Ms Skinnyfat

A Food & Travel Blog from Singapore

It seems to me that the best Chinese restaurants are all housed in the hotels. Ok maybe not all but all my favorites are (Yan Ting and Li Bai)! This time, i checked off another Cantonese classic, Wan Hao Restaurant at Singapore Marriott Tang Plaza Hotel. It's been a good 20 years for the hotel and they'd be having an array of promotions and activities from 4 May to 31 July 2015 to commemorate this milestone. 
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Looking for a classy and indulgent meal without breaking the bank? Look no further. Joel Robuchon Restaurant and L'Atelier de Joel Robuchon, in Resorts World Sentosa Singapore, are bringing back their weekend lunch with a brand new French haute menu with an extensive selection of dishes for you to choose and customize your experience from. Diners can select a 3 to 5 course menu priced at an amazing $48 onwards at the Atelier and $78 at JR. 
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It's no doubt that Yan Ting is one of my favorite Cantonese restaurants, especially so after Executive Chinese Chef Tony Wun joined the team at St. Regis Singapore (read my previous Yan Ting review here). This time, we headed back for the new specials that Chef Wun has created.
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We started with a trio of appetizers. A lightly battered deep fried whitebait fish with salt and pepper; a pan fried scallop glazed with teriyaki sauce; and an appetizing Japanese-style marinated radish 
Something to warm the tummy before the arrival of the mains- the soup in a tea pot.
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A luxurious update from the previous sea whelk version is the Double-boiled Abalone Consommé with Ginseng served in Teapot
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We piled on more nourishing goodness with the Braised Superior Bird's Nest with Black Truffle in Pumpkin Sauce. Delicate silvers of bird's nest (it was almost like eating glass noodles) in a savory pumpkin and stock broth. The black truffle was more a garnish as it didn't contribute any flavor in fact but we were more than happy with the bird's nest. 
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The Steamed Seafood Dumpling was made with an inventive egg white skin which encased a savory and crunchy mix of seafood and water chestnut. I found the crab broth to be on the bland end in terms of flavor but i think some people may enjoy this healthy option. 
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If you're into rich flavors like i do, then i'd highly recommend the Pan-fried Chicken with Morel in Superior Soy Sauce, which was a burst of wok hei and featured the distinctive flavor of morel mushrooms alongside tender chicken fillets. I loved how the sweet morel soaked up all that superior soy, making each bite a delightful one.
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Next, the Baked beef ribs with herbs served with Ee-fu noodles.
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The ribs were fork tender and full of collagen bits. However, it was lacking in flavor and i had to add the bean paste chili to it. I couldn't stop eating the noodles even though i'm not a carbs fan. 
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To complete the meal, one must have the Coconut Jelly with ice cream! Yummy! For something more indulgent, you could go for the Double boiled Bird's Nest served in Coconut.
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I was also amazed by the Crispy red bean and Banana fritters. It sounds heavy and oily but it was light and airy and full of crunch. 

Apart from new à la carte selections and set menus, expect weekly specials at Yan Ting such as Alaskan crabs, giant garoupas and imperial eels, prepared in a variety of cooking styles. The Weekend Dim Sum Brunch has also been updated by Chef Wun and i can't wait to head back for his signatures.

The St. Regis Singapore. Level 1U. 
29 Tanglin Road, Singapore 247911
If you are following me on Instagram (you should if you need food or travel inspiration! Find me @msskinnyfat heh), you would notice that I've been spotting a shorter hairdo and I love it! Kudos to the Silkcut team for that. :)

I only head to DRx for all my skincare needs since I'm particular about the products that go on my face these days. Even though I never used to be a fan of facials, I super love the Essential Facial Plus by DRx Medispa and even more so now with their new and improved formulas and treatment. 

House has been a Dempsey Hill feature for the longest time, known for their fries and vintage afternoon tea (which I've always wanted to try). I wasn't a fan till now, as they have refreshed their way overdue menu! New hits and improved house classics, plus a new dessert menu, will lure you from newer players at the idyllic Dempsey (I like Becasse).

Almost lunch and i'm craving for some crisp and fresh greens that will keep me satisfied. Introducing Skinny Salad, a fresh new concept by the crackling good folks of Skinny Pizza. Located at 100AM, in Tanjong Pagar, you lucky CBD folks out there can dine on yummy salads, tasty grilled wraps and vitamin-packed juices. 

