31 January, 2012

Le Cuisson - A Pictorial

A French stall located in a coffeeshop in Queen Street behind Illuma. Set up by two of my seniors from at-Sunrice GlobalChef Academy - Chef Kenneth & Chef Wilson.

Le Cuisson (13)

Le Cuisson (1)

Le Cuisson (6)

Le Cuisson (7)

Le Cuisson (10)

Le Cuisson (11)

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27 January, 2012

DBS Indulge - A Night with Chef Sho Naganuma, The Underground SupperClub

After hearing and reading so much about DBS Indulge first “The Underground SupperClub” series held at St Regis with Chef Anthony Genovese, HFB was truly ecstatic to receive an invitation to their second event hosted by the highly-acclaimed Chef Sho Naganuma at the HY California, Marina Bay Sands. For those who hadn’t realised, Chef Sho was featured in the recent premiered “Great Dinners of the World” on Asian Food Channel.

A Night with Chef Sho Naganuma (1)

For some who are unaware of such “underground supperclubs”, the menu is usually themed or kept as a secret and the dinner details are usually kept within those who are in the know. And DBS Indulge presents DBS Cardmembers and their partners with such exclusive dining experiences where renowned chefs redefine and give their own unique interpretation of the theme “food for the soul”. In this instance, the food served that night was off the menu of HY California, and purely created for this event.

A Night with Chef Sho Naganuma (3)

Mocktails of Grenadine with 7-Up were served to guests upon arrival. And very soon, we were lead to our respective seats. Yes, HFB was among the honoured few who had the opportunity to dine, mingle and exchange conversations with Chef Sho and other like-minded food lovers on the same dining table! How awesome is that?

A Night with Chef Sho Naganuma (2)

The man himself did a quick speech, excused himself and hurried off to the kitchen behind the counters to prepare our first dish.

A Night with Chef Sho Naganuma (4)

The first savoury that was served that night was the Wagyu Beef Carpaccio with Aka-Daikon, Hijiki, Arima-Sansho, Meneji and Truffle. Chef Sho explained that when he first stepped foot overseas, he was surprised at how other people were using Japanese produce (beef) and turning it into something else he had never seen before, with their cooking techniques – and beef carpaccio was one of them. While the beef was extremely marbled and really gratifying, HFB was really astounded by the red daikon that the beef was paired with. It was the first time he had tried it and he was charmed by its fascinating crunchy texture.

A Night with Chef Sho Naganuma (5)

With the opening of Hide Yamamoto at Marina Bay Sands two years ago, Chef Sho moved over to Singapore to helm its kitchen as their Executive Chef. And thus the birth of his creation – Singapore Chilli Crab Soup served with Mantou as his second dish. Such was his love for our celebrated local dish! The soup was clean, and delicate, yet intense with various flavours harmonising really well together. This was definitely HFB’s favourite dish for the night and one that he wouldn’t mind replicating it at home (hint: lots of ginger, onions, tomatoes, chilli (oil?) and chicken stock).

A Night with Chef Sho Naganuma (6)

Most people loved their Black Cod, and to Chef Sho, this dish, or rather ingredient holds much meaning to him, as it was the first dish that he had mastered when he stepped up from a sushi chef behind the counter, and into the culinary kitchen.

A Night with Chef Sho Naganuma (7)

Served with Pomegranate and Balsamic Reduction, Kumquat Compote and Winter Turnip Puree, the dish was a harmonious medley of flavours. Rich flavours of the cod goes well with the tangy reduction sauce, with the kumquat compote breaking the monotony with its sweet, plus chewy texture. And the turnip puree does a great job mellowing the whole dish with its palate cleansing quality.

A Night with Chef Sho Naganuma (8)

For dessert to round off the night, he named it “Classic Japanese Apple Pie 2012”. Paired with a very interesting Yoghurt Sake, which HFB didn’t quite fancy, Chef Sho created his rendition of the dessert his mum always made for him when he was young.

