Ellenborough Market Cafe Tasting Session

January 22, 2018 Ivan Teh - RunningMan 0 Comments

Ellenborough Market Cafe Tasting Session
20 Merchant Road

Opening Hours:
Daily: 6:30am - 10:30am (Breakfast), 12pm - 2:30pm (Lunch), 6:30pm - 10pm (Dinner)



https://www.swissotel.com/hotels/singapore-merchant-court/dining/ellenborough-market-cafe/


This was an invited media review. I did not pay for the meal during the free hosted tasting session.
Attended with representatives from Chubby Botak Koala, The Arctic Star, Madame Chewy, Mighty Foodie, I Eat And Eat, and Food Gem.



Grilled Jumbo River Prawns With Sambal Belachan & Mentaiko Sabayon Sauce



Revel In The Joy Of Spring

(Ratings: On a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 = Worst and 10 = Best)
Overall: 8
Ambience & Setting: 8
Food & Beverage: 8
Service: 8
Value for Money: 8
Budget about SGD $80 per person.


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Revel in the joy of Spring and celebrate Chinese New Year 2018 at Ellenborough Market Cafe. With the launch of their Prosperity Buffet from 5th February till 2nd March 2018, diners can look forward to roasted delights and culinary treasures at Ellenborough Market Cafe in Swissotel Merchant Court Singapore hotel. This all-day buffet and ala-carte dining restaurant of the hotel has long been well regarded for their Straits Chinese cuisine, Peranakan cuisine, and International selection, so you're assured of a good meal.

Ellenborough Market Cafe Exterior
Ellenborough Market Cafe Exterior


Ellenborough Market Cafe Interior
Ellenborough Market Cafe Interior



Ambience at Ellenborough Market Cafe harkens back to the British colonial era, the large and expansive space in hues of white, turquoise, and grey, which lends a sense of elegant grandeur. Comfortable cushioned wooden chairs surround large, marble topped tables, well suited for communal dining. The low white light ensures the place is brightly lit, yet not harsh on the eyes, being rather comforting. The buffet spread here is well laid out, and I note dishes are topped up regularly.

Seating
Seating



Service at Ellenborough Market Cafe is good. Staff are friendly, polite, and courteous, performing their duties efficiently. They proactively come around to clear empty / finished plates and cutlery, and they also swap out utensils for you. Great, especially for a buffet. I note staff display rudimentary product knowledge, while they will engage in conversation if asked, they often need to check for answers as well. You can also speak with some of the chefs at the live stations.

DIY Salad Bar
DIY Salad Bar



Food at Ellenborough Market Cafe is focused on Straits Chinese cuisine, Peranakan cuisine, and International cuisine as part of their buffet. The variety of dishes is above average, such that you may not be able to try every single item here. Quality and taste is above average too, dishes are consistently decent, better when fresh from the kitchen. As a buffet, portions are unlimited for the price. However, prices are also comparable to high end hotel buffets, budget about SGD $80 per person for a meal here.

Charcuterie Platter
Charcuterie Platter



From 5th February till 2nd March 2018, Ellenborough Market Cafe is offering a communal set menu for 10 people, priced at $788 or $988 per table. This Prosperity Set for Chinese New Year 2018 features a line-up of 8 luxurious dishes, which will also be made available for their regular buffet during this period.

The Double-Boiled Fish Maw With Dried Scallop And Cordycep Flower Soup has a large, generous portion of fish maw, which has a lovely sweet savoury flavour with a sticky crunchy slippery texture. The soup / broth, flavoured with herbs, is hearty and comforting, opening the appetite nicely.

Double-Boiled Fish Maw With Dried Scallop And Cordycep Flower Soup


Double-Boiled Fish Maw With Dried Scallop And Cordycep Flower Soup
Double-Boiled Fish Maw With Dried Scallop And Cordycep Flower Soup



The Imperial Herbal Chicken is served in an earthy herbal savoury gravy, while the chicken meat is tender and savoury sweet, coming easily off the bone. I enjoyed this, especially spooning the delicious gravy over white rice.