While i like to create my own salad, having a pre-determined menu takes the pain from having too many permutations. Skinny Salad has engaged Celebrity Chef Philip Davenport of Toque 12 TV show fame for their 8 salads and 7 wraps for their opening. These salads are influenced by flavors of Thailand, Europe, Japan and the Mediterranean. Dressings are made from scratch and herbs thrown in for that special something something. Of course Ms Skinnyfat had to try everything at Skinny Salad so here's the low down, in order of preference! I'll start with the salads first. 
Roasted Roots & Goat Cheese ($11.50 with lamb). I love roots and can never say no to pumpkin, sweet potatoes and baby beets. This is a hearty but healthy salad because it's low in GI and i love how the basil, herb dressing and goat cheese gave the dish an added twang. Absolutely love goat cheese with pumpkin! The lamb shoulder was a little tough IMO. There's also the choice of chicken instead and they are both $3 
My second favorite is the Cabbage & Nouc Cham ($9) which is typically Asian with the pungent and salty nouc cham dressing with Vietnamese mint and chili. It could do with a little more spice actually but i do love this interesting salad, after i removed all the bean sprouts of course. Make sure you add on the yummy master-stock pork which was super umami and tender!
I'm a kale fan and the Kale & Quinoa ($11.50) is what i'd call a 'meaty' salad even if you don't add any meats to it. I guess that's because it's full of sprouted beans and leafy, leathery vegetables.

I like how Skinny Salad doesn't stinge on their greens. There's a wide and interesting selection of vegetables instead of lousy ones like lettuce and cabbage. In this salad, there're kale, green beans, zucchini, sprouted lentils, spinach, watercress, cherry tomatoes, beetroot and quinoa! Honestly you'd be paying through your nose for a mix like this elsewhere. 
The next 3 salads were ok and not fantastic but it's a matter of preference i guess. I found them a little bland for my liking. Here's the Seared Tuna & Radicchio ($13.50) which has white anchovies and olives. I love their red onion jam in this one though.
The Organic Chicken & Spinach ($12.50) was boring compared to all the exciting smells and flavors of the other salads. I guess you can't expect the cumin yogurt to spice things up. The chicken was a little dry for me.
The Fermented Cabbage & Yuzu ($11.50) was interesting but i found the mix a little too stringy for me with all the shredded up and shaved carrot, cucumber, enoki and mung bean sprouts. I liked the fermented cabbage and the spicy yuzu dressing though. Add on the confit salmon (made fresh daily) or the tuna for some Omega-3!

If a hot toasty meal is what you are craving for, then the wraps will be your thing. I preferred the heartier salads though as the wraps don't seem to fill much. The fillings may be similar to those of the salads but they're not entirely the same. They're wrapped smugly in a soft flour tortilla (comes in various flavors) before panini-ed for a crisp exterior.
My favorite of the wraps was the creamy Roasted Chicken ($8.50) that packed in a cauliflower tabbouleh, baba ghanoush, hummus, confit garlic aïoli, baby cos lettuce. No prizes for getting the inspiration behind this wrap right. They had me at hummus. A similar wrap is the Slow-Cooked Lamb Shoulder ($9.50) with feta, roasted garlic mayo and mint-yogurt dressing but the overall bite wasn't as rich as the Roasted Chicken though.  
Again, because of my love for pumpkin and cheese, the Roasted Pumpkin & Goat Cheese ($8.50) was my second love. Oh and because there were sweet caramelized onion, tomato chutney and basil sauce to give it that tangy, herby and salty flavors, it didn't even strike me that this is a vegetarian wrap. NOMS!
It's the return of the Master Stock Pork Belly ($8.50) in the form of a Vietnamese salad wrap using spinach tortilla, this time enhanced with kimchi aioli, mint and coriander. Give me more kimchi aioli please! 
For fish lovers, the Seared Tuna & Tapenade ($10.50) is a decent option provided that you like olives (i do!). The tuna is seared on site to ensure freshness and it paired well with the light lemon aioli and basil. This is wrapped in a tomato tortilla.
I did not like the Coconut & Turmeric Chicken ($8.50) because bean sprouts. This is a raw-ish and cool dish with cucumber and tofu and a rather bland coconut cream. 

Amp up your meal with some Vitamin C with Skinny Salad's freshly squeezed fruit and vegetable juices from $5. They're not cold pressed but they're still full of goodness! 

Skinny Salad is giving the other salad bars a run for their money honestly. With a changing salad and wraps menu created by culinary talents that they'll be working with, you'll never get bored of the selection. So go before your favorite salad/wrap gets replaced!

Skinny Salad
#01-03 100 Tras Street, 100AM. Singapore 079027 
Daily: 8am - 8pm 
Added to the decor mood board of my future home is Black & Ink, a cosy monochrome cafe with all my favorite elements- glossy tiles, marble tabletops, dark wood, and a light touch of color (preferably green or brown). 

