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Of everything we tried at Yakitori Uma, this was both the most promising yet disappointing item we got. The Katsu-don ($6.80) was, I feel, the epitome of “you get what you pay for”. The portion was decent, but the fried pork cutlets were so tiny and thin there was barely any pork. I mean yeah I could taste it, but it wasn’t thick, juicy, or shiok for katsu yknow? On the other hand the rice was amazing: fragrant, tender with a bite, moist while keeping the integrity of each grain — it was delicious especially with that light tasting sauce. If you think about yeah I shouldn’t have been surprised looking at the price, but then again knowing how good their fried items are I kinda expected more.
If you tell me that you don’t like them chicken skins then well I’m sorry, we cannot be friends 😤 Of the grilled items we tried there, my favourite was the Kawa (chicken skin, $5.40 for 2 sticks). Beautifully charred and crisp on the edges, juicy, tender, and wonderfully greasy on the insides, these skewers were just crazy addictive! For the super health conscious (just very slightly judging you there), they do a mean Sasami (chicken breast, $4.90 for 2) as well. With their extensive yakitori menu though I’d suggest you go crazy like we did and just try abit of everything!
Still my favourite item on the menu It took me 2.5 years to come back, but I’m super glad to find the food as good (though I can’t say the same of their service). Their simple kushiyaki of Ren-kon(deep-fried lotus root) remain my favourite — so much that we had 6 orders between 4 of us 🙃 First off: the batter’s fantastically light and thin, sticking to the lotus root instead of simply peeling off as a thick coat. That’s half the battle won, mind you; many places can’t even nail that. It’s also not greasy, with a little of the oil lovingly seeping into the root vegetable and giving it a kinda muted crunch — “al-dente” if you could imagine. I loved how earthy and sweet the root vegetables were, holding firm on their own and shining through that batter. Most wouldn’t think of ordering this at a yakitori store, but I’d call this a must-try at Uma.
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Sweet & Sour Pork Sweet & Sour Pork ($7) . Extended deliberation on whether to post about this crazy value for money tze char place located within chinatown food centre. The menu isn’t extensive but every dish is executed with finesse and perfection. This sizzling hot claypot of my favourite sweet and sour pork is only $7 and the portion could easily feed 4. The unique selling point of this dish is that its sweet and sour sauce was made with hawthorn instead of the usual pineapple, vinegar and ketchup. Expect to find quirky senior folks running the shop and not taking no carbs as an acceptable reason to skip ordering rice and this stall only opens for a short 2 hours, making it a feat just to order successfully.
Claypot & Cooked Food Kitchen #02-83 Recommended by the butcher from the wet market downstairs, this stall always sells out quickly and we finally got to try it yesterday. After a grueling wait due to their many customers, this spread that only costs $34 (for 6 ppl!) arrived in cute, homely claypots. While I found the dishes slightly too oily for my taste, the wok hei was undeniable. Order the generous serving of 姜葱pork liver that has that tender, "medium rare" perfectness.
Claypot Liver For those who were afraid of the gamey taste, this dish will change your mind. When the wok was heated to extremely heat, it caused something called the "wok hei". This wok hei helped to remove most of the gamey taste and not losing any the meat natural sweetness. Stir fried with ginger and spring onions improved also its sweetness. To achieve such perfect texture of the liver takes years of practice (I mean yearsssssss of hard work and the ability to endure the heat of the burning stove.) According to the auntie, they have no actual closing time. When they sold out, they closed. So do drop by early! Claypot & Cooked Food Kitchen Smith Street Food Centre #02-83 Open from 11am till Sold out Closed Alt Wed and Thurs Phone: 81008265
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Hot 100 2019
Featured In 5 Guides
NEW Pasta Tasting Menu If you want to carb out in preposterous style, the new Pasta Tasting Menu at Spago has your name on it. It certainly had Burppler Jayne Tan and mine. Comprising of smaller portions of the four existing pastas from the a la carte menu, it is an ideal way to try them all at one sitting. Frankly speaking, I have only had the agnolotti (it’s pure magic, just ask everyone else I’ve introduced it to) and wasn’t quite aware of the other three pastas’ existence. Blame it on my usual must-haves that get first dibs on my belly’s real estate whenever I visit 😂😂 So thank you Executive Chef Greg Bess for insisting we leave it to you this time. The first to arrive was a pile of exquisite frilly Mafaldine prepared in a far-from-basic cacio e pepe style with prosciutto and asparagus. The former added meaty savouriness while the latter threw in not only in extra flavour but also succulent bites of juiciness. Second was a really appetising Rigatoni. The sauce of pork ragu, fennel seeds, Swiss chard, parmesan, parsley had a subtle kick of heat from chilli which paired beautifully with the big tubes of al dente #pasta. I am a fan of tripe but only if it is done well, and in the case of the Bucatini “Trippa ala Romana“, our third pasta, it hit the bullseye. Superbly soft and gently chewy, the pieces of tripe were saturated in the spicy tomato sauce it had been braised in. Ricotta, mint, parsley and pecorino rounded this off very nicely. Last but certainly not least was the handmade Agnolotti that had stolen my heart from day one. This season sees it filled with pumpkin with a hint of herbs, and served with a plate-lickably delicious sauce, as evidenced in my recent IGTV post starring @heyrozzz @dineshb and @iamkennethelee. We were feeling rotund by then and common sense would dictate refusing dessert. But did we do that? Of course not. A very fragrant deconstructed Apple Crumble landed on our table soon after and in we dug, munching on the freshly baked fruit and crunchy pecan streusel, accompanied by raspberry gel and a magnificent brown butter pecan ice-cream.
NEW Tacos On The Menu At Spago Bar & Lounge Making an appearance for the first time today at Spago Bar & Lounge on the 57th floor of Marina Bay Sands is this Wagyu Tongue Tacos. And what an interesting Mexican-Indian hybrid it is. Inspired by staff meals cooked by the Indian members of their international kitchen team, this features made-from-scratch tortillas and very tender cubes of Wagyu tongue cooked in masala spices, and then smoked with cloves and ghee. Fresh avocado, airy-light, crunchy pork crackling puffs and a side of creamy raita (yes, you read right, it’s the team’s take on the Indian yogurt with chopped onions and cucumber) amp things up further, elevating this exotic and very tasty taco to greater textural heights. We were besotted from first bite!
Taking Steak To Another Level. When an ordinary #steak is too ho-hum, there’s always this funkier option at #spagosingapore. Aged in bourbon whisky for 60 days, the Snake River Farm #AmericanWagyu was presented to us by Executive Chef @gregabess at the beginning of our dinner, looking utterly resplendent and paparazzi-worthy in its wooden box. After being grilled to a perfect medium-rare, it was transformed into a gorgeous thing all pink and juicy on the inside. The flavour was intense and complex with a subtle sweetness. And it seemed to get tastier the more I chewed on it. This is a steak you’ll want to take your time to savour. Due to its time-consuming preparation process, this piece of beef is only available about once a month. However, of late, it has been included as one of the courses in the Tasting Menu (we each paid $195++ for ours that night). If you are keen to try, please double check on its availability when you make a reservation.
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