Time really flies especially when you are leading a very fulfilling life. It has been 2 years since I last stepped into INDOCAFE – The White House at Scotts Road. Coincidentally, I was here for a media tasting for the Chinese New Year menu 2 years ago.
The last time I was here, it was in the evening. This time round, it was in the early afternoon and I am so glad that I am able to appreciate the surroundings better. Guess what, there is a blue butterfly pea plant growing at the fences surrounding INDOCAFE. How nice it is to see this plant, whose flower is used as natural blue colouring in the making of nonya zhang, outside a peranakan restaurant!
As we stepped into the restaurant, it feels as if Chinese New Year is here! The decoration and ambience just set everything right for the CNY mood.
Unlike the previous tasting, we tried a variety of food from the Chinese New Year menu and the main menu. We had Treasure Pot ($298++ and serves 6) aka Pen Cai aka Poon Choi. For those who are not familiar with Pen Cai (盆菜), it is a traditional one pot chinese dish which is suitable for a communal meal. Hence it is a largely popular dish during the Chinese New Year Season. As it is a dish that is traditionally served to the emperor, opulent ingredients are often seen in this dish. Besides scallop, prawn, sea cucumber, fish maw, there were abalone and dried oysters found in this Peranakan inspired potage. While I like the idea of having all the delicacies in a pot, the gravy is not rich and thick as I would like it to be.
Next up, we tried the 招財進寶, one of the item that is on the 4 Chinese New Year menus available at INDOCAFE. It is a sampler of prawn roll, chive dumpling and Kueh Pie Tee with baby abalone. A little of everything, hmmmm, I likey. 鸿运当头 ,which means abundance of good lucks/ blessings, is represented by Stir-fried Jumbo Tiger Prawns with Homemade Sambal. Love the thoughfulness of deshelling the prawns without compromising on the aesthetics, the dish looks beautiful. If finishing the whole means can huat huat through the Year of Monkey, I really don’t mind having the whole plate. lol
If you are in any peranakan restaurant, how to miss Babi PongTeh ($22++), right? A tradition peranakan dish made with pork belly (yes, recipe called for live live must use pork belly) and fermented soya beans aka Tau Cheo (豆酱). Melt in the mouth meat with potato that is so soft and well seasoned with soya bean paste and a variety of spices after hours of braising. Lai(come) , give me a bowl of rice, please!
A meal is never complete without a dessert. We ended with a Chendol panna cotta. The gula melaka was served thoughtfully at the side in a black porceline spoon. Drizzle some or you can even do a pour shot with it (Opssss, work’s (in this case, blog) hazard). But be careful not to pour too much into the jar, you wouldn’t want your chendol panna cotta to be cloyingly sweet. Boon who went to INDOCAFE the next day love this, what about you?INDOCAFE has 4 Chinese New Year menus with a starting price from $248++. Besides that, you can also order the Glorious Prosperity Yu Sheng and/ or Treasure Pot (Pen Cai) as well with 1 day in advance booking. Aiyo, the Glorious Prosperity Yu Sheng with Abalone is so cute can! The mini abalone is so easy to eat (dun need to cut mah) and the special peranakan sauce also gives it a beautiful touch of heat. Yum yum.
Glorious Prosperity Yu Sheng
$68++ (10 pax)
Glorious Prosperity Yu Sheng with Abalone
$88++ (10 pax)
Treasure Pot – Pen Cai
$298++ (6 pax)
Bundle Set A (Glorious Prosperity Yu Sheng + Treasure Pot)
$638++ (10 pax)
Bundle Set B (Glorious Prosperity Yu Sheng with Abalone + Treasure Pot)
$668++ (10 pax)
As TCC and INDOCAFE are under the same umbrella of the Sarika Group, you can also buy these super kawaii handmade Pineapple Tarts at INDOCAFE. There are 20 individually packed pineapple tarts in a box and it is retailing at $23.80 per box. For members of TCC, you get 25% till 21 Feb 2015 loh. Why so good de? The pineapple tarts are buttery and cute. Suitable for those who has sweet tooth and of cos girls and kids alike would squeal at the sight of these pretty little tarts.