A memorable dining experience this Lunar New Year can easily come about by dining high in the sky at level 60 UOB Plaza at the Si Chuan Dou Hua restaurant. In a mark of prestige and towering elegance, this Chinese restaurant offers a spectacular view of the cityscape coupled with the exclusive feel of celebration that is all set as many gather round for reunion dinners this festive season. All ready to receive the year of the Water Snake?
UOB Plaza is situated right next to a section of the Singapore River and near Boat Quay. It was a beautiful scenic evening with plenty of office executives pounding the pavement after work.
Taking the maze of lifts up to the 60th floor of UOB Tower 1, I found myself at Si Chuan Dou Hua and was quickly impressed with what I saw. The decor was warm, cozy and splendid. It carried a certain amount of elegance that was befitting of a restaurant that stood high in the sky, overlooking the vast landscape around it.
The restaurant can easily accommodate private dinner with their private dining rooms. The largest, able to hold up to 20 persons stands in an exclusive annex of the restaurant with their own view and majestic chandelier. Imagine holding a reunion dinner here, spectacular!
Dinner starts off proper with the Prosperity Salmon Yusheng with Emerald Green Pea Strips ($88-4 to 6 persons, $108-8 to 10 persons).
The traditional yusheng is given a slight twist to mark the year of the snake with pink orange salmon slices intertwined with gelatinous green pea strips. The pea strips are rather neutral in flavour and add to a nice bite in the yusheng.
An added ingredient that made this dish even better is the pieces of fried fish skin. Crispy and crunchy with that slight salinity to bring out the flavour, this adds volume and texture and perhaps a little sparkle.
Set appetizers come in a variety of Six Delicacies Combination. Black Fungus, Spicy Pork Belly, Spicy cucumber, Sesame Chicken, Seasoned Jellyfish, Prawn Salad. I especially loved the sesame chicken for the deceptively plain looking flavour with hardly any notion of spice. For something simple and refreshing, go for the cucumber slices. Not complex flavours but crisp clear taste touched up with chilli oil and seasonings to leave a satisfaction after each bite.
Bottle of gold flakes. Very, very shiny.
Something special this Lunar New Year is the Scarlet Fortune Pen Cai ($438 for 4-6 persons, $588 for 8-10 persons). The traditional cantonese pen cai is made with luxurious ingredients such as duck, waxed meat, prawns, dried oysters, conpoy, soya chicken, fish stomach, mushroom, yam, beancurd, white radish, chinese cabbage and red dates. While the toppings are touched up with gold flakes, the broth of shark’s cartilage is deepened slightly into a touch of sweetness with a serving of capsicum sauce.
The pen cai is not too heavy, giving the tastebuds a chance to savour other dishes on the menu as well. The broth can be a little light for some so I would perhaps recommend choosing one that has the auspices of sea cucumber and abalone that thicken up the flavours altogether.
The Stir-Fried French bean with Prawn in Garlic and Chilli looked shockingly spicy upon arrival, although the fieriness were slightly lesser than expected. Each prawns was coated in a slick gravy of chopped garlic and dried chilli with a layer of oil that could leave one satisfied in indulgence. I reckon it goes exceedingly well with hot steamed white rice which I longed to have at that point in time.
The Fried Glutinous and White Rice with Waxed Meat was exceptionally tasty. Each grain stood well on its own and carried a deep aromatic scent of both the wok flavours and the salty sweet goodness of the sausage. I especially enjoyed how there is a bit more chew with the balance of sticky rice and white rice. Thumbs up for this.
A treat every Lunar New Year is the Nian Gao that in today’s modern culinary scale, comes in varied flavours. There is the traditional Nian Gao (Red), Osmanthus Cake (White), Red Bean with Red Date (dark orange red) and the Water Chestnut Cake with Sugar Cane (Green). I’ve always enjoyed nian gao when they come in small treats. And my favourite from the lot? The water chestnut for that varied crunch in every bite. The nian gao is available for takeaway in a Four Seasons Harmony Box ($28.80)
Tian Fu Tea Room to the left of Si Chuan Dou Hua
Sip tea and enjoy light dim sum at Tian Fu Tea Room
Celebrating the Lunar New Year at Si Chuan Dou Hua on the 60th floor of UOB plaza is spectacular when one combines both the dining experience and the towering ambience. The impression of the dishes are given a heightened boost in expectations and flavour while maintaining the comfort and feel of traditional Chinese dining round the dinner table. This Lunar New Year is all set for impressive delights and having that celebration at Si Chuan Dou Hua could be the start of something beautiful for both business, friends, and family.
Thank you Si Chuan Dou Hua for the invitation.
|Si Chuan Dou Hua
Top of UOB Plaza
80 Raffles Place
UOB Plaza 1
Tel: 6535 6006