Early Anniversary Mini Kaiseki Dinner @ Maru 丸 on 31May2018

weekday promos

had early anniversary dinner with wife at maru 丸 at icon village 12 gopeng street on 31.5.2018. ^^

unagi & aburi hotate don lunch

the bar restaurant offers various promotions that look quite interesting…

maru omakase set dinner 1 for 1 at S$78 inc 250ml free sake

excellent food & value.

we took the special 8-course mini kaiseki  1 for 1 S$78 mini kaiseki inc free 250ml sake 👍some more…

250ml free sake

& the sake was good standard. this alone would cost like S$18 easily..

#1 sensai 前菜edamame, tuna, marinated octopus

the appetizer plate included a tuna ceviche, marinated octopus & edamame.

the  tuna was very good…the octopus was tough…edamame the usual…

#2 oyster

not the very large oyster at hachi, but neverthelessthe oyster was very fresh & sweet, not big, quite ok, and came with a tasty tomato sherbet..

#3 5 kinds of sashimi – maguro, salmon, amaebi, tai, hamachi

#3 5 kinds of sashimi – maguro, salmon, amaebi, tai, hamachi

sashimi was nothing special, still quite good standard, fresh & sweet.

there were 5 kinds = sashimi – maguro, salmon, amaebi, tai, hamachi, one piece each for the 2 of us… 🙂

#4 kappa – grilled fish cheeks

#4 kappa – grilled fish cheeks

the shio (salt) grilled kappa (fish cheeks) very good 👍👍

wife found it slightly fishy, so took only 1/2…i took all of it & her 1/2 piece too. lol!

#5 sushi (aburi salmon & anago)+ #6 bara chirashi don

the aburi sushi & barachirashi don were served together.

sushi (aburi salmon & anago)

the aburi sushi were great…salmon was good & of course anago sushi 👍was special. sauce though was a bit sweet.

the bara chirashi don was ok. fish was fresh though odd cuts letfovers like any bara, the sushi rice not that great.

& there was a #7 soup…it was good too, nice tasty clear soup with asari (la la clams)…

#8 yuzu sorbet

yuzu sorbet lagi shiok!…very flavourful & refreshing. great dessert ite….

bara chirashi don

a very enjoyable early anniversary dinner with wife…

this place i will definitely come back again..don’t mind to take this mini kaiseki set again, alaos to try the weekday special & lunch specials..

c.h.e.f andy

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Maru Dine & Bar  丸 

Address:

Contact:

 

Gourmet Carnival Atmosphere @ Savour 2015 on 28Mar2015

entry queue at savour (26-29mar2015)

entry queue at savour (26-29mar2015)

my wife’s friend bought us a pair entry tickets to savour 2015 on 28mar2015.

there was a queue at the entrance at 6pm. the entrance tickets were S$69 for each person and had S$30 stored-value on each ticket. i guess that means entrance fee was S$39. i think we topped up another S$60 each.

i guess i had read about savour but never really paid attention. now that we were going, i kind of read up on the participating restaurants, decided on a few to try.

ku de ta's duck + angus beef S$18

ku de ta’s duck + angus beef S$18

one of the restaurant stalls we were interested was ku de ta.

wife not interested in belly pork (which is so common these days in fine dining), so we picked the sous vide duck + angus beef plate for S$18.

ku de ta's angus beef

ku de ta’s angus beef

beef ok but then we can do anytime. no attraction.

ku de ta kiosk

ku de ta kiosk

ku de ta's duck

ku de ta’s duck

duck pretty good too. again you can buy smoked duck from ntuc, mmmm, even qoo10.

ku de ta kiosk

ku de ta kiosk

certainly competent. no great motivation to go sky high & pay sky high.

crowd at stellar's kiosk

crowd at stellar’s kiosk

the other restaurant stall we wanted to try was stellar at 1-altitutde. used to be on amex palate but seems that no more. i wouldn’t really go there w/o palate discounts.

