Autumn is one of the best seasons to visit Singapore if you're a foodie. While there's no cool breeze to replace the warm equatorial clime, your consolation is a delicious crustacean making its way from China to Chinese restaurants around the island. The infamous Shanghai Hairy Crab from Yangcheng Lake and Taihu Lake is meatiest at this time of the year. Many foodies make their annual pilgrimage to Chinese restaurants in search of the rich and creamy roe and sweet meat presented classically steamed or applied to create new and decadent dishes. Here are some of the top places to feast on the hairy crab in Singapore. And if you're still left wanting more, there's always Hong Kong and Shanghai before the season ends.
Located in Pan Pacific Singapore in the heart of Marina Bay, the award-winning Hai Tien Lo is best known for its contemporary take on traditional Cantonese cuisine. For the hairy crab season from 1 October to 16 November 2014, Executive Chef Lai Tong Ping has crafted a selection of a la carte items and a 6-course prix fixe menu that showcases the meat and roe. Highlights include the 'Steamed Whole Hairy Crab with Perilla Leaves', 'Braised Bean Curd with Pine Mushrooms, Hairy Crab Meat and Crab Roe' and 'Steamed Minced Pork Dumpling with Hairy Crab Meat and Roe'. Available for both lunch and dinner, prices per serving start from $6.20 and the set menu is $168 per person based on a minimum of 2 diners, excluding all taxes. Visit the website for more information or phone 6826 8240 for reservations.
TungLok Seafood, Orchard Central
Braised Fish Maw and Beancurd with Hairy Crab Roe and Meat at TungLok Seafood Orchard Central
Part of the TungLok Group, this restaurant is popular with locals for its Singapore-style seafood dishes and daily a la carte lunch and dinner buffets. TungLok Seafood in Orchard Central has also flown in the popular Chinese crustacean from 1 October to 30 November 2014 (or while stocks last). In addition to small and large portions of the classically steamed crab, you can also choose hairy crab inspired dishes like 'Braised Fish Maw and Beancurd with Hairy Crab Roe and Meat', 'Cheese Baked Hairy Crab Meat and Roe Stuffed in Crab Shell' and 'Sauteed Egg White with Hairy Crab Meat and Roe'. Visit the website for more information or phone 6834 4888 to make reservations.
Reflecting the food of Putien on the coast of Fujian, China, the namesake restaurant serves up simple, tasty and heart-warming comfort food. To celebrate the bounty of land and sea during Autumn, this popular restaurant is serving up hairy crabs from Taihu Lake rich with creamy, golden roe. Enjoy the crustacean simply steamed or in the form of a deep-fried crab meat cake till 30 November or while stocks last. Visit the website for more information or phone 6336 2184 to make reservations.
Li Bai Cantonese Restaurant, Sheraton Towers Singapore
This award-winning Cantonese restaurant led by Chef Chung Yiu Ming is always busy with advance orders from regular customers during the hairy crab season. In addition to the popular steamed version, Li Bai Cantonese Restaurant will present some new creations including 'Braised Bird's Nest with Hairy Crab Meat and Crab Roe' and 'Braised King Prawn and Sweet Potato with Hairy Crabmeat and Crab Roe'. Chef Chung will also present a Hairy Crab Degustation on 7 November at $180 per person, excluding all taxes. Visit the website for more information or phone 6839 5623 to order your crab in advance.
This Chinese restaurant located in Fairmont Singapore is best known for serving up a tasty mix of Szechuan and Cantonese cuisines in an upmarket setting. From 21 October 2014 (till stocks last), Szechuan Court will present the Shanghai Hairy Crab in contemporary ways like 'Steamed Hairy Crab with Shiso Leaf' and 'Baked Hairy Crab with Aged Chinese Wine'. In addition to the a la carte menu, the restaurant has designed a 5-course set menu at $118 per person and $138 for the 6-course version, excluding all taxes. Far Card priviledges will still to apply. Visit the website for more information or phone 6431 6156 for reservations.
Opened in 2014, Royal Pavilion in Park Regis Singapore is upping the ante on the local Cantonese fine dining scene with its modern cuisine. Led by Chef Chung Ho Shi, the restaurant's debut hairy crab menu will display the same contemporary touch on the seasonal ingredient till mid November or while stocks last.
Signature creations include 'Flambe Drunken Hairy Crab with Superior Herbal Soup', 'Steamed Hairy Crab with Egg White and Chinese Wine' and 'Baked Hairy Crab with Wild Mushroom and Sake in Japanese Style'. For more information visit the website or phone 6818 8851 to make reservations.