After my first visit to Seasons Bistro, I left thinking it was ironic that with such a name, the food there needed seasoning.
Almost every dish I ate seemed in need of salt or pepper. Other than the poutine, nothing stood out - so I dismissed it.
But I must have been alone thinking that way. Each time I walked past, there was a crowd. Did I miss something?
So when I was invited for a meal, I had to accept. And compared with my first visit, the difference in the food was like winter and summer.
Seasons opened in May offering a range of edible Americana, stretching from Canada to the south west States.
The menu changes seasonally. The classic dishes remain but with tweaks to the ingredients. Currently, it is serving the summer menu.
On my return, it felt like everything had flowered. Flavours were bursting through and the overall dining experience was enjoyable.
Maybe my previous visit coincided with a bad night. Or maybe it has just taken time for the kitchen to stabilise.
The prices here are reasonable and the portions generous. This is just the place when you want a relaxing but substantial meal.
Seasons' Star Dish
This is the classic Canadian dish, poutine ($10). It's basically french fries, brown sauce and cheese curds. When mixed together, it looks like a mess - but the taste is exquisite.
I really like how they get comfortable up north. I'll be ordering this when I return.
Gumbo In Heat
The most disappointing dish from my first visit was the Surf & Turf gumbo ($27). It was so mild and lacking in personality. But on the second visit, it had a lot more punch thanks to the liberal dash of cayenne pepper. It really works better when it is on fire.
Not A Standout
The grilled portobello salad ($16) was competent but not a standout. The candied walnuts add a sweet crunch but that's as interesting as it gets.
It was a tad difficult to eat the seared yellowtail tuna taco ($14) but that's the only problem with it. I love that mix of moist and crunchy. The avocado mayonnaise and watercress salad helps elevate the dish.
The buttermilk fried chicken ($22) suffered the same fate as the portobello salad. It wasn't a bad dish but it was hardly memorable. It feels like the forgotten co-star in an ensemble production.
Orange Clove has introduced some Thai options with two new menus. The Rit-A-Roy menu ($25 per person) features classics such as Phor Phia Thord (vegetable spring roll), Thod Man Pla (fish cake) and Masaman Gai (chicken in Masaman sauce).
The Di-Yi-Yam menu ($30 per person) features Phad Thai, tom yum goong and green curry.
For an additional $3.50 per person, your buffet can include mango sticky rice.
To order, call 6515-0991.
Spicy & Shiok
McDonald's Shiok Shiok Satay Burger is going to be very fun to order!
It comes in two versions: Beef or chicken, at $5.50 each. The Extra Value Meal for this (from $6.60) comes with a medium french fries and a small Coke.
Also shiok are the Smokey Drumlets (two pieces from $2), with spices such as black pepper and paprika.
To balance the spice, order the Strawberry McFizz (from $2.70).
FYI: Seasons Bistro
#01-11/12, Triple One Somerset,
Opens Monday to Thursday 11am to midnight;
Friday 11am to 2am;
Saturday 10am to 2am; and Sunday 10am to midnight
Call 6836-5841 for reservations.
This article was first published on July 23, 2014.
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