What's on in Singapore this week
Huayi – Chinese Festival of Arts
Spread over 10 days, the 16th edition of the Chinese arts and music festival returns with over 200 family-friendly programmes including puppet shows and concerts. One highlight not to miss is Einstein in the Carpark, a commissioned site-specific piece by performance group Emergency Stairs that transforms Esplanade’s basement carpark into its stage.
Once Upon a Time by The TENG Ensemble
Witness the likes of The TENG Ensemble and Gareth Fernandez perform a medley of familiar tunes. From crowd-pleasing Disney classics to chart-topping pop songs, get ready for an evening of musical splendour and cultural stimulation proudly brought to you by Mapletree. Aside from the main musical lineup, immerse yourself in an interactive storytelling session as theatre company, MySuperFuture, employs traditional musical instruments and novel hand props to tell a captivating rendition of the famed Chinese legend of the Nian.
Catch funnyman Russell Peters in the flesh as he returns to Singapore with all-new material. The Canadian stand-up comedian last toured in Asia in 2015 and 2016 to sold-out houses and took time off to film Almost Famous for Netflix and a yet-to-air series The Indian Detective – but he’s back and ready to leave you in stitches in this one-night-only show.
Combine the mindfulness of yoga with the (guilty) pleasure of guzzling ice-cold bottles of beer at the lush pastures of Chijmes. Follow Broc & Bells SweatMaster Brandon Chong – founder of Yoga Instiinct and ambassador of Lululemon and Manduka – as he guides you through his unique rendition of yoga that combines movement alongside alignment in asanas. After the session, mingle with fellow like-minded participants as you let loose and soak in the good vibes. Just be sure to bring along some form of identification because you'd understandably have to be at least 18 years of age to take part in this spirited event.
Adventures in Grimmsneyland
Forget a true love’s kiss, happy endings and all that jazz. In Andsoforth’s latest pop-up theatrical dining series aptly named Adventures in Grimmsneyland (no, not Disneyland), fall into the wicked and raunchy side of the fairytale world where your princesses and princes are maybe not who they seem. Step through Mirror Mirror and roleplay as villagers, farmers or bystanders as you embark on a whimsical adventure. While you watch the story unfold, appetising dishes inspired by each fairytale are whipped up and served. And of course, in true Andsoforth fashion, the event’s location a secret so you’d wanna sign up to get all the deets.
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.
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.