Never have I ever felt so compelled to submit a review on HGW and in this case NOT for a good reason! We chose this place to host our guest when I saw that it made it to "Top 5 chilli crabs in S'pore" on some online article. First impression the ambience was nice & surroundings look comfortable enough. And...that's when everything went downhill.
First up, deep fried baby sotong. One bite, crunchy...then I detected a bitter taste. Alas, they were over fried resulting in a slightly charred bitter taste, but ok since its crunchy & still edible we made no complaints. Next was the prawn pancake & ngoh hiang. If I had to be picky, the ngoh hiang filling tasted a little powdery but still good & turned out to be the only passable dish of the evening. Cuttlefish kang kong, nothing to shout about. Then came the Mee goreng which I had high hopes for. It was an utter disappointment, the noodles were not fried well, it was quite bland & lacked the oomph. Honestly I had much better & I can even fry better than this. Nevermind, we shall pin out hopes on the star of the night, the chilli crabs. But it turned to be not only the worst dish of the night but also the worst crab I ever had in my life. Sauce was passable but the crabs are definitely not fresh! The meat tasted like what it probably would taste if it was FROZEN & there was no freshness or juice dropping out, it was just like a chunk of hard cold flesh. When questioned the staff insisted they used live crabs & offered to bring the dish to kitchen for "checking". When it came back, one piece was missing & she said the chef had taken it & it was alright no problems whatsoever! That was when my guest felt compelled to even intervene & told her the crab tasted like cold chicken & not crab! And her reply? "Oh we eat crab on a DAILY basis so we know that the crab is ok!" Sensing that we are still not buying her tales, she asked me which "part" I ate that tasted wrong. With that, she whizzed off a whole pincer to the kitchen & alas magically returned with an empty plate & the same "well-rehearsed" answer that it had passed the kitchen "taste test"! She then offered to deduct some weight off to give a discount so to speak. At this point, we just felt no reason to argue any further & I did not want to create a scene as we had our guest with u. So FINE, do whatever you wish as we just to get over the meal & leave the place. They took $11 off the crab which cost $56 - for a dish we barely touched & which honestly their kitchen ate more. The worst was that we had stomachache & diarrohea the day after which confirmed our suspicion that the crab is not fresh. Food not tasty, ok I still can swallow but serving food that's not fresh & blatantly denying it is totally unacceptable & calls into question the restaurant/kitchen practices. So you have been warned, STEER CLEAR & spend your money elsewhere!