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Restaurant buzzwords for foodies

We put together a handy guide to the buzzwords that restaurants are currently bandying about

Locally farmed fish
1/9

Locally farmed fish

What it is
Yup, turns out those moss-green waters you see lapping the shores at East Coast and Sentosa are hospitable waters for edible fish to grow after all. Dining on kelong-farmed fish isn’t that far-fetched anymore, with delivery services trucking fresh grouper, sea bass and shellfish to your door, and restaurants putting in more effort to serve seafood caught off our mainland.

Try it at Portico Prime. On his menu of mains, chef Nixon Low incorporates emperor snappers and barramundi farmed just off Pulau Ubin.

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Singapore
Meatless Monday
2/9

Meatless Monday

What it is
It’s essentially a movement that encourages adherents to stave off from eating animals on Monday. Why? To reduce your carbon footprint and think about meat’s effect on your health, of course. With even more attention paid to vegetables in kitchens, you don’t have to be content with oily fried tofu and bee hoon from your hawker’s vegetarian stall to do your part.

Try it at Pizzeria Mozza. Chef Mario Batali’s a big believer in the movement, and puts on nine grilled cheese sandwich options, and throws in a free roasted vegetable dish with your meal on Mondays.

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Promenade
Pickling
3/9

Pickling

What it is
The world of pickles is more varied than just those jagged gherkins you find between McDonald’s patties. This grandmotherly method of preserving firmer vegetables in a brine that typically contains a mix of vinegar, salt, sugar and spices is making a comeback as a zingy counterpoint to cured and roasted meats, and as the veg component in rice bowls.

Try it at 5th Quarter. Chef Drew Nocente ages vegetables two ways: whey goes into his pickling juice for milder acidity alongside a dish of scallops, while meat gets richer vinegar-pickled slices of vegetables.

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Little India
Fermentation
4/9

Fermentation

What it is
Not as disgusting as it sounds – after all, alcohol and yogurt are familiar examples of fermented food. Kimchi and sauerkraut get their bright sourness when bacteria turns the sugars in the vegetables into sour lactic acid, as do the rice and lentils in idli cakes. Trendy restaurants like Bacchanalia are already ageing jars of vegetables on shelves high above their diners to complement their dishes, and pro-probiotic makers are advocating fermented fruits and leaves for better health by wilting them in jars.

Try it at Good Food Heals, which makes its own jars of housemade kimchi, guava pineapple relish and beet apple slaw.

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Raffles Place
Poké
5/9

Poké

What it is
A cousin to chirashi and Chinese yu sheng, this Hawaiian method of serving fish has caught #eatclean buffs by storm. It’s thanks to the savoury notes that sesame oil, fresh white and green onions, and soya sauce lend to fresh chunks of yellowfin tuna, salmon, octopus and even avocado. Singapore’s first outpost dedicated to the fish salad opened on Amoy Street last year, but we’re hearing rumours of more bankers-turned-restaurateurs with plans to hop on the trend.

Try it at Aloha Poké, which serves tuna, salmon and tofu pokés – you can ask for a spike of wasabi – heaped on salad greens and rice.

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Telok Ayer
Biodynamic wines
6/9

Biodynamic wines

What it is
The hippies of the wine world, biodynamic growers think of the soil and other plants in the vicinity of their grapevines as integral components of the final product. Some even go to the extent of planting and harvesting grapes with the waxing and waning of the moon, preparing manure on an equinox, and aligning their planting with astrology. Mystical mumbo-jumbo aside, biodynamic wine adherents are said to have turned out wines that display more character than their more industrially made counterparts.

Try it at KOT Selections, a wine retailer on Neil Road that brings in a good variety of biodynamic bottlings. These are occasionally showcased during monthly Cellar Door tasting sessions, held at 6pm on the last Friday of every month.

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Outram Park
Nose-to-tail dining
7/9

Nose-to-tail dining

What it is
Like most other dining trends resurrected from an earlier era, nose-to-tail brings back the practice of making good use of the bits of an animal whose life you’ve taken, from the tip of its nose right down to the curl of its tail. The Spanish are great at turning pig ears into a tasty snack, the Chinese have kway chap, and the South Americans are known for their crisp, fried nubs of sweetbreads, derived from the thymus gland of a young calf or lamb.

Try it at Dehesa, dedicated to cooking off-cuts like duck and ox hearts, pig’s liver, kidneys and heads. Waste not.

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Singapore
Farm-to-table
Photo: Johan Lim
8/9

Farm-to-table

What it is
With more thought being put into our nation’s food security and the sourcing of ingredients, the farm-to-table movement has sprouted urban farms on rooftops, their vegetables finding their way onto our plates. This trend isn’t all that new, but as more restaurants start to lay the foundations to serve greens harvested and transported no further than from one end of the PIE to the other, we can look forward to munching on more sustainably grown greens.

Try it at Open Farm Community, the perpetually booked-out Dempsey garden restaurant that aims to garnish and add to the plates greens from its surrounding farms or one of the rooftop plantations managed by Edible Gardens.

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Orchard
Bean-to-bar chocolates
9/9

Bean-to-bar chocolates

What it is
They’re chocolates made with cocoa beans sourced from growers, and they reflect the qualities of their unique origins. Most bean-to-bar makers claim to process, conch and temper their own cocoa beans, before packing them between gorgeous paper packaging. It’s a premium way to post-break-up binge.

Try it at Hello Chocolate, a local online cocoa retailer that sells bean-to-bar brands like Marou, Askinosie Chocolate and Åkesson’s. Local maker Fossa Chocolate also crafts bean-to-bar treats.

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