Tuck in to a spread of endless local delights at Ah Hoi’s Kitchen dinner buffet!

ahhoiskitchen

Singapore is very much a food paradise with a whole spectacle of cuisine styles available at the city centre and popular spots around the island. One way of getting to know local food in the midst of Orchard Road is at Ah Hoi’s Kitchen located down at the Traders Hotel, where from now till August the restaurant will be serving up an a la carte buffet dinner in addition to the menu specialities on hand. Ah Hoi’s Kitchen signature Chilli Crab also makes a special appearance on the buffet menu and it is bound to tickle the tastebuds of locals and tourists wanting a go at one of the island’s most iconic dishes. At a price of $38++ per person, an enjoyable spread of endless local delights can be shared amongst family and friends.



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Ah Hoi’s Kitchen is located next to the hotel’s pool, and it provides a remarkable cooling ambience that settles a certain sense of tranquillity into the night.

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I started off dinner with the Braised fish maw with crab meat (one serve only). Traditionally prepared, with a good viscous soup base peppered with textured fish max that lend subtle bite. Add a little vinegar to liven the taste further. Very enjoyable start to the night. 

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Up next, a little something to whet the appetite further is the Spicy Ikan Bilis Salad. Curry scented with the slightly salty deep fried anchovies providing a complex textural contrast to the potatoes that make the base. Something unusual to begin with. 

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Another highlight to try is the Honey Glazed Chicken. For all its chunky pieces of poultry, each is lovingly coated with sweet honey for a sensation that is melt in the mouth with good savouriness that warms the tastebuds. Enjoy the pieces of young ginger by the side to clear any lasting flavours. I would order this dish again!

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The next dish is a classic that I myself love to prepare at home – Steamed fish fillet in teochew style. Nice tangy flavours from the preserved vegetables and tomatoes used, with a broth that is clear and savoury in each sip. Good portion, though for the buffet, I personalyl would have preferred something other than dory. The flavours don’t cut it as well as a portion of pomfret that carries finer, flaky meat.

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The Braised Jade Abalone with Spinach (One serve only. 4 serves in picture) is a decent serving of tender and soft abalone in a thick tasty braising sauce. I thought this was an okay dish that could please the palates of those looking for something a little more.

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The Braised Bean Curd with Crab Meat Sauce reminded me of those that are normally served on hot plates. Whole piece of soft tofu, with a firm skin is covered with a delectable crab meat braising sauce that bring out the flavours of tofu. I would enjoy this dish all on its own by myself, if not for the rest to come.

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Sliced beef in black pepper sauce

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The house’s signature Chilli Crab makes an appearance on the menu. Available as one serve only, the chilli crab is perhaps the best executed dish from the menu dishes I’ve tried so far. The sauce is the real deal here. I found it thick and spicy, going extremely well with steamed rice. I literally had two bowls of it with just the gravy. A little chilli spicy, with a good slightly tangy savoury aftertaste, this was beautiful. The crab itself was decent and enough to whet the tastebuds.

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For something off the buffet menu, do try the Black Pepper Kway Teow. It stood very well on its own and carried its own weight with that slightly smoky fragrance from the wok coupled with the black pepper grittiness and flavour that comes with a good serving of Black Pepper Crabs.  

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Although it was already quite heavy into the meal, I thought I would order more items to try and share with everyone since the conversation at the table was particularly eventful. The serving of Chicken Ngoh Hiang was served up nice and hot, with that first bite revealing the generous stuffing within. A good combination of meat and vegetables make up the ngoh hiang, leaving a particular fragrance in the mouth after each bite.

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The Sambal Squid was a pretty decent portion where the flavours of squid stood out more than the sambal. Deceptively spicy, this would make a good accompaniment with rice. If only I was not so full then.

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The Steamed minced chicken with salted fish and salted egg usually comes with a portion of rice outside, but here at the buffet menu, it becomes petite dish for all to share. The saltiness from the salted fish complemented the meaty flavours of chicken well enough, and the salted egg yolks were a nice touch in presentation. I personally wished there were water chestnuts mixed into the mince for that added crunch and texture, something that I’ve always been doing at home when I cook this dish.

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Desserts of Mango Sago with Aloe vera, Melon Pudding, Herbal Jelly with honey

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When I heard that Ah Hoi’s kitchen served Yam Paste on its regular menu, I knew it was something that I had to order to nicely round up the night. The dessert came in a generous bowl enough for at least two persons. The waft of coconut milk subtly scented the serving, revealing the deep paste of yam well layered at the bottom. A little sweet with a flavour that leaves you go “ahh” whenever you encounter comfort food in any cold chilly weather. Excellent end to the meal.

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The dishes from Ah Hoi’s kitchen in overall is a good take on local fare done up in familiar home style fashion yet served in a restaurant in the middle of Orchard Road. The portions itself are also small and easy to finish, giving the table a chance to try a good number of dishes on the menu. I found the Chilli Crab worthwhile to dig into, and items like the braised bean curd and the chicken ngoh hiang are worth the order. For $38++ and a minimum 4 to dine, one must consider savouring local delights at Ah Hoi’s kitchen as a buffet first that serves up local cze char dishes, alongside a comfortable and cozy atmosphere. For the variety to savour, I would say the price is worth and value bringing friends and family to dine. A great deal if you do not know what to order, or have a particular few favourites from Ah Hoi’s that you simply must have. However, if you just looking for a limited and select few dishes to tuck into, other local cze char establishments might suffice for that ravenous appetite for local cuisine. Otherwise, the buffet is a worthwhile look if you just like to have a good selection of local delights for dinner with all.

Thank you Traders Hotel for the invitation

Ah Hoi’s Kitchen
Level 4
Traders Hotel
1A Cuscaden Road
Singapore 249716

A La Carte Dinner Buffet
Adult $38++ , Child $19++ (Below 12 years of age)
Available daily 6.30pm – 9.30pm
Minimum 4 to dine