Taste: February Dining Discoveries

by Anton D. Javier
02 Feb 2023

This month, eat your way to good health at a new Chinese restaurant, traverse the flavorful Indian landscape, and discover fine Japanese dining at Rangoon Road.



  • Yue Bai's assortment of appetisers
  • Braised Duck, Sea Cucumber, Hawthorn, Korean Snow Pear
  • Stir-fried Lotus Root, Fuji Apple, Corn Kernel, Pumpkin Seeds, Dried Shrimp
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Modern Chinese restaurant Yue Bai, which is located on Duxton Road, puts simplicity, elegance, and fine Chinese flavors front and center. The restaurant’s interiors, reminiscent of a traditional teahouse, is also more than just a space for eating – it’s a celebration of Chinese art, literature, philosophy, and the personal ethos of co-owner and chef Lee Hongwei.

At Yue Bai, ‘shí liáo’ (or dietary therapy) is the pillar of Chef Hongwei’s culinary approach, where food is used to counteract or prevent disease, while enhancing wellbeing. The menu, then, presents balanced dishes and familiar flavors, with the aim of delivering holistic wellness for mind and body. Highlights of the a la carte menu include the Crispy Burdock, a root vegetable that helps lower blood sugar, finished with Sesame and Spice Powder. Other must-order starters include the Australian Lamb Jelly, Black Bean, Passionfruit-infused Pumpkin, and the Deep-fried Organic Purple Rice Cake, XO Sauce, Rice Puff, and Spring Onions. Soothing and nourishing double-boiled soups are expertly executed here, such as the Double-boiled Silkie Chicken Soup, Jasmine Flower, Dried Longan, and Wolfberries, where the gentle, savory essence of chicken is complemented by the heady aroma of Jasmine flowers.

Meat and seafood offerings are also done well at Yue Bai, with personal favorites being the Crisp-fried Pork Cartilage finished with a piquant mandarin peel sauce and served atop a crispy ring made from tofu and millet. Meanwhile, think of the Deep-fried Granola Prawn with Beetroot as an elevated take on cereal prawn, where plump prawns are flash-fried and coated with a texture-rich, house-made granola for a perfect sweet and savory flavor profile.

Visit Yue Bai at 33 Duxton Road, Tel: 9721 8055



  • Hay Smoked Oyster in Sol Kadhi
  • Caviar course
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Ahāra is the amalgamation of Chef Vikramjit Roy’s experiences in the kitchens of chefs like Masaharu Morimoto, Heston Blumenthal, and Alvin Leung, as well as nearly two years’ worth of research into India’s rich culinary traditions. What results is an eye opening, borderless menu that traverses India and further shaped by Japanese and European ingredients and techniques.

The full Ahāra experience is through a grand 16-course menu, but the 9-course menu is more than enough to give you an idea of what Chef Roy and his team are capable of. It begins strong with the Hay Smoked Oysters with Sol Kadhi, where plump Kumamoto oysters are marinated in curry leaf and herb oil, and lightly smoked with hay. It is finished with a refreshing sol kadhi (a fermented Indian fruit beverage) made with kokum and spices like cumin and fresh coriander. Meanwhile, the Japanese influence is immediately apparent in the Wagyu Shaami Tartlet, where raw A5 wagyu beef tartare on a crisp roti tart is infused with 18 types of spices and topped with pickled shallots and daikon.

While the menu starts of light with delicate bites, it moves on to more filling options starting with Ahāra’s Bread, a dense bun that perfectly accompanies homemade herbed butter, rich nihari gravy, and a spicy Goan chorizo dip. The Grandeur is a strong finish to the savory course, made up of various elements that allow you to enjoy a variety of new and familiar Indian flavors in many ways. As the name suggests, it is a grand spread comprised of Goat Shank Nihari served alongside dal makhni, roasted onion pulao, walnut raita, pickled vegetables, as well as a butter chicken kulchette topped with fresh dill and pickled onions.

Visit Ahāra at 20 Teck Lim Road, Tel: 9726 9720



  • Hokkaido scallops, sambal beurre blanc, pickled pearl onions, finger lime
  • Chawanmushi, smoked bonito dashi, Fleurette Special Reserve caviar
  • Ikura cured in-house, chilled cabbage custard, croutons, sudachi
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Culinary magic and excellence is happening at Fleurette, which is located in a quiet corner of Rangoon Road. The dining experience here is best experienced by the counter, where Chef Tariq Helou and team expertly put together beautiful dishes comprised of the season’s freshest bounties.

Heavily inspired by fine Japanese cuisine, with touches of Chinese and Singaporean flavors to reflect Chef Helou’s background, the menu at Fleurette tells the story of ingredients, people, places, and experiences. Diners immediately experience this with the signature Cold Ebi Somen, which brings together delicate dashi broth, chilled somen, raw botan ebi, and prawn oil – a reinterpretation of a dish Chef Helou’s Japanese grandmother made for him. Meanwhile, the Chawanmushi is elegant and comforting, where the silky egg custard is topped with an umami-rich katsuobushi stock and finished with a subtle saltiness from a spoonful of Fleurette’s “Special Reserve” caviar.

Local Singaporean flavors start to make an appearance in the main savory courses and is used subtly so as not to result in fusion confusion. A perfect example is the Pan Seared Hokkaido Scallops roasted in butter, served with sambal beurre blanc, and garnished with pickled onions and finger lime that helps cut through the richness of the dish. Then there’s the French Guinea Fowl, grilled over binchotan charcoal and served with potato purée, grilled maitake mushrooms, charred kai lan, and XO oil, which adds subtle heat and an extra hint of umami.

Visit Fleurette at 204 Rangoon Road, Tel: 8725 8218