On Monday 27th of March 2017, my younger brother and I went to Asian Market Cafe for lunch buffet. We arrived 11:30 am however the door is closed cause the operating lunch hours are from 12:00 pm to 2:30 pm. Anyway little information about this restaurant, it is located in Swissotel The Stamford and It is also Halal-certified restaurant. This restaurant featuring Singapore local favorites and contemporary regional delicacies. There is a dress code to it which is casual wear.
Before I continue, allow me to make a disclaimer. I was not being paid by Asian Market Cafe or any of their affiliate partners. My post is based on my personal opinion and judgement and in fact this post was posted randomly. Usually I post food review for the purpose of recommendation and critics only. So once again I am not being paid for posting this review. Anyway let’s get back to my post.
When the restaurant door was open, we were being ushered by a friendly staff of Asian Market Cafe to the dining table. The restaurant is very clean and the interior layout was neat and spacious but a bit dull due to color contrast. Easy to move around with my wheelchair in the restaurant. We were disappointed with the table, as they said it was full house and we got the table that is facing the wall, infront of the clearing station. However, we saw a peaceful table right at the corner and request to change, but we can’t as it was “reserve” to other guest. After we have gotten our table, my brother start to hunt around for food to start with. Our plan basically to try as much dishes as possible. Here are the list of foods that we tried:-
- Assortment of Sushi and Salmon Sashimi
- Cooked Seafood (scallops, mussels and prawns)
- Variety of Salad (seafood salad and Indian salad)
- Chicken Rice and Tom Yam Fish
- Otah, Black Pepper Crab, Mee Goreng and Chinese Fried Rice
- Egg Drop soup
For item number 1 and 2 we feel it is alright and satisfying because the ingredients being used such as the salmon can taste totally fresh, but only the seafood we could taste the smelly fridge. However for item number 3 onward, it was very disappointing for both of us. Seafood salad the taste is fine only need a little bit more seasoning, but for the Indian salad it was tasteless and the chickpea did not boil well enough. Before we tried the Laksa, looking at it were already disappointing to us. The gravy was too watery and my instinct tells me that the amount of coconut milk being used are less. When we taste, it tells us more thing about this dish that it lacks of dried shrimp paste and the Laksa leaf.
As for the Chicken Rice, the rice was cook perfectly as in Al-Dente texture, but the fragrance of the typical Singapore chicken rice is not there and the rice doesn’t really taste like a Chicken Rice to me, is totally lack of ginger and garlic flavor. My brother is a sucker for chicken rice, he knows that the rice wasn’t looks good and even myself couldn’t identified whats more is lacking. He said that the rice should have chicken fats, as it will give the rice a flavor, slightly fragrance and also shiny to it. It taste more of like eating plain rice. We realize that the plate for the buffet was not clean and covered with little spots for most of the plates. There is black stain marks, chips on the plate rim and no side plate on the table for the dirty cutlery.
My brother did pick 1 dish known as Tom Yam Fish but after we tasted it, we were wondering where is the taste of Tom Yam? and it taste like sambal fish, only more to mild side. As for the dessert some are alright but some of it was totally bad because it taste way too sweet and also too heavy for dessert. I was thinking if the chef could tweak some of the dessert a bit but still looking at the same concept as Baba Nyonya/Malay/Asian food. For example, instead of tauhwe, maybe could reconstruct to soya panna cotta with mint grassjel or maybe ice chendol could transform into cake or jelly base. lastly, the fruits, it was totally no taste, not sweet. it feels like that the fruit is not ripe enough. We only taste the fiber of the fruit instead.
Overall, as for big restaurant in Big 5 Star hotel, i would only give 1*/5* rating. Service staff are friendly, but only during entrance, i was expecting the manager or team leader or any staff to mingle around the guest, ask for feedback about the food, service and ambience of the restaurant. In the hotel industry, we should have people-oriented and not work oriented, have some passion in the job. i would give the service 3*/5* rating.