Where To Eat This Week: Chico Loco, Forest, Summerlong, Artemis, SweetSpot, Ministry of Crab
The week is off to a good start with new lunch places to check out, as well as freshly-launched menus to keep us excited and the work hours easier to manage.
1/6 Chico Loco
You’re certainly spoilt for choice if you work near Amoy Street with its bevvy of lunch options to choose from. The latest, Chico Loco, from the folks who gave us Super Loco and Lucha Loco, is unlike its sister outlets, specialising in Mexican spit-roasted chicken complemented by a succinct menu of snacks, salads and sandwiches.
The chickens here are succulent and extremely flavourful, thanks to the special way they’re cooked. First, the poultry is marinated for 10 hours in a secret marinade that has a touch of agave nectar. Then, it’s basted in a secret blend of 11 herbs and spices, including ingredients like achiote, dried oregano and mustard powder, and roasted for an hour.
Roast chicken is always better with accompaniments, of which you have the Mexican Mixta, an ensemble of romaine lettuce, cucumber, pickled onions, crunchy tortilla chips drizzled with a yoghurt-based dressing; lamb burrito comprising spit-roasted lamb assembled with the usual mix of rice, beans and jalapenos; and chicken taco.
Chef Sam Leong has been honoured with the Lifetime Achievement Award at the recent World Gourmet Summit. Naturally, he’s celebrating it with specially curated “I am Sam” lunch and dinner menus (available a la carte or in sets) that reflect his professional and personal journey the past 30 years.
For fans of Leong, that also means tucking into signatures such as the crispy wasabi mayonnaise prawn with mango salsa, which he created in 1989. He shares: “This brought me international stardom… it was the first time I used a Japanese ingredient in Chinese cooking.”
The nostalgic collection of dishes also includes pan-seared lemongrass chicken roll stuffed with glutinous rice, a Chin-Thai entrée he created with wife Forest; and steamed soon hock fish in clear chicken stock reduction, a memorable dish he prepared for the Queen of England and then Singapore prime minister Goh Chok Tong in 2006.
It’s no surprise that this open-air restaurant is always bustling, given its laidback vibes, scenic view of the river (and tourists strolling along) and enticing Mediterranean fare.
Come for dinner and you’ll enjoy chef Justin Hammond’s newly introduced three-course set menu, starting with your choice of mezze including classic hummus, eggplant hummus and fried calamari and zucchini.
Dig into kebabs for mains; the pork kofta kebab, coated with sticky pomegranate jus, is made for meat lovers, while the grilled eggplant kebab and red snapper kebab should please those looking to for something lighter. Both come with their own set of sides: zingy lemon tzatziki, crispy saffron potatoes, gremolata and pomegranate for the former, and harissa and cumin honey carrots for the latter.
Summerlong | 60 Robertson Quay, 01-04, S(238252) | firstname.lastname@example.org
(Related: Why Everyone Is Talking About The Mediterranean Diet In 2019)
Imbibers would be excited to know that the Sky Lounge has extended its timing for the Happy Hour Specials until September: weekdays are from 3pm to 11 pm and Saturday’s from 5pm until late. It’s closed on Sundays.
Drop by for a sundowner or stay through the night to enjoy beers such as Peroni at only $10, as well as cocktails, prosecco and the bar’s signature G&T’s at a special price of $15. For the ladies, Pretty in Pink is a popular choice with its invigorating mix of Codigo Rosa 1530 tequila, cranberry-infused Cointreau, and grapefruit and fresh lime juices.
Of course, a night out in town isn’t complete without snacks, and you have plenty to choose from. The charcuterie board loaded with prosciutto San Daniele, jamon iberico, Morcon sausage and Corsican coppa, and the mezze platter of hummus, beetroot tartare, marinated olives, and flatbread are all made for sharing.
When hunger pangs strike after a visit to the ArtScience Museum, head down to the family-friendly café for a healthy meal. Adults can start with coffee which will be prepared by the robotic barista. This machine is capable of making different combinations at four times the rate of a human barista, ensuring you don’t have to wait long for your cuppa.
Meal proper is a choice between DIY salad bowls and toasted wraps, where you have over 30 different ingredients to choose from (80 per cent of which are cooked dishes prepared in-house).
If you’re in a rush, just opt for the signature bowls including the gluten-free avocado and heirloom salad, a delicious ensemble of chopped kale, avocado, heirloom tomatoes and balsamic reduction, or the wild mushroom salad. This uses locally farmed mushrooms mixed with baby spinach, wild rice, soft-boiled egg and yuzu shoyu dressing.
SweetSpot | ArtScience Museum lobby, 6 Bayfront Avenue, S(018974) | 6688 7023
(Related: A Peek At Our Evolving Love For Chocolate)
6/6 Book Ahead: Ministry of Crab x Shangri-La Hotel Singapore
Ministry of Crab is back in Singapore for another pop-up event, to be held on June 27 and 28 at the Shangri-la's The Dutch Pavilion. And just for the occasion, its feted chef Dharshan Munidasa will curate an exclusive five-course menu.
Book your seats now so you can be sure to try the sumptuous highlights, which includes the luscious crab liver pate, prepared a la minute and lathered on crunchy melba toast; and the baked crab, prepared risotto-style but served in a crab shell. There's also his stunning garlic chilli prawns, which is a nod to Munidasa’s Japanese-Sri Lankan heritage, where Sri Lankan lake prawns are cooked in olive oil, Japanese soy sauce, garlic and chilli flakes.
As an added treat, Munidasa will also serve his signature pepper crab, prepared using hand-crushed Sri Lankan peppercorns and pepper stock.
The Dutch Pavilion | Shangri-La Hotel Singapore, 22 Orange Grove Road, S(258350) | 6213 4398 | email@example.com