Hua Ting 华厅’s SG50 6-course Lunch on 3Nov2015

vegetarian goose

vegetarian goose

a good younger friend wanted to buy lunch on 3.11.2015.

huating SG50 6-course lunch menu

hua ting SG50 6-course lunch menu

i wanted to try the hua ting 华厅 SG50 6-course lunch (not shy la..haha!) so suggested the place. ^^

i have not been to hua ting maybe >10yrs? not sure.

used to come here when i was having the millenium & copthorne’s ala carte card which gives 50% discounts for 2pax. liked the braised goose especially but that was like for a very short window & never had that since.

so we mostly had braised duck & also the lobster noodles. but like i was telling my friend, lobster noodles now we can have it anywhere, & 2 of the best for me are tunglok signature & xin cuisine. 🙂

we had a vegetarian goose starter.

mushroom fritters & seafood salad

#1 mushroom fritters & seafood salad

first course was the mushroom fritters & seafood salad.

mushroom fritters

#1 mushroom fritters

mushroom fritters were good, crispy batter & tasty mushrooms.

prawns & scallops salad

#1 prawns & scallops salad

prawns & scallops salad was competent.

overall not a particularly fine starter, but i guess a good restaurant standard, competent.

sweet & sour soup 酸辣汤

#2 sweet & sour soup 酸辣汤

second course was sweet & sour soup 酸辣汤.

this soup is not my favourite. still i remembered it was a rather tasty soup here eons ago. well, dishes change & tastebuds change too.

sweet & sour soup 酸辣汤

#2 sweet & sour soup 酸辣汤

i felt it was a bit below par for a hua ting standard restaurant.

c/w what i had at xin cuisine recently, at least that was fragrant, tasty & chokeful of ingredients as well.

even the colour & look were much better. 🙂

sea perch & minced pork tofu

#3 sea perch & minced pork tofu

i always like sea perch. the taste & texture is like cod. this one sat on an emarld tofu with minced pork sauce.

sea perch & minced pork tofu

#3 sea perch & minced pork tofu

photo looks ok, and overall the taste of both the sea perch & the minced pork tofu were good too.

it was a good restaurant standard. we both thought that the combination was not the best matching – a quite robust minced pork tofu competing with a sea perch.

c/w min jiang’s steamed sea perch, simple & dignified, somehow hua ting’s version look a bit like food from past decades.

lamb rack

#4 lamb rack

the lamb rack was ok. meat was tender, sauce was a bit overpowering. there was a bit of gamey taste which the sauce helped mask.

lamb rack

#4 lamb rack

i would say very competent dish. a bit of tacky decorations?

prawn noodles

#5 prawn noodles

prawn noodles? for me that was really quite below par.

prawn noodles

prawn noodles

alan’s S$5 “why eat har” prawn noodles beat this hands down.

prawn noodles

prawn noodles

so would any at tunglok signature & xin cuisine.

even my own big prawn noodles (copy tunglok’s) better than this la….lol,,,^^

mango pudding dessert

#6 mango pudding dessert

dessert was a mango pudding with fruits.

mango pudding dessert

#6 mango pudding dessert

overall, it was a very enjoyable lunch, catching up with my friend about his business & family.

food was pretty good i supposed considering it’s a S$50pax 6-course set with sea perch & lamb, but really far below the expectations i had for a restaurant like hua ting. so either the restaurant standard has fallen far behind or they are not giving representative dishes for the set (which defeats the purpose of having a promo).

c.h.e.f andy

Really Nice Fine Chinese Dinner @ Xin Cuisine on 1Oct2015

this tea infused duck is the best roast duck i tried!!

S$28 – this tea infused duck is the best roast duck i tried!!

wife & i went to xin cuisine for dinner on 1.10.2015.^^

though this is a palate restaurant, we had never use the amex palate privileges here before today.

the last time we had a superb fine dining here was 2.5yrs ago on 31.3.2013 for a ANZ set promotion.

excellent lie tong 例汤

S$9 – excellent lie tong 例汤

in fact, soup looked quite pathetic but it tasted phenomenal!!!

i think this excellent lie tong 例汤 should be offered & served in a nice earthen pot like at tunglok or say lei gardens in hk instead of an individual per portion serving. at the very least, even if it is served per portion, it should be done in a nice bowl instead of a jack’s place kind of soup serving!

excellent lie tong 例汤

S$9 – excellent lie tong 例汤

must try to do this lie tong at home.

this tea infused duck is the best roast duck i tried!!