The space is very tiny, meant for a quick cuppa and a slice before heading back to whatever you're supposed to be doing. I'm sure people wouldn't mind hanging around if the space were bigger. 
Coffee is pulled by Big Roy himself and served in the pretty Bodum Provina Double Wall Glass (which i'm tempted to get for myself). 
Beans are from a local micro-roastery and we had the house blend of Ethiopian Amaro Gayo and Columbian Excelso Timana. Medium bodied with a sweet berry acidity and dark chocolate finish. I always look out for the foam first and this was perfection. Single origins are also available in small quantities and sadly the Kenya Karogoto AB was sold out when we visited.
To accompany your coffee, there are light bites like tea cakes and savory muffins like Turkey Bacon Cheese Lava Egg and Chicken Meatball muffin ($4.50). Reminded me of the Pacific Marketplace's savory muffins. 
What you must certainly order is the Under The Table Cake, Big Roy's own creation. It's named such because it comes from the refrigerator under the table. Yeap. Banana mascaporne (with bits of banana) on a smooth milk chocolate center and a crunchy cookie base. This is more crumble than cake but tasty nonetheless. You cannot go wrong with banana and chocolate. Well, adding PB wouldn't hurt as well. Heh.
Black & Ink is kinda in the middle of nowhere but that's what specialty cafes are about ain't it? Well, they are also a social enterprise and will be working with people at risk, to help them get back and stay on track. Do pop by if you have a chance!

Black & Ink
168 Changi Rd S419730
Daily: 9am - 7pm
Closed Tues
"If it aint broke, don't fix it. Don't reinvent the wheel." Those were the thoughts that ran through my head as i sat through the preview of The Fabulous Baker Boy's new dinner menu. If only Juwanda were to stick to his brunch fare and cakes, I'm pretty sure people would love to have that for dinner as well (read my previous review here)..
Let's start with my favorite part of the meal- the cakes. TFBB is known for their cakes and while there were hits and misses (Green Tea Praline was too dry, Red Velvet a tad sweet), the latest addition, the Pam D'OR stole the limelight. This cake was created in honor of Juwanda's muse, actress Pamela Oei, a dear friend of his. 
What's better than sticky date pudding? A sticky date cake sandwiched with layers of butterscotch and cream cheese. Oh brown sugar, latte butter cream, and Valrhona chocolate. This cake wouldn't always be available in store but i think it should be made a staple. A 3kg 9" cake will set you back by $105 and each slice is $10. Love this one!
Back to the dinner menu, skip the salads and starters as they are quite blah. The Almond Encrusted Salmon with a mango hollandaise ($22) had several decent elements, such as the fragrant fat-free mango hollandaise sauce that had just a hint of sweetness. The salmon was a little overcooked but still palatable and would certainly do well with more sauce. The contrasting textures could be enhanced with a creamier spinach rather than one that looked like it came through the cold pressed machine but the flavor of the veg was on point.
I thought the Duck Confit ($21) was regular and by regular i do mean that it's not too bad. One of the more flavorful dishes of the night and the plus points were that it was fork tender and not too dry. I liked the cranberry plum compote that accompanied the duck.
Steak Frites ($25) 230g NZ grass fed sirloin, grilled on the griddle, dressed with mushrooms and caramelised onions and the horrible fries. No comments on this one as it was forgettable. The fries were just horrid i can't even begin to describe them (gosh the oil).
Serious room for improvement in the Fish Burger ($14.50). The components that i liked about this dish don't maketh a burger- the tangy Siracha tartar sauce, hint of curry leaves in the batter and the buttery billowing brioche. The batter needs to be WAAAY thinner and the fish needs more flavor on its own. Comes with the same horrible fries. 
The bastardized Fried Chicken & Waffles ($21) which was served with a half chicken. The horrors!!! Always chicken fillet. ONLY chicken fillet. I didn't like this dish due to the super hard and dense waffle and the overdose of syrup on this one (it was already drenched when served). TFBB definitely needs to work this one out man. That said, the meat was sufficiently moist though the buttermilk flavor could be enhanced.
Well well, that's my honest take on TFBB's dinner menu. Honestly i'm pretty certain customers would be happy with an all day brunch menu here with some heartier options. I do hope they work things the kinks out for dinner. In the meantime, be glad that you can now enjoy a slice (or two) with the extended opening hours at TFBB! 
The Fabulous Baker Boy
The Foothills, 70 River Valley Road, #01-15, Singapore 179037 
Tel: +65 6694 8336/ 9729 8560 
Tues to Thu: 11am - 10pm 
Fri & Sat: 11am - 11pm 
Sun: 11am - 5pm 
Looking to beef yourself up? Well head on over to Triple Three at Mandarin Orchard Singapore for some supersize-me action. From now till 26 Apr 2015, eat like an American at their Great Big American Buffet where iconic American dishes made from freshly flown ingredients from the U.S. are served.