Although Ernie's based in Hongkong, the land where dim sum originated from, we somehow seem to have an inordinate amount of dim sum whenever he visits.
Crystal Jade Golden Palace is one of Ernie's favourite haunts in Singapore. This fine-dining restaurant, with its Teochew slant to the typical Cantonese dim sum, makes for delightfully delicate and refined food. With its twinkling chandeliers, ombre dark woods and deep luscious reds, it's sexy and elegant. In line with its wonderfully classy ambience, this award-winning restaurant boasts exquisite fare. Like Imperial Treasure just at the opposite end of the 4th floor of Paragon, service was faultless. Teacups were regularly refilled and our waitress was Speedy Gonzales-worthy efficient and attentive.
The Deep Fried Enoki Mushroom & Vegetable Roll ($5.80) is like a very polished spring roll, with crunchy radish, julienned carrots and black fungus, but with the addition of enoki mushrooms and beancurd skin wrapping. This was mouthwateringly juicy, and totally sweet from all those root vegetables.
Save for the yucky parsley laced throughout the Steamed Teochew Dumpling with radish & Mushroom ($4.50), this crystal-skinned dumpling was great. Chewy gelatinous skin and diced Chinese black mushrooms and root veggies, this was a fine example of restrained seasoning focusing on fresh ingredients and little else.
The Steamed Bamboo Pith & Beancurd Skin Roll with Superior Broth ($5.80), filled with textured mince and diced vegetables in a light prawn-based broth, was excellent as well. A most delicate dish.
The Deep Fried Spring Roll with Fresh Prawn & Mango ($5.80) is Ernie's favourite dish here, and it's easy to see why. The flaky shortcrust pastry wrapper envelopes mushy ripened mangoes and juicy diced prawns. A wonderful marriage of sweet and savoury elements.
The Steamed Custard Bun with Salted Egg Yolk ($4.50) with the mild grainy texture of the oozy egg yolk and a candied accent, was great as a sweet finish to the meal.
The Sauteed Assorted Mushroom ($12) is made exotic with a light dusting of luxurious crab roe. Earthy and juicy with just that touch of briny sea-freshness.
The silky sheets of Steamed Rice Roll with American sliced beef ($6.50), black fungus and asparagus stalks, was robust and flavoursome. Tender full-bodied beef balanced out the plain black fungus and crunchy greens.
The Fresh Scallop Porridge in Cantonese Style ($13) was smooth and delicate, with plump and succulent scallops littered amongst the simple but flavourful rice gruel.
Crystal Jade Golden Palace
290 Orchard Road
Tel: 6734 6866
Open Mondays to Fridays from 11.30am to 3pm, 6pm to 11pm
Saturdays from 11am to 3pm, 6pm to 11pm
Sundays from 10.30am to 3pm, 6pm to 11pm