Todai 4th Anniversary Tasting Session

March 14, 2015 Ivan Teh - RunningMan 0 Comments

Todai 4th Anniversary Tasting Session
2 Bayfront Avenue
#B2-01A The Shoppes @ Marina Bay Sands


Opening Hours:
Monday - Saturday: 11.30am - 3pm (Lunch), 5.30pm - 10pm (Dinner)
Sunday: 11.30am - 4pm (Lunch), 5pm - 10pm (Dinner)

http://www.todai.com.sg/

This was an invited media review. I did not pay for the meal during the free hosted tasting session, but I did pay the standard price during subsequent visits.
Attended with representatives from HungryGoWhere, Fundamentally Flawed, Dairy & Cream, Purple Taste, Chubby Botak Koala, The Artic Star, and Food Esteem.



Birthday Dishes From Around The World At Todai - March 2015 Promotion

(Ratings: On a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 = Worst and 10 = Best)
Overall: 8
Ambience & Setting: 8
Food & Beverage: 8
Service: 9
Value for Money: 8

Price Of Buffet Per Person:
Lunch: SGD $42 ++ On Monday, Wednesday; SGD $46 ++ On Tuesday, Thursday, Friday; SGD $64 ++ On Saturday, Sunday, Public Holidays
Dinner: SGD $58 ++ On Monday, Wednesday; SGD $68 ++ On Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday, Public Holidays


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Since my 1st original visit to Todai in July 2013, I've returned several times to 'The Mother Of All Seafood Buffets'. Love their modern ambience, attentive service, and large variety of food, especially their fresh seafood, tasty Korean dishes, and delicious desserts.

In conjunction with the launch of their theme for March 2015, we were invited for a tasting session of 'Birthday Dishes From Around The World at Todai' on 11-March-2015, Wednesday. It was a large celebration as well, with 25 guests that night! Todai has put together 7 dishes commonly eaten during a birthday celebration, drawing inspiration from China, Korea, Russia, Nigeria, and Ghana.

Todai Signage



The first birthday dish on the Todai menu is the Russian 4-Layer Birthday Cake. Traditionally, birthdays in Russia are celebrated with a birthday pie, with the birthday greeting carved directly into the pie crust. However, birthday cakes are getting more popular, and the most common traditional birthday cake in Russia is the Layer Cake. There is no fixed amount for the number of layers in a Layer Cake, typically, a Layer Cake will have 4-Layers, although there are variations such as 5-Layer Cake, 8-Layer Cake, and even 15-Layer Cake!

The Russian 4-Layer Birthday Cake at Todai is designed to resemble a Rainbow Cake, with the 4 distinct layers coloured a pretty red, green, yellow, and blue. Not too traditional in presentation, as the classic Russian 4-Layer Birthday Cake isn't so brightly coloured. But the cake is light, moist, and fluffy in texture, with a slightly sweet, vanilla flavour. The cream is rather thick, but it's still pretty good as a dessert!

Russian 4-Layer Birthday Cake Description


Russian 4-Layer Birthday Cake



The second birthday dish on the Todai menu is the Chinese Shoutao / Shou Tao, or Longevity Peach Steamed Bun. In China, these buns are often filled with a sweet lotus seed paste, made from dried lotus seeds, then shaped and coloured to resemble a peach. They symbolize health, a sweet life, and longevity, making them a popular appetizer dish at birthday celebrations, traditional rituals, and other cultural festivals in China.

The Chinese Shoutao / Shou Tao at Todai have that sweet, smooth lotus seed paste within the soft, pliable Longevity Peach Steamed Bun. While they've coloured it to a bright pink hue, the shape of the bun itself only loosely resembles a peach, looking more like a pyramid shape, and could do with a little more moulding. A decent attempt, neither terrible nor outstanding.

Chinese Shoutao / Shou Tao Description


Chinese Shoutao / Shou Tao



The third birthday dish on the Todai menu is the Chinese Yi Mein / Ee-Fu Noodles / Yi Fu Noodles. These Cantonese flat egg noodles made from wheat flour are often stir fried with soy sauce / oyster sauce, and other ingredients, and are eaten in China on birthdays. The long noodles symbolise longevity, and are often served as the last course of a typical fine dining meal in China.

