Sunday, 3 October 2010

Seafood the Singapore Way

Chili crab
On my first night in Singapore, my friend suggested we get some seafood which of course was a great idea.

He found a place online called Long Beach, which is actually a chain restaurant, on East Coast beach, near where he lives.

So we wandered in and were seated right by the window. It looked like a popular restaurant among locals; it was only later when we went to the bathroom did we realize it was much bigger than we thought -- with another giant dining area off to the side, and all the tables filled with diners.

The specialty here is the black pepper crab, but to make things easier we ordered the set dinner for two which not only included this signature dish, but also chili crab, fresh prawns stir-fried with thick rice noodles, and water spinach in a soup base.
The wet towel featuring Miss Intercontinental

While we waited for our dinner to come, we noticed a large woman in her early 50s wearing a dress in a horrible shade of blue with grey patches on the chest area and on the short sleeve there was a tiger logo on it, for Tiger Beer. I mentioned to my friend that she was the beer lady, but she was the complete antithesis of the usual early 20-something girls showing a bit of skin and flirting with customers to get them to buy more beer. "Perhaps she scares them into buying more beer," my friend observed.

We also checked out the wet towel they gave us each -- wrapped in a silver foil complete with a picture of a woman in a bathing suit holding a plate with two crabs on it. She is apparently 1994 Miss Intercontinental Kimberly Anne Byers of the United States. And what is her connection to the Long Beach restaurant in Singapore?

Anyway, it took a while to get our dishes, but once they arrived, they did so at a furious pace.

First came a giant platter with the chili crab sitting in a sea of a thick sauce with egg whites in it, a touch spicy, but very delicious. The crab too, was very meaty, thankfully mostly cracked so all we had to do was pry open the thick shell to get the succulent meat. There were also two deep-fried buns for us to mop up the sauce, but they didn't seem too nutritious to put in our stomachs.
Black pepper crab, the restaurant's signature dish

As we were attacking this chili crab, the black pepper crab arrived too, along with the other dishes which was annoying, as they sat there getting cold and in the end we didn't think it tasted as good. Nevertheless, the black pepper crab is covered in fine black pepper that after being stir-fried, makes it look like it is dirty. We felt the signature dish wasn't so good... perhaps the dryness was a factor, or by that time we were almost crab-ed out.

We enjoyed tucking into the water spinach with roasted garlic, the thick rice noodles we didn't care much for in a thick soy-based sauce, but the prawns were sliced in half and were pretty good.

The restaurant gave us complimentary desserts as well -- small bowls of fake mango pudding with pieces of corn in it! How strange.

When we got our bill, we were surprised to find we were charged S$0.30 each for the wet towels featuring Miss Byers, and S$2 for a plate of peanuts we didn't ask for. Anyway the total came to S$166 ($126.43) for two including a fresh coconut and a glass of draft Tiger beer. Hope that beer woman is happy.

Long Beach Main Seafood Restaurant
1018 East Coast Parkway S
(65) 6445 8833

1 comment:

  1. from the look of it i think i would like the first dish too with the thick spicy sauce. would be good to have the bun to go with it.