Thursday, 17 May 2012

Mother's Day Lunch at Seafood International Buffet

Interesting factoid: Do you know that in the UK, Mother's day is celebrated on a different day than in Singapore? I only realised during my first year there, when a friend exclaimed she has forgotten to get something for her mother. So I hastily rang my mum up on the particular sunday in March, and my mum went - Huh? Mother's day not till May. Oops, my bad, bye mum. Did you also know that different countries celebrate Mother's day on different days as in the UK. The second sunday of the month is the most popular amongst countries. Some of them are Singapore for one, Canada and USA to name a few. Norway celebrates Mother's day on the 2nd sunday in February while UK and Ireland celebrates on the 4th sunday in Lent. What is Lent? Lent is a Christian Festival. In the past it was a long, strict religious fast when people gave up all rich food. Lent begins with Ash Wednesday and lasts for six and a half weeks and is moveable which means every year, the date for Mother's day is different. It tends to fall around February or March. In 2011, it was on the 9th of March and in 2012, it fell on the 22nd of February.

Anyway, we took my parents for a mother's day lunch at the Seafood International Buffet. Came across that they are having an ala carte buffet lunch till July 2012 that looks like a great deal. Have a look below.

Source: Seafood International Buffet

The prices are reasonable and on mother's day weekend, it was $32.80 ++ which included free flow of chinese tea or lime juice. So I booked ahead for a table for the 4 of us to go. The restaurant is located at the old Big Splash Complex at East Coast Park. By the time we got there at 12pm, the restaurant was already more than 70% filled! We settled down and was presented with the menu.

Source: Seafood International Buffet
The main drawing point of the ala carte buffet is the 12 'key dishes' which are limited to one serving per table. The waitress immediately asked if I want all 12 dishes served for 4 of us!! Could we really finished it all? She insisted that the portions were small. We ended up ordering the Abalone (dish 1) and Sharks fin soup (dish 2) for my parents only as the husband and I didn't fancy either. We left out dishes 5 and 10, and ordered the rest. True enough, the portions were small, but that was fine as we got to order the other dishes on the menu to try before we got too full.

Dish 1: Abalone
The Abalone was really a baby one of about 6-7cm in diameter. Didn't take a picture of the sharks fin as was too busy starting to eat as the dishes came.

Dish 8: Braised Sea Cucumber
I didn't eat this as I didn't fancy the texture of sea cucumber, but the parents liked it. 

Dish 9: Deep fried soft shell crab
This was my favourite. The soft shell crab was marinated nicely and really crispy.

Dish 3. Deep Fried Garoupa
Sorry for the grainy picture. It was taken with my lousy phone camera and was too busy eating. Anyway it was the cutest smallest Garoupa I've seen but it was nicely done and the sauce was nice. 

Dish 4. Drunken Prawn in Herbal Soup
You got 2 prawns per person. The prawns were really fresh and sweet. The soup was nice. You could really taste the herbs in the soup.

Dish 7. Baked Crayfish with 'Yu Xiang' sauce
The crayfish was also one of my favourite dishes on that day. The sauce was nice and the crayfish was fresh. Portion wise was alright, thought the crayfish served were more like baby ones. Each one are around 8 to 10cm in length, not your usual adult crayfish size. 

We ordered a few other dishes like Dish 6 - Fish Fillet with Lemon cream sauce, Dish 11 - Venison with black pepper sauce, the meat was very tender and Dish 12 - Beef Steak with Smoked BBQ Sauce, all of which the husband really liked and quickly disappeared into his stomach before I had the chance to take pictures of.

Other than the 12 premium dishes, we also managed to order several others like: Dish 18 - Fried Sweet Shell with XO Sauce (highly recommended), Dish 21 - Baked Chicken Thigh with Teriyaki Sauce, Dish 22 - Braised Lamb Stew in Claypot, Dish 23 - Fried Turkey Breast with Tri-sauce in Stone Pot (recommended), Dish 25 - Roasted Duck in Hot Sesame & Garlic Sauce and Dish 32 - Deep-fried Beancurd with Conpoy & Mushroom. That was the maximum we could stomach. There was also a dessert corner with local kuehs and seasonal fruits like watermelon and honeydew.

Dish 23- Fried Turkey Breast with Tri-sauce in Stone pot

All in all, it was a nice lunch. Something different for the family to try out. While waiting for our first dishes, Moses Lim and his family strolled in and went into the private dining room. Guess if Moses Lim was eating here, it must be good? Anyway, we spent $140 for the four of us, and that was with a 10% discount and $20 return voucher (over $100 spend) for Standard Chartered Credit Card Holders which made it more worth it :). Do go and try as the promotion is running till 31st July 2012.

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