Sunday, July 17, 2011

Crystal Jade Celebrates 20th Anniversary!

Crystal Jade is a well-loved brand with casual Chinese dining, specialty restaurants, bakeries as well as fine dining options in its vast stable of establishments.

Dim sum? Check.

Steamboat? Check.

Xiao long bao? Check.

La mian? Check.

Roast meats? Check.

Popularity here in Singapore? Check check check!

I think there's no denying that the brand is well established in the hearts, minds and stomachs of Singaporeans.

Anyway, I had the privilege to attend their 20th anniversary media lunch hosted by Chairman and CEO, Mr Ip Yiu Tung, and held at the fine dining Crystal Jade Golden Palace at Paragon.

We were treated to a sumptuous 6-course lunch showcasing its new dishes.

To start the ball rolling (and the gastric juices flowing) we were served the Cold Lobster in Teochew Style & Marinated Pig's Knuckle & Pickles Wrapped with Lettuce ($32/serving). The live Aussie lobster poached then served at room temperature was succulent and delicate. The pig's knuckle tasted very refined and was beautifully flavoured with the braising sauce. I loved the Teochew preserved vegetables! Very crunchy, slightly sweet, salty and tart. They were brave to serve this to a hungry cow. ;)

Oh and notice the single blackberry (not the phone lah!)? Interesting to see it at a Chinese restaurant.

Here's the actual full portion of the lobster. It somehow makes me wanna toss it with noodles in a hot wok! Drools.

And here we present the pig's knuckle.

Then came the Double-boiled Sea Whelk & Chicken with Starfruit & Pomelo ($20/serving). I was very much looking forward to this since I'm a soup person. And it didn't disappoint. Imagine a good chicken stock flavoured with the savoury sweetness of seafood from both the sea whelk and dried scallop. The starfruit and pomelo added bursts of fruity sweetness. I've had apples and pears in soups but it was my first with pomelo and starfruit. Apparently this soup is nourishing but not heaty. Perfect for busy working folks!

The Deep-fried Chicken with Black Truffle ($80/whole chicken) was a very modern interpretation of a popular dish. The chicken had an almost fat-free crisp skin and was paired with a sauce made of virgin olive oil, mushroom and French black truffle. Though the sauce doesn't taste very Chinese, it was nonetheless delicious! The purple cauliflower (I know right?) had a pleasant nuttiness that went well with the chicken. :D Two super thin slices of jambu were at hand to cleanse the palate.

Simmered Cabbage Topped with Cordycep Flower in Pumpkin Soup ($22 for small). My favourite part was the crispy shreds of dried scallop (I think) scattered over the dish!

For a healthy alternative to fried rice, try the Steamed Assorted Grain Rice with Prawn ($20 for small). See the many many different grains? There's white rice, brown rice, red rice, black glutinous rice, wheat, black and green beans, sesame and sweet corn. The result is a tasty and very wholesome dish. But do factor in longer chewing time. Can exercise while eating....I knew chewing was a good exercise! Moohehe.

I digress. The chicken pieces were also very good. Smooth and tender- like some claypot rice versions.

Chilled Pea Cake ($1.20/ piece) & Teochew Sweetened Soup with Bird's Nest ($21/serving) rounded up the meal. The former was said to be a favourite of the Empress Dowager. It had a very fine and smooth texture and had just enough sweetness. The sweetened soup contained hashima, dried longan, lotus seed, gingko and....

Bird's nest! Someone joked that we can all skip this month's facial. LOL.

Congrats to Crystal Jade on their 20th anniversary and 100th outlet!

Thanks to Geraldine Kan of linea Communications for the invitation and to the Crystal Jade team for hosting this hungry cow.

Note: Most photos in this post are of individual servings, unless where stated otherwise.

Crystal Jade
Golden Palace
Tel: 6734 6866
Opens: Monday-Friday 11.30am-3pm; 6pm-11pm
Saturday 11am-3pm; 6pm-11pm
Sunday 10.30pm-3pm; 6pm-11pm

Chew On This: To celebrate its 20th anniversary, Crystal Jade is holding a Culinary Carnival! 5-7 Aug, outside Crystal Jade Kitchen @ nex. Catch live cooking demonstrations, learn to make mooncakes, performances by Jack & Rai, la mian competition, 12 F&B kiosks etc. Profits from coupon sales will be donated to World Vision to help needy children in developing countries!

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