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Thursday, 16 April 2015

Lunch at Yan Ting Restaurant @ St. Regis

29 Tanglin Road, Level 1U,  The St. Regis Singapore, Singapore 247911
Tel:  6506 6887

Been wanting to dine at The St. Regis for a while, but the plans were forgotten because too many newer eateries have popped up. Recently, a friend mentioned her dimsum lunch at Yan Ting Restaurant, reminding me that yes, I still have this restaurant pending on the gastronomical bucket list. So what better time to dine here than my birthday lunch with the family?

Located at such a luxurious hotel, one could not help but anticipate dining here in these plush settings. But first, we were all attracted to the display of takeaway desserts situated at the main entrance of Yan Ting Restaurant - the honeycomb cakes and water chestnut cakes looked very tempting.

The interior decor was all gilt and mirrors, with some frosted glass panels and fine paintings adorning the walls. There was nothing short of a touch of class and sophistication with the drapes and muted but tasteful tones of the restaurant.

Yan Ting Restaurant serves Chinese fine dining cuisine strongly inspired by the authentic Ming Dynasty, when authentic Chinese culinary art flourished. They have an exquisite menu specially designed and crafted by their new Executive Chinese Chef, Tony Wun.  It was Easter Sunday but the restaurant was packed with diners.

We came for their Dimsum, so our first item was their Crispy BBQ Pork Buns (SGD$6.00 for 3) - there were 5 of us and we ordered 3 to start. We liked it enough to order another set of these crispy pork buns with crusty skin that melted in the mouth; the honeyed BBQ pork were tender and sweet, filling up these crusty shells deliciously.

Next, Radish Pastry (SGD$7.00 for 3 rolls) were one of our favorites as well, so we had a second order for this as well. Imagine flakey skin with softly sweet flavor melting away to refreshing bites of radish slivers, no less or more sweeter than its lovely crusts.

Then we had the Glutinous Rice in Leaves aka Rice Dumplings (SGD$18.00 for 3) - which was the exactly the latter in form and printed on the receipt, even though I was sure I'd ordered the former from the menu. Anyway, it did not disappoint at all - the rice was well cooked so that it was soft but still chewy in texture, and the simple ingredients of salted egg yolk, dried shrimps and meat made the tiny dumplings ridiculously tasty.

Following that, we were served the Cheong Fun (SGD$10.00) with BBQ Pork - you can have the choice of scallops, shrimps and something else I cannot recall. The rice rolls were relatively smooth and the bbq pork quite succulent, but sorry to say that I have had better chee cheong fun at other places.

Moving on, we had Meat Dumplings with Abalone (SGD$9.00 for 3), or better known as "Siew Mai". The abalone was steamed soft and tender, very easy to bite - even the mom approves. The shrimp within the dumpling was very fresh and bouncy, however I did not like the meat. Instead of the usual minced meat, the meat in the siew mai here seemed to be in pieces, and were hard, with a distinctive porky taste that was not pleasant in my opinion.

The next item we had was the Spare Ribs (SGD$6.00) with a decidedly light-flavored sauce. The portion was rather generous but the meat was taut rather than tender.

Then came the Shrimp Dumplings (SGD$9.00 for 3) - juicy prawns with buoyancy in texture once the teeth bites through the thin veil of the dumpling skin. This was definitely a palate pleaser.

After that, we got to enjoy some really good Egg Yolk Buns (SGD$6.00 for 3), more commonly known as "Liu Sha Bao" - small little darlings oozing perfectly warm and delicious salted egg yolk like golden syrup, a unique blend of sweet-saltiness draping luxiously across the tongue like a dream.

The next item another remarkable favorite of mine - the Goose Liver Spring Rolls (SGD$14.00 for 3) - crackling on the exterior and scrumptious on the inside. If you love foie gras, this is just the thing for you - goose liver amongst slivers of vegetables, perfectly paired in texture and flavours.

Following on the heels of the spring rolls were the Chicken Claws (SGD$6.00 for 3) - one could never get enough of plump, juicy chicken feet that are cooked with thick bean paste gravy.

Next up, the Pan Fried Radish Cake with XO Sauce (SGD$10.00) - these deceptively-simple looking cubes were ridiculously palatable and very rich in taste, not sure if it is due to the infusion of XO sauce or the fact that radish was used in lieu of the usual carrots. Every cube was soft, with distinctive taste of radish, dark soy sauce and XO hints - full as we were, we still fought for these irresistable delicacies.

Finally, the one item we managed to squeeze space in our abdomens for - Red Bean Cakes (SGD$8.00 for 3), or known as "3-layers cakes" as recommended by the service crew. The first layer is Osmanthus, then Coconut in the middle, sitting atop Red Bean which is the bottommost layer - the cooling and refreshing dessert was utterly endearing. They were not too sweet, adding just the right touch of soothe to the palate after an engaging savoury meal (yes, the dimsum managed to engage the senses overall).

The only tiny little complaint we had about the place is that our pot of Pu-Er tea was SGD$20.00 in total, but then again this is St. Regis, and I believe they use quality tea (hopefully).

We left the beautiful place suitably pleased - the dimsum items were dainty in size so we could try more variety, some of the items were rather exotic and sumptuous, and the service was excellent. The price was very reasonable as well- SGD$150.00 (after 15% Starwood Group membership discount) for 5 of us.  Here are some ending shots of the sleek settings.

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