This haven at the busy end of Orchard
Road offers an ample spread of local and international fare. Start with the oysters, which are delicious and worth queueing for. One of the highlights of the Western selection is the crispy pork saddle, rolled in a marinade of prune, pancetta and herbs; it’s served with a choice of quite a few sauces, of which the most hearty is the jus from the roasting pan. The pork is tender, with a very crispy crust. For those with a penchant for seafood, the local highlight is the Singapore chilli crab, which looks more fiery than it actually is. For dessert, the sticky date pudding, served with a delicious warm custard sauce, ticks all the right boxes. Service is prompt, courteous and knowledgeable. Mandarin Oriental Singapore, 5 Raffles Avenue, Marina Square, S(039797)
TEL: 6885 3500 The buffet offerings here are extensive, with a good variety of international fare. Produce is fresh and the quality is spot-on, evident in the seafood selection comprising Alaskan king crabs, oysters, prawns and mussels—brimming with fresh ocean flavours. Save some space for other stellar dishes, too, which you’ll find across the Indian, Southeast Asian and Japanese stations. Worth noting are the sashimi and sushi, which are extremely fresh and satisfying, as well as the kebabs—you’ve got a choice of lamb, chicken and vegetables, among others. Desserts also attract with choices ranging from the decadent The Melt chocolate cake to the Asian-inspired mango kaffir lime cheesecake. Thanks to the layout of the dining room, the buffet areas never feel crowded, even on a busy Friday evening; there’s no need to sidestep guests or servers. The staff are efficient in clearing used plates, yet are never intrusive. They also display a lot of initiative, from suggesting cold drinks at the start to offering hot tea and coffee when we returned to the table with our desserts.