Tien Court Restaurant @ Copthorne King’s Hotel Singapore

Hey everyone!

After a sumptuous lunch at Wooloomooloo and a relaxing staycation at Hotel Clover, we’ve finally come to the final part of my birthday celebration, courtesy of my boyfriend’s wonderful parents. This year, they brought me to Tien Court, a reputable restaurant that serves contemporary Cantonese and Szechuan cuisine at Copthorne King’s Hotel. It has been in operation for a long time with Taiwanese Masterchef Ho Tien Tsai at the helm of the kitchen, clinching countless of awards throughout the years for its culinary excellence. It’s a pretty popular choice among Chinese newly-weds to be for holding wedding banquets here in Singapore.

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Being a Chinese restaurant, the deco of the restaurant gave a very oriental yet modern vibes. It used auspicious colours like red and white, coupled with black to portray a more contemporary theme. It had a huge collection of antiques and more interestingly, there were even bird cages hanging everywhere!

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Featured the white romper I was wearing here!

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Me settled down in the restaurant. Love the intricate design of the sleeves by the way!

The restaurant is rather small for grand wedding banquets if you ask me, but it’s perfect for small-scale ones meant only for people you’re really close to (which I would be opting for in the future because I never like the idea of wedding banquets).

Bf’s parents did all the ordering of food while I was at the washroom so I didn’t know what to expect on the dining table! It was great they chose the food because I’m a fussy eater when it comes to Asian cuisine and I’d probably take ages to decide on what to eat. Haha.

First came the starters – an individual bowl of Szechuan Hot and Sour Soup for everyone.

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Topped with lotsa pepper and vinegar afterwards.

The Szechuan Hot and Sour Soup is a perfect alternative to Shark’s Fin Soup which I’m really glad is banned in most Chinese restaurants in Singapore. It’s addictive, equally thick and had lots of finely diced Tofu with plenty of mushrooms. And once you add the usual condiments like pepper and vinegar, it tastes almost like Shark’s Fin Soup!

Next, we had Roast Chicken with Spicy Garlic and Almond Flakes.

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The skin was roasted to the perfect golden brown – divinely crispy and perfectly dry. I usually eat chicken meat without their skin but this, I couldn’t forgo. The tender and moist chicken meat was given the extra crunch with those almond flakes and spicy garlic. You have to try this when you’re at Tien Court.

A simple stir-fried Asparagus dish with onions and red dates followed.

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Asparagus is one of the few vegetables I enjoy eating. This one at Tien Court was fleshy, juicy and soft – an indicator that it was cooked perfectly. It’s delicate, fresh and crunchy and it melts in your mouth. This plate was emptied the fastest!

Then we had Braised Duck.

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It had a rather strong herbal essence which I found pleasant and delectable. It added flavour to the succulent duck meat, making it really fragrant and savoury. Bf, on the other hand, thought that the smell was a tad too strong to the point of revolt. I guess if you’re not afraid of the pungent smell of Tea Leaf Eggs (茶叶蛋), this should be a-ok for you!

The final meat dish of the night was Hong Kong Style Steamed Garoupa.

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Bf and I love any “Hong Kong Style Steamed” fish because of the sweet and savoury soy sauce that came with it. It has a unique and addictive taste that you cannot find in other fish prepared differently. On top of that, the fish would always come silky smooth and tender, so much so that it’d break apart very easily when you try to cut the fish into smaller portions. The Garoupa dish fitted my description perfectly though. My expectation for this was well met 🙂

Last but not least, what is a birthday celebration without Longevity Noodles?

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It bizarrely came last and I vaguely remember that we wanted it to be served in the beginning. I guess the service staff wasn’t paying attention. But because it came so late, we were already full to the brim. I don’t think we even had space for desserts. Haha!

But I still managed to take a few mouthfuls of it to be polite. It was slightly cold and mushy, like it was left at a corner for some time before it was served to our table. It could be better if it was served earlier because the taste was not too bad honestly.

Okay, that’s all for this entry!

