When it comes to Chinese New Year, the only thing that gets me more excited than a stack of ang pao is the prospect of never ending feast of Yu Sheng. From the golden brown, crispy golden crackers to the sweet tangy sauce, there are just so much flavours going on in one simple plate. So when I heard that a new concept, Stray by Fat Cat, is serving up Yu Sheng Poke Bowl, I was thrilled. Yu Sheng even when it's not CNY? Count me in!
2018 CNY vibes?
From the go, the place seems to be casual and friendly. Though I would suggest that you don't come here too hungry as the queue could be pretty long, even for a weekday. Everyone in the queue seems to already know what they're looking for, same as me. From the conversations that I've overheard the other notable dishes seems to be the Wagyu Black Pepper Bowl ($22) and the Fried Chicken and Waffle ($19). I've decided to stick to Yu Sheng, because #Focus.
A quick glance around the restaurant promises that the serving size is pretty good. There seems to be generous servings of rice and topping on top. Coming in at $20 a bowl, the price is around the same as the other joints around Singapore. The service was pretty fast, we received our food in about 10 to 15 mins, which is good because waiting in line will definitely work up your appetite.
Upon serving the dish definitely didn't disappoint! It really does looks like Yu Sheng! The serving of the golden crackers was so generous it was overflowing out of the bowl. The process of eating the dish was honestly a bit tricky because there were so many ingredients #GoodProblems. Each of the Yu Sheng poke bowls comes with julienned carrot and cucumber, rice base, golden crackers and of course generous heap of salmon cubes. As if that's not enough, the dish is topped by a spoonful of fish roe as well.
I decided to mix the ingredients together slightly, worrying every time that I'm going to accidentally spill the golden crackers. So in the end i just kind took it one bite at a time and I've got to say I was pretty impressed! The quality of the rice was commendable, which is my big pet peeve when it comes to chirashi or donburi. Plum sauce like sweetness coated the salmon cubes and the vegetables. When mixed with the rice and crackers, it definitely created interesting textures and flavours.
Did it work?
The big question remains, does the dish actually work? I really applaud Stray by Fat Cat in taking the risk to create something new and creative but stay relatable with it's audience. There's always a danger in taking something, in this case two things: yu sheng and poke bowl, so familiar to the crowd and taking to another exciting space.
I'm definitely intrigued to try their other dishes, such as the one that my friend, Deanna, had that night. The Wagyu Beef Pepper bowl promises tender, fatty meat with a good measure of wok hei, so that's definitely on my list. Another dish that I have my eye on is the Salted Egg Chicken Waffle which is described by the restaurant as "So sinful that it might just run aFOWL with the law!" Well if that's not the kind of dish I'm into I don't know what is.
Stray by Fat Cat
181 Orchard Road, #04-23, Orchard Central, 238896
Open from 11 am to 10 pm, closed on Monday
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