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This week, our Makan Kaki Peter Knipp (the man behind the World Gourmet Summit) suggests we try some chinese food. That alone doesn’t sound very exciting, but we assure you, this place he’s recommending is fantastic and has been causing quite a buzz in the local food scene since it opened its door less than 3 years ago.
Blue Lotus Chinese Eating House is run by Peter’s friend Ricky Ng (who worked with the Tung Lok group for many years before starting up his own place) and his charming wife Chloe. It’s a casual dining restaurant that serves traditional Chinese dishes (sometimes with an innovative modern twist) against the stunning backdrop of the Sentosa Cove marina. Whilst many of the dishes served here remain classics and familiar to our local palates, the dedicated chefs employ western techniques at times to turn out beautiful, tasty dishes of the highest quality. Take their Josper Oven for instance – according to Peter Knipp’s World Gourmet Summit website – it is
a modern piece of equipment invented to cook food at high temperatures of 350 degrees. Using Japanese charcoal, the Josper Oven infuses food with flavours of firewood while the high temperatures work to “seal” the essence of each taste to retain the juiciness of the meats on its fire. The end result is a perfectly textured dish that gives a kick of modernity to Chinese cuisine, showcasing the notion that Chinese food can be prepared using western methods of pan-searing, baking & grilling instead of only on the big black wok”.
Traditional Asian flavours are enhanced, refined, honed and ultimately, savoured by us, the diners! From live seafood to succulent cuts of the finest red meats, noodles to rice and everything else in between, Blue Lotus is doing something really, really special. EVERY. SINGLE. DISH. was a party in the mouth and a taste explosion!
Instead of your usual Sunday Brunch, Peter urges everyone to try their weekend dim sum brunch, which is absolutely delicious and altogether more unique. Just imagine siting on the waterfront, taking in the gorgeous quayside views, wind in your hair, glass of champagne in your hand, tasty morsels of expertly prepared dim sum (traditional and modern) and other Chinese classic dishes flowing…
It’s the kind of place you take your partner or the whole family if you want to score brownie points. The atmosphere is casual and relaxed, and pets are welcome. Peter thinks it’s heaven being there on a Saturday or Sunday mid-morning – you have the best of Chinese food, the right beverage, the amazing view… That is about as good as it gets!
Ricky and his team are amazing, so committed to making sure everything served is close to perfection and while you can also do sundowners and dinner at Blue Lotus, it’s all about the weekend dim sum brunch for Peter and in his own words, you’re gonna have “one hell of an experience there” and the food is “super yummilicious”!
I, on the other hand, need to wax lyrical about said sundowners and dinner at Blue Lotus – it’s the perfect not-too-far getaway after a long day at work. It’s just the kind of place you want for a weekday unwind with a glass of chilled white wine, really stunning food and yes, those gorgeous views. Seriously, everything I ate was popping with flavour, nothing disappointed. Have a look at my picture journal of the wonderful feast I had at Blue Lotus just last week…
This moreish starter-snack is crunchy and fragrant, with just enough salted egg yolk (not cloying or gloopy). Elevated by the tangy, perfumed lime zest, this is a winner with a cold beer of chilled white wine!
These skewers of seafoody succulence were enormously satisfying in both size and taste. Juicy prawns mingled with the citrusy, woodsy scent of lemongrass with just a hint of spice to tickle your throat.
One of my favourites – the batter embracing the soft, pillowy egglant was crisp and light. The fresh spices kicked up the flavour spectrum in my mouth several notches. And ooh boy, those dried chillies, toasted garlic, sesame seeds and scallions generously showered all over the eggplant made things even more exciting to the palate.
Can a soup be both light and rich at the same time? This one was! Bordering on a western lobster bisque, this broth was not creamy, but silky and had a certain heft, like it was holding many hidden ingredients inside. Paired with fresh bok choy and a large king prawn ravioli (or wonton), this is Chinese soup with a modern twist. Yum!
Many have recommended it, many have even bet that it’s the best Chilli Crab in Singapore, so of course I had to put my mouth where their money is! Their rendering of this classic local dish will not disappoint, especially since it’s been elevated with a secret blend of spices and a chilli kick that can even make hardcore fans cry. That’s because you can request for spice levels from 1 to 10. Level 10 is a gravy made from 100% chilli padi and isn’t actually recommeded, unless you’re a masochist. The most chilli-lovers will go is level 3 and that already has some tearing and sweating! The gravy is really, really good. I had Level 1 and the chilli left a very pleasant tingle on the tongue and the back of the throat.
Packed with those secret spices and given a surprising fruity adornment of pomelo, you won’t get the usual ketchupy-sweet chilli crab flavour at Blue Lotus. What you get is freshness, spice and that unusual bitter-sweet-citrusy pomelo taste that cuts through all the richness. Plus, there are those gorgeously burnished deep-fried mantou (buns) to sop up said irresistible gravy with. You won’t be able to stop at one, so don’t! It’s messy, tasty good fun. Just dive in with your bare hands and attack the sweet, juicy, meaty Sri Lankan crabs! Blue Lotus’ Signature Chilli Crab is truly a beautiful reinvention of a Singapore classic.
This is very traditional and comforting – tender cubes of peppery Wagyu with fresh veggies (red & green peppers, leek, scallion and red onions) served in a sizzling hot stone bowl. I could eat just this alone with a mountain of steaming white rice!
This is another one of my favourites! I’m a big fan of beef short ribs and was delighted to try the baby lamb version for the first time at Blue Lotus. These short ribs were tender, juicy and delicately gamey. The gentle gaminess was off-set by the dry rub of spices, reminiscent of the kind they use on Yang Rou Chuan or lamb skewers of China’s Xinjiang province. The refreshing relish of fresh tomato and onion was a welcome sweet and sour accompaniment, cutting through the fatty, spiced richness of the meat. Although I have to say, bring on the fatty, spicy richness! Lamb with cumin and fennel is a combination that’s hard to beat. I was stripping meat off bone after bone with just my teeth and fingers! I even took some leftovers home and the meat was just as wonderful a couple of days later heated up in my toaster over and even straight-out-of-the-fridge cold!
Another Chinese classic done well. The beans were sweet and crunchy and I love the wrinkled texture their skins get from all that searing wok-heat!
By now, a full belly might slow down the appetite considerably, but do consider a couple of noodle dishes, both of which are very different, but also very tasty. If you love the crunch of sheng mian or crispy egg noodles and you want a decadent treat of fresh Boston lobster, choose this one.
Or you can choose this other one, which I prefer between the two. Have you even seen such monstrous prawns?! Grilled to rosy perfection and packed with an umami garlic-spice stuffing, these two enormous crustaceans sit atop a slippery mound of tender-braised mee pok, flecked with chive shoots and bean sprouts. I also admit to ripping the prawn heads off and noisily sucking the head juices out like a barbarian.
Stomach groaning, I valiantly tackled dessert, which thankfully, was a refreshing, fruity snow ice that was feathery-light and fluffy to the tongue. I imagine this is what licking a mango-flavoured cloud would be like! The strawberries, mango, blueberries, blackberries and passionfruit were a healthy antidote to everything that preceded. It was a barely-there dessert, the perfect tangy sweet ending to a very filling and outstanding meal.
31 Ocean Way #01-13
Quayside Isle at Sentosa Cove
Mondays – Fridays: 6 – 10pm
Weekends: 11.30am – 3pm, then 6 – 10pm
+65 63390880 (12 noon – 11pm daily) or email email@example.com