 (small) (above)

8) Pomfret, season price (above) – And Teochews are famous for knowing their fishes, and of course for cooking them. So it be a crime if we didn’t order any fish dish. And for choice of cooking, we naturally went with steamed! So good.

9) Sweet yam with pumpkin & gingko nuts, $5 (single serving) (above)

Despite the restaurant’s (slight) inaccessibility (mainly cause they are located in Hougang and I don’t really venture into that area of Singapore. lol), I honestly enjoyed the dinner at Peng’s Restaurant. Actually I am sure my colleagues did too. So yes, I would definitely recommend Peng’s Restaurant! Great Teochew dishes at affordable prices. Would definitely head back (one day soon) to try the other dishes on their extensive menu.

30 Lorong 1 Realty Park, Singapore
6289 6975, Facebook
Overall: 7.5
Opening hours:-
Food/Beverage: 8
Mon – Wed, Fri – Sun: 11:00 – 14:30 (Lunch)
Ambience: 7
Mon – Wed, Fri – Sun: 17:30 – 22:30 (Dinner)
Value: 8
Service: 7
* Closed on Thur

Dinner @ Lerouy

April 17, 2018 in French by thywhaleliciousfay

Due to my heavy traveling schedule in January and February, the earliest I could check out Lerouy with my IGGF (InstaGram GirlFriend) was March. And yes, call us kiasu because we made our reservation at least 1.5 months ahead via Chope. Keke. And to secure our online reservation, I was required to submit my credit card details.

And a little about head chef Christophe Lerouy… He was formerly the executive chef at Alma by Juan Amador. And I read that he was the chef responsible for bringing Alma its first Michelin star. But of course, he left and partnered with chef-owner Willin Low of Wild Rocket and chef-owner Gwen Lim of Patisserie G to open Lerouy in November 2017.

Remember how I mentioned (earlier in the post that) we made our reservation 1.5 months in advanced? An impromptu work trip had me needing to reschedule our dinner at the very last minute. Sob. So when my IGGF and I finally arrived at Lerouy, I couldn’t help but wonder if the unfavorable seats which we were assigned to was because of that.

The only table in the restaurant was a counter top. And because the unit which the restaurant occupied was long, the counter which was designed to stretch from one end of the room to the other meant parties seated at the two (far) ends won’t get to witness much kitchen action as that happened at the middle of the space. And yes, my IGGF and I were assigned counter-end seats. Sob.

The menu at Lerouy was simple; A piece of paper with the prices (5 courses at $98 and 7 courses at $128). And from the menu, my IGGF and I ordered:-

1) Grand, $128 comprised of:-

(A) Bread, Complimentary (above) – Sourdough with 3 types of butter. Charcoal, beetroot and natural butters. We really loved the bread.

(B) Canape #1 (above) – Pita bread with red pepper cream and shrimp (sakura ebi).

(C) Canape #2 (above) – Squid ink cracker with seafood foam, cured egg yolk, salmon roe and smoked fish hidden within the foam. I was busy taking pictures since the bread and 2 canapés were served at the same time when the staff came up to us and said we should eat this first (and fast) before the foam deflat. Oops.

(D1) Dish #1 (above) – Beef tartare topped with miso ice cream.

(D2) Dish #1 (above) – And because I don’t eat beef, I was served scallop carpaccio instead!

(E) Dish #2 (above) – Huge meaty oyster with a thin layer of lardo on top and foie gras cubes in hearty Jerusalem artichoke broth. Nice.

(F) Dish #3 (above) – Tiger prawn with yuzu gel, pistachio cream and cauliflower.

(G) Dish #4 (above) – Salt-baked cabbage, pork crackling and sauce made with garlic and pesto. And yes, with a thin layer of lardo too. Somehow, I couldn’t help but be reminded of MUME’s burnt cabbage dish. Somewhat similar (in ingredients used) but not (in taste).

(H) Dish #5 (above) – Tooth fish in vinegary squid-ink sauce and topped with vegetables and raspberry. I didn’t really like this though.

(I) Dish #6 (above) – Pigeon with chestnut crust and raspberry purée sauce. Definitely a first for my pigeon dish to be served in this manner. Wasn’t quite used to it cause the chestnut was a little too empowering.

(J) Dish #7 (above) – Passionfruit tart.

(K) Petit fours (above) – Chocolate truffle, chocolate chip, and (mini) yuzu madeleine.

Unfortunately, the meal failed to impress. And that was disappointing because I read so many raving (instagram) posts about the place prior to our dinner appointment.

First, it was our assigned seats. And by that, it’s not just about us being placed at the end. The restaurant was running at full house that night and it seemed like they may have accepted 1 too many reservation because it was way too cramped. At least at our end of the counter where my IGGF and I were literally joining the group of 5 (that’s beside us).