there was a good crowd. we were early at about 6pm. later the crowd & queue were longer & we did not have enough interest to stand in queue for other food.

stellar's wagyu burger

stellar’s wagyu burger

i thought stellar’s wagyu burger was quite good, and S$18 price was quite fine too. when i was in the queue, a young mother was just ahead of me. she had bought 1 already & was ordering 2 more & telling the server she wanted it more cooked as her young child could not take the medium rare.

bought 1 & ordered 2 more. that gave me some confidence haha!^^

stellar's wagyu burger2

stellar's wagyu burger

stellar’s wagyu burger

wagyu & onions were tasty with simple seasoning. the brioche also quite nice. 1 of my wife’s friend couple came so we shared & had a quarter each. 🙂

stellar's kiosk

stellar’s kiosk

i quite liked this wagyu burger. it’s something that worked for me.^^

savour 2015 ambience

savour 2015 ambience

we were at the open space in front of the F1 pit building.

the flyer in the background.

savour 2015 ambience

savour 2015 ambience

great ambience & vibes!

pea veloute - UK's 2 michelin midsummer house

pea veloute – UK’s 2 michelin midsummer house

we decided to try another stall. this time we picked midsummer house, a UK 2 michelin star restaurant.

pea veloute - UK's 2 michelin midsummer house

pea veloute – UK’s 2 michelin midsummer house

the pea veloute was pretty ok. i think it was S$12. always like pea soup.

UK's 2 michelin midsummer house

UK’s 2 michelin midsummer house

that was our last tasting as we were not attracted to the other food, and the crowd & queue built up after that. 🙂

savour 26-29mar2015

savour 26-29mar2015

view of the stalls below from level 2 of the F1 pit building where the sake & gourmet grocery stalls were located.

japanese yuzu

japanese yuzu

we bought some japanese yuzu. later, i used the skin from 1 yuzu to make a yuzu pepper. very nice!^^

japanese strawberries

japanese strawberries

gourmet vegetables?

gourmet vegetables?

so we didn’t spend much of the S$90 each, and used up all the money buying groceries, like japanese strawberries, yuzu, italian iberico ham etc.

would i come for this again? for myself, probably not. don’t think my wife interested either. with some friends, not so hot but don’t mind doing too. there were other food we could try. 🙂

c.h.e.f andy

A Tale of 2 Dinners Part 2 The Good Ending – A Marvellous Kaiseki Dinner @ Gettoan on 26Jan2015

excellent uni

excellent uni

after the excellent ryokan breakfast this morning, we now had cause to anticipate a nice kaiseki dinner on 26.1.2015.

kaiseki menu

kaiseki menu

this time we were not disappointed.

hence i had termed these 2 dinners on 25.1.2015 & 26.1.2015 “a tale of 2 dinners”

what a difference a menu change made.

see the sub-par dinner on 25.1.2015

with a good kaiseki dinner & breafast, Gettoan 月灯庵 did fully meet our expectations of a good ryokan.

umeshu梅酒

umeshu梅酒

for this evening, dinner started with umeshu梅酒.

excellent chawanmushi with egg & spring onions

excellent chawanmushi with egg & spring onions

excellent chawanmushi with egg & spring onions

excellent chawanmushi with egg & spring onions

the chawanmushi (茶碗蒸し) was outstanding. there was bits of minced ginger on top. the texture & flavours were exquisite. maybe i will try this at home.

superb braised wagyu & tendons

superb braised wagyu & tendons

superb braised wagyu & tendons

superb braised wagyu & tendons

superb braised wagyu & tendons

superb braised wagyu & tendons

the braised wagyu & tendons was just superb. texture was almost like gelatinous, had bite yet dissolving in the mouth, and nice mellow beefy flavours, mildly sweet. this was par excellence! ^^

sashimi moriawase

sashimi moriawase

grating own wasabi

grating own wasabi

ika

ika

fish sashimi

fish sashimi

we grated our own wasabi roots!

