Friday, May 28, 2010

Chikuwa Tei, Mohd Sultan Road


Rising from the ashes of the old Wasabi Tei is Chikuwa Tei (9 Mohamed Sultan Road, #01-01, tel : +65 6738 9395).

Clearly, this place would be of interest to the people who once clamored to the drab 16 seater that once graced Far East Plaza. This new location by the former chef looked almost nothing like before and it seems that quite a bit has changed.

For one there was a larger menu now in the restaurant and there were actually a few wait staff manning the current premise which is much more spacious than before. The place even accepts reservations these days it seems. Changes as they were, did not come totally and some remnants of the old trademark of the now smiley chef could still be seen. Hell, even the cuts of the raw fish looked like before and their ankimo still looked like the maimed chunk of discolored wet clay.

After a few orders, one could also say that the quality of the food did not change but however, portions have become a little less generous and prices have gone up. Certainly, some of the dishes which I've never had the chance to order still came in rather large portions. Noticeably the hearty and comforting oyaku don which came a in a large steaming bowl of rice laden with the sweetish egg, chicken and onion over the top and a very nicely grilled squid which wasn't shabby at all. There were even the seasonal sawagani (small deep fried river crabs) which were lightly salted and nicely crispy and crabby in flavors.

Still, I think I would have preferred the old and regularly overlooked stall back in the day where one could not call up for a seat and had to queue 45 minutes in line waiting for the moment when either the chef of the wife would give the signal that we could enter and be seated. The slightly frantic but subdued shuffling of 16 pairs of feet into the restaurant where customers would quietly eye each other across the U shaped table as they got quickly to the seats and ordered quickly and then proceeded for the next wait over the preparation of the food.

What I had missed about that experience was a sort of anticipation of the unknown coming from the once dreaded service with a scowl.

sawagani

ankimo

sake

amaebi

oyaku don set

chirashi set

cod hot pot set

grilled squid

4 comments:

xf said...

hi, was waiting for you to blog about chikuwa.:p finally...:p
i read your blog entry about wasabi tei only after the restaurant had changed hands, but did an interview with the chef subsequently.
finally tried his food..now that he has set up a new restaurant.will definitely visit again.

ice said...

Was good. I enjoyed it.

ah Teo said...

although the oyako don is finally "in stock" and tastes so very appetising, I think I still prefer the grouchy him at Wasabi Tei, Far East plaza. The appetiser is done away with; hotpots have shrunk; slabs of fish have reduced but the prices has gone up.

joicetan said...

the famous chef has left the restaurant since Feb 2012... follow him on FB now at https://www.facebook.com/exec.chef.peter :)