From exterior, the month-old Fat Chap appears to be like like a typical watering gap in a shopping center.
It occupies a ground-floor unit in Suntec City, dealing with the principle street the place the Promenade MRT station is, and what passers-by see is a bar at its entrance and small tables ringed by bar stools exterior.
But the identify Fat Chap ought to offer you an inkling that that is greater than a bar. So you aren’t getting completely shocked once you stroll in and discover a spacious L-shaped eating room that ends in a semi-open kitchen.
The chef is a younger Indonesian chap from Medan named Selamat Susanto, who whips up Asian dishes, together with just a few conventional Indonesian ones, that should be shared.
There are additionally snacks to go together with drinks. They work as starters too and lots of are good, so order just a few to munch on whereas your mains are being fired.
Crispy Pig’s Ear ($12) is completely addictive. You do not get the crunchy bone you anticipate from pig’s ear as a result of all the things is deep-fried to a crisp, however the curry powder it’s coated with is ideal – not overly spicy or salty.
If you want, you possibly can squeeze just a few drops of lime juice over it to perk up the flavours, however it’s scrumptious sufficient with out that.
Where: Suntec City Mall East Wing 01-643, three Temasek Boulevard, tel: 6836-5994
Open: 11am to 11pm (Mondays to Thursdays and Saturdays), 11am to 1am (Fridays and eve of public holidays), 11am to 5pm (Sundays)
Food: four out of 5 stars
Service: three.5 out of 5 stars
Ambience: three out of 5 stars
Price: Budget about $40 to $50 an individual, with out drinks
The dish additionally comes with a small dish of acar and the acidity cuts the fats within the ears.
Crispy Chicken Skin ($eight) tastes bland compared and it’s good to dip it within the accompanying candy plum chilli sauce for added oomph. It is first rate by itself, however if you’re having the pig’s ears, skip this.
Asian Buffalo Drumlets ($14) is a greater guess. The drumlets are plump with juicy meat coated in a sticky, spicy sauce. They remind me of Korean fried rooster with gochujang sauce however are much less candy, which I desire.
Leave loads of room for the principle programs as a result of a few of them come in beneficiant parts.
Grilled Whole Fish is ideal each occasions I eat it and at $53 for a golden snapper, it’s priced fairly too.
The fish is contemporary, with agency and moist meat, and rubbed in an fragrant spice combine earlier than being grilled. It comes with a wonderful sambal belacan and although the fish is nice by itself, it’s even higher with the added kick. The sambal is fiery although, so chilli cowards, be warned.
Marinated Whole Squid ($15) is nice too, cooked good and boasting a nice smokiness from the recent charcoals. It is served with nam jim, a piquant and spicy Thai dip of chillies, fish sauce and lime juice.
I am much less impressed with the meat dish, Spiced Lamb Spare Ribs ($35). The fats makes it a bit too gamey, which the cumin and chilli powder dip can’t masks.
I really feel the dish may match higher if the rack of ribs had been rubbed extra generously with spices earlier than being grilled. But if you happen to like your lamb sturdy, it’s possible you’ll discover nothing improper with it.
The Indonesian dishes, which chef Selamat says are primarily based on what he remembers of his grandmother’s variations, are wonderful.
Oxtail Soup ($20) is available in a well-balanced broth full of carrot, potato and tomato and meaty chunks of oxtail. The tender meat, which falls off the bone simply, is eaten with inexperienced chilli sambal and it is good.
The Asam Pedas ($19) is pretty much as good as that in any Peranakan restaurant right here. The broth boasts a pleasant steadiness of candy and bitter flavours, and the items of golden snapper are contemporary. The dish goes nicely with rice, however as a result of it isn’t too acidic or spicy, it’s completely palatable by itself too.
Among the desserts is one thing known as Klapertart ($12), an Indonesian cake with Dutch influences that I’ve not eaten earlier than.
The model here’s a coconut custard served with rum and raisin ice cream, and topped with almond flakes in addition to raisins soaked in rum. It’s scrumptious and the alcohol is sufficient to get you in excessive spirits with out leaving you mild in your toes.
So I go away completely happy, with ideas that I will probably be again for a number of the different dishes. And undoubtedly for extra of these pig’s ears and grilled fish.
- The Sunday Times paid for its meals on the eateries reviewed right here.
- Follow Wong Ah Yoke on Instagram @wongahyoke