S$28 – this tea infused duck is the best roast duck i tried!!

the duck & veg were just as phenomenal!

this tea infused duck is the best roast duck i tried!! definitely better than the very nice duck at canton paradise. 🙂

this tea infused duck is the best roast duck i tried!!

S$28 – this tea infused duck is the best roast duck i tried!!

the tea fragrance was so lingering! amazing! restaurant manager said it was because the hk chef not only smoked but also marinated the duck in tea.

maybe i will try my tea infused duck again…

just super! preserved vege with chinese small cabbage & egg plant

S$18 – just super! preserved vege with chinese small cabbage & egg plant

this preserved vege with chinese small cabbage & egg plant was super also.

just super! preserved vege with chinese small cabbage & egg plant

S$18 – just super! preserved vege with chinese small cabbage & egg plant

the flavours of the preserved vegetables with the light soy sauce, not salty, was inviting.

just super! preserved vege with chinese small cabbage & egg plant

S$18 – just super! preserved vege with chinese small cabbage & egg plant

a very fine vegetable dish. 🙂

big prawn crispy noodles

S$14 – big prawn crispy noodles

the big prawn crispy noodles was great, as expected.

big prawn crispy noodles

S$14 – big prawn crispy noodles

crispy noodles & broth all good.

lobster noodles also good

S$22 – lobster noodles also good

lobster noodles also good, but broth tasted perhaps just a wee bit not as good as tunglok’s.

lobster noodles also good

S$22 – lobster noodles also good

overall still a very good dish.

i tried my own king prawns braised noodles previously which tasted pretty good too.

i served this at a 11pax homecooked lunch on 15.10.2015 & everyone loved it!^^

this a really nice enjoyable dinner & with 50% for 2pax amex palate discounts, dinner was just S$69.

for me, the dishes were very fine, the soup was wonderful, & the duck quite divine, delicate & lingering tea flavours, and so was the veg. the prawn noodles & lobsters noodles were more ordinary dishes but very well executed, real good class.

service was ok, except at the beginning server took inordinately long time to respond to taking orders (even after acknowledging which already took long time) when there were just 3 tables including our own.

c.h.e.f andy

Protected: RI Friends G20 13pax Dinner at Peach Gardens @ Metropolis on 26May2015

This content is password protected. To view it please enter your password below:

RI Friends G20 13pax Dinner at Peach Gardens @ Metropolis on 26May2015

steamed soon hock

steamed soon hock

had a fun dinner get together among RI friends at peach garden @ metropolis on 26.5.2015. ^^

happened to be the same friend who organised G20 dinner 2 years ago also at peach garden (@ novena), aug2013.

come to think of it, this was the 3rd time we had G20 dinners at peach garden in as many years. the most recent was at peach garden @ miramar on 30.6.2014, almost 1 year ago.

many of us had not been to metropolis. 1 who had been associated it with MOE as he is a professor at NUS. for another in a brokerage firm, it was CDP that came to mind.

i parked at the openair carpark before metropolis building, very well located next to the bus stop & MRT. there was a lift that took me to level 2 right by peach garden. 🙂

place was new so looked somewhat better than previously at novena & also at miramar. the ala carte buffet menu with 1 free for 3 paying is for steamboat, so we decided to take the ala carte menu instead.

roast pork烧肉

roast pork烧肉

roast pork烧肉

roast pork烧肉

we ordered the roast pork烧肉, a recommended dish. it was good, same standard as the usual places like crystal jade, imperial trasure, tunglok & canton paradise.

roast duck 明炉烧鸭

roast duck 明炉烧鸭

roast duck 明炉烧鸭

roast duck 明炉烧鸭

we were deciding between peking duck & roast duck. they were same price , i think S$56 for 1 duck. more went for roast duck, which was also my preference.