sashimi moriawase was nothing like last evening’s which was below those at sun with moon, or for that matter any supermarket basement sashimi picks in japan!

this time we had good serving each of uni, very sweet! ika was pretty good & the fish slices were very good too. the same lady server initially said it was swordfish, but when i mentioned it did not look remotely like kajiki, she corrected herself but we did not understand what fish it was actually. whatever, what counted was it’s good!

excellent anago tempura

excellent anago tempura

excellent anago tempura

excellent anago tempura

excellent anago tempura

excellent anago tempura

excellent anago tempura

excellent anago tempura

& we had an excellent tempura!

the 2 large pieces each of anago (sea or conger eel) was a large helping. the tempura batter was just great & the whole experience wonderful.^^

bungo wagyu 丰后和牛

bungo wagyu 丰后和牛

bungo wagyu 丰后和牛

bungo wagyu 丰后和牛

& we had a wonderful bungo wagyu 丰后和牛 shabu shabu. there were 10 large thick slices of wagyu for 2 pax, beef was well marbled and flavourful, very good indeed!

shabu shabu

shabu shabu

noodles, mushrooms, veg

noodles, mushrooms, veg

we had the usual noodles, mushrooms, vegetables.

bungo wagyu 丰后和牛

bungo wagyu 丰后和牛

bungo wagyu 丰后和牛

bungo wagyu 丰后和牛

i can have this again! 🙂

if we were to make a comparison with mikuni’s excellent kagoshima wagyu sukiyaki konabe, certainly what we have at Gettoan was much more marbled & better beef quality. in terms of satisfaction, mikuni’s was almost as good & a good approximation to this.

pickles

pickles

we had pickles with the gohan (rice).

cake dessert

cake dessert

dessert was ok. we did not have much interest for the butter cake. it maybe that gettoan indeed is trying to be fusion, with the foie gras tofu last evening (tonight’s chawanmushi would beat tat hands down), and these cake stuff, which some restaurants in Singapore like kuriya etc does too.

anyway, we were immensely satisfied with the kaiseki dinner this second night. ^^

c.h.e.f andy

A Tale of 2 Dinners Part 1 – Disappointing Totally Below Par Kaiseki Dinner @ Gettoan on 25Jan2015

bungo wagyu ishiyaki 丰后和牛石烧

bungo wagyu ishiyaki 丰后和牛石烧

we were booked for 2 nights at Gettoan ryokan 月灯庵 at yufuin 汤布院. Gettoan ryokan & its kaiseki dinners had very good reviews, and we were expecting a very good dinner on the first evening we checked into the ryokan on 25.1.2015.

it turned out to be really disappointing. i would say this dinner was below just about every ryokan dinner i had in tohoku (we visited just before the tsunami, sadly cannot go back now), and way below (say) mikuni or hachi or kuriya in singapore.

i need to add here though that the japanese breakfast the next day was excellent (& the day after too) & the shabu shabu kaiseki on our second night 26.1.2015 was just exquisite, par excellence, so i term this a tale of 2 dinners. ^^

https://chefquak.com/2015/02/08/a-tale-of-2-dinners-part-2-the-good-ending-a-marvellous-kaiseki-dinner-gettoan-on-26jan2015/

https://chefquak.com/2015/02/08/wonderful-breakfast-a-redemption-gettoan-ryokan-yufuin-kyushu-on-26-1-2015/

https://chefquak.com/2015/02/08/another-wonderful-breakfast-to-savour-gettoan-ryokan-月灯庵-yufuin汤布院-kyushu-九州-on-27jan2015/

kaiseki menu

kaiseki menu

sensai

sensai

sensai-seaweed wrapped mentaiko

sensai-seaweed wrapped minced salmon?

sensai - fish roes

sensai – fish roes

the sensai was ok, but really unexciting for this class of ryokan (i.e. very expensive ryokan). the mini kaiseki lunch at kuriya had far better sensai (前菜). and the omakase lunch at GOTO had just as good sakizuke(先附).

