6 places with the best private dining experiences by home cooks in Singapore

Instagram/thewoodear

Don’t know where to eat in Singapore on weekends or your days off? Try going for private dining.

While private dining has yet to become mainstream in Singapore, the trend is definitely not going anywhere.

Having garnered a lot of attention and built a loyal following via word of mouth and social media, the food sells itself.

After all, we’re a food-loving nation and usually can’t wait to try a meal that someone has recommended to us.

With a mix of professional and self-taught chefs offering this service, one thing they have in common is a love for cooking and sharing their dishes with others.

Interested to give it a go? Take note that this is not a last-minute dining option.

In fact, some of these private dining venues are so popular that you have to book months in advance!

Here’s a rundown of seven places in Singapore you can try private dining.

1. THE WOOD EAR

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Teochew style steamed barramundi. #TheWoodEarSg

A post shared by The Wood Ear (@thewoodear) on Jan 10, 2019 at 7:53am PST

Located in a HDB flat in Choa Chu Kang, this private dining establishment operates on Saturdays only (the chef has a day job) and serves fusion food.

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Chef Jesper Chia is known for his meticulously plated dishes that look like they belong in a fine-dining restaurant, and past offerings include a chilled capellini with wood ear, sakura ebi, tobiko and truffle sauce and an asparagus clam and potato tart.

To pay tribute to his Teochew roots, he is serving traditional Teochew food – with a twist, of course – as a way to celebrate the Lunar New Year.

Dishes include pork trotter jelly, steamed barramundi (teochew style), braised duck and orh nee (yam paste) — all part of an eight-course dinner available till 31 August 2019.

This menu runs concurrently with its regular nine-course classic menu so the choice is yours. It’s very affordable too – both menus are priced at $45 per head.

For more information, visit here.

2. LYNNETTE'S KITCHEN

Cultural Medallion recipient Lynnette Seah is best known as a violinist and co-concert master with the Singapore Symphony Orchestra (SSO) but, to her close friends, she’s always been that one friend who loves feeding them delicious gastronomic delights from her kitchen.

She expanded on this idea and launched a private dining business in 2014.

At Lynnette’s Kitchen, you’ll enjoy her specialities such as buah keluak fried rice (her signature dish and original creation), mushroom risotto, beef rendang and a gorgeous tiramisu.

According to Lynnette, every dish is cooked from scratch, and she gets fresh ingredients from the Tiong Bahru Market.

She covers Peranakan and European cuisines, as well as seafood and dessert dishes so there’s a lot of good food to be had here.

A six-course meal costs $100 per person while a seven-course meal costs $120 (minimum seven pax and maximum 16 pax).

Bonus: Lynnette has been known to occasionally play the violin for guests after dinner.

For more information, visit here.

3. FAT FUKU

Annette Tan is a food writer who started Fat Fuku in 2017 because she enjoyed entertaining.

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She cooks dishes from her Peranakan family’s favourite recipes, with a few Eurasian ones thrown in too.

But it’s not as simple as it sounds – she gives them a modern twist, making them truly unique.

A meal here ($95 per person) features an ever-changing rotation of about seven dishes that includes winners such as Crispy Mee Siam With Prawn Sambal & Quail Eggs, Curry Devil Pie and Pork Belly Buah Keluak “Biryani”.

Her kitchen operates from Tuesday to Friday and a minimum of six, up to a maximum of nine, people are required for a reservation.

For more information, visit here.

4. OWNSELF MAKE CHEF

Self-taught chef Shen Tan creates fun menus that showcase the creations that have resulted from her kitchen experiments.

She hosts a supper club series with a range of Singapore-inspired menus, with quirky names such as aPORKalypse, Majulah Singapura Lor!, And Rice To The Occasion.

These one-of-a-kind creations mix many of the chef’s culinary influences and many components are ‘ownself make’ (hand made) too.

She also hosts cooking classes from time to time, teaching her signature dishes such as twice steamed nasi lemak, no stir beef rendang, and crispy chicken wings.

Her supper clubs are held every Saturday; check her website for details on the menu for each week as well as prices (menus start from $99 per pax with a minimum of eight pax, maximum of 12 pax).

For more information, visit here.

5. LUCKY HOUSE CANTONESE PRIVATE KITCHEN

As the name suggests, Cantonese dishes take center stage here.

The organic vegetable garden on the landed property supplies the greens you’ll eventually eat.

There’s one lunch ($60 per person, minimum five, maximum 10 people), three dinner ($80 to $130 per person, minimum six, maximum 10 people) and one vegetarian ($60 per person, minimum six, maximum 10 people) menu to choose from.

Chef Sam Wong is a self-taught home cook who also loves fishing and growing various plants on his property.

Dishes you’ll get to enjoy include Chef Wong’s Peking duck, Causeway Bay noodles, wild caught garoupa in traditional Guangzhou seasonings, and Chinatown ‘Yi Gu’ almond dessert.

You’ll do more than eat here though, as your host encourages you to enjoy the feel of the open porch and even have a go at the stone mill and try to grind the almond into a paste for the dessert.

For more information, visit here.

6. RELISH.SG

If you’re looking for a private home-cooked dinner and a show, you won’t be disappointed by a visit to Dr Rose Sivam and Christopher Choo’s abode for one of their weekly dinners.

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Rose was formerly a TV producer (whose resume includes Phua Chu Kang) and her husband Christopher is the man behind the cooking.

Make dinner an entertaining event by choosing a theme such as Afrobeats, Bollywood or Spanish and your cuisine will match the entertainment for the night.

You could work with them on a custom theme too but whatever you decide to choose, it’s a unique way to celebrate a birthday, an anniversary or any happy occasion with a group of close friends or family.

If you’re happy just to have a meal, there’s also the option to choose a playlist to accompany your food; you’ll enjoy the tunes through a state-of-the-art Sonos sound system which is connected to Spotify and Deezer.

There’s a range of cuisines to choose from, such as Singapore & Malaysia, India, Spain, Morocco and New Orleans.

Meals are priced at $68 per person, with six to eight courses served; minimum two persons required for a reservation.

For more information, visit here.

This article was first published in CLEO Singapore