Galley By The Straits, Dining By The Sea

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I have stayed in the North for almost 12 years now but never did I realise that there stood a restaurant directly next to the sea, hidden deep behind the winding road to the SAF Yacht Club. The entrance is easy to miss and many would assume that its just another road to the military camp. Yet, the trip there makes the entire journey worth it as one is rewarded with a breathtaking upclose view of the Straits and Johor right across.



I arrived sometime after six thirty and was just in time to catch the dwindling sun over the horizon. What appeared to be a radiant sky of blue and white soon became an orange reddish glow, personifying a vitalised sense of warmth and tenderness.

And together with the occasional touch of sea breeze wafting a sense of sea saltiness and freshness in the air that this dinner by the straits begins.

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Galley by the Straits features a wide range of cuisines on its menu. Western, BBQ, traditional Cze Char and seafood, the variety seemingly aims to please almost every other local palate of its diners. And it is without doubt that for the dinner tonight, it is almost only natural that seafood would win hands down.



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The first dish served up was the Double Boiled Seafood Soup in Coconut ($14 ea). As far as double boiled soups go, this version carried a clear and hearty flavour with a slight pepperish aftertaste. The broth was rich in umaminess and the prawn, scallop, dried scallops and shreds of enoki mushroom were a pleasant partnership to the dish.

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Next up, the Galley’s Smoked Salmon Sashimi ($36). Natural imported cherry wood is burnt to smoke the fresh slices of salmon sashimi which is then enjoyed either au nature or with a dip of wasabi and shoyu. Pleasantly, each piece leaves a rounded smoky aftertaste which is very different as it carries a more robust flavour.

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The Salmon Dip ($18) were to my opinion hand made bruschettas. The flaky salmon dip itself has a savoury aftertaste by itself with a burst of the deep tasting salmon oil in each bite. When paired with the pieces of freshly toasted sliced bread, a delicate texture yet fascinating crunch is added to each bite.

I was particularly impressed with this dish of Yuan Yang Prawns ($7 per 100g). Fresh Sea prawns were used in this dish and a combination of wasabi mayonnaise prawns with roasted cereal prawns were presented as a complementing entity.

The wasabi prawns were creamy with more focus being on the texture rather than on the natural spiciness of the fermented horseradish. Roasted sesame seeds sprinkled on the top of the prawns added a elegant finishing touch as it gave a more earthy flavour to the sea.

For the cereal prawns, it was decent with slightly rustic flvaours of curry leaves in each piece.

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When it comes to meats, the combo of Galley’s Spring Chicken and Crispy Smoked Duck was the only meat out of the seafood entrees. The sauce was interesting with a sweet and slightly tangy taste.

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For creativity, I would like to say that Pipa Seafood Beancurd ($9) was nicely done by Galley. The “pipa pieces” were made from tofu and each piece had a savoury texture and taste to it. The seafood spinach tofu at the centre was delicately smooth and soft such that it was akin to enjoying a good cup of pudding.

For The Sweet Potato Ring with Scallops & Mango, I found the potato ring to be a little too sweet. Perhaps the use of sweet potato in this dish was a little too strong as the final result made the ring gamey and starchy. Scallops and mango were decent though they hardly add flavour to the dish on a whole.

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Fish Head Curry ($28) is probably one of the most popular dishes here at Galley. The curry itself is thick in rempah and spices, together with a generous portion of coconut milk giving the spicy yellow gravy a name for itself. I particularly enjoyed the tantalizing flavours of spices from the chillies being developed as the curry sits in the mouth.

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Surprisingly, I thought everything was done until the waitresses brought out the Chilli and Pepper Crab. The chilli crab was decent enough with the meat being sweet and slightly tender. It went well with the chilli crab gravy which on its own is sweet, spicy and viscous.

The pepper crabs impressed me with the use of very good pepper in the dish. A touch of sweetness decorates the fiery peppery flavour and with the natural juices from the crab, a helping hand to a light smoky flavoured cuisine is created.

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Desserts were presented to round off the meal with the Mango Pudding in a glass and Yam Paste with Coconut Ice Cream.

For the entire evening, diners were treated to an almost non-stop piano performance for 3 hours by veteran pianist Gregory Fone. Live music is available on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.

For the food, the quality and flavours are pretty decent and enjoyable when dining as a family or with a group of friends. Add that up with a great view of the sea and the natural calmness of the night waves, Galley By The Straits might just be that next getaway from the city.

Many thanks to Andy Iskandar of Web Profits Lab and Jimmy Sim, Managing Director of Galley By The Straits Restaurant for hosting the dinner.

Other bloggers who attended the food tasting session :

Galley By The Straits (Open To The Public)
SAF Yacht Club
43 Admiralty Road West
Reservations : 6491 1388
Website : http://www.galleysgourmet.com

Opens from : 11am – 10.30pm daily

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