2014 has been a year of changes. First, I changed my job. Nothing spectacular. Moving from one position to another. However, the new position brought me to new worlds and a new domain. Second, I changed my taste in food. No more big appetites, buffets. Simple stuff, natural.
In 2014, I spent 167 days either on a plane or in a hotel, ate 143 airplane meals, got to know Middle Eastern cuisines better. Picking the Top 3 in Singapore was not an easy task as I took to more home cooking than eating out – I only went out to eat in Singapore 33 times in 2014. These were my favourites.
3. Halia @ Botanical Gardens (visited in Feb 2014)
This was a surprise find for me. I was arranging for the family gathering and Halia was within the budget for everyone. Set lunches were a bargain. The location is great, but the only challenge was getting there. You either park far away and walk, take an MRT and walk, or talk a cab and stop at the Orchid Garden entrance. The food was pleasing for even old folks that did not like “ang moh jiat”. Our favourite was the chilli crab spaghetti. Highly recommended for the romantics in the evening. They have started another branch at Raffles Hotel. Don’t know if the standard is maintained over there.
2. Haidilao Hotpot @ Somerset 313 (visited May 2014)
We loved this place so much that now whenever we wanted hotpot, we would go there. The only issue was the crowd. The average queue time during peak hours was 3 hours. But if you manage to get a table, the freshness of the food and the excellent service will be worth the wait. The service would put to shame the many other so-called fine dining establishment with impeccable Michelin-styled service. Everyone was having fun in this joint. Did I mention that the hotpot was really “mala”?
Really? A restaurant that cost $400++ per person for a dinner? Why this “atas” choice? Firstly, JAAN service team was impeccable. My companion and I were treated to a great evening of good food and invisible service. The food was centerstage and Chef Julien was a worthy successor to Chef Andre. Every course was a piece of art.