Wednesday, October 19, 2016

MasterChef Dining & Bar in Singapore @ Ash & Elm, InterContinental Singapore.

If you are a fan of the MasterChef series, you must.. must.. must.. have heard of the MasterChef Dining. The wife and I were strolling in Sydney way back in 2011 and we saw a huge MasterChef Pop-up at the St Mary's Cathedral Forecourt. We managed to take a photo with Adam Liaw, but sadly it was a sold out event so we could not dine there.
Untitled (Photo of Marco courtesy of MasterChef Dining / Saffron Comms)


MasterChef Dining and Bar is coming to Singapore from 25 November till 9 December 2016!

Chef Marco Pierre White is coming to Singapore and a few other MasterChef personalities from around Australia, Asia and United States of America will be coming to town. It is the first time Marco will helm the MasterChef Dining and Bar Pop Up.

MasterChef Dining
Oh yes, the MasterChef Dessert Guy, Reynold Poernomo (left, photo courtesy of MasterChef Dining) from MasterChef Australia Season 7, will be here too. I love watching him plate Desserts.

He reminds me of Marcus Low from MasterChef Asia. I wonder if Marcus is coming too. Marcus and Lennardy were two of my favourites!

I read that Reynold has opened KOI Dessert Bar in Sydney. Reviews vary, but when he's here, I am sure it will be top notch as he will be here in person!


For the MasterChef Dinng and Bar Pop up in Singapore, Ash & Elm, at the InterContinental Singapore would be hosting it. It will be in an open-kitchen restaurant setting so we will get to interact with the Chefs.

The ticketing details:

20 October at all Sistic outlets.

Early bird pricing for purchase of tickets between 20 October - 27 October
$138+ (Lunch) / $248+ (Dinner)

28 October onwards:
$168+ (lunch) / $288+ (dinner)

Daily lunch sessions will feature a 4-course menu while daily dinner will be a 6-course affair. There are only over 200 seats available for the 15 day pop up event. (I read the pop up in London was sold out in 4 days when it was first launched in London).


For IHG Rewards Club / InterContinental Ambassador Level members:

You would have received the non stop announcement pop up (every 2 minutes) on your phone app! I did! You would also have received an email about it.

Untitled


If you are a fan of Marco, you have 48 hours earlier (i.e. 18-19 October) access to buy the tickets.
The early access code is in your IHG App notification / Email.
The code also allows you 20% off the normal price even if you missed the early bird. 

(I bought mine tickets first (yes, I paid for it), before I blog about it. I am nowadays only blogging about things that interest me a lot!) 


Update (26 Oct):
3 More MasteChefs will be at the Pop Up!
Audra Morrice, Luca Manfe and Woo Wai Leong!

All MasterChef talents would be here for the entire event with the exception of Audra Morrice [25 Nov - 3 Dec] and Reynold Poernomo [4 - 9 Dec].

3 More MasterChefs coming...

For latest updates:
Visit their website at: www.masterchefdining.sg
Official Facebook page: www.facebook.com/masterchefdiningsg




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Saturday, August 06, 2016

Staycation Ideas with Delicious Food and Great View: The Ritz-Carlton, Millenia Singapore.

If you are a last minute planner or your partner is suddenly available during this coming National Day holiday, you can consider the "Celebrate with the Nation" or "Explore Singapore" room packages that is valid from 29 to 31 July and 8 to 10 August 2016.

These two packages are offered by The Ritz-Carlton, Millenia Singapore and the rooms offered are the Premier Rooms / Club Rooms.

We had the privilege to join The Ritz-Carlton, Millenia Singapore folks for a half-day experience of the "Explore Singapore" guided tour and dinner at Colony.

View of the National Stadium from The Ritz-Carlton Millenia Singapore

The photo above was taken from the Premier Room.  It will be exciting to witness the fireworks that will light up the sky above and over the Singapore National Stadium where the National Day Parade will be held this year, in the comfort of a luxurious room where you can enjoy a bottle of Moët & Chandon and a variety of snacks.

Below are details of the two packages:

"Celebrate with the Nation" - SGD740
  • Overnight accommodation in a Premier Room
  • Daily buffet breakfast for two persons
  • One bottle of Moët & Chandon champagne per stay
  • SGD50 in-room dining credit.
(If you want to snack while watching the fireworks, you can order the Celebratory Snack Platter on 9 August from SGD80 that includes steamed seafood siew mai, California maki and gula melaka cupcakes.)


