Paradise Group is becoming a force to be reckoned with in the Singapore dining scene. Their restaurants maintain a rather high standard throughout, but a few of them are outstanding. One is the Taste Paradise, another is their Paradise Inn. And today, we feature their Paradise Pavillon.
The first thing that catches the eye and one's nostrils as one enters the restaurant is the huge ovens used for roasting ducks. Peking Duck is a delicacy in China. Indeed, I have recently tasted the best of the best in Beijing...the Da Dong Restaurant's Peking Duck is par excellence. Da Dong was certainly the best interpretation I have tasted. The very famous Quan Jude, also in Beijing pales in comparison. And in Singapore, Imperial Treasure's Super Peking Duck restaurant in Paragon is one other temple for Peking Duck. And recently, Paradise Pavillon.
The chefs in charge of the ducks, I understand, were trained in Quan Jude, and they use apple wood to produce the fire and smoke to roast the duck. But more on this later.
We were there for a banquet, my mother's birthday dinner, so we began with a special appetizer.
From foreground, the grilled Hokkaido scallop, the chilled Japanese cucumber and cheese bacon roll. All rather tasty, but I feel, perhaps the cucumber was a bit of a "cheat" to a meal which is rather expensive. But from a taste and presentation standpoint, it was very good.
Next up, double boiled superior shark's Fin with fish maw in shark's cartilage soup.
Yes, we do still eat sharks, but we also eat all the shark. The meat is used elsewhere, and in this dish, we have the shark's fin and cartilage. The soup was superior stock, very nice, thick, tasty. The shark's fin provided some crunch and texture which contrasts to the soft, tender, almost melting texture of the fish maw and the firm crunch of the cartillage. For me, this was the highlight of the evening's dishes.
We were then served pan seared king prawns with black truffle
The prawn was certainly very large. Nice, fresh, crunchy. The seasoning was a tad strong, but still quite delicious. I hardly tasted or felt the presence of the black truffle safe for a tinge of the aroma.
Next dish is the steamed live Marble Goby with chilli
This a very traditional dish, though at home, most would use garoupa instead of a live fish like marble goby. The fish was fresh, of course! and the steaming was done perfect. Just a bit pink at the bone, but the meat cooked throughout. Presented in this fashion, the fish was delicious. Tender but not overly so. Sweet, rich, fresh.
The Peking duck was next
Brought to the table whole, like in Da Dong, but an additional cost privillage in Quan Jude in Beijing. And carved insitu
Interestingly, the a sliver of only crispy skin was served to be eaten with sugar...a presentation pioneered by Da Dong, and not practiced in Quan Jude, where the chefs hail from. This style of presentation is also used in Imperial Treasure Super Peking Duck.
And the rest of the duck was sliced skin and meat, to be eaten with wrapped around the pancake.
For me, the shadow cast by Da Dong is just too long. Nothing compares to the supreme taste of their duck. So this too pales in comparison. But nearer to home, I think Paradise Pavillon's duck also loses out to Imperial's.
After the duck, a braised edamame tobu with crab meat and chinese spinach in Tham's brown sauce was served
Much like a dumpling...the brown sauce, given its interesting name...the restaurant never did explain who Tham was or why the sauce was attributed to him. The dish was tasty, but not spectacularly so.
Fish noodles...where the noodle is made from fish is getting more common. Fish meat is mashed and made into noodles, and wok fried in shrimp stock. I found this dish to be quite nice. The noodles were more springy than regular flour made noodles...perhaps the mashed protein of the fish entangle with each other to form this springy noodle. And the stock very nice.
And for desserts, two style of pastry
Quite interesting too, but nothing special.
Reasonably tasty dinner, especially banquet style for a table of 12, but I felt a bit expensive for the quality of the food. The shark's fin soup was the highlight, and the Peking Duck, which I was looking forward to all evening was a minor let-down.
8A Marina Boulevard, #02-01 Marina Bay Link Mall