Birthday Party at Club Chinois

collageI’ve had many opportunities to dine at Club Chinois at the Orchard Parade Hotel, but I have always missed them.

I was determined not to miss it this time, not because my friends keep beating my head over how good the place was and how I keep missing out; no, this time a dear friend invited me to celebrate her birthday there.

For those who’ve never heard of Club Chinois, it’s a small but elegant restaurant, run by the Tunglok Group, that serves great modern Chinese Cuisine. And nestled deep in the restaurant is a very nicely appointed private dining room where the party was to be held.

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I think it was very elegant in an old Shanghai style. Unfortunately, it was not a formal dinner otherwise, I think it would have been sharp. No worries as any dinner with good friends is the best dinner no matter the setting.

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I think the service staff was getting a little worried because we were loitering in a corner of the room sipping Champagne while the starters were getting warm. So we moved smoothly to our seats with the casual ease of highly experienced diners, we sat and the cold tofu with Century Egg and Sesame sauce appeared.

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I must say that the combination of Century Egg and Sesame is a match made in heaven, sweet and savoury with the cold tofu providing a sensuous texture. A great way to awaken and refresh the palate!

This was quickly followed by the deep fried tofu and siew mai.

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Topped with spicy minced pork, the deep fried tofu was done as perfect as can be, crispy on the outside and smooth on the inside.

The one thing that I regretted unable to enjoy was the seafood roll with a huge prawn hidden within the salad greens and beancurd skin.

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I was very happy when soup came out. I love soup. Warm and comforting, with a pastry cover on top too!

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Pastry covers always presented a problem for me. The first instinct is to crush it and stir it into the soup but would that be too crass or should I lift it up and put it on the nice velvet table cloth to break into pieces?

While the debate was going on in my head, Shaoxing wine was sent for to flavour the soup. And what did I see as I stirred my soup (avec la peau écrasée de pâtisserie)?

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The persons seated next to me were very lucky that night. 😉

The Black Cod came next was also huge, but I was resonably sure no treacherous prawn lurked anywhere near. After all, Cod are natural predators.

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It was not all decadent seafood all the way of course. There was the rack of lamb that did not consist of any prawn at all.

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No sir. It was honest-to-goodness lamb that had that gamey, chewy texture and taste that all lamb-lovers crave. This was good as most Chinese restaurants would use a very heavy sauce to mask the aromas and gamey-ness. Instead, the sauce here actually enhanced the taste of the lamb with its citrus flavours, much like why you would use mint sauce.

And speaking of Chinese restaurants. No birthday is complete without noodles. Mee sua (Vermicelli) to be precise.

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Being Hokkien, I love mee sua. It is comfort food to me and this was done beautifully with a creamy egg sauce topped with crisp green peppers.

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When all was sated, the birthday celebrations continued with the cake-cutting and gift-giving. And we all got to taste the chocolate cake by Jeremy. As always, it’s a pleasure and a rare honor.

What was different was that everyone got a gift to take home. This is almost unheard of in Singapore tradition.

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What was even more unheard of was me trading off a homemade Brownie for Jellybeans. Hey, I like jelly beans more than baked goods ok?

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It was a fun party as old friends caught up and had a good time. Service at Club Chinois was enthusiastic and good as was the food.


Posted on 15th Oct 2006 in Chinese, Food and Drink, Fusion, Makankaki, Western

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There Are 4 Comments

 

superfinefeline commented on October 15, 2006 at 7:58 pm


Very nice pics! I esp like the pics of the cold tofu, Cod & Mee Swa. I love tofu & mee swa. The lamb looks absolutely divine! I like my lamb sans sauce usually with the option of adding the sauce to enhance flavour.


 

Ivan commented on October 15, 2006 at 8:50 pm


Thank you. Do you happen to be Hokkien too? ;P

Actually, it’s a Chinese restaurant, so the sauce is de riguer.


 

[…] Ivan: Thank you. Do you happen to be Hokkien too? ;P Actually, it’s a Chinese restaurant, so the sauce is de riguer. […]


 

superfinefeline commented on October 18, 2006 at 1:53 pm


Oui, oui!

I’m Hokkien too.

Hmm…I guess it’s normal for Hokkiens to like Mee Swa?

Yeah, i know abt Chinese restaurants being sticky about sauce…wish they would give the option but have never had the guts to ask for fear of “additional ingredients”.


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