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Best of 2014

And here's the annual Best Eats compilation, for the preceding year 2014!

Japanese fine-dining: Ginza Sushi Ichi offers swimmingly fresh seafood, and ups the ante with affable personable service.

Japanese ramen: Uma Uma Ramen refines the traditionally peasant dish with aplomb.

Steakhouse: Wooloomooloo for the perfectly grilled meats that you won't need an expense account to afford.

Peranakan: Indocafe remains one of the most underrated Peranakan establishments around, with elegant, intricate fare in historically colonial digs.

Indonesian: Pagi Sore, always reliable when craving for spice-laden, intensely complex stuff.

Indian: The Muthu's Flavours, classed-up South Indian cuisine, now with Northern fare thrown in the fiery mix.

Italian: It's a toss-up between long-standing stalwart Garibaldi and the prodigal son trattoria La Strada.

Steamboat: The ultimate comfort food in the frequently rainy Singapore, Hai Di Lao truly lives up to the hype, and is worth every hour of queuing in their freebie-loaded waiting lounge.

Chinese: Lei Garden Chijmes hits it out of the ballpark with its award-winning trifecta of gorgeous setting, consistent food, and efficient warm service. Another plus-point: complimentary parking!

Spanish: Catalunya for the best tapas and most fun cocktails in town.

East-West Fusion: Restaurant Ember seamlessly marries Asian ingredients with Western techniques with finesse. Even after the handover from long-timer Chef Sebastien, the food's purportedly still excellent.

Vietnamese: There's a very good reason why Nam Nam Noodle Bar is always marked by a long queue of patient diners. Robust broths, silky noodles and scrumptious meats make for addictive pho, the Vietnamese version of Japanese ramen.

Local Snack: Oven Marvel for wholesome, hearty, ridiculously popular chicken pies that sell out by 2 pm everyday.

Cheap Eats 1: Heritage hawker Swee Guan Hokkien Mee for the ultimate indulgence in charcoal smoked prawny goodness, your lard-clogged arteries will thank you for it.

Cheap Eats 2: The fatman's Fei Zai Prawn Noodles whips up the most balanced soupy prawn noodles by tampering the heady stock with fragrant shallot oil.

Cheap Eats 3: Another heritage hawker, Blanco Court Kway Chap got the Hubs to eat (and like it!) innards, and that's a big win in my book.

Desserts: Chalk Farm, their crumb cakes are so heavenly, you'll gladly make space in an already stuffed belly

Online retailer: Cat & the Fiddle offers the most value-for-money cheesecakes to suit every whim and fancy

Biggest Surprise: The chilli at Putien made me eat my words and I finally get why the Heng Hwa restaurant is so damn popular. It's the elixir that makes the somewhat bland-ish cuisine come alive.

Special mentions to my all-time oldie-but-goodies: SPRMRKT, Imperial Treasure, Crystal Jade Golden Palace, and Wild Honey.

To awesome eats in 2015, and here's hoping ya'll have a fabulous new year!

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