Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Rise dinner buffet

A "punter" punting through the "river" in MBS. I don't mean to offend, but, how touristy.
I celebrated my sixteenth birthday with a buffet dinner at Rise last night. Rise is a restaurant located in the posh Marina Bay Sands and is well-known for it's exquisite and high quality of food. I have always wanted to try the buffet there, but it was just too expensive that I never got around to it. So it was really a pleasant surprise when I found out that my parents had planned a dinner there for my birthday.
Open layout and high ceiling (if there is one at all) all make for a wonderful evening.
View of the restaurant from an (indoor) bridge.
The spread:
From breads to raw foods to honeycombs and a roast turkey, there is a relatively large variety of foods on the buffet line. I say "relatively" because it isn't really that much, but it is fully compensated for by the quality of food. Also, these are the foods that most people tend to "whack" at a buffet (hehe).
The "centrepiece" which is essentially what greets you as you enter the restaurant. A colourful and vibrant greeting, no less.
What is there not to love about a whole table full of sweets?
The white chocolate fondue can't beat the green tea one at Lime (PARK ROYAL @ PICKERING), but it's still something interesting, as compared to the done-to-death milk chocolate fountain.
The brown cubes there are chocolate marshmallows! I love the marshmallows at Rise - they are unbelievably soft! Like roasted/BBQ-ed kind of soft!
 You know you are paying for quality when you find ice-cream flavours like such in lieu of "strawberry", "vanilla" and the like. ;-) 
 Portugese egg tarts!
((to die for))
The fresh fruits station, next to the salads...how apt.
 SALMON SASHIMI (a.k.a the only sashimi I dare to eat)
The way in which the chef slices the sashimi is really professional as each slice is fat and juicy! Even the "miserable" slices left when all the "good" ones have been pinched off!
Mussels, scallops, oysters and prawns 
 The roast turkey was tender and succulent, or, in other words, perfect.
 Bread bar which had, unfortunately, awesome-tasting breads. I say "unfortunately" because bread is practically solid carbohydrate which fills you up pretty quickly: something you don't want happening at a buffet. :-(
Assorted cheeses. My favourite was the Brie cheese. :-)
What I ate: 
Hot drinks were complimentary, so I had a (two, actually) pot(s) of Jasmine Queen (Green?) tea from TWG! They also served drinks like hot chocolate but I'm more of a tea person. Anyway, I'm impressed that they use TWG and not commonplace brands of teas such as Lipton etc. Then again, I guess that has all been included in the price!
Clockwise from left: Roast turkey, pork thingamajig, roast beef, Croque Monsieur, braised beef cheek and chicken (centre)
The turkey was, as I mentioned earlier, FANTASTIC. I really needn't go into more detail about that. The rest of the meats were all right, but pretty hard. As I had a minor toothache, I couldn't really enjoy them as much as I wished. The Croque Monsieur was a surprise ((to be on the menu)), but also surprisingly good. :-) (well, most things at Rise should be good)
Salmon sashimi, marinated scallops and assorted sushi.
Also, I happened to take the soba sauce instead of the soya sauce...but it complemented the salmon anyway! :-) Ha ha, what an accidental discovery. I could be the next Isaac Newton, heh. Ok, I digress.
The salmon was really really really really really good. Fat and juicy and such a deep orange, everything is appealing to my senses. Well, except for touch I suppose. That would be rather queer. (or not)
Sadly, the scallops were a bit too salty (over-marinated?) and the sushi too ordinary. Not something I would expect from a restaurant in MBS.
 Mussels, clams, prawns and scallops. I don't dare touch the oysters because of their insane cholesterol levels, as much as I do want to eat my money's worth. The best of this plate were the prawns, but prawns are such a chore to eat! I hate peeling them as it is literally as if a battle has erupted on my plate, ugh. Oh well, convenience (laziness, more like) > gastronomic bliss I guess.
More roast turkey, grilled saba in soya sauce and some haddock dish. I nearly mistook the haddock for mashed potatoes! Anyway, everything on this plate tasted delicious, though the saba could be a little dry if you don't scoop up the sauce with the fish. The haddock thingamajig was really tasty, like mashed potatoes except that it tastes like fish and chips. It's so weird to describe it, but tastes absolutely amazing.
Rum and Raisin, Strawberry sorbet and Coconut sorbet.
Only the R&R was nice here. I was hoping that the coconut sorbet would be like the one I had in Bangkok (Chatuchak market) but it pales in comparison. Maybe it's the rum that mars my tastebuds, but I feel that none of the other ice-cream flavours taste the way they are supposed/expected to.
Also, R&R is my all-time favourite ice-cream flavour so I may be a little biased here.
 Crème brulée, yoghurt mochi, vanilla bean thing, yule log cake, almond and apple tart, chocolate eclair, blueberry tart, poached pear, chocolate mousse and marshmallows drizzled in white chocolate fondue
This was literally a guillotine for diabetics. Everything was SO SWEET. Not that I'm complaining, since it is dessert, after all. But.
Personally, I enjoyed the blueberry tart the most. The crème brulée was just sweet, the mochi starchy, vanilla bean pie-thing odd, and the poached pear was quite hard. I have never had poached fruits before so I'm not very sure what to expect, but this was far from what I had sort of expected (especially after seeing the glorious delight that are poached eggs).
 Portugese egg tart, bread and butter pudding, Christmas stollen, panettone, grapes and strawberries and a marshmallow dipped in fondue
The egg tart was really good, but quite small, so you can't really taste the eggy custard unless you eat a lot of egg tarts. The rest were simply meh. Also, I have discovered that I have no appreciation for stollen and panettone.
Raisin bread, tomato focaccia, haddock thingy, saba fish (with cheddar and brie at the side)
LOVED the tomato focaccia bread the best. It was soft and had nuances of olive oil and garlic (???). I would never have paired these together but somehow it just clicks! I love love love bread so much... :-)
Madeleine, kaya roll, rock melon, blackberries, grapes and strawberries
The madeleine was rather dry and disappointing, while the kaya roll could not hold a finger to Rich and Good Cake Shop's. But it was still acceptable, I guess. The fruits were nice (when are fruits not nice), and I was especially thrilled that most of the strawberries were sweet and not sour! It is so difficult to get sweet, juicy strawberries here as most are either sour to begin with, or they mould very quickly.
My birthday-cake, compliments of Rise. It was really rich and intense and I was explosively-full by then that I only managed two bites before I surpassed the point of no return...
It was a good cake, though, but maybe a little too overwhelming and jelat.
In total, we spent about $300 for the four of us. Yes, it's a very steep price to pay for a dinner but it's more of the ambiance, company and quality of food that would draw customers there. It was very nice to sit back on our cushioned chairs and just chat with one another, as the Christmas tree not far away twinkled. Also, the soundtrack for the Notre Dame de Paris musical was playing in the background, so it was a very different but enjoyable experience for me. :-)
Even if it meant skipping breakfast and lunch the next day, I would not have traded this meal for anything else in the world.
Rise Buffet Restaurant
10 Bayfront Avenue Tower 2,
Lobby Level Marina Bay Sands Hotel Singapore
Tel: +65 6688 5525

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