Monday, June 21, 2010

Singapore Food Part I: Sheraton Towers Buffet + Taste Paradise at Ion Orchard

My recent Singapore trip was for work. We flew to attend a business conference to report the goings on in the Philippine distributorship. We didn't really didn't have time for R&R, except for the day we spent at Resorts World Sentosa (Photoblog soon!) BUT I'd have to say I enjoyed the trip because of the food!

Man, were we drowning in food! It was good food day in and day out, and yeah, no complaints from my end. Well, maybe except for the extra flab still hanging around in my tummy area. But seriously, the food was a blast! With the wonderful (and might I add, new, at least for me) flavors and colors, it was foodie heaven!

Sheraton Towers Lunch Buffet
Tuesday was our first working day in Sg. We had a full day lined up and I was crazy nerve-wracked for my report. Lunch was a welcome treat. My first "real" (I am not counting my bread and coffee brekkie from CBTL) meal for the Sg trip at the lunch buffet at the Sheraton Towers.

The Dining Room, Sheraton Towers, Scotts Road, Singapore
Photo credit:

(Its uncanny, if you look to the upper left hand side of the photo, this was the exact spot we sat for lunch!)

It was casual lunch but with business colleagues, so um yeah, I didn't take any pictures. I just didn't feel proper,  you know, how in the middle of discussing volumes and market potential, I whip out my camera and snap away at my mango pudding. I just don't think I'd be able to pull off "adult" very much. Judgment call. So yes, I just mooched photos off of interweb to help me take my gastronomic points across. Let's get crackin!

Miso Soup
Photo credit: FoodTravelBangalore

For this buffet, I took my time and paced myself :) For starters, I had the miso soup and some greens and cheese for salad. The miso soup was good, no fishy taste, and the tofu was soft and just the right size. I am no fan of tofu so it already is something when I go out to eat it, much more if I say it's good. The greens were fresh, and the dressing was pretty tasty. I think it was garlic ranch, it was the right amount of tangy and salty. Good for the unadventurous.

Deep Fried Soft Shell Crabs
Photo credit: j2k3blogs

For the entrée, I had coated soft-shelled crab and roast peking duck with the house paella. Everything was good! But now that I think about it,  it can also be because I was starving when we went down to eat!  I didn't finish the second of the 2 small crabs I got and I had to force myself to finish the duck.

I have never tried soft-shelled crabs so I decided I had to, just because it was there. I got 2 small crabs about half the size of my fist, even smaller, just to try. I finished the first one, and sated my curiosity already. I gave the other one to my boss, who loves the crabs. The roasted duck had good taste and flavor, but there is much to be had with the texture. The duck was a bit tough. But I finished it off to the delight of my happy belly :) 

There was also braised lamb and roast beef on the buffet. But I really am not a big meat fan, so I skipped for this one. I tried lamb before and I did not really like the "lamb-y" taste. The roast beef  was on the medium rare side, I can see the bloody center of the meat slices. So yeah, passed these two up.

Durian Tiramisu (sort of)
Photo credit: SgDessert

(Again no photos of the dessert buffet so I mooched off this photo from the SgDessert webbie. If you look at the second photo on the left row, that's pretty much how the Durian Tiramisu looked like)

Then desserts! I always leave room for desserts :) I especially loved it since it was a dessert buffet so you have all the sweets you can think of available in one very happy, very colorful table. I picked durian tiramisu, mocha pudding with coffee sauce, and a scoop each of banana flavor and cappuccino flavor iced cream with a healthy helping of sliced almonds.

Mocha Pudding with Coffee Sauce (sort of)
Photo credit:

(I mooched this photo off of cos it resembles the mocha pudding I had. That one had a thick coffee sauce that I ever so generously drizzled on the sad brown pudding. It was goooood!)

Let's go first to the so-so ones. The durian tiramisu was too much for my picky taste buds. I had 2 spoons and that's it for me. Again, it was one of those, I had cos I don't know where else I can have it, so I will have it now. Another on the so-so for the desserts is the banana flavored ice cream. It was too sour. I don't really know what kind of banana they were gunning for. Again I had two spoonfuls and left the rest of the scoop on my dessert plate. I'm charging it to food experience.

My dessert favorites are the mocha pudding with coffee sauce and the cappuccino ice cream. I went all heavy on the pudding sauce and flooded the tiny dessert plate with the sauce. Loved it! The ice cream went so well with the sliced almonds. But yeah, when you think about it, anything with sliced almonds, runaway winner. 

I left The Dining Room full and happy :)

Taste Paradise Sit Down Dinner
The Taste Paradise sit down dinner is definitely my favorite of all the meals we had in the Sg trip. Taste Paradise is a fine dining Chinese Restaurant in the upscale Ion Mall along the famous Orchard Road. I must say, our principal really pulled all the stops for this one. The food was exquisite, the service was superb, and the overall dining experience was really enjoyable. I enjoyed dining here so much, 2 weeks after the trip I can still vividly remember the courses we had and I can still taste it in my head! That good :)

Taste Paradise, Ion Orchard, Orchard Road, Singapore
Photo credit: Robert Steiner

We ended Tuesday Day 1 of the conference on a happy note with a group photo at 5ish. By which time my tummy was grumbling and is crazy hungry again! I don't really know where and how it processed the food from the buffet lunch but I was really excited for dinner already around this time.

