Thursday, December 30, 2010

Melt - The World Cafe @ Mandarin Oriental Hotel

I've been hearing raves about the buffet at Mandarin Oriental's Melt - The World Cafe restaurant. With the on-going UOB promotion on 3 diners + 1 diner free, my colleagues and I decided to go and discover what the buzz was all about on this famous restaurant. Armed with an adventurous and curious appetite, we lavishly feasted on the extensive repertoire of combined asian and international buffet.
A wide array of fresh seafood on ice was the star of the buffet set-up. It's beaming with fresh oysters, crabs, lobsters, scallops, mussels and prawns. This was a very good station to start with.

Pardon the very limited food shots taken for this post. The dimly lit ambiance at the restaurant made it relatively difficult to capture a nice angle. The buffet showcased a total of 7 stations to choose from :


1) antipasti, salads, breads & cheese, sushi & sashimi
2) fresh, cold seafood
3) chinese & thai cuisine
4) indian cuisine
5) combined asian & western cuisine
6) roast specialties, pasta & noodles
7) desserts & sweets



While each station had something that's worth a try, there were also some dishes that were mere so-so. Some of the notable ones were tandoori chicken, chicken masala, naan, tomato soup with garlic bread, fresh seafood, smoked duck, roasted pork, barbecue ribs for the savoury dishes and chocolate fondue and waffle a-la mode for the desserts. Generally, it's a good buffet to try but it still leaves you craving for more. In terms of variety, it's extensive enough to deliver your money's worth . Quality wise, which pertains to taste and wow factor, it fell short of my expectations granted that it's very well hyped in the foodies' world.


Monday, December 20, 2010

Christmas at Home
































This year's Chirstmas brought so much difference into our lives. It's a far cry from how we usually celebrate it. Read this previous post why it's so. Anyhow, celebrating it (sans the traditions we were born to) is still a must thus, the customary christmas decoration at home.


Christmas tree is the typical icon of the holiday season. It brings an unexplainable cheery ambiance especially at home. From an orange - gold themed Christmas tree back in the Philippines, I decided to go tradional (red - silver) this year for our Christmas tree in Singapore. I got most of the tree hangings at Ikea, IMM and the Warehouse Sale at Tampines. The tree was a steal at 50% off the original price. For this tree, I spent S$300 to complete the look albeit I think I'm still half way to what exactly I want it to look like. (Anyway, I'll just keep that idea for next year), my children are already ok with it.
It's exactly 4 days to go before Christmas! My goodness! time really flies so fast. It seemed like it's only yesterday since I started the countdown on our office board and it's now down to just 4 days. While my kids can no longer contain their excitement on Santa's gifts for this year, I still need to find time to shop for those "secret presents". There were 3 items on each of their lists and I do hope that stocks are not yet depleted in the shops. This is by far the least stressful christmas year for me. It's the first time ever that I didn't bother my self to shop around and get busy with party preppies and gift wrappings. This experience is both good and sad actually. It's good because it turned out to be a hassle free season and I managed to save a lot. But at the same time, it brings me sadness because I still missed the customary gift giving. After all, there's really no Christmas like home in the Philippines.


To further mark this very different Christmas in 2010, I am also not preparing a noche buena at home. It's a first since I got married and have children. I used to think about my food theme year on year but this time, my family and I are going for a Holiday Buffet (as to which Hotel? that's yet to be decided).





It's a bit bizaare that this humble table will be deserted on the eve of the Christmas day. How I wish it can be graced with wonderful aromas and flavorful bites. But I guess, that's how we will adapt this year under the circumstances. So, from my home to yours, "have a merry christmas everyone and a bountiful new year"! Let's enjoy the holiday in any way we can!.


































Saturday, December 18, 2010

Christmas around the Island

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas. The festive season is already at its peak. While we all get busy on the final stretch of the Christmas shopping and party preparations, we get more excited with wonderful decorations around. This year, the Orchard road is once again well adorned with amazing lights and colours. Inspite of the mix reviews (some say, last year's decor was better), it still manage to provide a nice Christmas ambiance. I would agree though, that last year's was more vibrant and appealing.
Popular shopping centres have likewise put up their own decors and below are some of my favorites...



TANGS...



WISMA ATRIA....

NGEE ANN CITY / TAKASHIMAYA...

PARAGON....