The Chinese Yi Mein / Ee-Fu Noodles / Yi Fu Noodles at Todai are properly chewy, slippery in texture, and long, with a nice, thick, savoury gravy of soy sauce and oyster sauce. The ingredients of prawns and sping onions are fresh, and overall, this is a pretty good dish.

Chinese Yi Mein / Ee-Fu Noodles / Yi Fu Noodles Description


Chinese Yi Mein / Ee-Fu Noodles / Yi Fu Noodles



The fourth birthday dish on the Todai menu is the Nigerian Jollof Rice / Benachin. This 'one pot' dish has many variations, but the base of a traditional Jollof Rice / Benachin in Nigeria is typically made using African long grain rice, fresh tomatoes, tomato paste, salt, onions, nutmeg, ginger, powdered cumin, and scotch bonnets peppers / atarodo. Other types of meat, seafood, vegetable, or spices can also be added, including chicken, squid, prawns, fish, cassava, bell peppers / capsicum, peas, thyme, plantain, or curry powder. This dish is popular not only in Nigeria, but throughout large parts of West Africa as well.

The Nigerian Jollof Rice / Benachin at Todai has that classic deep orange colour, and the long grain rice has soaked up the tomato sauce base well, so each mouthful is a sweet, tangy taste of tomatoes. Almost like a cross between tomato rice, biryani, and paella! Texture of the rice is borders al-dente firm and soft, but at least the grains separate easily. The addition of okra / lady's fingers is an unconventional touch that differs this version from the traditional version.

Nigerian Jollof Rice / Benachin Description


Nigerian Jollof Rice / Benachin



The fifth birthday dish on the Todai menu is the Korean Japchae / Stir Fried Sweet Potato Glass Noodles. Often served during special occasions in South Korea, including birthday celebrations, Japchae / Stir Fried Sweet Potato Glass Noodles are made with sweet potato cellophane noodles, pan fried with a mixture of vegetables, including onions, bell peppers / capsicum, shiitake mushrooms, carrots, and garlic chives. Usually, 1 type of meat is added, either chicken, beef, or pork. This dish was served to royalty in South Korea, and is typically also served during happy occasions, as such, many Koreans have happy memories associated with it.

The Korean Japchae / Stir Fried Sweet Potato Glass Noodles at Todai is among the best dishes available here. A combination of complimenting textures, the slippery, long noodles, silky mushrooms, crunchy cabbage and carrots, seasoning of fragrant soy sauce, garlic, shredded egg, sugar, and sesame seeds. So good I kept going back for more!

Korean Japchae / Stir Fried Sweet Potato Glass Noodles Description


Korean Japchae / Stir Fried Sweet Potato Glass Noodles



The sixth birthday dish on the Todai menu is the Korean Miyeokguk / Seaweed Soup. This highly nutritious soup / broth is often consumed in South Korea after giving birth, or during birthday celebrations. Made with dried wakame / sea mustard seaweed, which is then added to a soup stock of either beef, seafood (mussels / clams), or fish. Seasoned with either soy sauce or salt, along with garlic and sesame oil. This nourishing staple soup / broth of South Korea is low in calories, high in calcium, iodine, and fibre, and is believed to aid metabolism, relieve constipation, and improve blood circulation.

The Korean Miyeokguk / Seaweed Soup at Todai is very tasty, with the soup / broth being made with a beef stock base, and is well balanced in seasoning. A perfect appetizer to kick off a meal, the warmness and lightness of the soup / broth is at once comforting and feels cleansing.

Korean Miyeokguk / Seaweed Soup Description


Korean Miyeokguk / Seaweed Soup



The seventh birthday dish on the Todai menu is the Ghanaian Oto. In Ghana, tradition dictates that Oto is the first dish eaten on the morning of the birthday. Because Ghana is among the world's top 3 producers of yam, Oto is typically made with mashed yams / taro. The type of yam / taro used is commonly Pona / White Yam, although other varieties such as Water Yam / Purple Yam / Ube, or Serwa Yam could also be used. Cooked yams are mashed, then fried with onions, palm oil, salt, and sometimes, tomatoes or dried shrimp, which gives the dish a bright yellow colour. It is then garnished with hard boiled eggs, and served. Eggs in Ghanaian culture are considered a symbol of fertility and wealth.

