Friday, 18 September 2015
East Bistro In Sembawang Singapore - Second Visit JK1240 东小馆
Chef Tony Wong owner-chef of East Bistro invited us back to visit his restaurant in Sembawang. Chef Tony who had been the Chief Chef of Lei Garden Hong Kong and Lei Garden Singapore for decades had been running his own restaurant, East Bistro for almost exactly a year now. Business has been growing steadily as more and more people hear about this gem in Singapore's far north.
Naturally, Chef Tony started us off with some dim sum dishes.
All of East Bistro's Hong Kong style dim sum are hand made and freshly prepared right here in the restaurant's open kitchen.
Pan Radish Cake 香蒸萝卜糕 (SGD3.80).
Tender, slight crisp outside, savouriness from dried shrimps with natural sweet notes from diced radish. Good but nothing really to set it apart from radish cakes at other good dim sum places.
Mushroom Char Siew Bao 花菇王叉燒寶 (SGD3.80).
The "mushroom" refers to the looks of the skin not the filling, which is regular char siew. A dark soy sauce based coating (I believe) is brushed on the bao and when the the bun expands on steaming, the random cracks give the "mushroom bao" it's signature look.
Have not seen this anywhere else.
Interesting and a little gimmicky visual appeal but it is still a pretty good juicy char siew bao :-D Nice bouncy sweet bun too.
Steamed Custard Quicksand Bao 奶王流沙包.
Doesn't flow rivers of custard but I enjoyed the well balanced savoury sweet flavours in the smooth milky "lava" (not quicksand LOL ).
Beijing Dumpling 京式餃子 (SGD6).
Bejing style dumplings with thick chewy skin is not really my style ;-p
Xiao Long Bao 鮮肉小籠包 (SGD3.80).
Xiao Long Bao standards are high in Singapore and East Bistro's are as good as any of the best. But, at SGD3.80 a basket, it takes the top prize.
Crispy Eggplant (SGD6).
Two of my favourite things together - eggplant and salted egg yolk. Skilfully executed with a wok of hot oil and subtly spiced up with curry leaves.
Chef Tony is very proud of his "Saliva Chicken 口水雞" which he makes with spices personally brought in directly from Sichuan for that authentic sting, plus that lips and tongue numbing bite. "Spices from anywhere else won't do" Chef Tony stressed.
The chicken was juicy and tender like good Hainanese chicken rice.
Come to East Bistro must of course try Chef Tony's signature Pao Fan 泡饭.
The large bowl of porridge cooked Teochew style in a round bodied, real chicken broth (free of MSG).
The twist comes from this dish of steamed rice fried to a crispy brown puff.
The light crispy brown rice puff is tipped into the porridge just before eating.
Dig in fast for maximum crackling goodness.
Stir the crispy rice puffs into the porridge.
It's a jumble of textures - of tender rice and diced mushroom, chicken with crackly pop held together by a mild and delicately balanced savoury natural sweet broth. Simple "home cooked" goodness with an interesting twist.
As far as I know, in Singapore you can only get Pao Fan at East Bistro.
If you are a Singapore Northlander (folks of Woodlands, Sembawang, Yishun) there is no need anymore to travel south or east for top notch dim sum. And, of course, the Pao Fan should attract some folks from central and east to visit Singapore's north ;-D
My first visit to East Bistro, thanks to Uncle Martin's recommendation <- click
Peninsula Hong Kong style mooncakes at East Bistro <- click
Disclosure: Please note that this is an invited tasting.
Restaurant name: East Bistro 东小馆.香港点心晚饭小菜
Address: 10 Jalan Tampang, Singapore 758954 (same row as famous white bee hoon shop)
GPS: 1.441977, 103.823472
Opening Hours: Mon - Fri 11:00 am to 10:00 pm | Sat & Sun 9:00am to 10:00 pm (break from 3:00pm to 5:30pm)
Date visited: 13 Aug 2015, 26 Aug 2015
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