VIVO CITY....

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Christmas Party Potluck


The party season has officially started. How many parties have you been into lately? As for me, I've been to an office potluck party just recently and boy, was I fully stuffed with sinfully delicious home made goodies that can be translated into a parade of international cuisines! Mainly attributed to the multiracial ambiance at work, we feasted on different cuisines from different countries. The experience was actually more than just a delight to the palate. It's beyond sharing different cultures through food. Here are some of the foods that we had. I wish I could have taken better, more stunning shots as well as the rest of the items we had, but I was too busy digging into each of them that I can hardly contain my enthusiasm in trying all the dishes. Besides, I only had my ever reliable iPhone camera at hand. I'm so looking forward to post with my food shots taken through my new EOS. That'll be the bigger "facelift" happening on this blog soon!!


Hongkong : Kailan with Oyster Sauce

Singapore : Baked Chicken Wings

Philippines : Spicy Tuna Pasta Twist

This is the dish that our team prepared. You can check the recipe here but we modified it a bit. Instead of using 3 x 250 ml all purpose cream, we modified it to 2 x 250 ml and added with 1 can of classic condensed cream of mushroom soup.

Thailand : Mango Sticky Rice

Singapore : Localized Western Salad

Singapore / Malaysia : Curry Chicken

Singapore : Roti Jala

Singapore : Yellow Rice


Indonesia : Gado Gado


Singapore : Chicken Kebab

Mexico / Italy : Beef Lasagna

Italy : Tiramisu



We still had some french dishes from our French colleague, it's a pity I was not able to take a snap shot of those. Overall, it sure was a very filling and scrumptious lunch experience. On the other light, it's also inspiring to share each ones culinary skills and creations. 'till next potluck time! =)

Christmas Party Potluck


The party season has officially started. How many parties have you been into lately? As for me, I've been to an office potluck party just recently and boy, was I fully stuffed with sinfully delicious home made goodies that can be translated into a parade of international cuisines! Mainly attributed to the multiracial ambiance at work, we feasted on different cuisines from different countries. The experience was actually more than just a delight to the palate. It's beyond sharing different cultures through food. Here are some of the foods that we had. I wish I could have taken better, more stunning shots as well as the rest of the items we had, but I was too busy digging into each of them that I can hardly contain my enthusiasm in trying all the dishes. Besides, I only had my ever reliable iPhone camera at hand. I'm so looking forward to post with my food shots taken through my new EOS. That'll be the bigger "facelift" happening on this blog soon!!


Hongkong : Kailan with Oyster Sauce

Singapore : Baked Chicken Wings

Philippines : Spicy Tuna Pasta Twist

This is the dish that our team prepared. You can check the recipe here but we modified it a bit. Instead of using 3 x 250 ml all purpose cream, we modified it to 2 x 250 ml and added with 1 can of classic condensed cream of mushroom soup.

Thailand : Mango Sticky Rice

Singapore : Localized Western Salad

Singapore / Malaysia : Curry Chicken

Singapore : Roti Jala

Singapore : Yellow Rice


Indonesia : Gado Gado


Singapore : Chicken Kebab

Mexico / Italy : Beef Lasagna

Italy : Tiramisu



We still had some french dishes from our French colleague, it's a pity I was not able to take a snap shot of those. Overall, it sure was a very filling and scrumptious lunch experience. On the other light, it's also inspiring to share each ones culinary skills and creations. 'till next potluck time! =)

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Flavored KIT KAT Chocolates

Wasabi & Lemon Iced Tea
Straight from Japan, a colleague spotted and brought some samples of Kit Kat's new product innovation to the office. The chocolate that's positioned as a favorite "snacking item" now comes in more exciting flavors. Think of fruits, drinks and some classic savoury flavors infused into the wafer chocolate. Sounds odd, huh? Well, definitely not. Kit Kat has done it. And honestly, I was wowed by the product when I tasted it. Among those that I found really good from the range of flavors are the Cheesecake, Cheese and Green Tea. The Wasabi is a bit selective but acceptable too. Each flavor is being marketed as a specialty of a certain place in Japan. Say for instance Green Tea as Shizuoka edition and Cheesecake as Yokohama edition. These sweets are just perfect for the season and I do hope they will be made available world wide soon.
Green Tea


Cheesecake

Savoury Cheese