6 Restaurants Putting A Twist On Tradition This Festive Season

From decadently encased yu sheng to an Asian version of Bloody Mary and an upscale take on local delights

6 Restaurants Putting A Twist On Tradition This Festive Season

(left to right) Chopsuey Cafe’s White Pepper Espresso Ribs; Po’s King Crab Carrot Cake; 1864 The Bar’s Festive Beverages. Photo: Courtesy

Look no further than our favorite grub spots this festive season for your Lunar New Year dining pleasure—be it reunion dinner or simply a night out with family and loved ones. From decadently encased yu sheng to an Asian version of Bloody Mary and an upscale take on local delights, we’ve rounded up eight standout restaurants putting a twist on traditional dishes, making run-of-the-mill Chinese feasts are a thing of the past.

Antoinette

Antoinette's Queen's Yu Sheng

Queen’s Yu Sheng from Antoinette Photo: Courtesy

For the festive season, Antoinette reimagines French classics with Chinese flavours.The Queen’s Yu Sheng is a dressed-up dessert version of the original dish. Instead of raw fish slices and julienned vegetables, this prosperity platter features a gleaming golden chocolate egg, nestled among an array of chocolates, nuts, rich mandarin orange butter cake, meringue, crispy taro and sweet potato chips. Crack open the gilded egg to dig into tangy shredded pineapple, Thai green mango, red dragon fruit, and pomelo. Now, all that’s left to do is to mix in the mandarin orange dressing, plum and gula melaka (palm sugar) before you toss everything for good luck, in true lo hei fashion. A special cake has also been created for the season—Antoinette’s Abundantly is a glorious chiffon cake incorporated with rich purple sweet potato and garnished with black sesame peanut feuilletine. This toothsome confection is topped with piquant cream cheese, black and white tapioca balls, glacéd sweet potato and yam cubes, gold chocolate coins and a sycee (ingot).

For more information, visit antoinette.com.sg

Po Restaurant

Po Restaurant

Photo: Courtesy

Housed at The Warehouse Hotel, Po Restaurant, short for Popo (grandmother in mandarin), prides itself on producing classic dishes that are inspired by the district’s culture, the historical significance of its location and Singaporean taste buds—making it the perfect home away from home venue for reunion dinner with loved ones.  For the festive season, Po reimagines classic local dishes with a twist. For instance, the King Crab Carrot Cake made with Alaskan king crab meat is more reminiscent of a frittata than the ‘black’ and ‘white’ hawker center varieties. For something more true to form, yet equally delectable, try Po’s rendition of Dragon Ribs—a must for meat lovers. Comprised of Kurobuta pork tomahawk that’s grilled to perfection over charcoal flames, the meat is incredibly tender and full of smokey goodness that’s best enjoyed with a side of refreshing sesame cucumber pickles. Po’s wholesome Silk Hen Broth comprised of chicken collagen soup, bamboo pith, spinach and wolf berries, also deserves a notable mention. 

Available from 19 January to 9 February 2020. For more information, visit po.com.sg

Related article: The Best Vegetarian And Vegan Restaurants In Singapore

Kin

Kin Restaurant

Photo: Courtesy

For hearty peranakan dishes, look no further than Kin, located within the lobby of Straits Clan and helmed by Chef Damian D’Silva. For a true taste of Kin’s offerings, try The Five Blessings—a feast spotlighting five special dishes that are mainstays on Chef Damian’s family reunion dinner table, specially created for the festive season—featuring popular favorites such as the Garam Assam Snapper (golden snapper bathed in spicy gravy with an ever so slight sourness) and Hati Babi Bungkus, which is comprised of minced pork, coriander, liver patties, Sarawak white pepper, dark soy sauce and homemade spices meticulously wrapped in caul fat. But the hero dish, in our opinion, has to be the Udang Masak Nanas—a quintessentially straits Chinese dish with Malay culinary influences. The mouthwatering dish is made with fresh seasonal prawns tossed with pineapple, chilli, galangal, lemongrass and tamarind. 