"Explore Singapore" - SGD1800
  • Overnight accommodation in a Club room including exclusive Club privileges
  • A three-hour private guided tour by an accredited local guide conducted in English, inclusive of limousine transfers per stay
  • Dinner for two person at Colony per stay
  • A bottle of Moët & Chandon champagne per stay

Here are some photos of the "Explore Singapore" tour. We joined a local tour where we visited Haji Lane, Kampung Gelam and Chinatown.  The tour guide was engaging and we didn't even realised we had walked for 3 hours!

Mural at Haji Lane

It's been some time since we last went to Haji Lane. The artistic murals are the centre of attraction.  Our tour guide told us that this area was previously a sea shore and Muslims would start their pilgrimage to Mecca by boarding the boat here.


Mural at Haji Lane

While we were intrigued by the interesting shops, cafes and bakeries along the way, we noticed many people taking selfies /wefies 'instagram' worthy photos. 


Our tour guide gave us a crash course in the history behind Kampong Gelam.  He pointed us to the "Gelam" tree which Kampung Gelam is named after and also captivated us with the history on the Sultan Mosque, Sri Mariamman Temple and also the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple and Museum.

After the tour, we made our way to Colony for dinner.

Ice Bar featuring various Cold Seafood like Oysters and Lobsters at Colony, The Ritz-Carlton Millenia Singapore

It was a fully booked night. We have dined here privately on several occasions and noticed the menu is always slightly different depending on the season so we are assured of the freshness of the ingredients.

If you are interested to view photos of what Colony offers, you can follow the hashtag #DiningAtColony on Instagram.

Tomahawk - Colony, The Ritz-Carlton Millenia Singapore

The "Tomahawk" Roast that was the feature "Roast" of that night.  We once had the "Iberico Roast Piglet" during one of our previous visit. I have to refer to the photos in my phone for other visits. It was always changing.

Fireworks from the Premier Room, The Ritz-Carlton Millenia Singapore

This photo was taken from an iPhone so don't worry if you do not own a DSLR to be able to capture the fireworks.



Here are snippets of the outing.  Sorry for the jerky video as it was taken using a tiny hand-held camera. Enjoy the video.


The Ritz-Carlton, Millenia Singapore
7 Raffles Avenue
Singapore 039799

For reservations and enquiry:
Tel: (65) 6434 5111
Email: rc.sinrz.reservations@ritzcarlton.com



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Thursday, July 28, 2016

Seasonal Taste @ The Westin Singapore, The Great Thai Feast.

It has been some time since the wife and I dined here. We first dine here when we saw the opening specials of Westin Singapore and booked a room for a short staycation. (Time passes so quickly as they are now 3 years old!)

We wondered into Seasonal Taste because there was nothing really opened at Asia Square at that time. During the weekends the restaurants at Asia Square were all closed then. We decided to have the a la carte items during lunch and they were good. All the Westins around the world has this healthy menu. Healthy yet tasty menu.

For dinner, we had dinner one night at Cook and Brew and another night at Seasonal Taste. We had their buffet then and somehow we never came back. If you watched enough restaurants reality TV, you know why you shouldn't come during the early days of opening. LOL.

We are back this time and this was an invite from the hotel and was also an unhosted tasting. You just dine like a regular guest, they foot the bill. If we liked it, we write about it. We were seated near a table of 4 hungry ladies, a couple on a date and a table of 8 businessmen on company dinner.

For 2 weeks till 31 July, they are having The Great Thai Feast.

Seasonal Taste @ Westin - The Great Thai Feast

If you are a SPG (Starwood Preferred Guest, not Sarong Party Girl lah...) member (which is free by the way, and I have it since 2003), you get a discount of 20% plus Starpoints for future hotel stay redemption.

Seasonal Taste @ Westin - The Great Thai Feast

One of the highlights of the Thai Feast is the Kor Moo Yang (Marinated Grilled Pork Neck). Yes, it's the fatty and muscled meat part of the oink oink animal and is used in Thai and Chinese cooking for melt in the mouth dishes. I am sure if you have been to Thailand, you have bought them to snack like me.

The dipping sauce Jim Jaew is an addictive sauce accompanies this dish. I drizzled it for most of the things I ate!

