Selling out last year, the largest gourmet food festival in Singapore returns in 2013 with great gusto to tantalise the palates of local foodies and those visiting from abroad. Masterminded by Singapore GP, the company behind the annual Singapore F1 Grand Prix, this first gourmet fiesta of its kind on the island seeks to unite the public with fine food and drink delivered by top chefs, expert master classes, live demonstrations, fun workshops and culinary shopping, all in one purpose-built venue.
Gunther Hubrechsen / Photo courtesy of Gunther's Restaurant
To get the culinary professional insider scoop on the event, I enlisted the help award-winning chef, Gunther Hubrechsen of Gunther's Restaurant who participated in 2012 and is showcasing his signature dishes and conducting a Gourmet Masterclass at the 2013 edition. Gunther is best known for bringing sophisticated French food to Singapore's chic fine dining scene in 2007, which earned his restaurant the 84 position in the Best 100 Restaurants in the World List.
He was pretty pleased with last year's event, remarking that the attendance was overwhelming, it garnered a lot of media attention regionally and brought new customers to his restaurant. After much discussion, we have arrived at the 9 top reasons for foodies, wannabe chefs and culinary professionals to visit Savour 2013 .
Well, simply because Savour is the largest gourmet festival in Singapore and Michelin and celebrity chefs are a part of it! While visitors have the chance to taste cuisines from different chefs at the Gourmet Village, the event also houses a Gourmet Market where visitors get to see more products and ingredients under one roof. There's also the Gourmet Masterclass section where attendees get to participate and mingle with various chefs, including Gunther.
Cold Angel Hair Pasta with Oscietra caviar / Photo courtesy of Gunther's Restaurant
The 2013 edition promises an enhanced gastronomic experience for all visitors through an all new line-up of culinary adventures and the best of global cuisine. You're talking about over 60 signature dishes designed by some of the world's best chefs including Mauro Colagreco of Mirazur in France (1 Michelin star, San Pellegrino World's 24th Best Restaurant 2012), Margot Janse of Le Quartier Francais in South Africa (San Pellegrino World's 57th Best Restaurant 2012) and Claude Bosi of Hibiscus in the UK (2 Michelin stars, San Pellegrino World's 94th Best Restaurant 2012) just to name a few. Gunther will be preparing 3 signature dishes including his "Cold Angel Hair Pasta with Oscietra caviar", "Golden Crispy Farm Egg Provençal" and "Fruit Jubilee Vanilla-flavoured Soft Ice Cream" at booth R2.
18 award-winning restaurants will be presenting their signature creations at the Gourmet Village. Visitors can look, stop and taste from a wide range of menus and mix and match starters, mains and desserts from different restaurants. This is a major attraction for visitors because where else can they embark on a tasting trail and sample various dishes by different chefs. Importantly, prices of dishes are very affordable and they get to create their own culinary journey. Best of all, all these amazing cuisines can be enjoyed in a brand new air-cooled dining pavilion. For the chefs and restaurants, Savour 2013 is an ideal platform for visitors to sample their dishes at reasonable prices and to attract them to try other dishes back at the restaurants.
It is also about building closer relationships with customers for the chefs and restaurants through the mingling. Most chefs are hidden away in the kitchen most of the time. For Gunther, Savour 2013 offers an opportunity for him to venture out of the heat to interact with people and watching the smiles on their faces every time after they try his food. For him, it feels like an accomplishment.
Wannabe chefs and fellow professionals will enjoy the indoor Gourmet Auditorium with a state-of-the-art kitchen where culinary master classes are conducted. Some of the stars at work include
Chef Alvin Leung of Bo Innovation in Hong Kong (2 Michelin star), André Chiang of Restaurant André in Singapore (#68 World's 100 Best Restaurants 2012, #5 Asia's 50 Best Restaurants 2013) and Chef Jason Atherton of Pollen Street Social in London (1 Michelin star) just to name a few. Gunther will be displaying his finesse for creating unusual flavour combinations with delicate sensitivity in front of some 300 attendees during his 30 minute Gourmet Masterclass.
For professional chefs like Gunther, Savour 2013 provides an opportunity to showcase their signature offerings, especially to new customers. While his restaurant has been operating for more than 5 years, there are certainly diners who have not been exposed to modern French cuisine or sampled his food. After a tasting at Savour, he hopes visitors will return to his restaurant.
Photo from Global Baker Ltd
The Gourmet Market showcases an international range of artisan food and drink exhibitors. You can indulge in free activities including wine appreciation sessions, baking classes and cocktail-making workshops. You can also enjoy learning about the latest food trends from around the world, check out the latest kitchen equipment and gadgets and bring home the finest wines. There's Andres Lara of Pollen on chocolate creations and confectionery, Baker & Cook's Dean Brettschneider on the art of baking, and Sushi Making with Chef Takahashi from Hashi.
As a small country, Singapore offers a melting pot of different people and culture. And when it comes to food, Singaporeans are spoiled for choice as there are so many cuisines to choose from Japanese, Indian, Italian, Chinese and the list goes on! Savour 2013 allows the chefs and restaurants to showcase their cuisine and offer the food-loving public the best of their art. For Gunther who heralds from Belgium, its about increasing the awareness of modern French cuisine.
For a single ticket visitors can enjoy various activities which includes gourmet workshops and have the opportunity to sample over 60 international award-winning dishes, pastries, dessert making, bakery, coffee appreciation and wine appreciation, all reasonably priced. Tickets range from SGD35 to SGD65 and include Savour dollars which are used the Gourmet Market and Village.
SAVOUR 2013 is held in the heart of the city at Singapore's F1 Paddock and Pit Building (next to Singapore Flyer). Entry for lunch or dinner is available through either a pre-purchase premier and standard pass or tickets at the event gate. As each chef/restaurant will only serve limited portions of their signature dishes, purchase of passes or tickets do not guarantee the tasting of all your preferred signature dishes. Savour Dollars are used to purchase food and drink at the Gourmet Village and products at the Gourmet Market, and onsite cash and credit card facilities are available at the event venue for purchase of additional Savour Dollars. All masterclasses, workshops and demonstrations are all complimentary with each entry ticket. However access are on a first-come first served basis, subject to availability. For more information, visit the event website.