After undergoing a three month of renovation, Crystal Jade Group's flagship fine-dining restaurant, Crystal Jade Palace at Ngee Ann City has unveiled a brand new look and menu. The restaurant now boasts a sophisticated contemporary space that includes an intimate tea room, breezy communal dining hall, elegant courtyard, as well as chic private dining rooms.
Garden Salad with Crab Meat, Pomelo & Sakura Ebi 4.2/5
We kickstarted the dinner with the light and refreshing Garden Salad with Crab Meat, Pomelo and Sakura Ebi ($14.80). This dish used to be only served upon request has made permanently into the menu. It is an elevated rendition of the classic Thai-inspired appetiser that is a medley of fireworks, with the flavours coming together.
Deep-fried Chive Stem Pancake 3.5/5
At first sight, the Deep-fried Chive Stem Pancake ($14.80) looks like any ordinary Chinese style pancake. However, I find the ingredient used to put this together is interesting. The crispiness comes from the thin sheets of spring roll skin, while the filling is a tasty combination of sweet chives stem, minced prawns and bits of Chinese Lap Cheong.
Steamed XO Scallop Dumpling Wrapped in 'Marbled' Skin 3.5/5
Crystal Jade Palace also offers dim sum on their menu. We got to try the Steamed XO Scallop Dumpling Wrapped in 'Marbled' Skin ($8.80 for 3pc). This is a premium take from the usual with the used of the scallop. The parcel is filled with plump scallop and prawn, crowned by a robust homemade XO sauce. Steamed scallop can be quite tasteless; hence, the XO sauce played an important role in holding the whole parcel together.
Roasted Honey BBQ Iberico Pork 4.2/5
Personally not to be missed at Crystal Jade Palace is the Roasted Honey BBQ Iberico Pork ($30 regular portion) and the Roasted Irish Duck with Black Truffle ($26/$48/$95). Using the prime pork shoulder meat for the roasted honey BBQ pork, it is really tender and juicy with the right fat and lean ration which I enjoyed. The sauce is also just right, not overly sweet.
Roasted Irish Duck with Black Truffle 5/5
As for the Roasted Irish Duck, this is a winner for me. The Irish duck is already well known for its amazing texture. The addition of the black truffle is a match in heaven that lifted the flavour and whole appreciation of the beautiful poultry.
Double-boiled Chicken Soup with Peruvian Ginseng 4/5
Perfect after all the richness, is the nourishing Double-boiled Chicken Soup with Peruvian Ginseng ($26 per pax). This is my first time coming across Peruvian Ginseng or also known as Maca. It is actually a member of the radish family. It is also claimed that the root plant helps to boost energy, may improve libido and reduce the psychological symptoms of menopause.
Sauteed Beef Cubes with Shishito Peppers in Black Pepper Sauce 4.2/5
Filled with "Wok Hei" on top of the succulence is the Sauteed Beef Cubes with Shishito Peppers in Black Pepper Sauce ($36 for regular portion). The shishito peppers are actually not spicy, and it has a delightful crunchy texture. The black pepper sauce was not peppery, leaning towards the sweet side.
Braised Sea Cucumber with Grandma's Braised Pork Belly 4.5/5
A new favourite for me at Crystal Jade Palace is the Braised Sea Cucumber with Grandma's Braised Pork Belly ($36). It is a comforting pot of sea cucumber and fork-tender pork belly that has been slow braised with soy sauce, rock sugar and spices. That rustic home-style flavour is a home run for me.
Poached Seasonal Vegetable with Fresh Beancurd Skin and Gingko Nus in Superior Broth 4.2/5
A usual order at any Chinese restaurant for me is the poached vegetable with trio eggs. Thanks to the recommendation, I would order the Poached Seasonal Vegetable with Fresh Beancurd Skin and Gingko Nus in Superior Broth ($26) whenever I visit Crystal Jade in the future. It is a simple poached vegetable dish elevated by the flavourful and collagen-rich chicken stock, with fried ginko and garlic cloves. The bonus is the addition of the smooth sheets of fresh beancurd skin.
Fried Crispy Rice and Arzo Pasta with Prawn and Shrimp 4/5
A unique dish on the menu is the Fried Crispy Rice and Arzo Pasta with Prawn and Shrimp ($26). It looks like fried rice, but it is not. Chef Foo has substituted the rice grains with orzo pasta. The orzo pasta is skilfully tossed over high heat with prawns, char siew, red and green capsicums to get that al dente rice texture. Crispy sakura ebi and deep-fried rice grains are added for the textural contrast. It is undoubtedly a delicious dish to eat. However, it lacks the wok hei and egg fragrant, which I think the rice grains can absorb better than the orzo pasta.
Chendol with Coconut Ice Cream 3.5/5
Last but not least, we wrapped up the dinner with the Chendol with Coconut Ice Cream ($12.80) for dessert. Inside the coconut husk, there are coconut gelato, chendol, grass jelly cubes and feuilletine shards. I like the idea and presentation, but somehow I didn't feel satisfied, especially if I am looking forward to a bowl of chendol dessert. I couldn't really enjoy the different components in the husk together to associate it to the chendol dessert, as I ended up tackling the elements individually.
Note: This is an invited tasting.
Crystal Jade Palace
Ngee Ann City
391 Orchard Road
Tel: +65 67352388
Nearest MRT: Orchard (NS Line)
Mon-Fri: 1130am - 3pm, 6pm - 1030pm
Sat: 11am - 1030pm
Sun & PH: 10am - 1030pm
1) Alight at Orchard MRT station. Take Exit C or D. Walk to Ngee Ann City. Journey time about 8 minutes. [Map]