On most Fridays, S and I have lunch with his colleagues. The quick 1-hour meal suffice as a break from the usual lunches I have at home by myself. C and J are the ones who helped us out when we first arrived and it’s always fun having them around. They’ve introduced us to numerous dining establishments which S and I have grown to love. One of them was Singapura, a small place near their office where we can dine on some of, what I think are, the best Chinese food we’ve had in Welly.
We’ve eaten at Singapura countless times now, even celebrated S’ birthday here! Singapura’s prices are a bit higher than the other Asian restaurants we’ve been to, but their very generous serving sizes make up for it. I normally struggle to finish what’s on my plate because I’m full by the time I finish 3/4 of what’s on it. I often ask S to eat the rest, but then he feels way too bloated. Maybe I’ll just have the rest for takeaway next time.
Like most Chinese restaurants, Singapura has an extensive menu which offers everything from soups to noodles to rice dishes. Most of us go for the rice dishes, but J and I have tried some of their noodles too. J mentioned that the Singaporean Mee Hon (NZ$10.90) was good. I, on the other hand, wasn’t blown away by the Wonton Noodle Soup (NZ$11.90) I had one time. I suggest sticking to the rice dishes. Those are yummy!
S has ordered a bowl of Hot & Sour Soup (NZ$7.90) before when he wanted something to warm him up. He enjoyed the sourness and was impressed with how much stuff was in the soup, but had to give it up midway when he can no longer take the spice level. Being the one who’s addicted to anything spicy, I gladly had the rest of what remained in the bowl. I enjoyed it to the last drop!
We’ve tried a number of their rice dishes, but we haven’t ordered everything off the menu yet. We hope to do that eventually. Here are just some of the ones we’ve tried:
Whether we’re hankering for something fried or steamed, both the Crispy Chicken (NZ$13.90) and Hainanese Chicken (NZ$12.90) satisfies. Their ginger sauce is really good with the tender chicken meat.
One of S’ favorites from this restaurant is their Sweet & Sour Pork (NZ$14.50). Unlike S, I’m not the biggest fan of sweet & sour pork in general as I’m more into savory than sweet dishes. Thankfully this one from Singapura wasn’t as cloying as the other ones we’ve tried before. It gets a thumbs up, not just from S, but from me too!
There’s something about the squid here in New Zealand. I haven’t encountered a chewy, tough squid dish ever since arriving here. It’s not my style to order squid dishes in Manila because they often turn out gummy and just plain horrible to eat, but not here in NZ! Do they have a different kind here or are people here just really good at preparing squid? I have to learn the secret!
Speaking of which, I like Singapura’s Spicy Squid (NZ$17.50) not just for the texture, but because of the nice, red sauce. That thing packs a punch and I am all for that! The sauce alone makes me want to order an extra serving of rice just so that I don’t waste any of it. Disclaimer: I don’t. Although I enjoy this dish very much and wouldn’t mind having it again in the future, I firmly believe the next squid dish on this list takes the number 1 spot.
I often try to order something different each time I visit a restaurant, but with Singapura, I’m almost always drawn to their Pepper & Salt Squid (NZ$14.90). It’s my ultimate favorite, because it reminds me so much of what I get to eat at South View back home. No kidding. What I love the most about this dish is that beautiful spiciness cuts right through the other flavors, thanks to the red chili bits mixed in. S thinks it’s too spicy, but to me, it’s the level I’m most comfortable with. The restaurant’s owner knows I love their pepper & salt squid and highly recommends I try the king prawn version next time. I’m already looking forward to it!