Thanks for reading 🙂

Tien Court Restaurant
Copthorne King’s Hotel Singapore
403 Havelock Road
Singapore 169632
Tel: 6733 0011
Fax: 65 6732 5764
Website

Nostalgic Canton Dim Sum @ Mouth Restaurant

MEDIA INVITE

Hey everyone! How’s your week going so far? 🙂

After a stressful week at work, it’s time to give yourself a pat on the back by rewarding yourself. But besides retail therapy, which could potentially burn a big hole in your pocket if you’ve terrible self-control, how else can you do so? I don’t know about you but as a glutton, I’d definitely turn to food and treat myself to a sumptuous meal (thus explaining my weight, gosh) because food always makes me happy. Of course, I’d also ask my parents and Bf along because after all, food taste better when shared with the ones you love right? And you don’t need any special occasion to show filial piety to your parents.

However, there’s always this problem with finding the most suitable place to dine at, especially when cost is a concern. Where can you spoil yourself (and your loved ones) without splurging but at the same time, the standard of the food is upheld? Look no further guys, the answer is right here.

I had the honour of tasting the dishes of the all-new nostalgic dim sum set menu crafted out by Mouth Restaurant the other day and boy, I was wow-ed by the food, its distinctiveness and taste. I had nothing but praises for the restaurant in my first review (and have been patronising their Plaza Singapura outlet ever since) but the latest experience proved that they could do even more. I feel that they have outdid themselves with this one.

Named Nostalgic Canton Dim Sum, the 9-course set menu brings back popular dim sum of the sixties packed a punch. It’s definitely not only targeted at people born in that era who probably can’t find food like that anywhere else. You youngsters would be surprised to find yourself loving the dishes too! Just like myself. And I’m not really a mega dim sum lover to begin with 😛

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Birdnest & Hasma Dumpling in Double Boiled Wintermelon Chicken Soup

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Dumpling made with carrot and filled with crab meat and hasma

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Made with spinach (skin) and filled with bird nest and minced chicken meat

Mind you, every dish prepared for this set menu is made from fresh ingredients. The skin colours you see above are derived purely from the ingredient (i.e. orange from carrot and green from spinach). In other words, no preservatives and colouring of any sort so it’s absolutely healthy and nourishing 🙂

The soup serves as a great starter to open up your appetite. Its clear broth is very flavourful (yet not very overpowering) and not oily at all. I may not be so much into dim sum but I’m certainly a soup lover. As a half-Cantonese, no meal to me is complete without a bowl of piping hot soup. And this chicken soup is definitely one of the best I’ve tasted so far.

The dumplings, like the traditional kind, are rather tasteless on its own. It’s rather thick so it may take awhile to finally get to the filling. But because of its soft and jelly-like texture, it’s actually an enjoyment chewing it (lol). Thus it’s also perfect for the elderly who may have difficulty chewing food.

One of the uncommon food ingredients you’ll see among the set menu is hasma, which is what makes the skin of the dumplings. It provides many health benefits such as replenishing vital essence in the lungs, kidneys, and improving skin complexion (great for ladies as well!)

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Steamed Chicken Siew Mai with Mushroom, Asparagus, Turnip & Wolfberry

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Glistening…

This isn’t new to you, but how often do you come across freshly prepared Siew Mai, packed with succulent, fresh and juicy chicken meat? And to top it off, it comes with four other ingredients that not only enhance the flavour, they are also beneficial to your health. Now you have more reasons to binge on your favourite dim sum!

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Steamed Hairy Gourd with Minced Chicken Meat, Water Chestnut & Conpoy (dried scallop/干贝) in Oyster Sauce

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Hairy gourd (the base) is a mini version of winter melon so naturally, this tasted a lot like the latter. Having drunk winter melon soup all my life, the way hairy gourd is prepared here is certainly new to me. Taste-wise, it’s very crunchy and juicy. The sauce was rich and addictive. You can just eat the entire piece and let the oyster sauce spurt in your mouth.

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Deep Fried Taro Coated Prawn in Blended Oyster Sauce

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I love anything battered with yam so this is paradise to me. Even before it was placed on the table, I could already smell it from afar due to its distinctive yam aroma. The crisp yam crust shattered with every bite and beneath it laid another layer of yam, mashed to make the overall coating not too dry. The prawn was very fresh and luscious and despite it being deep fried, its juiciness was maintained.