Seasonal Taste @ Westin - The Great Thai Feast

Another highlight of the Thai Feast is the Tom Yum Gung. Prepare to "cough /choke" on your first mouth. Recover from it and you will want more. I know my stomach, so I shared a bowl with the Mrs. If I have more of it, the body will tell me!

The table next to us really loved it from their chatter.  It's sometimes a joy to watch other people eat right? "Eavesdropping" on people who talk loudly and enjoying and laughing silently with and also at them. 

Seasonal Taste @ Westin - The Great Thai Feast

Marry a partner who peels prawns, and she will dish a bowl to share and then peel it for you as well.

Seasonal Taste @ Westin - The Great Thai Feast

Papaya salad - the 'live' station that has the chef pound your salad in the Clay Kruk mortar and wooden pestle. Do you think the clay mortar bruise the Som Tams and Nam Priks gentler so they are better flavoured?

It's recommended to eat it with the Grilled Pork Neck, fresh prawns and/or salted egg.

Seasonal Taste @ Westin - The Great Thai Feast

Pad Thai! There was once when a few of us visited Bangkok, we were on a Pad Thai discovery. We ordered and tasted Pad Thai from so many places, from streets carts and small eateries, chain restaurants and higher end establishments. We discovered that where the locals eat, the noodles are QQ / al dente. If it's a place where tourists go, it's soft like how we normally get in Thai restaurants here. I wonder if my observation was correct.

Well, this Thai Chef prepares it the QQ way here. Your parents might say it's undercook haha! A good thing about a buffet is you can add as much peanuts or chilli flakes or lime on it.

Many people will avoid the raw bean spouts and chives right?

Seasonal Taste @ Westin - The Great Thai Feast

I had many rounds from this station. Skewered meats, chicken wings and roast chicken with that dipping sauce that is addictive. 

Seasonal Taste @ Westin - The Great Thai Feast

I have a confession. I mostly skipped this station. Too much veggies for a pig out night.
I only took the Nam Prik for the veggies and used it for some rounds of cold seafood and meats.

Seasonal Taste @ Westin - The Great Thai Feast

Not Oysters Kilpatrick, but grilled oysters with Red Curry and Green Curry. 
I think they have this for those who don't like freshly shucked oysters! Somehow they tasted so good. 

Seasonal Taste @ Westin - The Great Thai Feast

The main staples of the Seasonal Taste buffet - Canadian Lobsters, freshly shucked oysters. (also mussels, prawns, scallops). For the Thai Feast, they have in addition to the usual dips and sauces, Thai sauces and dips.

This was the Mrs. She always love her lobsters and oysters.

Seasonal Taste @ Westin - The Great Thai Feast

This is my plate. I prefer Lobsters and Prawns. I had them with Jim Jaew.

Oh, if you like Pork Skin/Rind, they have a bag at the salad table and it disappears quickly. If you see it when you walk past, grab some and then top it with the spicy spreads. That's why there is pork rind on my seafood.

Seasonal Taste @ Westin - The Great Thai Feast

They have a quite a few Thai based desserts too. The colourful Khanom Luk Chup, it's mung bean filling inside the colourful outer layer. Like Ang Ku Kueh! 

They also have some Thai Pumpkin Custard which disappeared quite quickly! When I wanted to taste it, it's gone!

Seasonal Taste @ Westin - The Great Thai Feast

I had Khao Niew Ma Muang (Mango Sticky Rice), I know many people love this, but I am one who don't appreciate it. I like my Toffee Pudding with Toffee Sauce eaten with a scoop of Dark Chocolate Gelato, so good. I had a few more scoops of blood orange sorbet, mango sorbet and avocado gelato.


A photo posted by Philip Lim (@keropokman) on

I had 6 helping of this addictive Cha Yen (Thai Milk Tea), made from black tea infused with condensed milk. The hungry ladies beside us, they were also thirsty! Instead of these small mugs that is placed at the dessert table, they used their big iced water glasses from their table to fill it up! That good! I think I haven't had anything with condensed milk for a long time that's why!
(Warning, very sweet! Thai style sweet, which I think some people can't take it.)

If you consider this for dinner this week if you are planning for some Thai food. On a Wednesday night, it was quite filled up.


Seasonal Taste
The Westin Singapore
Level 32,
12 Marina View,
Asia Square Tower 2
Singapore 018961

Tel: +65 6922 6968
Email: seasonaltastes.singapore@westin.com
Web: www.thewestinsingapore.com/seasonaltastes



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