roast duck was good too, very flavourful & tender, & skin was crisp. it was no better than canton paradise. i think the latter still more fragrant & tasty, my gold standard. haha!^^

steamed soon hock

steamed soon hock

steamed soon hock

steamed soon hock

soon hock was S$9/100g. we had 12pax (+ one who came a bit later on), so we ordered a 1kg fish.

i always preferred steam for a very fresh live fish to deep-fried, which is like second best. soon hock was excellently done, very tender, smooth, tasty.

salted egg prawn

salted egg prawn

i was quite wary i.e. distrustful (& weary) of peach garden’s wasabi prawns. it once came with a ton of green wasabi mayo. but looking back at the 2013 photos actually it was not bad. anyhow we ordered the salted egg prawn, which was very good too, though not quite my favourite. 🙂

claypot tofu with naibai 奶白

claypot tofu with naibai 奶白

claypot tofu with naibai 奶白

claypot tofu with naibai 奶白

a friend ordered the claypot tofu with naibai 奶白. a simple dish but really quite well executed!^^

chinese cabbage with golden mushrooms

chinese cabbage with golden mushrooms

chinese cabbage with golden mushrooms

chinese cabbage with golden mushrooms

& we had the chinese cabbage (jinbai 津白i think) with enoki mushrooms. again a very simple dish & very tastefully (both sight & taste) done indeed! 🙂

egg white dried scallops fried rice

egg white dried scallops fried rice

egg white dried scallops fried rice

egg white dried scallops fried rice

egg white dried scallops fried rice

egg white dried scallops fried rice

egg white dried scallops fried rice is quite a standard dish in many good chinese restaurants. i used to love it a lot at imperial treasure nanbei, especially with the xo chilli sauce.

somehow this one didn’t wow, quite average to me, not much wok hae. i think i can do better than that myself. my favourite now is the spicy seafood fried rice at crystal jade la mian xiaolongbao.^^

fried kuayteow

fried kuayteow

a friend managed to reach when we were down to the second last dish, so he ordered a fried kuay teow. looked ok i guess, like the usual fare.

芝麻豆沙锅饼

芝麻豆沙锅饼

芝麻豆沙锅饼

芝麻豆沙锅饼

the sesame red bean pancake was another standard dish. it was done pretty nicely – look & certainly taste also.

custard bun 流沙包

custard bun 流沙包

custard bun 流沙包

custard bun 流沙包

the last item was the custard bun. pretty good but i kind of tired of them (like i was tired of the crispy charsiew bao at timhowan).

a very enjoyable dinner & evening with friends.

the price came to S$414 nett for 13pax after a 15% credit card discount=S$32nett. of course we did not order much food too. we did not order expensive ingredients so these were average dishes but very well executed. price was ok, about there i guess.

c.h.e.f andy

Enjoyable Dinner at Il Lido on 12Apr2015

grilled octopus

grilled octopus

had delightful 2pax dinner with wife at il lido on 12.4.2015.^^

had not been to il lido like 5yrs maybe? recently daughter was here & shared photos on family whatsapp, so we decided to come try ourselves after so long. 🙂

il lido terrace

il lido terrace

il lido view

il lido view

il lido view

il lido view

we came just before sundown & sat outdoor. not so humid this evening & really pleasant terrace ambience & wonderful dinner.^^

amuse bouche 1= mushroom cappuccino

amuse bouche 1= mushroom cappuccino

amuse bouche 1= mushroom cappuccino

amuse bouche 1= mushroom cappuccino

we were served 2 amuse bouche.

first was a mushroom cappuccino/foam. there were mushroom bits at the bottom & some balsamic cream & some barley etc on top.  taste was intense, fabulous. texture combination excellent too.

wife said what the server liked to hear, that this was better than jaan’s.

for me though, nothing beats jaan’s cepes mushroom tea amuse bouche. but since jaan’s was taken out of feed at raffles, and i am never going to pay full price for the degustation dinner at jaan, this would be the next best thing, i guess! & its close too!^^

amuse bouche 2

amuse bouche 2

second amuse bouche – crispy cheese risotto…quite ok i guess, but no impressions vs the mushroom foam.

