1. Fat Fuku, Singapore
A meal at local food writer Annette Tan’s breezy East Coast apartment is naturally as much about the storytelling as the delicious, modern Peranakan food she has been plating up since 2017. Diners are treated to a hearty feast inspired by both the flavourful fare that Tan’s “formidable” late mother once cooked up and the fine cuisine the writer has sampled while eating her way across the food-crazy nation. Tan’s fare has proven such a hit that the waitlist can be up to a month.
Highlights: A fall-off-the-fork beef rendang; nasi ulam (herb rice salad); crispy rice vermicelli with prawn sambal and quail eggs; and pork belly buah keluak (a seed from the Pangium edule tree) biryani are some of the more traditional dishes, while her Curry Devil pie is a nod to the neighbourhood’s Eurasian influence.
Price: S$95 per head for seven dishes
How to book: Tan accepts bookings of six to nine people for lunch or dinner, Tuesdays to Fridays. Bookings must be made at least two weeks in advance.
Call +65 9387 6399, email email@example.com or visit fb.com/fatfuku
2. Axis, Bangkok
In 2018, US chefs Aisha Ibrahim (previously from Aziamendi in Phang-Nga) and Samantha Beaird (of San Francisco’s Boulevard) organised a series of pop-up dinners across the city, enticing in-the-know diners with their inventive menus that run anywhere from 12 to 20 courses.
Highlights: For a private dinner organised by community space theCOMMONS in end-September, the chefs presented a produce-driven menu that focused on seasonal Thai ingredients. The duo have hinted that they plan to open a full-fledged restaurant soon so watch this space.
Price: Varies, depending on the event
How to book: Follow them on social media (IG:@axis.th) to get updates on their next pop-up.
3. Ah Tee Kitchen, Kuala Lumpur
Since 2015, Malaysian cook Kevin Tee has been inviting diners into his living room to feast on the authentic Hock Chew fare that his grandma used to make. It’s rare to taste this kind of food outside of the home hearth.
Highlights: Expect hand-shredded red wine pork knuckle with steamed lotus buns and sour plum pickles; chicken wings stuffed with shrimp and pork in a red wine chicken soup; or Tee’s “golden pillow”, a crispy bun full of ginger and pork.
Price: RM98 to RM138 for a four-course meal
How to book: They require at least three days notice.
Call +60 12 383 0478, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit fb.com/ahteekitchen
4. Villa Chandara, Siem Reap
The experience starts with guests being whisked off by SUV to West Baray, an ancient reservoir created to irrigate the Angkorian temples. After a boat cruise past the island temple of West Mebon, friendly staff await with cocktails at one of Siem Reap’s most bucolic and charming village settings.
Highlights: Villa Chandara is a restored Khmer wooden home set inside tropical gardens festooned in fairy lights and candles. The sumptuous five-course dinner prepared by the award-winning young chef includes a piquant green mango salad served with salty, dried fish; fish amok (steamed curry) and barbecued pork ribs.
Price: US$130 + taxes
How to book: Reservations must be made no later than 10am on the day of the dinner.
Illustrations by Jacob Stead
To book a flight, visit singaporeair.com
SEE ALSO: 5 unique dining experiences in Asia
This article was originally published in the October 2019 issue of Silkwinds magazine