The Ghanaian Oto at Todai differs the greatest from its traditional, classic version. The chefs here have replaced the mashed yam / taro with mashed potatoes instead, as they were unable to replicate the original recipe with local yam / taro. Also, as traditional Ghanaian Oto has the least ingredients as compared to the other birthday dishes, it tends to lag behind in taste, so Todai has enhanced the flavour through the use of additional garnishings.

Ghanaian Oto Description


Ghanaian Oto



As a Korean buffet restaurant operated by Koreans, the Korean food selection at Todai is always great. The Ddukbokki / Tteokbokki / Sweet & Spicy Rice Cakes in particular are a standout item here, with a texture that is softer and chewier than elsewhere, and a sweet, spicy, savoury flavour to the sauce. Also good are their side dishes of Kimchi Baechu / Kimchi Pickled Cabbage, Kimchi Oi Sobaegi / Kimchi Pickled Cucumber, and Myeolchi Bokkeum / Fried Anchovies, all made in-house!

Selection Of Korean Dishes - Ddukbokki / Tteokbokki / Sweet & Spicy Rice Cakes, Kimchi Baechu / Kimchi Pickled Cabbage, Kimchi Oi Sobaegi / Kimchi Pickled Cucumber, Myeolchi Bokkeum / Fried Anchovies, Haemul Pajeon / Seafood And Scallion Omelette Pancake, Mandu / Fried Mandoo Dumplings


Selection Of Korean Dishes - Ddukbokki / Tteokbokki / Sweet & Spicy Rice Cakes, Kimchi Baechu / Kimchi Pickled Cabbage, Kimchi Oi Sobaegi / Kimchi Pickled Cucumber, Myeolchi Bokkeum / Fried Anchovies, Haemul Pajeon / Seafood And Scallion Omelette Pancake, Mandu / Fried Mandoo Dumplings



So glad that Todai served us their signature deshelled King Crab and fresh Oysters! Love how fresh, plump and juicy the Oysters were, lovely with a splash of lemon juice. And I especially love the deshelled King Crab, meaty, juicy, fresh, clean tasting, absolutely delicious! I've visited Todai time and again for these, and they've never disappointed me with their excellent quality!

King Crab & Oysters


King Crab & Oysters



Also love their very fresh Selection Of Sashimi! What I like is that they tend to use a thick cut for their salmon, tuna, and yellowtail, which gives a more satisfiying chew. I particulary love their fresh octopus, which I mentioned in my previous post on Todai.

Selection Of Sashimi


Selection Of Sashimi



I loved the creamy, yet somewhat chunky texture of the Cookies & Cream Swiss Roll Cake, and the white chocolate garnish on top lent a buttery flavour. The Waffle in the Waffle With Ice Cream, Meringue & Macarons was also very good!

Cookies & Cream Swiss Roll Cake


Waffle With Ice Cream, Meringue & Macarons



Overall, I love the experience at Todai, which is why I've returned several times. While the 7 birthday dishes are largely well executed, I would have also loved to see more such birthday dishes from around the world.

Other birthday dishes from around the world that could have been introduced include:
the Sudananese Karkady (a hibicus tea),
the Indian Doodh Pak (a dessert rice pudding),
the Australian Fairy Bread (white bread coated with rainbow candy sprinkles),
the Norwegian Blotkake (vanilla cake coated with whipped cream and strawberries),
the Dutch Slagroomtaart (lemon sponge cake coated with nougatine and assorted fruit),
the Brazilian Beijinho (condensed milk candy with grated coconut),
or the Argentine Chocotorta (chocolate cookies stacked like a cake then coated with dulce de leche and cream cheese),
maybe Todai could introduce these for their 5th Anniversary!






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