Shang Palace Singapore itself is a culinary icon.
Launched in 1971 with Shangri-La Singapore, the Cantonese restaurant is the only F&B concept remaining from the hotel group’s opening. It is the forerunner of an international chain of 38 Shang Palace restaurants worldwide, and flagship of Shang Palace brand.
The swanky establishment is currently helmed by Executive Chinese Chef Mok Kit Keung, whose sterling 40-year career saw him bring Shang Palace Kowloon to its second Michelin star in 2011.
Wow! But I shall be honest and say that though impressive, none of these really matters unless we experience the food for ourselves, right?
It was a brilliant meal right from the beginning with a trio of dim sum.
The Steamed Crystal Dumpling with Beetroot & Water Chestnut ($9++ for 3pcs) held a combination of crunchiness from the ingredients and softness from the thin crystal dumpling skin, while the Steamed Morel Mushroom with Assorted Vegetable Dumpling ($8++ for 3pcs) delighted much with its earthy flavours.
Using a specific shoulder cut of Spanish Iberico pork, the Signature Barbecued Pork Loin Glazed with Honey Sauce ($68++) was marinated in a house-blended sauce, then roasted on medium heat, and finally finished on high heat to achieve a smoky flavour. The meat was fatty, perfectly tender with a bouncy bite.
Who would have thought that the Boneless Quail filled with Bird Nest in Supreme Broth ($98++) is such a decadent treat from its deceptively plain appearance?
The tiny bird was skillfully deboned and plumped up generously with bird’s nest and shreds of Jinhua ham. Paired with supreme broth cooked for 8 hours using chicken, pork and Jinhua ham, flavours were incredibly rich.
We were told that this is fresh take on a heritage dish which replaces the traditional use of shark’s fin with bird’s nest for reasons of eco-responsibility.
The Deep-fried Crab Meat, Coriander & Pork Fritter ($36++ for 6pcs) is another heritage dish which we don’t see very often.
Shaped like a golden coin, the mixture of Sri Lankan crab meat, mushroom, coriander and bamboo shoots are wrapped with thinly-sliced pork fat and deep-fried until crispy. It must be the use of pork fat which gave the fritter such unctuous deliciousness.
Chef Mok also presents innovative offerings such as Stewed Coral Trout with Foie Gras and Black Garlic ($108++), as well as seasonal specialties like Stewed Boston Lobster with Lemongrass & Garlic ($78++).
We also cannot miss Chef Mok’s Signature Deep-fried Whole Boneless Chicken Filled With Fried Glutinous Rice ($98++, one day advance order is required).
Prepared in traditional style, the whole deboned kampong chicken is stuffed with glutinous rice that has been wok-fried with Chinese sausage (lap cheong), dried shrimp, dried scallops, and shiitake mushroom. It is then basted with malt syrup and red vinegar, air-dried and bathed in hot oil until the skin is crispy.
This is one of the traditional recipes Chef Mok believes must be passed on to the next generation.
As I just had the same dish at Shang Social (the first standalone dining establishment by the Shangri-La group) a week before this Shang Palace visit, its presentation and taste stayed vividly in my mind. I’m really glad I’m enjoying the chicken again, though I can’t help but noticed the price difference between the two restaurants for the same dish. Oops.
Our dinner ended with 20-year Tangerine Peel Sweetened Red Bean Soup ($12), a warm Chinese dessert with premium tangerine peel added for a bright, citrusy note.
Shang Palace indisputably offers Chinese fine dining at its best. Not only are the dishes exquisitely-prepared, we can also be assured that it is a healthier choice as there is no added MSG in the entire menu. Chef Mok even works with producers to specially create non-MSG sauces.
Definitely a highly-recommended restaurant for business luncheons, family gatherings, or simply when you want to indulge yourself in a good meal.
Shang Palace 香宫
Address: LobbyLevel, Tower Wing, Shangri-La Hotel, 22 Orange Grove Road, Singapore 258350
Contact: +65 6213 4473 / 4398
Opening Hours: Lunch Mon-Fri 12pm-2.30pm | Lunch Sat, Sun & PH 11am-3pm | Dinner Daily 6pm-10pm
Prices are stated in Singapore dollars and subject to 10% service charge & 7% GST. Information is correct at point of published date.