bread basket

bread basket

quite good bread basket.

grilled octopus

grilled octopus

grilled octopus

grilled octopus

we ordered a grilled octopus to share.

it’s pretty good really. octopus was tender (like sous vide). there were some sausages.

prawn & uni tagliolini

prawn & uni tagliolini

for the mains, we basically go with the restaurant favourites & there server’s recommendations, and ordered the scampi & sea urchin taglioni & the black cod, asparagus & sea urchin. both were featured in the degustation set menu. 🙂

prawn & uni tagliolini

prawn & uni tagliolini

prawn & uni tagliolini

prawn & uni tagliolini

the scampi & uni tagliolini was tasty, not intense but subtle & pleasing. tagliolini though was too soft NOT al dente.

it had expensive ingredients like uni but overall taste & experience wise, i would not consider it better than most pastas i do myself.

black cod

black cod

black cod

black cod

black cod was great!

will try the other signature dish, the bone marrow crusted angus beef tenderloin next time.

gelato & sorbet

gelato & sorbet

coconut gelato

coconut gelato

passion fruit sorbet

passion fruit sorbet

we had a passionfruit sorbet & a coconut gelato to share. sorbet was tangy & excellent, gelato no coconut flavours nothing like the delicious coconut ice cream on 雪中情怀mango pomelo dessert we had at tunglok.

dinner cost S$100nett include 1 glass of white.

it’s really quite excellent ambience & food for a couples dinner. 🙂

c.h.e.f andy

Expensive Below-par Food @ Lei Gardens Times Square on 5Apr2015

venus clams with sweet peas

venus clams with sweet peas

had expensive below par lunch today at lei gardens @ times square on 5.4.2015.

this was so different from the excellent lunch i had at 2 michelin star lei gardens at tsai yee street洗衣街 ‎mongkok outlet in 2013.

they had 2 seating & we booked 11.30am. we went to have a short walk at the mid-level escalators & stanley street & decided to eat some small portion of roast goose at yat lok.

so maybe we were a bit full & not great appetite.

lei gardens times square

lei gardens times square

service was quite polite actually. these days service pretty ok though they were always busy to have much time with you.

lie tong 鸡骨草例汤

lie tong 鸡骨草例汤

we had a lie tong 鸡骨草例汤. HK$148 for 1pot, maybe should have the 1/2pot HK$98.

it was ok i guess, but these days, my helper made such great soup on the slow cooker at home. also my memory of 鸡骨草例汤 at imperial treasure nanbei was that it was such a tasty soup this one really paled in comparison.

chicken feet in abalone sauce

chicken feet in abalone sauce

we ordered the hicken feet braised in abalone sauce HK$42. wife & son preferred the usual dimsum deep-fried chicken feet which we found out was just hk$32. 🙂

my son said he did not realise how nice the dimsum at timhowan were until compared with the much poorer ones here. in fact i think all of crystal jade, imperial treasure, tunglok & canton paradise are better.

radish pastry

radish pastry

the radish pastry was ok.

char siew fun cheong

char siew fun cheong

the char siew fun cheong was poor. skin was very doughy & tough.

noodles in lobster broth

noodles in lobster broth

we took the recommendations which had the venus clams with sweet beans (top photo) & the noodles in lobster broth combination for HK$298.

the venus clams was the only dish that was good. the lobster broth noodles was tasteless, really a surprise for me. somehow the food did not agree with us.

c.h.e.f andy

Below Par (for the Price) 4pax Dinner @ Restaurant Home on 25Jun2014

mini buddha jump over the wall

mini buddha jump over the wall

was truly disappointed with the S$59.80+ ala carte buffet at restaurant home on 25.6.2014. 😦

probably had to do with wrong expectations, as the award winning chef tan yong hua has so many accolades, not least the first singaporean chef to win against iron Chef Thailand. also the price of S$59.80+pax would be quite ok if the dishes were good & not just mediocre.

mini buddha jump over the wall

mini buddha jump over the wall

#1 the mini buddha-jump-over-the-wall(bjotw) had a light decent soup base (not intense & maybe that was intended), a good flower mushroom, a quite small abalone which was ok & lots of chicken plus a cheap fish maw (not 花胶). i supposed average ingredients were quite ok if the soup was really tasty. it was not a bad soup. 1 of us commented any lie tong (例汤) soup of the day by tunglok or imperial treasure would beat this, so there was nothing much to say.

