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Tuesday, February 25, 2014

21 On Rajah


Singaporeans love to eat and what better place than a buffet!
When someone mentions Halal-certified buffets in Singapore, I'm guessing you would probably be able to come up with a list of places to visit. In fact, you can find some of those names right here on our blog.

Well, we have some really great news...
You can now add one more name to that list - 21 On Rajah!!

That's right - we're jumping for joy too!!
Situated along Balestier Road, Days Hotel At Zhongshan Park is a modern-looking hotel. If you've never had a reason to visit it before, well now you do!

21 On Rajah has just recently been certified Halal by MUIS and it offers not only a nice buffet spread but also some very tempting Ala Carte menu choices as well. We were invited to have a taste of their delectable buffet spread and have a taste of some of their signature dishes as well.

And like all our buffet posts, we're gonna run down individual items later but let's give you a sneak peek at what the spread actually has in store for you... Let's start with the Salads and Appetizers...

D.I.Y Salad Station
Mozzarella Cheese and Tomatoes
Potato Salad
Grilled Mixed Vegetable Antipasto
Smoked Salmon
Salad Nicoise with Tuna Tataki
Assorted Sushi
They also have a station where you can mix up your own Rojak!

Rojak Station
Besides the salads and appetizers, they also have a nice spread of Cold Seafood that includes Green Mussles, Snow Crab Claws, Scallops, Tiger Prawns and even LOBSTER!!

The Cold Seafood Spread
Tiger Prawns
Mushroom Soup
They also have a selection of Cheeses and Bread for us to enjoy.
And of course, there'll always be an offering of soup at any buffet spread. When we visited this time, it was one of our all-time favourites (and probably yours too?) - Mushroom Soup!

The soup may have been a little light on the texture but I really enjoyed it.
You get a nice earthy mushroom flavour and for those who really enjoy that, you're gonna enjoy this soup.
Enjoy with a nice warm roll to complete the dish!

I would have had more but I was planning to stuff myself with so many other things I decided to go slow :P

And then we come to the Mains...
21 On Rajah actually has a good mix of Mediterranean and Asian delights. One of the Restaurant Managers actually described it as a 'Meditter-asian' theme which I thought was very fitting because you can really see the eclectic mix of food ranging from Asian (Chilli Crab-style Crayfish, Laksa, Rojak, Sushi etc) to Mediterranean and European (Italian-style dishes like Pasta and Antipasto, Braised Lamb Shank etc).

I think I'll let the picture do more of the talking... And the tempting!

Nasi Goreng
Kung Pao Style Chicken
Slipper Lobster Singapore Chilli Crab Style
Fried Mantou Buns
That's right! They have a Chilli Crab-style dish with Slipper Lobsters and complete with the Fried Mantou Buns!! I have to say that this is not really the kind of dish you would expect to enjoy at a Hotel Buffet but this was actually pretty good!

If you're like me and don't want to make such a big mess, just enjoy mopping up the delicious Chilli Crab gravy with the buns! Yummy!

Slow Baked Salmon with Mustard Cream Sauce
Spinach Ravioli
Sauteed Asparagus and Carrots
Braised Lamb Shank
Gratin Potato
Roasted Prime Beef Ribeye
Shallot Jus Sauce
What I felt was the real star of the buffet spread was the Roasted Prime Beef Ribeye.
Just look at the delicious slab of meat there calling out to you... "Eat me.... EAT ME!". ZOMG.

As you may very well know by now - I loves me some meat. And when you have a buffet line where there's a guy waiting to carve out some meat for you - it's a win-win-win-win trust me.

And the meat itself? Roasted to perfection!
You have a nice crispy char on the outer layer and medium-well done for most of that part. And when you get to the middle, a nice pink medium-rare awaits you. How can you resist!
If you're like me and prefer it to be less pink, just let the guy know and they'll char it a little bit more for you on the pan. Finish off with some Shallot Jus Sauce!!

And now we have some pictures of the food that we dished out for ourselves... There are a lot more but only had time to snap these few because we spent the rest of the time wolfing down the food!!

Mozzarella Cheese and Tomatoes
I'm a big fan of cheese but not so much of tomatoes to be honest. But I totally enjoyed this. Even the tomatoes! The cheese taste is not so overwhelming and the tomatoes were really firm and fresh. It was a very nice and refreshing start to our meal!

Grilled Mixed Vegetable Antipasto
Smoked Salmon
Potato Salad
I guess I'm a sucker for these kinds of European appetizers.
Smoked Salmon is an automatic yes for me every single time because I really love it. I guess that's something I picked up from my Dad. And the quality here is top notch.

The Grilled Mixed Vegetable Antipasto is roasted peppers, zucchini and aubergines and has a very nice and robust flavour to it.

The Potato Salad is not your usual type of Potato Salad and you can even have it as a side when you have your meat dishes like the Roasted Prime Beef Ribeye or even the Braised Lamb Shank.

