20 Jan 2009 • 131 reviews • 33 followers
We had an afterwork dinner at quayside seafood yesterday (because I didn’t think we could afford coriander leaf next door haha) and I did think it went ok, save that two of the dishes we had were unfortunately cooked with too much salt.
We had, all in small portions:
Ultimate crab meat and prawn fired rice
Kangkong with sambal chilli
Wok fried beef with spring onion and ginger
I had originally intended to order their fried rice with diced chicken in a medium portion but was told by the very nice (and matronly) waitress that a small portion is good enough for two! Medium would be too much - for three to four people. (but actually, I knew that already. I just wanted to eat a ton of fried rice that night and I knew my partner was hungry because he was at the gym before that) so anyway because we downgraded our size of fried rice, we upgraded its quality to the ULTIMATE fried rice which was priced at $18, $26 and $38 for small, medium and large respectively. On the hindsight, while a small would be adequate for a party of two - given that you will order other dishes and all that, it was a little small for us. I didn’t get to eat as much fried rice as I would have liked, but well, at least I wasn’t stuffed.
The kangkong with sambal chilli started off rather well - the sambal chilli wasn’t overpowering given that I had told the waitress not to make it too hot (my partner cannot eat spicy food too well, how useless) and you could taste the vegetable itself. It wasn’t smothered in sauce originally, but as we ate more of it it got sadly saltier and a sambalier. So it was pretty much the case of diminishing returns. Personally I would have preferred it more spicy, but this was okay, if not for the fact it was quite salty.
The wok fried beef with spring onion and ginger unfortunately had the same issue with salt. It was basically smothered in a salty brown starchy gravy, though the beef was very tender. (I am not sure whether that is the effect of tenderiser and I have not found out whether tenderiser is a bad or good thing) However, we couldn’t taste any of the spring onion or ginger, unless you specifically picked it up and ate it. Portion wise, I suppose, was okay - given the location of the restaurant and their clientele. I think it was $14 for a small - and this small is the kind of small you would get at your neighbourhood zhi char stall.
The best dish out of the lot had to be the ultimate crab meat and prawn fried rice, though I must say that if this is the best they have to offer it would be a sad restaurant indeed. But we only had 3 dishes, so it would be an unfair comparison. Anyhow, the fried rice was not over fried, or overly salty. You could taste and see (even in their ridiculously dim lighting) the crabmeat, though there was a grand total of only 4 prawns. BUT the prawns were very fresh and good. I wouldn’t say the rice itself was terribly well cooked - in the sense that I did think some parts were a little hard, but on the whole this dish went down very well with us.
Service was relatively prompt and always polite. Our waitress (probably Chinese speaking) asked us in perfect english how the food was, and I appreciate that. I told her that unfortunately it was rather salty, and she said she would tell the chef. But I honestly think that my partner and I (my partner especially) have a rather low threshold for salt and we have to make the particular effort to remember to tell the chef to minimise use of salt.
The table next to us were two angmoh banking dudes and their dinner while low key, did look rather yummy - they had on aprons for their chilli crab and all that. My partner said he did see the crab prices - I think he said it was $18 per kg and according to my partner more expensive than Jumbo. I wouldn’t know. But on the way back, we passed by Irvin’s (apparently the most handsome cze char in town - what kind of tagline is that) and I saw this big banner that advertised “large sri lankan crab at $18 each” and I told my partner we should go there because $18 sounds cheap. We just might!
I think if anything, the ambience of quayside seafood is their prize quality. It is very nice (even if I do not particularly care for it) sitting right next to the singapore river and watch the hippo boats go by. Especially at night. So that’s particularly soothing and peaceful though the restaurant obviously is doing its best to cash in on it by squeezing as many tables as they can next to the river. Which resulted in my partner and I sitting at a square table at right angles to each other (as opposed to facing each other) and that was the case for my angmoh banking dudes neighbour and the foreign couple we were sandwiched in between. Come to think of it, I don’t recall seeing any other Chinese people apart from us. Haha.
anyway please bear in mind that we did not have any seafood, except for the ULTIMATE fried rice, so your price per head with seafood would likely be significantly higher.