tofu dish with foie gras

tofu dish with foie gras

the foie gras flavoured tofu dish was a nice dish, but really average by japanese kaiseki standards, non descript really.

sashimi moriawase

sashimi moriawase

sashimi moriawase

sashimi moriawase

the sashimi moriawase (kampachi, tai maybe?? & hirame) was an immense let down, completely substandard. for me, even sun with moon sashimi is much better standard than this! sashimi was not sweet & was tough – a really low grade cut!

yuba pot

yuba pot

there was a egg, yuba pot with veg. i would give same assessment as the foie gras tofu…underwhelming, just like the entire dinner.

clear soup with fish

clear soup with fish

clear soup with fish

clear soup with fish

the clear soup came with a nice tasty piece of fish, maybe snapper? anyway for this dish alone, maybe one could say “normal service resumes??” but this was a non-substantial by-the-way dish in a kaiseki.

bungo wagyu ishiyaki 丰后和牛石烧

bungo wagyu ishiyaki 丰后和牛石烧

bungo wagyu ishiyaki 丰后和牛石烧

bungo wagyu ishiyaki 丰后和牛石烧

of course the bungo wagyu ishiyaki 丰后和牛石烧 was just excellent. like my wife said, ishiyaki is self service & they did gave a very good beef cut. in a good or at least par-for-the-course kaiseki, one expects to taste good cooking, some creativity & great matching of taste. those were non existent in this dinner!

ochazuke

ochazuke (お茶漬け)

ochazuke

ochazuke (お茶漬け)

ochazuke

ochazuke (お茶漬け)

ochazuke

ochazuke (お茶漬け)

other than the bungo wagyu ishiyaki 丰后和牛石烧, the ochazuke (お茶漬け) was the only other dish throughout the dinner that we consider of good standards. the kampachi cut was good & could be taken as sashimi or slightly poached with the rice. the yuzu miso paste was great & the dashi 上汤was just excellent! a very good dish.

deseert

deseert

the dessert was just as bad. any dessert in sun with moon would be better!

one comment on the service. the overall service of the ryokan was top notch as expected of any ryokans of this standard. we were assigned a server who spoke very good english & we were kind of expecting top level service.

but the service was really superficial! the server tried to get us to order red wine instead of sake claiming that the dishes suited wine better. i would say none of the dishes qualified at all as western or fusion & why would one take red or white wine instead of sake for a japanese dinner, they were just not very good japanese food! & it was quite blatant way to get us to spend more money. this the first & only time we encountered that in japan. even in Singapore these days, server will advise you NOT to order things you don’t need/want!

and worse, after the beef before ochazuke she asked us whether we wanted tea. we asked for ocha & was later billed 950yen! of course it was not about the money. she did not tell us it was chargeable, and the way she asked it was evident that she did not intend to reveal it was chargeable. immediately after the ochazuke, we were served another ocha, this one free. does that make any sense??

for me it was a lowly tactic suited for yesteryears, like london chinatown in the 1970s, not a top class ryokan in Japan, or for that matter any ordinary restaurants in Singapore.

fortunately for us, the ryokan redeemed itself the next few meals. we were asked again the next dinner if we wanted tea by the same server, again w/o telling us it was chargeable! some bad habits just do not go away!

c.h.e.f andy

OK Post-movie Dinner @ Shokudo Orchard Cineleisure on 16Jan2015

unagi salad

unagi tofu salad

went with friends to watch “the theory of everything” at orchard cineleisure on 16.1.2015. 🙂

it’s a movie about the lives of stephen & jane hawkings. really nice movie – wonderful script, acting, direction. i liked it very much! ^^

after movie, we decided to have a quick dinner at shokudo (食堂or canteen in japanese) at level 2.

we ordered 4 dishes to share for 4pax as we only wanted a light meal, and one friend had to leave shortly. 🙂 later we added a parfait for remaining 3 of us to share.