A Night with Chef Sho Naganuma (09)

Essentially an apple-flavoured ice cream placed on top of a very crusty pie, HFB really enjoyed the dessert that night. Such simplicity, but articulate much delightfulness within!

A Night with Chef Sho Naganuma (10)

Disclaimer: No ratings would be given, as this is an invited media tasting. HFB would also like to take this opportunity to thank DBS Indulge, Asian Food Channel and HY California for their hospitality.

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11 January, 2012

Kohii @ One Shenton Way

Office executives working in the heart of Central Business District (CBD) have a new lunch venue – Kohii, or ‘Coffee’ in Japanese, is a contemporary Tokyo café and sandwich bar. Located at One Shenton Way, a high-end residential development in CBD, Kohii offers healthy value-for-money deli delights with a touch of Japanese sensibility.

Kohii (1)

HFB’s first impression when he set foot at Kohii was akin to him being transported to Tokyo downtown - the al fresco setup plus the servers dolled up in modern Japanese café-styled uniform.

Kohii (2)

But what caught his eye most was the menu that came with Japanese wordings, which added more character to the whole branding. HFB LIKE!

Kohii (3)

Tasting went in full swing with the much acclaimed Mixed Mushroom soup ($9.80) and Pumpkin soup ($7.50) as well as their signature smoothies – Ichigo Nana (Strawberry and Banana $6.30) and Ringo Cinnamon (Apple and Cinnamon $6.30). Unlike the traditional French-styled mushroom soup that came heavily laced with cream, Kohii’s version of mushroom came without and definitely tasted more homely. It was light on the palate with a very full mushroom flavour in a good way. HFB was told there were five different awesome types of mushroom within.

Kohii (4)

It’s usually a love-hate relationship when it comes to pumpkin soup – either you love it or hate it. As for HFB, he is ok with pumpkin and he pretty much approved Kohii’s version that was again light in texture (no cream) and has natural sweetness from the pumpkin. As for the smoothies, he’s a bigger fan of the Ichigo Nana, named after the owner’s daughter, than the Ringo Cinnamon. You can also check out MangoMomo (Mango and Peach) that was named after the other daughter.

Kohii (5)

HFB was also introduced to Kohii’s trio of chicken sandwiches – the Teriyaki Chicken Breast ($9.50), the Curry Chicken ($9.50) and the Pesto Chicken ($8.50). Among all, he thought the curry chicken stood out the best - he was told all the chicken breasts were marinated with teriyaki sauce prior to grilling and drizzled with their various dressing and felt that the curry sauce really complemented brilliantly with the meat. Love it! However if he was to nitpick, he felt that the chicken breast were a tad dry for all trio – perhaps it was the cut of the meat, or maybe it was the cooking process.

Kohii (7)

But if there was one compelling reason why HFB should be back at Kohii, it would be the star of the afternoon – the Assorted Seafood Salad ($10.50)! Salad with heaps of seafood – prawns, crabstick, octopus, and scallops – swimming merrily with choice of salad dressing – Soy Vinaigrette, Goma or Miso. HFB sampled all three dressing and each has its own merits - the soy has a nice savoury and tangy balance, the goma has a rich familiar flavour that would suit the masses, and the miso a unique salad dressing that even HFB thought was really interesting in a good way.

Kohii (6)

With ingredients imported from Japan (they even uses UCC UESHIMA coffee from Japan), a nice ambience and atmosphere created, plus value-for-money deli offerings, what is there not to like about this place?

Disclaimer: No ratings would be given, as this is an invited taste test. HFB would also like to take this opportunity to thank Yean and Kohii for their hospitality.

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04 January, 2012

Pontini @ Grand Copthorne Waterfront - A Pictorial


Pontini (1)
Complimentary Bread

Pontini (2)
Fresh Canadian Oyster

Pontini (4)
Tuna Tartare with Lemon Oil Cintronette

Pontini (5)
Vitello Tonnato

Pontini (6)
Grilled Wagyu Steak

Pontini (7)
Porcini Mushroom Risotto with Foie Gras

Pontini (10)

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