What's on in Singapore this week
Wildlife Parks' CNY Celebrations
From electrifying LED dragon dances to animals prying festive treats from fire crackers, Singapore’s 4 wildlife parks – Jurong Bird Park, Night Safari, River Safari, and Singapore Zoo – proffer a refreshing way to usher in the Lunar New Year with the myriad of engaging activities that they have in store. Snap photos with the auspicious God of Fortune mascots that will grace all four parks with their presence or embark on a Zoo-diac trail to see what the Year of the Dog has in store for you. After working up an appetite, savour specially curated festive delicacies like mandarin orange cheese tarts and almond and peach cakes.
Chinatown Chinese New Year Celebrations
This Chinese New Year, it’s out with the rooster and in with the dog. New Bridge Road and Eu Tong Sen Street get dolled up with bright lights including sculptured lanterns of – you guessed it – adorable pups. Get auspicious trinkets and traditional delicacies at the festive street bazaar, join in on song and dance performances and bask in all the celebrations. Pro tip: head to the carpark on level 6 of People's Park Centre for a bird's eye view of the family of dogs between Eu Tong Sen Street and New Bridge Road.
Diva to the Death
Here’s a theatre performance you won’t forget: Diva to the Death is a one-of-a-kind supper dinner affair where classy jazz culture clashes with the brash world of getai (which literally means ‘song stage’ in Mandarin). Held at Monti at 1-Pavilion, the interactive performance by Singaporean playwright Jonathan Lim transforms the waterfront restaurant into a playground (or is it warzone?) as you dine on a ‘culture clash’ themed supper menu.
Hail, Chinese Culture!
The first in a series of three art exhibitions that celebrate empowerment of people with special needs through arts, Hail, Chinese Culture! shines the spotlight on three local artists: Chng Seok Tin, Teresa Tan and Lee Mun Choong. Taking inspiration from Chinese culture, each artist has created a piece based on their individual style – and if any of the works resonate with you, it’s available for purchase.
Healing Chromosomes by Hiromi Tango
Japanese-Australian artist Hiromi Tango’s work reflects on our dependency on technology and the critical impact it has on our world. Exploring the concept of neuroscience, Tango builds neon double helix installations that represent our DNA with cables and wires in shades of healing colour.
Welcome the Year of the Dog with Gardens by the Bay's Lunar New Year floral display featuring dahlias, camellias and more in auspicious hues of red and yellow. Taking inspiration from Chinese gardens, look out for 'Foo Dogs' – Chinese guardian lions – as they greet you at the floral field, sculptures modelled after 2018's zodiac animal, and palace lanterns brightening up the space. Also keep your eyes peeled for the God of Fortune, we hear he's roaming the Flower Dome to spread wealth and prosperity.
New restaurants and bars in SG
The casual restaurant on the buzzy stretch of Ann Siang Road serves up seasonal Mediterranean cuisine in small plates for sharing. Watch the chefs prepare your food right in front you at a dining bar, or opt for the communal table one floor below to pass the plates around. The joint is famous for its sea urchin pudding, which you’ll end up licking clean – trust us, it’s that good. To try more of what it has to offer, opt for the restaurant's new tasting menus. It's priced at $85 for five courses and $110 for seven courses and features dishes like heirloom beets that are both smoked and pickled, and a divine hand-torn pasta dish with black trumpet mushrooms and duck leg confit ragout. While Lolla doesn't offer wine pairings with the tasting menu, its wine list is excellent so you should be able to find a glass or two to wash everything down with.
Old-school Chinese restaurant Kia Hiang at International Plaza has been a long time favourite among those working in Tanjong Pagar. Its sister restaurant, Myo Restobar is looking to make a similar impression at Oxley Tower downtown. Serving dim sum and other home-style Cantonese dishes, Myo does comfort food right. Don't miss the signature Kia Hiang Claypot Spring Chicken ($18) that's made using a recipe that's been passed on for generation. The chicken is wrapped in a layer of Chinese cabbage and stewed for hours in a herbal gravy resulting in meat that simply falls off the bone, best eaten with a plain bowl of rice.
Modern European cuisine doesn't have to stay within the confines of stuffy restaurants with pretentious tasting menus – Tablescape offers comfort food instead, paired alongside cocktails, wine and craft beer. Dip your spoon into veal sweetbread in a two-minute pea soup, and prosciutto-wrapped monkfish and Maine lobster claw in bisque, risotto and Armagnac cream.
Hidden behind the buzzy café-bar Fat Prince lies The Ottomani – an opulent, Middle Eastern-inspired restaurant where you can luxuriate on a plush couch while enjoying a meal fit for royalty. Start the meal with a plate of thinly sliced Hokkaido scallops ($24) served with fennel, mojama (salt-cured tuna) and pomelo amba, a tangy that gives a dish some acidity. The cabbage sprouts ($28) cooked over charcoal is another winner. Each mouthful offers a different experience with the mingling of flavours between the sweet potato dumplings, leek kashk and sweet macadamia nuts.
Dine 100 metres above sea level and take in sweeping views of Sentosa island at Dusk Restaurant and Bar. The hotspot at Faber Peak delivers European dishes created by executive chef Kenny Yeo with over 30 years of French culinary experience. Standout creations include the foie gras thin crust pizza ($32) and the côte de boeuf ($98, serves 2) – featuring 700g of char-grilled prime beef paired with roasted marble potatoes and red wine sauce. Wind down with Dusk’s signature Dusk till Dawn cocktail ($16) with gin, vodka, rum, tequila, blue curacao, lemon juice, peach syrup topped with cranberry juice.
Amoy is proving to be the hottest dining street in Singapore with a slew of new openings including Kimme: a casual modern Asian joint by chef Sun Kim who also runs the one-Michelin-starred restaurant, Meta. Choose to dine on the first floor where a large communal table offers a view of chefs at work or climb up to the second level, which boasts a bar a buzzier atmosphere. You'll find mostly dishes inspired by chef Sun's and head chef Louis Han's Korean roots including a wagyu tartare ($23), made from hand-chopped rump beef marinated with sesame oil, soy and mirin that meant to be scooped up with fried sago chips. Our favourite has to be the assemble-it-yourself bossam ($35), a uniquely Korean dish served with pork belly that's been slow-cooked for 12 hours, crisp endives, homemade kimchi and ssamjang sauce.