We started the meal with appetizers of this beautiful thing that is the Roast Pork Belly. THIS IS CRAZY GOOD. It's a small square piece of pork belly cooked to perfection. It's cut into 9 small square pieces and is the perfect size to snip with your chopsticks and pop into your mouth. Just perfect. And that is not an exaggeration, no kidding. I can still taste it in my mouth! Really really yummy!

Roasted Pork Belly (CRAZY AWESOME!)
Photo credit: LadyIronChef

(apparently this photo is taken from the Lei Gardens Restaurant in Chijmes also in Singapore. But the Roast Pork Belly appetizer from Taste Paradise in Ion looks uncannily like this one)

It's three layers of sinful goodness. The top part, the pork skin is done to perfect crisp. It crunches when you bite into it! Layer number two is the requisite pork fat. It's a thin layer of white, jiggly pork fat that complements the rest of the layers perfectly. While some other roasted pork belly fat layers shoot straight up in your head and give you that nasty feeling after two bites, this one goes down perfectly. And the last, of the 3 is the pork meat.

Appetizer Set: Coated and fried mushrooms, wasabi prawns, and pan-seared scallops
Photo credit: j2k3blogs (or fatpig from

(This picture though shows a different set with duck skin and foi gras. Same though for the center of the sampler is the mean and gren, wasabi prawns)

I am not adventurous with food. I am a creature of comfort and I always like sticking to what I think is comfy. When it comes to food my comfy is chicken. So when I got this appetizer platter of mushroom, prawns, and scallops I wasn't exactly excited. Prawns was the only familiar to me, and it went with wasabi. So inside I was really like, meh.

But my, when I sunk my teeth into each, lovely treats! The mushroom looked like fried mussels. I had two and was good. Not my favorite of the 3. Then the wasabi prawns. Oh boy, it was crazy good! The wasabi was just the right amount of chili and the salmon seeds went so well with the texture of the prawns. Hands down my favorite! Last is the pan-seared scallops, which I've never tried, in my life. It looked unfamiliar and I was tempted to pass up. Thankfully I din't. I tried it and it was tender and sauce that went with it was really tasty.

And now the real meal starts! Peking Duck :D

I was thrilled when the waiter brought in the duck. It was roasted and the skin looked just the right amount of shiny, it was perfect. You know how something looks so good, you just know it will taste just as good?

Roasted Peking Duck
Photo credit: Robert Steiner

We had the duck 2-ways. First, the kind service staff cut up the duck skin in small perfect squares. They then put it into these thin pita-like wrappers with the radish and some magic sacue. The duck skin is served in these small sticks of awesomeness which you bite into like a hotdog sandwich (how pedestrian! hahaha!) and eat with your hands. Mano-a-mano is the way to go. I prolly had something around 5 or 7 of these babies. Crazy good!

Roasted Duck Skin served with Steamed Pancakes
Photo credit:

Next came the entrée. We were made to choose from between seared cod and wagyu beef. I went with a medium well wagyu steak. I had pretty low expectations of the beef. I thought it might end up a little too chewy and tough cos I preferred it done well. I knew it would've been more tender if I picked medium rare, but the thought of blood oozing through my meat makes me squeamish. Oh, food choices.

Pan-seared Wagyu Steak
Photo credit: Robert Steiner

(again I was embarrassed to take any photos of my wagyu so this was taken from Mr Steiner's album. Again, not the one from Taste Paradise but pretty much approximates the serving size and the feel of my wagyu)

But rare or no rare, the wagyu did not disappoint! My steak was tender and just the right amount of chewy. I am no meat eater, but this one I will remember for a long time :)

After the steak came the duck meat cooked in Chinese spices and a rich smothering of pepper. To my untrained tongue, it tastes kind of like our local Adobo, but that's just me. The meat was really tasty. Right around this time, I was feeling how full I was so my brain isn't as excited in processing the tastes and flavors anymore.

I was already bursting to the seams when they served a thick soup with seafood and mushrooms. I loved the soup, it was thick and flavorful, but the most I ate was 3 spoonfuls of just the broth and didn't touch any of the clams. I was a bit embarrassed but my tummy refuses to take in any more.

But wait there's more! After a good four courses, we were served rice last. Apparently when the Chinese eat, rice really is served the last. A Chinese friend told me that the logic behind it is that after you ate all that good food, they served you rice for if you still don't feel full. The rice is to compensate for whatever else is left of your hunger after such a feast.

Five courses and I am simultaneously in food heaven and a food coma. I can barely move. But like a true dessert fiend, I ALWAYS leave room for dessert :)

Mango Pudding
Photo credit: Robert Steiner

I went with a mango pudding for my dessert. The one in the photo is I think a mango-lychee pudding (not sure) but my dessert pretty much looks like this one. It was really yummy! Perfect way to cap a sinful, albeit, really enjoyable five courses :)

For Singapore Food Part 2, I'll write about my Din Tai Fung Dinner and Tonkichi Dinner with PV <3


  1. where's part 2?! now i want to SG! Let us! For fun ;p Next year?

    - princess (too lazy to log in)

  2. Part 2's been a draft for a full week now! Hindi ko matapos tapos! Hahaha!

    Me too! I mean it's fun and all cos it's a new place, but it's still work. and I get this thing where I get all guilty for having fun while I am at work there. With all this weird guilt I carry around am convinced I may be Irish Catholic inside :p

    Yes, we should plan! It's gonna be our 2011 thing :D


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