[SG] Celebrating SG50 together with the inaugural Singapore Restaurant Month!Tuesday, July 07, 2015
With all the SG50 themed events happening concurrently in Singapore, you will not want to miss this one. From now till 10 August 2015, you get to experience the first-ever Singapore Restaurant Month organised by Restaurant Association of Singapore (RAS), with support from Agri-Food & Veterinary Authority of Singapore (AVA), Singapore Tourism Board (STB), and Union Pay! To celebrate SG50, 50 restaurant brands have created 50 new dishes using local produce namely eggs, fish and vegetables.
Cafe Iguana | Pibil Pescado in Red Chile sauce | $30++ (inclusive of an SG50 margarita OR Iguana Lager)
Our gastronomic trail started with this oven-baked sea bass in spicy red Chile marinate, topped with refreshing shrimp salsa and Mexican rice on the side. The fish was first marinated with shallots, garlic and sugar chilli, then pan seared both sides and oven-baked to retain the moisture within. The salsa which contained jalapeños has a combination of sweetness and heat; the Mexican rice made of tomato paste, onion, peppers, capsicum and carrots was very appetising to start off our food night journey.
Portico | 3 Grain Laksa Risotto, Homemade Pulau Ubin Seabass Fish Cake | $50++ (part of a five-course SG50 menu)
The highlight of the night personally was this reinvented rendition of laksa. Every element on the plate was so well thought and had the usual laksa ingredients, only to be presented in a whole new dimension altogether! The stock was simmered at length and produced from the fish bones of the locally farmed seabass; which was also used to make the delicate fish cake. Complemented by the herby laksa leaf pesto, the grilled tiger prawns pleasantly sat atop the chewy risotto which composed of barley, orzo and quinoa. While the dish was savoury and salinity on the high side, the coconut foam added a refreshing touch to it and balanced out the dish. We would definitely go back for its 5-course meal specially created only for this happening month at just S$50!
12 heritage restaurants that have contributed to the local F&B scene for decades are also featured amongst the 50 restaurants. The public can taste their creations for a shorter period of time from 17 July to 2 August 2015. Heritage restaurants include the following well-known brand which has been around since 1977 and is one of Singapore's longest established restaurants.
Prima Tower Revolving Restaurant | Sautéed Bird's Nest with Egg White | $70++
Prima Tower's classic featuring egg white and precious bird’s nest, also named 赛螃蟹. This dish tries its best to imitate or rather say beat the look and taste of real crab meat. Despite its Chinese name, no crab meat is actually used; instead the egg white was fried to a velvety texture and perfection. Chef has also modified this dish by adding the smoothness and crunchiness from the nutritious bird's nest, as well as Jinhua Ham to enhance the overall flavour, what a comfort and enjoyable dish indeed!
Palm Beach Seafood Restaurant | Fried Baby Barramundi | about $18++ per 500g
The night concluded with this locally reared Baby Barramundi which was butterfly cut and deep fried till golden brown and drizzled with honey tangy sauce made with shallots, pickle, ginger and herbs. The unusual pairing of cuttlefish strips surprised all diners at the table - the crunchy texture and fragrant taste rose to the occasion to deliver a perfect counterbalance to the crispiness and freshness of the fish. Worth a shout, S$18 for 500g is definitely a great steal to savour on such a quality dish.
What can be more meaningful than supporting your home-grown produce and local business, acting as one nation in Singapore's Jubilee year. With a selection of traditional, modern, Asian and western cuisines, do check out their website for all the participating restaurants and look out for some local dishes with innovative twist. Note that AVA selects and approves suppliers for restaurants to collaborate with, so one can be assured of the quality of the ingredients and happy eating! I can't wait to dine out more in this celebrated month!