Imperial Herbal Chicken


Imperial Herbal Chicken
Imperial Herbal Chicken



The Hong Kong Style Fried Garoupa With Pork Belly is a unique dish for a festive menu. Having bold notes of sweet sour earthy flavours, the relatively boneless fish has a crisp skin which quickly soaks up the tasty gravy, while the fish meat is clean-tasting and fresh. The garnish of vegetables lend both colour and texture for contrast. Completed with crisp roasted pork belly, which lends a deep meaty flavour to the dish. Good!

Hong Kong Style Fried Garoupa With Pork Belly


Hong Kong Style Fried Garoupa With Pork Belly
Hong Kong Style Fried Garoupa With Pork Belly



The Wok-Fried Asparagus With Pearl Scallop In XO Sauce features crunchy vegetal sweet stalks of large asparagus, highlighted by medium sized, tender and savoury sweet scallops. I enjoyed the slight kick of spice, which doesn't have a fiery burn, and how the sweet freshness of the seafood pairs with the vegetables. Good!

Wok-Fried Asparagus With Pearl Scallop In XO Sauce


Wok-Fried Asparagus With Pearl Scallop In XO Sauce
Wok-Fried Asparagus With Pearl Scallop In XO Sauce



The Braised Abalone And Sea Cucumber With Australian Broccoli is a straightforward comfort dish that is well executed. Served in an earthy braising gravy, the fresh and crunchy florets of broccoli are vegetal sweet, while the slippery smooth sea cucumber is nicely tender and earthy. The chewy tender abalone is small, but there are several chunks scattered about, which is sufficient for most groups.

Braised Abalone And Sea Cucumber With Australian Broccoli


Braised Abalone And Sea Cucumber With Australian Broccoli
Braised Abalone And Sea Cucumber With Australian Broccoli



What stood out in the Fried Glutinous Rice Wrapped In Lotus Leaf, besides the lovely fragrance when served, is the meaty chunks of dried Chinese pork sausage and earthy shiitake mushrooms within. The glutinous rice itself isn't too sticky or clumpy, but has taken on a lovely earthy savoury flavour.

Fried Glutinous Rice Wrapped In Lotus Leaf


Fried Glutinous Rice Wrapped In Lotus Leaf
Fried Glutinous Rice Wrapped In Lotus Leaf



The Double-Boiled Hasma With Red Dates is luxurious with its hasma / hashima, served in a warm and sweet soup / broth, along with jujubes / red dates, longan, rock sugar, and lotus seeds. Exotic yet comforting, with textures of slippery, chewy, crunchy, tender, and firm. Good!

Double-Boiled Hasma With Red Dates


Double-Boiled Hasma With Red Dates
Double-Boiled Hasma With Red Dates



Cute little Mini Fruit Tartlet, with strawberry, kiwi fruit, and orange on a smooth custard base, within a buttery crumbly pastry tart shell. Burst of juicy fruity sweet flavours in the mouth.

Mini Fruit Tartlet


Mini Fruit Tartlet
Mini Fruit Tartlet



The Apple Mochi is so pretty, with a chewy sticky texture. Flavour is earthy sweet, very different from apple, but overall, it's decent as a dessert.

Apple Mochi


Apple Mochi
Apple Mochi



The live grill station focuses on offering a speciality every month - for January 2018, it's Grilled Jumbo River Prawns With Sambal Belachan & Mentaiko Sabayon Sauce. The prawns are large, meaty, and fresh, coming off the grill with a smoky aroma, tender texture, and savoury sweet flavour. Top with either spicy sambal belachan or creamy mentaiko sabayon sauce for added flavour. So good we went for several rounds of this. Highly recommended!

Grilling Jumbo River Prawns
Grilling Jumbo River Prawns


Grilled Jumbo River Prawns
Grilled Jumbo River Prawns


Grilled Jumbo River Prawns With Sambal Belachan & Mentaiko Sabayon Sauce
Grilled Jumbo River Prawns With Sambal Belachan & Mentaiko Sabayon Sauce



While I've visited Ellenborough Market Cafe several times, oddly enough, this seems to be the 1st time I'm formally reviewing them. Nonetheless, Ellenborough Market Cafe looks set to entice diners from 5th February till 2nd March 2018 with their Prosperity Buffet, the line-up of appetizing dishes to celebrate Chinese New Year 2018 and welcome the year of the dog.


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