Oktoberfest & Thai Fare @ Tawandang Microbrewery, Dempsey Hill

Dim Sum Dolly and I caught up for lunch over the weekend. She felt like Asian food, while I wanted to get a caffeine fix from Jones after lunch and so we headed to Tawandang @ Dempsey Hill. After having indulged a little too much during dinner there 2 weeks back, we decided to have a light lunch this time around.
Phad Thai @ S$10 / $18
Fried Rice Noodles Thai Style with Prawns

DSD and I ordered a Phad Thai, a perennial Thai favourite noodle dish. We were pleased to find that it was the right balance of saltiness, sweetness with a slight touch of tanginess that made the dish satisfying without being cloying. I am generally not a fan of Phad Thai because the dish tends to be too sweet for my preference but the seasonings in this version suited me just fine. The crumbly and crunchy texture of the crushed peanuts along with the lightly blanched, firm stems of beansprouts added a nutty and juicy touch to the dish. This Phad Thai is definitely worth a try, especially for folks like me who are not huge fans of sweet food.

Steamed Chicken in Chinese Wine @ Tawandang, Dempsey
Kai Chao Lao @ S$20
Steamed Free Range Chicken in Chinese Liquor & Jellyfish served with Roasted Chili Paste

Wanting to eat somethingy fairly healthy, we decided to skip the Pork Knuckle on this visit and ordered a steamed chicken dish instead. I love Drunken Chicken and wanted to give Tawandang's version a try. When ordering this dish, we were warned that there have been feedback from some clients that the liquor flavour is rather strong, hmm...we'll give it a try anyway. When it arrived, DSD and I couldn't help but observe that as far as our tastes were concerned, there wasn't enough Chinese Wine in this dish! Even though DSD and I are not big on alcohol, we wished the kitchen had added more Chinese Wine! Different strokes for different folks, I guess?

The flavours in this dish were reminiscent of old-school Chinese wedding banquets of yore, when Drunken Chicken and Marinated Jellyfish were ubiquitous items on an appetizer platter. Though some parts of the chicken was a little drier than I would have liked, the flesh was nonetheless moist and tender for most parts of the dish. I loved the delicate flavour of the Chinese wine-infused cool gelatin found between the skin and the flesh of the chicken. The slippery yet tender strips of Jellyfish had been well-marinated with soy sauce and wonderfully fragrant sesame oil. This is definitely worth a try!

Oktoberfest 2010 Special: Twice-Cooked Chicken @ S$20
Tawandang is having an Oktoberfest promotion featuring specials just for the month of October 2010. One of the items on the promotional menu is the Oktoberfest Fried Chicken dish. Having already ordered Phad Thai and Drunken Chicken, we were a tad skeptical and worried about our tummy capacity when outlet manager Vee told us about the Twice-Fried Chicken dish. He offered us a small portion of the Fried Chicken to try and explained that the chicken had been cooked twice to achieve the desired outcome. The chicken is first fried at a lower temperature to cook the interior and then a second time at a very high temperature to drive out the oil from the chicken skin resulting in a very crisp exterior.
When the fried chicken arrived sometime after we'd been digging into the Drunken Chicken, we wondered if it would taste as good as we'd been told besides, we'd just eaten some chicken. We were pleasantly surprised to discover that it was indeed excellent. I'm not saying this just because this portion of chicken was given to us for free as a sample but because it beats the Drunken Chicken hands down (or would wings be more appropriate in this instance?)! We expected the chicken to be somewhat dryi-ish but the flesh was moist and coupled with the well-seasoned crisp skin, it was a pleasure to savour. Even though we were already pretty full, we couldn't help digging in. We were thrilled to note that the flavour of the marinade had permeated the flesh of the chicken. Apparently the chicken was marinated for 24 hours with Coriander Roots, Red Basil and Soy Sauce for flavour along with some Egg White to tenderize the meat. We asked if this dish might eventually be a regular feature of the menu and were told that this chicken dish is only meant for Oktoberfest so catch it before the month is out! This is a Must-Try!
Empty Chilled Beer Mug next to Tawandang's Oktoberfest 2010 Beer
Tawandang's Oktoberfest 2010 Beer
@ S$8 for 0.3l, S$12 for 0.5l, S$24 for 1l & S$45 for 2l

As is apparently traditional for breweries at Oktoberfest, Tawandang had a special brew for Oktoberfest 2010. Only 500 litres of this beer is available in Singapore for the month of October and as at the end of lunch on Saturday, a little less than 300 litres remained.

That Saturday afternoon, it seemed like every table had ordered this beer so though DSD and I do not generally drink beer, we tried some. It was not as bitter as we expected and was rather refreshing.

The price for the beer is exactly the same as the 3 regular brews at this microbrewery so if you like a more robust beer because more hops were used in the making of this brew, do give it a try before it runs out.
Until the next blog entry, I wish you a good weekend and a Happy Oktoberfest weekend (yes, this festival is being celebrated this weekend and most of this month in many parts of the world whilst the main event in Munich has ended). Prost!
Tawandang Microbrewery @ Dempsey Block 26 Dempsey Road, #01-01, Singapore 249686 Tel: +65 6476-6742 Operating Hours: Daily from 11.30am to 1amTawandang Microbrewery @ East Coast Seafood Centre 1204 East Coast Seafood Centre, #01-06 UDMC, Singapore 449882

Tel: +65 6243-2291
Operating Hours: Daily from 5pm to Midnight

email: info@tawandang.com