Food wise… It was good but not to the extent where we were blown away. I guess it didn’t help that we came to Lerouy with high expectations created from the hype. My IGGF and I also noted ingredients were repeated way too often to the extent we felt ingredients were… Recycled? An example would be the Yuzu gel. We remembered it because it was really sour. And the yuzu gel made its appearance at least twice thereafter.

But despite the above, I would not totally rule out Lerouy and say the restaurant is not worth checking out. Food was pretty affordable and service was good. My IGGF and I were surprised when head chef Lerouy popped his head out of the restaurant to say goodbye to us. Maybe give the restaurant abit more time?

3 Stanley Street, Singapore
6221 3639, Website, Facebook
Overall: 7
Opening hours:-
Food/Beverage: 7
Mon – Fri : 12:00 – 14:00 (Lunch)
Ambience: 7
Mon – Sat : 18:30 – 21:30 (Dinner)
Value: 7
Service: 7
* Closed on Sun

Dinner @ Candlenut [Revisit]

April 14, 2018 in Asian by thywhaleliciousfay

Yup!!! My string of re-visits continues. It was a very belated birthday celebration for me by my girlfriends, and I got to choose the venue. So yes, I requested for us to dine at Candlenut. Since my last visit in 2014, Candlenut has relocated to Dempsey and earned a Michelin star yearly since the first edition of Michelin Guide Singapore (2016).

Located in COMO Dempsey, the restaurant is fairly accessible. Just a 5 to 8 minutes walk from the bus stop (that’s right in front of Dempsey). My girlfriend who drove feedback it was fairly easy to find a parking lot too.

In a group of 5, we arrived at Candlenut on a Saturday evening. And from the menu (pages 1, 2), we ordered:-

1) Crackers, Complimentary (above) – Subsequent additional bowl is chargeable.

2) Kueh pie tee, $12 (4 cups) (above, left) – Homemade shell, braised local turnip, pork belly, prawns. And since there’s 5 of us, the staff assisted to add 1 kueh pie tee shell at $3.

3) Charcoal grilled snake river farm kurobuta pork neck satay, $16 (4 skewers) (above, right) – With kicap manis glaze. Similarly, we ordered an extra stick for $4.

4) Itek tim soup, $14 (above) – Local duck meatball, salted mustard cabbage, cherry tomato, taro stem. And the portion was meant as 1 bowl per person.

5) Blue swimmer crab curry, $30 (above) – Turmeric, galangal, kaffir lime leaf.

6) Buah keluak of braised local chicken, $22 (above) – With peranakan signature black nut sambal.

7) King tiger prawn, $28 (above) – Gula melaka cocount sauce, lemongrass, Thai basil.

8) Baked cod fish fillet, $28 (above) – With kicap manis glaze.

9) Sambal baby sweet potato leaves, $16 (above) – With dried shrimp.

10) Brown rice, $3 (above) – For a bowl of brown rice, I must say the amount given is appalling. The bowl containing the rice wasn’t big, yet it was not filled to the brim! The bowl was only half filled. Come on…

11) Steamed caramel banana cake, $14Banana compote, gula melaka ice cream.

12) Candlenut’s ice kachang, $15 (above) – Azuki red beans, bandung, rose and pandan shaved ice.

13) Candlenut’s classic chendol cream, $12 (above) – Homemade pandan jelly, gula melaka.

14) Buah keluak ice cream, $15 (above) – Salted caramel, valrhona warm chocolate espuma, chilli.

Since photographs can be deceiving, I’m going to be really honest by saying it upfront that the portion was ridiculously small. The portion works for small groups (and by that, I mean pair) since one could thus enjoy variety by getting to order many dishes (in order) to fill one’s stomach. Ie, the ‘small portion’ which only came in one size (ie, no small, medium or large) didn’t work for us since we were in a big group. I didn’t enjoy the meal as much since I was constantly worrying if I would deprive my friends of sampling the dish if I took more.

So yes, I didn’t think the meal was value-for-money since it was pretty pricey for the small serving. But price aside, the food was good as I last remembered. Would I recommend Candlenut? Well… It was an enjoyable meal though the ‘small portion’ certainly left a deep impression. Not in a good way, if you were still wondering. But I guess an option to go around it would be to opt for their ah-ma-kase menu that’s $88 per head!

17A Dempsey Road, COMO Dempsey, Singapore
1800 304 2288, Website, Facebook
Overall: 7
Opening hours:-
Food/Beverage: 7
Mon – Sun : 12:00 – 15:00 (Lunch)
Ambience: 7
Mon – Thur, Sun : 18:00 – 22:00 (Dinner)
Value: 6
Fri – Sat : 18:00 – 23:00 (Dinner)
Service: 7