Cherry Garden's one of my "secret hideaway spots" for exquisitely refined food in peaceful, elegant surroundings. I've eaten here so many times, and I've never been disappointed. The food may, admittedly, be a little on the pricey side, but the quality of the food and the generous portions more than make up for the somewhat fine-dining prices. To top it off, I love the service here. The wait staff are always attentive but never intrusive, and warm and knowledgeable.
In fact, the great service extends to the entire service staff throughout this hotel, rated travellers' favourite hotel in Singapore by Tripadvisor. From the cleaning auntie who pushes the lift button for you, to the doorman who opens the heavy doors with a ready smile, the service here is top-notch and without compare.
Today, we rested our work-weary selves down in plush oriental chairs and were welcomed with an Amuse Bouche, a chilled grilled unagi, chewy and soft to the bite.
The Marinated Jellyfish Salad ($8) made for a refreshingly great appetizer. Jellyfish was cooked perfectly, bouncy and springy, and the soya sauce marinade was very light, so it really complemented the mildly sea-fresh flavours of the jellyfish.
The Sweet Corn Soup ($10) with minced chicken and egg white was pure comfort, silky egg whites intertwined with sweet corn kernels and tender morsels of chicken mince.One of the best versions of this Chinese classic.
The Sea Treasure Soup ($10) was surprisingly more controlled than I'd expect of a seafood-based soup. The unami flavours were nuanced and balanced, and diced zucchinis lent colour and texture.
The Sauteed Monkey Head Mushrooms ($20) with assorted vegetables and pine nuts was something I'd turn vegetarian for. This was so delicate, and the light seasoning brought focus to the natural sweetness of the crunchy vegetables.
The Stir-Fried Chicken Fillet ($22) with shallots and spring onions was a heady dish packed with flavour. Chicken was smooth and succulent, and the rich, slightly wine-ish sauce was intensely aromatic.
The Stir-Fried Asparagus ($22) with Hong Kong kailan and honshimeiji mushrooms in spicy XO sauce was packed with flavour, and complemented the slightly peppery taste of asparagus.
The Mandarin Oriental
5 Raffles Ave
Tel: 6338 0066 / 6885 3030
Open daily from 12noon to 2.30pm for lunch and 6.30pm to 10.30pm for dinner