A bit of everything

International buffets are usually a hit-or-miss for me because different cuisines don’t really go well with each other. Thus I didn’t have high expectations when we went to Todai in late November. The place was packed when we arrived, and we were really lucky to be offered a private room for the five of us.

My first instinct was to go for the rows of sushi that caught my eye when we were walking in. The california rolls and sashimi were great! I could just fill up on them and be happy without venturing into the other sections.

But I headed over to the roast counter after my first plate. Everyone was raving about the roast beef and I had to try it. I paired the roast beef with some cold cut meat and broccoli before grabbing an oyster to try too. Then came more roast beef and potato gratin that will remind you why you can’t live without carbs.Everything was well replenished all the time except for the chilli crabs where there was always a queue. I was in my lil happy bubble eating a year’s worth of cheesy prawns and scallops that I didn’t even consider about the crabs which were limited to 2 pieces per pax.It is a pity that the dessert section was very forgettable, or I wouldn’t mind going back again in a few month’s time.

The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands, 2 Bayfront Avenue, #b2-01, Singapore 018972
Lunch buffets start from $42++ & dinner buffets start from $54++

PS: Todai was in the news recently because of a food poisoning incident. I think it’s probably a one off-thing as we had a lot of raw food that day and we were fine.


Old school steamboat at Whampoa market

The Whampoa Fish Steamboat jaunt is one I make pretty regularly – especially on days when I feel like this equation (don’t wanna dress up + feel like hawker food + don’t want just char kway teow + don’t feel like squeezing with crowds) = Whampoa Fish Steamboat.

It’s a lone stall in the breakfast section of the Whampoa market, so even when there are lots of people, there isn’t any jostling or crowd-confusion.

One stall. 3 Fish Choices. One hour. Eat.
Go on a weekend evening and you are likely to have to wait an hour or more for your steamboat to arrive. Preposterous length of time for ANY hawker stall but as with all good things in life, it’s worth waiting for. I love how it comes with yam.

They also offer 3-4 choices of side dishes which you can pick from. We highly recommend the braised duck, it is super yummy.

This famous Whampoa Fish Steamboat is so popular that it has prompted many similar ‘imitations’ in the Whampoa Hawker vicinity. To ensure you are ordering from the right stall, double check that it’s located at the Breakfast Market – where Loy Kee Chicken Rice is also situated. You’ll find most of the stalls closed save for those selling drinks.

Xin Heng Feng Guo Tiao Tan
Whampoa Drive Food Centre
Blk 91 Whampoa Drive, #01-15

Brussels Sprouts

Brussells Sprouts Special Mussels, Brussels Sprouts Platter and Belgian Wings

Beer, Braised Lamb Shank with Gibelotte Sauce, Caramelised Shallots, Mushrooms and Smoked Bacon, and Steak Frites with Salad: Classic Sirloin with Fries, Side Salad and Caramelised Shallots with Garlic Butter sauce

When attempting to make up our minds on what’d we be having for dinner, I waved for a waiter and pointed at the menu, confused by the multitude of mussel & clam serving varieties. “I’m lost. Can you help me?”

“Well, let me see. You are at Brussels Sprouts, East Coast Park Playground, Block F, Unit Zero One Twenty Seven.”

…and that was where we spent a lovely Sunday evening. Having been to Brussels Sprouts at Robertson Quay, I like their new outlet so much more. Being away from the city, this relaxed environment, with high wooden beams and the beach in close vicinity is perfect for chilling out with friends over mussels, free flow fries and booze.

The service staffs at Brussels’ Sprouts are stars. They are easygoing, attentive and reactive. Every time I checked on an order, or asked for another bucket of fries, I’d be confident of getting a response within a minute.

Larry, coming from Oklahoma, had little experience with mussel and clam types’ seafood and was naturally cautious (as everyone would be when conquering new shells). When we ordered the Brussels Sprouts Special, a broth made from celery, parsley and heaps of pepper, he loved it. Looks like their signature mussels don’t come with a reputation for nothing.

Only thing I wouldn’t order again would be the Platter. It wasn’t as satisfying to the palate as the Wings, Lamb Shank, Steak or fries were. Sounds like I already know what I’m ordering next time when I return, and return I would.

902 East Coast Parkway, Block F Unit #01-27, Playground @ Big Splash
Tel: +65 6346 4344

Arrrbite. Hidden gem

Arbite is an unassuming, homely restaurant which sits above Sushi Tei in Serangoon Gardens, and whose entrance is almost easily overlooked with the crowd of a queue to the Japanese restaurant.

The restaurant’s “concept”, if there was intended to be one, is an assemblage of lego toys and home-styled decor with white washed walls, scrawny tables and chairs and a single sofa sitting corner.

Arbite is a mix of lego toys, tea bags and interesting magazines.

We went on a Saturday night and it was relatively empty – which is great because you get really attentive, excellent service – and not surprisingly, the number of patrons turned out to be a poor indication of how great the food can be because they served up a really hearty meal.

Tempura Stuffed Button Mushrooms

This neat start oozes with cheese when sliced.

Pappardelle with Mushrooms and Parama Ham & Pappardelle with Braised Beef

We had two pastas because they came strongly recommended. Restaurant owner/ chef Marc Wee (ex Michaelangelo) said they hand make their own pasta noodles, which I think only every self-respecting restaurant should. Portions were more than generous, but we both cleaned our plates with no problem.

Grilled Moroccan Chicken & My Wife's Chocolate Cake

Their dessert selection is limited to two options, but the chocolate cake was very well-done flourless fudge and a real indulgence.

At the end of a very satisfying dinner, we couldn’t find any reason to complain from dinner, and no reason not to return!

66A Serangoon Garden Way, Singapore 555962