Salad Nicoise with Tuna Tataki
Those who love Tuna will enjoy this dish.
Lightly-seared Tuna which has a black pepper crust paired with peppers, potatoes and quail eggs.
Just remember that the black pepper crust will give you quite a kick :)

Slow Baked Salmon with Mustard Cream Sauce
Gratin Potato
Braised Lamb Shank
ZOMG the Lamb Shank is the bomb.
I heard some people even picked up with the whole bone and started chomping down and I don't blame them!! But I'm shy so I just tore off some meat :P

Spinach Ravioli
Besides just being the Meat Guy, I'm apparently also the Pasta Guy. All the more if it's creamy!
I really really really really really really really really really really enjoyed the Spinach Ravioli. If you enjoy creamy pasta, you'll definitely enjoy this too!

PS have I mentioned that I really enjoyed the Spinach Ravioli?

Okay. More like 'No cage can hold back our gluttony' to be more exact :P

21 On Rajah also has a nice Desserts spread including fruits, fondue, Asian and Western desserts!
If you still have space after the mains, take your pick!!

Fresh Tropical Fruits

Carrot Cake
Profiteroles (with Lemon Curd Filling)
Asian Nyonya Kueh
Dark Chocolate Fondue
Bread & Butter Pudding with Dates (and Vanilla Sauce)
As you can see, quite a lot to choose from!
In fact, they had more desserts like Panna Cotta and even mini-desserts which are served up in shot glasses.
I took a few but whacked them before I got a chance to snap some pictures. Oops. :P

The 'Juice Bar'
Something we found very unique was this 'Juice Bar' set up where you can have your choice of Orange, Lime or Cranberry Juices and then you can mix it up as you see fit!

You can top it off with some fizzy drinks like Ginger Ale, Tonic Water or Sprite and then add some fruits like Strawberries, Pineapple, Kiwi and you can even add some Mint Leaves!

Something very unique that we've not seen at any other buffet so far! :)

But do keep in mind that from what we understand, there are up to 5 menus which are on rotation throughout the week so it's best to call and check if you want a rundown on what's being served when you visit.

You might very well enjoy some of the stuff we've posted here but then again you might enjoy something else that we didn't get a chance to try!

Buffet Prices:
Breakfast - $18.00++ (Adult) / $9.00++ Child
Semi-Buffet Lunch - $15.00++ (Buffet only) / $10.00++ (with any main course ordered)
Dinner (Mondays to Thursdays) - $32.00++ (Adult) / $16.00++ (Child)
Dinner (Fridays to Sundays, Eve and PH) - $35.00++ (Adult) / $17.50++ (Child)
Sunday Brunch - $38.00++ (Adult) / $19.00++ (Child)

The buffet at 21 On Rajah is really good value for money! You get quite a nice spread of food and definitely some favourites there so you know you'll be able to concentrate on eating just the stuff you like.

Besides the buffet, 21 On Rajah also has an ala carte menu which boasts Mediterranean favourites such as Paella, Poitrine de Poulet and also Asian delights like Chicken Curry 'Singapore Style' and Nonya Laksa.
If you want to have a taste of both worlds, then maybe you can consider trying their Semi-Buffet Lunch where you can have an ala carte dish plus still get to sample the buffet spread!

And some more good news!
When you go for the Sunday Brunch, they have a supervised activity corner for the kids! This means you can relax and catch up with friends and family after the little ones have had their fill!!

We'll definitely be visiting 21 On Rajah again to sample their ala carte menu.
But the buffet is so tempting we might end up having both.

And a special shout-out to Izad and Hana who are also fellow foodies!
Check out their blog (www.izadnhana.com/blog) and Instagram (www.instagram.com/izadnhana#)
Maybe we can all go makan together again!

21 On Rajah

Days Hotel At Zhongshan Park
1 Jalan Rajah

Tel: 68086868

Operating Hours: Weekdays
Breakfast - 6.00am til 10.30am
Lunch - 12.00pm til 2.30pm
Dinner - 6.00pm til 10.30pm

Operating Hours: Weekends
Breakfast - 6.00am til 11.00am
Lunch - 12.00pm til 3.00pm
Dinner - 6.00pm til 11.00pm

Monday, February 24, 2014

Asli Village - Istimewa Wanton Noodles

Okay boys and girls here's a quickie for you.
Recently visited Downtown East for quick bite before catching a movie and decided on something simple.

Had the Chicken Rice at this stall before and reckoned it was not so bad.
But how about the noodles?

Wanton Noodles ($4.50)
Okay so you actually have a choice.
You could have the wanton OR the char siew chicken with the noodles for $3.50 but if you're greedy like me, you can have the wanton AND the char siew chicken for $4.50.

But if you don't fancy the Char Siew Chicken, you can always ask for the normal roasted chicken too.
Anyways back to the dish.

It really wasn't anything special to be honest.
The Char Siew Chicken did not have any of the sweet glaze flavour you're supposed to get from Char Siew Chicken. This turned out to be just roasted chicken with a red/orange/pink colouring.
The wantons were equally as bad and were just deep fried nothings.

The noodles are bathed in this soy/chilli mixture which really lacks taste.
In fact, I got most of the taste by eating every mouthful of noodles with some chilli jeruk (pickled chilli) which you can see at the top right hand side of my dish.

Adam's Verdict:
Wanton Noodles 1/5

There are a few other dishes on the menu which I had originally planned on trying next time I visit Asli Village at Downtown East but now I'm not so sure. Looks like I might have something else from another stall instead.

Istimewa Chicken Rice Stall

Asli Village (Downtown East)
1 Pasir Ris Close #01-03

Operating Hours:
11.30am til 9.30pm Daily