Celebrity Chow with actress Dawn Yeoh

Dawn Yeoh's idea of a perfect dining spot would be one that allows her to savour her food slowly amidst forest trees, rich flora and cascading waters.

"I like to dine in the woods. It's kind of a 'girl' thing, isn't it? I love the serenity," said the 29-year-old local actress with a grin.

"You can't really find such places in Singapore, but in Australia, there are many. In Sydney and Melbourne, there are lots of vineyards with great food and wine - all out in the woods."

Well, we did find something close - M met Yeoh last week at House at Dempsey, a chic, cosy joint nestled among the greenery at Dempsey Hill and away from the city's concrete jungle.

As we enjoyed the restaurant's high tea buffet, Yeoh, who is signed to Taiwan artist agency Catwalk, said that House would be a "nice place for me and my girlfriends" to catch up.

"I've been using the #brunchingwithBFFs hashtag very often on Instagram, it's getting popular. And I even came up with my own unique hashtag #brunchingwithQAD. QAD means "qing ai de" (Mandarin for my darlings)!" she added with a laugh.

Yeoh has been rather prolific of late - TV audiences can catch her on long-running Channel 8 drama 118, weeknights at 7.30pm, as well as time-travelling drama Echoes Of Time, which airs on Mondays at 10pm on E City (StarHub TV Ch 111/825).

Come October, she will be on our small screens again in xinyao-themed Channel 8 series Crescendo.

You took a lot of food! Are you the type who doesn't put on weight? These days, many women are into clean eating, raw and gluten-free food. How about you?

Gluten-free? What's that? (Laughs.) No, I'm a foodie and I have quite an adventurous palate. I eat almost everything - except onions.

I enjoy savoury flavours as much as I like my sweets. The macarons here are great, so are the tapas-sized wild truffled mushroom pizza and squid ink pizza.

Unfortunately, I do put on weight from food. If I eat more than usual, I'd just push myself harder to work off the extra calories.

Besides House at Dempsey, which are your other favourite restaurants here that provide a spot of green?

I actually love the entire Dempsey area. The Disgruntled Chef and The White Rabbit are very good restaurants.

Another one would be Casa Verde at the Singapore Botanic Gardens. It's under the Les Amis Group, which is an excellent F&B group.

As an artist with Catwalk, you occasionally have work in Taiwan. Are you familiar with Taiwanese cuisine?

I love Taiwan's liang mian (Chinese for cold noodles). It's a must-eat for me each time I'm in Taiwan. You have to toss it with peanut sauce, cucumber and eggs. It's so simple, yet so good. Lu rou fan (stewed minced pork rice) is very delicious too.

I like all the unhealthy fare in Taiwan. (Laughs) When I visit the night markets there, I eat my way from the first stall to the last stall!

Do you cook well?

After a few failed attempts at cooking aglio olio, my verdict is that it takes talent to be a good cook. And sadly, I don't have it. (Laughs.) My best dish would be omelette.

Most memorable dining experience in the world?

I had a wonderful brunch at a restaurant in Wollongong, Australia. It was a simple meal, mostly stuff like sandwiches, but it was the ambience that made it very special for me.

The air was fresh, it was not so crowded, and there were yachts in the distance.

I share an affinity with Wollongong, it's definitely a place I feel that I can settle down in.

This article was first published on August 5, 2015.
Get The New Paper for more stories.