Despite being an office and residential hub, Marina Bay Financial Centre is also home to many reputable restaurants. This week, we take you through highlights of Chinese gastronomy, starting with Sichuan hot plates and finishing off with the familiar flavours of Beijing.
Think You Can Handle the Heat? Head down to Qi – House of Sichuan
As a Michelin star awardee in the Michelin guide Hong Kong Macau, Qi – House of Sichuan offers a spectrum of flavours to tease your taste buds. This casual-chic restaurant exudes a laid-back ambience that lets its dishes do the talking.
Start easy with the Bang Bang Wantons, where juicy parcels of meat in a silky skin are served in a smooth peanut sauce and a dash of chilli oil. The sweet and salty peanut sauce eases you into the spice while the chilli oil provides the soft hit of heat.
If you’re feeling adventurous, amp up the heat factor with the Chili Fried Iberico Pork Sichuan Style. This plate of fiery indulgence is something of a staple in Sichuan, where a generous handful of dried chillies are stir-fried with the meat of your choice. The deep-fried Iberico pork is satisfyingly crispy and juicy with a healthy amount of fat to cut through the heat, giving it a rounded and more balanced flavour profile.
Need a break from the heat? This Sugar Glazed Ginger and Scallion Beef is a welcoming respite. The sugar-coated Angus beef is pan-fried to give it a nice texture and a satisfying, caramelised crunch. Stir-fried with ginger to impart warmth and scallions to add a touch of sweetness, this dish is easily a family favourite!
Upon recommendation, we end our meal with the much-raved-about Braised Grouper Fish Fillet in Chilli Oil. The sheer size of the dish may seem intimidating but believe us – it’s well worth the wait. While traditional versions of this dish are too oily, Qi tweaked theirs so that diners can enjoy the goodness of the broth sans oil. The fish fillets are mild and tender which pairs well with the bright, savoury broth.
Savour Authentic Beijing Flavours with a Twist at Forbidden Duck
Across Qi – House of Sichuan sits Forbidden Duck, a modern restaurant by world-renowned ‘Demon Chef’ Alvin Leung offering contemporary Cantonese cuisine with a twist. Forbidden Duck amps up the wow factor with dishes that showcase creativity and impeccable flavours. On top of the popular dishes from its Hong Kong establishment, the Singapore outlet carries locally-inspired specials as well.
Those familiar with Chef Alvin will know to expect dishes that are no less than innovative, like the Marinated Duck Tongue and Jellyfish with Sichuan Green Sauce. This chilled starter whets the appetite, with the tangy Sichuan green sauce and snappy jellyfish adding extra texture and brightness to the dish.
The exceptionally succulent Spanish Iberico Pork Char Siu comes gleaming with a layer of savoury sweet char siew sauce. The restaurant uses quality, imported Spanish Iberico that impart a mellow yet unforgettable flavour that’s pleasing and comforting at the same time. We’re not exaggerating when we say that this melt-in-your-mouth goodness will leave you craving more!
A visit to Forbidden Duck is never complete without their pièce de résistance – the Signature Slow Roasted Duck. The duck, with its crispy skin and tender meat, arrives with a basket of Calamansi mantou and condiments. The Calamansi-infused buns are a delightful touch, adding a refreshing component to this otherwise flavourful dish. You can also customise your own dish by adding scallions, salt, or garlic paste into the buns with your slices of juicy duck meat.
Seemingly simple, the Seafood Rice in Aromatic Duck Soup is one dish you mustn’t miss! The presentation for this is something of a spectacle too. Crispy rice is poured into a clay pot of boiling hot duck broth before your eyes, creating an exciting sizzle and aroma. Additionally, the seafood adds a sweet touch to the extremely flavourful deep duck soup.
Go big or go home, as they say; in this case, we went all the way with their Giant Egg Tart. Unlike egg tarts we’ve had anywhere else, this classic Hong Kong favourite gets an upsized makeover. A buttery crust cup encases wobbly, golden egg custard with sweet marmalade filling. With a dessert this satisfying, we can’t think of a better way to end the meal!