we had the unagi tofu salad. somehow we were chatting & missed the wafu 和风 dressing (a vinaigrette) or ponzu sauce until we almost finished. the salad was actually quite nice with the dressing.^^

saba tamago don

saba tamago don

saba tamago don

saba tamago don

the saba don was quite tasty. saba was tasty & tender & the don (rice) was nice. 🙂

ebi truffle mentaiko ali olio

ebi truffle mentaiko ali olio

ebi truffle mentaiko ali olio

ebi truffle mentaiko ali olio

the ebi (prawn) mantaiko aloo olio looked anaemic when it came. my friends added the grated cheese & red chilli pepper & it looked a bit more appetising.

the truffle flavours were actually quite nice.

a deepfried tofu dish

a deepfried tofu dish

a deepfried tofu dish

a deepfried tofu dish

we had a fried egg tofu with some cheese flavours topped with mentaiko. pretty ok. felt like the tako balls type preparation.

parfaitcc

parfaitcc

parfait

parfait

i always like the parfait in japan & also sun with moon. this was good good, with yuzu sorbet. mochi, green tea jelly & cornflakes…didn’t see any chestnut? anyway i liked this best.

the food was ok. the bill S$66 also about right for the food we had. it was a fun time with friends – movie, makan & chat. 🙂

c.h.e.f andy

Pleasant Dinner Chat @ Nassim Hill Bakery on 1Jan2015

chilli crab spaghetti

crab spaghetti arrabiata (spicy tomatoes)

wife, son & i went to have a drink & some makan at nassim hill bakery on 1.1.2015. 🙂

earlier we had a homecooked 20pax family new year day lunch.

i was full & we had some leftover food.

wife ordered crab spaghetti arrabiata (spicy tomatoes) & bruschetta & a drink. i did not take any. iced water was free so we had 3 water.

bruschetta

bruschetta

a yuzu pimms drink

a yuzu pimms drink

bruschetta

bruschetta

spicy crab spaghetti was very good, same as what we had last time on 5.10.2014 but w/o the 1 for 1 discounts.

there were lots of crab meat & a good arrabiata (spicy tomatoes) sauce.

wife liked the bruschetta with melted cheese, cherry tomatoes, parsley (or basil) & good bread. we can make this at home.

son was leaving for london the next day. this a good place to chill, not cramped & crowded like assembly coffee, and parking was free. we had nice, relax chat & good time together. 🙂

c.h.e.f andy

Salted Egg Curry Leaves Prawn Spaghetti – An Experiment

salted egg curry leaves prawn spaghetti

salted egg curry leaves prawn spaghetti

did a quick experiment on a salted egg curry leaves prawn spaghetti this morning…

tried a salted egg pasta at a quite excellent dinner at petite menu earlier on 22.3.2014 & wanted to try cooking the dish. had 2 salted duck eggs left from a recent 12-course homecooked dinner where i tried the chinese style salted egg prawns, so decided to cook it for lunch for my son.

salted egg curry leaves prawn spaghetti

salted egg curry leaves prawn spaghetti

salted egg curry leaves prawn spaghetti

salted egg curry leaves prawn spaghetti

i minced 2 salted egg yokes after boiling the eggs earlier.

i had some browned garlic cloves in olive oil in the fridge leftover from the day before so i added that to a pan & fried 1 stalk of curry leaves (w/o the stem) to bring out the flavour, then i added the minced salted egg yokes. lastly i added 1/2cup of white wine & some sugar to taste (1 teaspoon).

i had my spaghetti done as usual just below al dente.

i decided to practice deep fry prawns instead the usual pan fry.  i added fish sauce, sea salt & white pepper PLUS yuzu salad sauce & fresh egg yoke to a pack of shelled small prawns (about 20+) & seasoned. then i put 3 tablespoon flour in a bowl & heated a small saucepan of oil. i coated the prawns & dropped into the oil for a very quick fry.