A special sauce made with mushroom comes together with this dish. It went really well with the prawn but I’d suggest taking a bite of it first without any dip to taste the crunchiness of it 😀

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Steamed 3 Colours Crystal Dumpling in 3 Flavours

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Fillings: King Oyster Mushroom, Ham, Red and Green Pepper & Shiitake

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Fillings: Egg White, Crab meat & Prawn

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Fillings: Shiitake, Poplar Mushroom & Sea Cucumber

The colours, once again from natural ingredients (mostly vegetables), are what catch the eye. I’m not very sure if it’s the same wrap as the ones in the double boiled soup but it most likely is. Filled with different types of mushroom in each dumpling (with the exception of the green one), it is a dish that mushroom lovers would die for. I’m very much carnivorous so the green dumpling was my favourite. The meat in the green one also injected some sweetness into the overall taste which the other dumplings didn’t have, and the egg white made it more chewy.

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Pan Fried Glutinous Rice with Chicken Meat & Mushroom in X.O. Sauce

This was one of my favourites from the set menu, or perhaps my favourite if you don’t count the custard bun. Bf regarded this as the restaurant version of Puen Kueh and I felt that this tasted a little like Ba Zhang (but of course, way better), minus the slight crispiness on the top which I really enjoyed. Don’t worry, it’s definitely not as dry as Ba Zhang, neither was it too sticky. It’s actually relatively moist so none of it got stuck between my teeth. This was served with an X.O. sauce that has a very strong dried shrimp smell but nonetheless, complemented this dish very well. Bf really loved it as he took several servings of the sauce.

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Deep Fried Dumpling with Fresh Prawn & Char Siew in Sweet & Sour Sauce

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Big bowl of sauce

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Crispy dumplings!

People who are oblivious to this food item may think that they are two separate dishes due to the similarity in the size of the sauce bowl and the dumpling basket. In fact, I thought the sauce deserves a spot on its own because wow, it’s really thick and filled with great ingredients like prawns and char siew. I wouldn’t mind just having sauce on its own.. or perhaps, they could turn it into a broth? Haha!

The dumplings are not those teeny weeny ones you see at Wanton Mee stalls. They were perhaps slightly smaller than my palm – very value for money! If you have kids, I guarantee that they’d keep digging into this. Served fresh from the kitchen, it’s very crispy and the wrap is thick but has very generous amount of filling so it’s very balanced. Eat both separately if you wish because the dumplings are good on its own. Otherwise, just dip slightly into the sauce and enjoy the rest of it later. 😛

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Braised Beancurd Skin Roll with Chicken Meat, Mushroom, Fish Maw & Luncheon Meat

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Another great dish packed with flavours which blended really well together. It’s served with very nice stock which made it even more succulent. I was at first puzzled by the choice of meat for the roll because it’s kinda unconventional to include luncheon meat in something that’s meant to be steamed. But be surprised! It really added flavour to the roll. And nope, the luncheon meat is definitely not those preserved kind that you find in cans as it’s of very good quality and not really salty at all.

I’m not sure what the best way of eating this is because the beancurd skin makes it very difficult to be cut. So I suggest abandoning your dining etiquette (I know ladies like myself love to cut their food because it’s practically unglam to eat something in one mouthful haha) and just eat it altogether at once to fully savour the flavour. It’s not that big (but it’s thick) so you should be fine. 😆

Last but not least…

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Legendary (yes that’s absolutely right) Baked Cream of Salted Egg Yolk Bun

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Oh my 天

I can NEVER get enough of Mouth Restaurant’s custard bun. It’s a must-order for me every time I dine there and once I even ate my Bf’s share because I felt three weren’t enough for me HAHA.

Anyway I believe this needs no further introduction. You can read my raves here but if you’re lazy to navigate, here’s the summary:

Best Salted Egg York Bun. Ever.

But please refer to the above picture to have an idea how flowy it is (because it’s taken with a better camera this time!). However, I’d like to add that the oil-like liquid beneath the custard isn’t oil. The custard is actually made from high-quality, low-cholesterol egg yolk and pure butter. Hope this makes you health conscious people feel better eating it now! To be honest, I didn’t know this fact prior to this food tasting. Now that I know, I’m certainly not going to show mercy next time. I AM GONNA ORDER 3 SETS AT LEAST. Dieting can wait 😳

And also, the buns are best eaten fresh and hot. In order words, takeaways for this are not recommended.

