Jade Restaurant: Where Art Meets Cuisine

8/9/2019

As one of the best gastronomic institutions that serve Cantonese cuisine in Singapore, Jade restaurant at The Fullerton Hotel Singapore is still the place where one can find an amazing culinary experience whilst basking in a beautiful design.

This 11-year old restaurant went through an interior revamp in 2017 and the new look features a combination of teal blue and white ambience, wrapped in a modern style of the colonial inspired theme. A series of contemporary Chinese lanterns adorn the centre ceiling of the restaurant while a beautiful print of birds on trees with a teal blue background wallpaper covers the wooden panels to create privacy for some tables.

Aside from Jade’s beautiful new surroundings, the restaurant also refocused its culinary concept in order to create originality in the restaurant’s menu. Executive Chef Leong Chee Yeng, who helmed the establishment since it first opened in 2008, created a concept where art meets cuisine as the philosophy in creating a brand new and unique selection of food for Jade. The signature dishes created by him are characterised by fresh, premium ingredients and precise execution using traditional techniques and exquisitely plated like a work of art. Highlights include deep-fried crab shell stuffed with fresh Sri Lankan crab meat, double-boiled chicken soup in fresh young coconut with Japanese dried scallops and snow lotus, and sautéed diced Kagoshima wagyu beef with crispy garlic in black pepper sauce.

The talented Chef Leong Chee Yeng not only brings his excellent Cantonese taste into the culinary experience in Jade restaurant, but he also brings his sophisticated art mastery into his food presentation. Aside from being a great talent in the kitchen, he is also a skilled ceramicist as well as a Chinese painter and calligrapher. It can be said that for Chef Leong, the flame that ignites his heart, the stove, and the kiln now burns brightly and passionately at this restaurant.

The 52-year-old Singaporean master and award-winning Chef Leong brings a distinctive and personal approach to cuisine, grounded in expert kitchen techniques and knowledge of Cantonese specialities and other ethnic cuisines, as well as his own deep artistic sensibilities. As the recipient of “Asian Cuisine Chef of the Year” from the World Gourmet Summit in 2016, Chef Leong handcrafted a series of art pieces for a table centrepiece made of gelatin, depicting birds perched on a tree that is inspired by the interior design inside Jade restaurant.

During our recent visit to the restaurant, he also showed us some of his other similar great art pieces in the form of a frog on a lotus plant, a golden fish swimming around the water plant as well as the outstanding sculpture featuring the Chinese famous longevity god called Shouxing. It is without a doubt that Chef Leong is more than just a talented chef, but also a great master of art as well. He told Indonesia Design that he does the art directly with only an image in his mind and the hands will do the work to make that image into reality. In 2015, Chef Leong also created 30 ceramic artworks and they were exhibited under the title of “Ceramic Indulgence” at the East Garden Foyer of The Fullerton Hotel Singapore.

Dining at Jade restaurant is definitely more than just having a wonderful Cantonese culinary experience, but it is also an experience where heritage, culture and value combine into one memorable journey.

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Erza S.T.
Author
Erza has pursued his great passion for opera and classical music for over a decade. His brainchild, the Indonesia Opera Society, has produced many classical music concerts and operas, and recently marked its 10th anniversary with a gala production. He is also a journalism lover focusing on luxury, lifestyle and travel stories, which he files from datelines around the globe.
Alexander Thian
Photographer

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