Three to try: A chill barbecue joint, bao bar, and exquisite sushi restaurant
For textbook-perfect Cantonese fare that would please even the fussiest grandmother, you can always count on Li Bai Cantonese Restaurant to deliver time after time. This time around, the same team behind this grand dame of Cantonese restaurants has launched Full of Luck Club, a restaurant in Holland Village that puts a contemporary spin on authentic Cantonese cuisine. Think beef claypot rice amped up with a touch of truffle and a bao bar (which reminds us of London's hipper-than-thou Bao joint) that dishes up steamed and fried baos filled with everything from salted egg yolk prawns to braised pork belly. Asian-inspired cocktails pepper the drinks list, tipple you'll enjoy even more once their rooftop bar opens in June.
Full of Luck Club. 243 Holland Avenue. Tel: 6208 6845.
Temple of zen
With only eight seats hugging the main sushi bar and six in the private dining room, Shoukouwa clearly isn't playing the volume game. As with other high temples of gastronomy the likes of Ginza Sushi Ichi and Shinji by Kanesaka, what you'll find here is a finely tuned performance that puts the edomae sushi experience at its core. The stage is austere and worthy of contemplation: Fish and vegetables are flown in from Tokyo's famed Tsukiji Market and everyone gets a view of Chef Masakazu Ishibashi as he prepares each course in the omakase-only menu. Expect to find the finest grade of uni draping warm mounds of sushi rice tempered with rice vinegar, raw tuna cheek (infinitely fattier than otoro) charred by burning ambers, and abalone cooked in sake and dressed in its very own rich liver sauce. To close each meal, you won't find the usual showcase of seasonal fruits so favoured by other sushi restarants. Sweet endings come in the form of exquisite dessert creations from French fine dining outfit Saint Pierre.
Shoukouwa. #02-02A One Fullerton. 1 Fullerton Road. Tel: 6423 9939.
All fired up
What is it about roasting meat over an open fire that crinkles the skin and brings out only the most succulent bits of the beast? Over at Camp Kilo Charcoal Club (started by the same good folk behind Kilo), fire and ember hark the beginnings of a great night filled with whole hogs cooked over a crackling spit, roasted French poussin, and such grown-up campfire sides as corn bread with honey butter, and patatas bravas. Set within the ground floor of the Ture Building next to the Kallang river, this open air joint is the ideal spot for big groups looking to commune over honest grub.
Camp Kilo Charcoal Club. #01-01, 66 Kampong Bugis. Open 530pm-11pm on Fridays and 11am-11pm on Saturdays and Sundays. Tel: 6292 2306.