Hungry? These restaurants are open during the long CNY weekend
Come Chinese New Year, we won't be surprised to see Chinatown looking a bit like a ghost town when many Chinese restaurants and shops close over the weekend for people to spend time with their family.
While most of you might have your visiting schedule lined up, not every home you visit will cater a full meal for you. Some of us might need to have a meal or two outside for the ease of convenience, instead of the hassle of preparing for meals at home.
So we compiled a list of restaurants (other than the obvious ones like Crystal Jade, Din Tai Fung, etc.) that stay open over the long CNY weekend and have good food too. Here goes.
1) Folklore (Destination Beach Road)
Folklore's one of our top picks for restaurants during CNY simply because the food tastes like it could have been made by your family, and you don't quite feel like you're eating at a restaurant when you're there.
That's because Chef Damian D'Silva puts in many painstaking hours into each dish, inspired by what his own grandmother cooked for his family.
The CNY feast here is called Tok Panjang, which means "long table". That's cause the long table at the side of the restaurant is packed with close to 15 different Peranakan dishes. We loved nearly everything, but if we had to shortlist a few, we recommend you save some tummy space for the rich fish maw soup and ayam buah keluak that tastes nutty, chocolatey and savoury all at the same time.
Availability: 15 February to 2 March 2018, 6pm to 9:30pm daily.
Price: $68++ per adult and $28++ per child.
Location: Folklore is at Destination Beach Rd, 700 Beach Rd.
2) Auntie's Wok & Steam (Andaz Singapore)
If you haven't been to the new Andaz hotel for a meal yet, consider checking it out. In particular, we think Auntie's Wok & Steam is a lovely place to have a CNY meal, with its Szechuan influenced tze char.
There's also dim sum, hand-pulled noodles and sustainably sourced live seafood you can pick from tanks and the chefs will prepare them from their live wok and steaming stations.
In addition to the usual staples like yusheng and abalone, try the recommended double boiled beef short rib noodles, and the mapo style silken tofu with Alaskan King crab.
Availability: 6pm to 10pm daily.
Price: $98 per person, additional $18 for tea pairing.
Location: Auntie's Wok & Steam is at Andaz Singapore, 5 Fraser St.
3) Lime Restaurant (Parkroyal on Pickering)
If dishes like claypot foie gras rice, peking duck, and roasted king salmon call your name, know that you can get it all at Lime Restaurant.
Other dishes include five-spice braised duck leg, hearty braised seafood soup, and crispy suckling pig which is exclusively available on CNY eve only. And did we mention it's a buffet spread? Make sure you're hungry before you go.
Prices and availability:
15 February (Thu) - Reunion Lunch: $68++ | Reunion Dinner: $128++
16 February (Fri), 17 February (Sat), 2 March (Fri) - Lunch: $68++
16 February (Fri), 17 February (Sat), 18 February (Sun), 2 March (Fri) - Dinner: $88++
18 February (Sun) - Super Lunch Sunday: $88++
Location: Parkroyal on Pickering is at 3 Upper Pickering St.
4) Blue Lotus Chinese Eating House
Blue Lotus has various set menus based on various themes like harmony, prosperity, and longevity.
The harmony set menu (the most affordable option) comes with 'treasure' filled broth, lotus leaf fried rice, and claypot braised pig trotters. But if you shell out a bit more for the longevity set menu, expect delicacies such as double-boiled abalone, chilli pomelo crab claw, and truffle wanton mee sua, just to name a few.
Availability: 2 February - 5 March 2018, 6pm to 10pm daily
Price: $68++ to $108++ per person
Location: Blue Lotus Chinese Eating House is at 31 Ocean Way.
5) Wan Hao Chinese Restaurant
Mmm, the dishes at Wan Hao Chinese Restaurant are full of premium and delectable ingredients which make for a filling dinner.
The usual wok-fried meat is amped up with lobster and caviar, while stir-fried scallops are served with coral clam and pine nuts.
There's an entire vegetarian set menu too, which includes black truffle yusheng and double boiled monkey head mushroom soup.
Availability: 16 January to 2 March 2018, 6.30pm - 10.30pm daily.
Price: $108.80++ per person (4 to 8 persons) to $2088++ per 10 persons.
Location: Wan Hao Chinese Restaurant is at Singapore Marriott Tang Plaza Hotel, 320 Orchard Rd.
6) Jin Ho Mia
Another option is the casual Chinese restaurant Jin Ho Mia. Pictured is the Zhao Cai Jin Bao set which comes with succulent pieces of abalone, meaty snow crab legs, smoky roasted pork, and delicately sweet tiger prawns.
Some broth options that you can choose are tom yum, chicken, cheese, herbal chicken, and signature fish broth, which is left to simmer for over eight hours to intensify the natural flavours of the fish.
This isn't your typical roundtable reunion meal, but we think your family could have a nice time chatting over a shared hot pot meal too.
Availability: From 15th February 2018, 5.30pm - 10pm on weekdays and 11.30am - 10pm on weekends.
Price: $68.80 - $88 per set.
Location: Jin Ho Mia is at 460 Alexandra Rd.
7) Chopsuey Cafe
So far we've been seeing all the classic Chinese food options, but if you're tired of all the pen cais, braised meats and soups, we'd recommend treating yourself to something from Chopsuey Cafe.
We're talking crisped garlic spare ribs with green chilli chutney to dip in, Tajima beef with fried rice that's been tossed in the beef drippings for a richer flavour, and tamarind king prawns (pictured on the right) that are succulent with a sweet-spicy taste.
And if you want to have a lo hei, expect your usual shredded vegetables to be replaced with kale, wild rice and blueberries; and the salmon with slices of trout. It's the perfect place to spend CNY with your cafe-hopping friends.
Availability: 5 February to 2 March 2018, 10.30am - 11.30pm on weekends, 11.30am - 11pm on weekdays.
Location: Chopsuey Cafe is at Dempsey Hill and Martin Road.
8) The Carvery
If you love meat, like seriously love meat, just skip all the other restaurants and go to The Carvery. There are three new roasts for CNY - Szechuan spiced roast leg of lamb, citrusy Kumquat chicken which comes wrapped in cellophane paper to seal in the juiciness, and Marmite pork rib which is sticky, savoury and sweet.
And the lohei is stepped up with pulled pork, caramelised walnuts, granny smith apple strips for a bit of tartness, tortilla 'pok chui' crackers, and white balsamic peach dressing to pull it all together. Call all your friends who love food and trying new flavours, cause we're quite sure this modern take on CNY food is for the adventurous.
Availability: 22 January - 2 March 2018, 12pm - 3pm and 6pm - 10pm
Price: $48.80 - $68.80 per person.
Location: The Carvery is at Park Hotel Alexandra, 323 Alexandra Rd.
This article was first published in Her World Online