8-head abalone, mushroom & spinach

8-head abalone, mushroom & spinach

8-head abalone, mushroom & spinach

8-head abalone, mushroom & spinach

#2 the bite/texture & flavour of the 8-head abalone & also the flower mushroom were quite good. the spinach was just average, and perhaps it was more the method of preparation, but any brown sauce braised chinese abalones (ah yat, tunglok, xin restaurant etc) would be a better overall taste experience than this (not a better abalone). i guess this dish would be above average to good whereas the mini bjotw was just average.

salmon & maguro sashimi & mayo prawns

salmon & maguro sashimi & mayo prawns

#3 the salmon & maguro (tuna) sashimi were ok, the lobster was buried in mayo. a wasabi or salted egg prawn would be better. the dish was ok but nondescript.

herbal drunken prawns

herbal prawns

#4 the prawns were big & fresh & quite tasty. i guess it was about as good as a herbal prawn could be. it was not a dish i would much fancy though, unlike the wow factor with the golden prawns at mikuni.

deep-fried soon hock

deep-fried red garoupa

#5 the deep-fried red garoupa was competent, good even. but as 1 diner commented, it was no better than ah yat though the garoupa tasted better than soon hock. i also thought it was not much better than peach garden miramar, not counting ban heng’s deep-fried soon hock which was very average.

roast duck

roast duck

#6 the roast duck was to me about the best dish for the evening (& it was not among the chef selected dishes above limited to 1 serving). skin was crispy, meat was tender, moist not overcooked & very flavourful.

cabmeat brocoli

crabmeat brocoli

#7 the crabmeat broccoli was another better dish, looked good, tasted great, more like the standards of tunglok or imperial treasure.

sichuan beef with rice crackers

sichuan beef with rice crackers

rice crackers (for sichuan beef)

rice crackers (for sichuan beef)

#8 the sichuan spicy fish fillet (i forgot to take a photo) was ok edible not good but as 水煮鱼 it was a disaster! even the NUS canteen foodgle hub just above average S$6 水煮鱼 was better than this.

#9 the sichuan spicy beef with rice crackers was worse than the fish! beef was bad by any standard, the sinewy quite tasteless like rubber type. even the artificial tenderised beef at coffeeshop zi char stalls were better! not sure the thai type rice crackers qualified as 锅巴. if it were any zi char stall, i guess one could argue that’s just a choice of words.

osmanthus jelly

osmanthus jelly

#10 the osmanthus jelly was pretty good, i guess not so far off timhowan which was better, but it’s just jelly.

fruit jelly

rosella jelly with diced mango

#11 the rosella jelly was ok for a jelly but really a poor dessert c/w any of tunglok, xin, imperial treasure, i guess better than having red beans & green beans at ah yat.

#12 3 of us ordered the almond jelly (no photos). this was good restaurant standard.

i had earlier booked en japanese dining @ alocasia to try their S$56++pax queen crab wagyu ala carte buffet, but had canceled that to try this new restaurant. it was a manifestly wrong decision to take this ala carte buffet. it was not near as good as peach garden miramar’s (S$30.80++pax 3 paying 1 free) which was 1/2 the price. this 4pax dinner cost S$264nett. my recent fabulous 4pax dinner at mikuni cost only S$195nett. there was totally no comparison at all regards the food! 😦

1 Facebook friend who dined there recently commented that the ala carte orders –  lychee wood smoked peking duck, claypot steamed fish, tofu egg, braised pork knuckles vermicelli in oba leaf – were pretty good. i guess a sound opinion & i am not totally ruling out trying ala carte here if there are takers among my friends(but i think not likely), but the ala carte buffet is totally out for me! & i think really the organisation is still not in groove to put up this below par level of cuisine for a S$59.80 ala carte buffet. 😦

c.h.e.f andy