>$60

Chinese New Year Reunion Dinner at Forest 森, Equarius Hotel, Resorts World Sentosa

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Meeting Celebrity Chef Sam Leong, who runs Forest, is one of the highlights of all my nth food tastings that I could hardly breathe. I watched the man on tv!

My fanboy excitement was fanned further by the open, modern decor with a tall ceiling and pillars denoting trees. Get it? Forest has trees?

Rather than a traditional Chinese New Year reunion dinner, Forest serves contemporary Chinese cuisine. From 18 Jan – 24 Feb 2013, celebrate Chinese New Year with a 5-course Fortune lunch set at $68++ or 6-course at $88++. Dinner is more expensive, $168 , $198 or $888 per pax. A four-day reservation is required for the $888 set.

We sampled three auspicious dishes, all gold in color! Gold is our favorite color, the color of our logo.

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Japanese Rice and Foie Gras in Yellow Pumpkin ($28)

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The first dish, baked Alaskan king crab with spicy mayonnaise and fish roe, was not too bad: the chili left tingles on my tongue and the baked surface set off the moist meat but the crab could be fresher. Accompanying the crab is chawanmushi (steamed egg), topped with sauce with crab meat and roe, which was too salty.

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The photogenic second course is cooked by steaming Japanese rice and xo sausages in the hollow of yellow pumpkin, topped with pan-seared foie gras. Everyone adored it! The sticky, short-grained Japanese rice is by nature already sweet and now the fragrance of the pumpkin completely imbued into the rice. The soft lap cheong added a savory aspect, making it complex but not complicated. Although the foie gras is icing on the cake, I did wish there were more because it was seared perfectly, firm and caramelized on the outside, buttery within. I’d come back especially for this dish alone, since it is very filling and at a relatively reasonable a la carte price of $28. Someone at our tasting–I forgot who–said, “I’m already very full but I just can’t stop eating it.”

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The dessert samples were both good and bad. It was 杨枝甘露 or mango-pomelo with a twist of lemongrass jelly, which was refreshing. The other, banana-chocolate ganache with lemon sherbet, was disappointing: the pastry shell tasted like a Khong Guan biscuit and the banana-chocolate was boring.

From the third dishes, the bolder and more innovative dish paid off whereas the more conventional ones were ordinary, run-of-the-mill. One thing is for sure, the Japanese rice with XO lap cheong is hitherto the best thing I’ve eaten this year. I’d return to order it as an a la carte.

Forest森

8 Sentosa Gateway
Equarius Hotel, Resorts World Sentosa
T: 6577 7788
Website
chope-reservations

Breakfast: 7.30–10.30am
Sun Brunch: 11.30am–4pm
Lunch (M-Sat): 12–2.30pm
Dinner (M-Sun): 6pm – 10.30pm

Rating: 3.000/5 stars

PS: Thank you, Khushil, Juan, Xinyi, Mark and RWS for the tasting.

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