when all ingredients were ready, i reheated the pan with the salted egg sauce till it boiled, then i off the fire and added the spaghetti & tossed & lastly added the deep-fried prawns.

i tasted the dish. it was very tasty as good as my usual seafood alio olio. the deep-fried prawns were fresh & good too though nothing special. there was curry leaves flavour but i could not detect much of the salted egg flavour.

my son enjoyed the pasta very much & walloped the entire plate. 🙂

while the dish was quite tasty & looked good with the colour & garnishing of the chopped salted egg yokes which also contributed texture, it was just another tasty dish & did not really stood up as a salted egg pasta.

c.h.e.f andy

Good Ala Carte Buffet @ Peach Garden Miramar on 8May2014

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drunken chicken

went with sis, b-i-l & a friend to peach garden miramar on 8.5.2014. they were having a 3paying 1 free promotion for 4pax at S$30.80 weekdays. 🙂

#1 the drunken chicken was 1/2 frozen & did not look great (my one looked better..haha) but the taste was good! much better than mine. 🙂

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pork floss with deep-fried eggplant

#2 we all liked the pork floss & also the light battered egg plant, very nice dish! 🙂

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deep-fried soon hock

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deep-fried soon hock

#3 deep-fried soon hock was ok, above average, perhaps a little better than the recent one at ban heng on 25.4.2014, but not the best.

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pork ribs

#4 the pork ribs were flavourful. meat not the most tender, just slightly chewy, taste was good.

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crab sauce tofu

#5 crab sauce & tofu were good. look-wise seems something missing in this dish..maybe some garnish or greens.

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pating fish

#6 pating my favourite fish. this method of preparation not the best. the minced ginger or HK steamed style much better.

roast pork - below par!

roast pork – below par!

#7 it seemed really odd that a roast pork dish in such a restaurant could be bad, but it was, much below par!

char siew

char siew

#8 we were already very full when i spotted the char siew later & had to order it. this was very good! almost imperial treasure standard. 🙂

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losbter claw sharksfin soup

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sea cucumber sharksfin soup

#9 each diner was only allowed 1 order of soup. i had the lobster claw sharksfin soup. it was very average soup (not even as good as any lie tong aka soup of the day from tonglok restaurants or imperial treasure), and the sea cucumber sharksfin seemed no better.

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hotplate venison

#10 venison was very average, like any zi char stall.

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pan-fried kurobuta

#11 kurobuta itself was tender & tasty. this chinese way of preparation though not my favourite.

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dried scallop eggwhite fried rice

#12 fried rice was good, fragrant! 🙂

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yuzu prawn fritters

#13 these were very nice, much better than wasabi mayo prawns preparation. 🙂 may try these at home.

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fried scallop with french beans

#14 this was like a joke. the scallops turned out to be like 1 medium scallop (or maybe 1/2) sliced into 10 pieces. you need real skills to slice it so thinly. a case of disappearing scallop dish. 😦

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indonesian prawn

#15 surprisingly, the indonesian prawn dish was very good. prawn was good & fresh & the curry sauce was very good.

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tofu with vege

#16 this was ok, pretty standard.

brocoli & cauliflower

brocoli & cauliflower

#17 brocoli & cauliflower was very well done, very tasty! 🙂

overall food was quite good for an ala carte buffet, a lot better certainly c/w ban heng.

the service was good, efficient & friendly throughout except when paying the bill. we were charged a really hefty S$1.50pax for ice water & S$1pax for towels, so there was an extra S$10++ tab on the bill. it was a bit high but ok except that we asked specifically at the beginning when deciding whether to order tea & was told by the server that water was FREE, and tea was S$2.50pax. i told the girl closing the bill. she said water was as charged (next time i need to record the conversation. haha!). anyway, the total bill after 1pax free came to $120nett=S$30nett per pax so i was quite ok to just pay it.

i would come back again but buffets were very heavy & not ideal for me to do too often. 🙂

c.h.e.f andy