That’s the end of the set menu! If you’re worried that the food won’t be enough to satisfy your appetite, fret not. Bf (he’s a guy in case you’re doubting my ability to eat a lot) and I left the restaurant feeling like we ate at a buffet. It’s that satiating and that’s only lunch. This 9-course set menu is available all-day ’til Jan 2015 (except for Sunday lunch and Public Holiday lunch) and the best part?

It’s only S$24.80++ (min 4 pax 2 pax now!)

Scratch that. Now with their Qoo10 promotion, you just need to pay a fraction of that price.

How about S$19.90 NETT?

Likewise, you need a minimum of 4 2 people to dine. Let this be the perfect reason to treat your parents to a well-deserved meal. I have bought mine and will bring my lao beh and lao bu (and my Bf again to fulfill the requirement, but at his own expense hahahaha) to the Plaza Singapura outlet soon. For the record, I had this meal at their main outlet (China Square Central).

If you still have space for one more dish (à la carte) after the 9-course meal, I’d also recommend you to try…

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Squid Ink Char Siew Bun

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On par with custard bun!

“EEEK!”

Hold on, calm your titties, it’s not as bad as you think it is. It’s black because of the special ingredient, Squid Ink (not some dirty substance or food colouring if case you’re wondering again), which is exclusive to Mouth Restaurant. You can’t find this anywhere else!

Hmm, perhaps you won’t feel so repulsive about its appearance once you know the benefits of squid ink. Specially air-flown from Italy, it’s actually a very expensive food with loads of health benefits. According to several studies, this black food “possesses antitumour and antibacterial characteristics” thus it helps combat cancer. On top of that, it also “represents a hearty dose of antioxidants and beneficial nutrients” so if you wanna stay youthful, squid ink is the food for you (yay they rhyme). Also worth mentioning is that this squid ink is not the same as the ink from the squids here, which is contaminated. The one at Mouth Restaurant is specially harvested in Italy and quality is ensured before it was exported to Singapore.

To make it more appetising, Mouth Restaurant has very nicely incorporated this superfood into everyone’s favourite Char Siew Pao to distract you from the stuff you don’t want to see (i.e. its unappealing appearance). Actually it’s really not that bad. I find it very exceptional because you don’t see black buns all the time! And you wouldn’t be able to suspect anything if you eat it with your eyes closed because the bun itself is tasteless. Yes, no eeky squid ink taste if that’s what you’re worried about.

The bun is very fluffy and it melts in your mouth. Unlike your usual kopitiam paos, it doesn’t get stuck at the back of your teeth. Don’t you hate it when that happens? I had to keep attempting to get it off with my tongue and I swear I looked like some spastic person in public. Unglam to the max.

The Char Siew is very flavourful and moist (apparent from the picture above). I really love how red it was because that ensured its freshness. I’ve ever tried super dark ones and they were very gross, like they were kept for many days in the steamer. This one was a complete opposite. MUST TRY!

Okay stop salivating and buy the coupons now! Trust me, it’s really value for money. Don’t say got good deal I bo jio.

Thanks for reading! ❤

Mouth Restaurant (China Square Central)
22 Cross Street
#01-61 China Square Central
South Bridge Court Shop House
Singapore 048421
Tel: 6438 5798 , Fax: 6438 5623
Operating Hours (Open Daily)
Weekday – 11.30am to 3pm, 6pm to 10pm
Weekend/PH – Weekday 10am to 3pm, 6pm to 10pm

Mouth Restaurant (Plaza Singapura)
68 Orchard Road
#02-01 Plaza Singapura
Singapore 238839
Tel: 63377446
Operating Hours (open daily)
Weekday – 11.30am to 5pm, 6pm to 10pm
Friday – 11.30am to 5pm, 6pm to 10.30pm
Weekend – 10am to 10pm
Public Holidays – 10am to 10pm

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 *Photographs kindly taken by my Bf while I indulged in awesome Chinese food