Available from 20 January to 8 February 2020. For more information, visit restaurant-kin.com

Jade Restaurant at The Fullerton Hotel

Jade Restaurant at The Fullerton Hotel Singapore

Jade Restaurant’s Hot Stone Silver Needles Noodles with Truffle Meat Sauce. Photo: Courtesy

Sometimes, all one wants is a simple, comforting one-dish meal rather than the rich and unctuous repasts on festive menus everywhere. Jade Restaurant at The Fullerton Hotel understands this and has come up with their version of the Hakka favourite, silver needle noodles (also known as “rat’s tail” noodles) with minced pork, a dish which makes an appearance on many family tables during the Lunar New Year. The restaurant’s upscale version, Hot Stone Silver Needles Noodles with Truffle Meat Sauce, is elevated with fresh truffle and truffle oil, which melds exquisitely with the fragrant pork braise. Its other festive dishes are also worth a mention. The flavourful Deep- Fried Chilean Sea Bass with cherry tomato in peach sauce (for 8 to 10 persons) showcases the chef’s masterful knifework, where the fish is sliced and shaped into a rat. Do leave some belly space for Executive Pastry Chef Siddharth Prabhu’s series of contemporary baked delights. The pretty Koi Fish Jelly encircled by fresh fruits takes the cake.

Available till 8 February 2020. For more information, visit fullertonhotels.com

Related article: 10 Restaurants in Singapore That Practice Sustainability for Guilt-Free Dining

Chopsuey Cafe

Chopsuey Jade Ocean Trout

Chopsuey Jade Ocean Trout. Photo: Courtesy

Tucked away in Dempsey Hill, Chopsuey Cafe is well-known for its Western rendering of Chinese comfort foods—and this Lunar New Year, they’ve upped the ante with not one, but two dedicated festive set menus. Both sets consists of their Anglo-Chinese iteration of the yu sheng sees traditional ingredients swapped out for trout, kale, celeriac, sprouts, red radish, blueberries and wild rice; complete its own dressing featuring a combination of fresh calamansi, lemon juice, plum sauce, marmalade and vinegar. The first set is comprised of seven courses—Hot & Sour Chicken Soup, Chopsuey Chilli Jam Prawns, Jade Ocean Trout, Chef’s Wok-fried Claypot Rice and more—including a choice of Pasqua Passimento Prosecco or Orange Basil Crush. Diners have the option of choosing between Sweet Salty Spicy Fried Chicken, Crispy Orange Beef Rib or White Pepper Espresso Ribs, as one of the courses. The second menu comprises more of the same, with the addition of Young Coconut & King Prawn Soup, Tamarind King Prawns, Crispy Cod with Chilli Garlic Sauce, Braised & Blackened Cabbage. Whichever set you choose, the meal ends with a refreshing cup of Hot Ginger Root Tea. 

Available from 13 January to 8 February 2020. For more information, visit pscafe.com/chopsueycafe

1864 The Bar at Sofitel Singapore City Centre

1864 The Bar

Hong Shu (right) and Bai Shu (left) Photo: Courtesy

Head to 1864 The Bar at Sofitel Singapore City Centre for Chinese New Year cocktails shaken and stirred by Head Mixologist Michael Mendoza. Bai Shu (left), which means ‘white rat’ in Mandarin, is an Asian version of Bloody Mary, concocted with yuzu-spiced tomato juice. Hong Shu (right), which translates to ‘red rat’, is made with non-alcoholic Seedlip spice—which packs a punch—yuzu juice and fragrant rosemary syrup. While there, do yourself a favour and check out Racines— right next door and their Lunar New Year menu that promises a sensorial dining experience via its interactive open-kitchen concept—the perfect venue to enjoy a reunion meal with your loved ones. The restaurant’s pièce de résistance is the Signature Pen Cai prepared by Executive Chef Andrew Chong as part of its festive menu.

Available till 8 February 2020. For more information, visit sofitel-singapore-citycentre.com

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