Think Six Senses and you’re likely to think of lush resorts clinging on to the little nooks and crannies of the world, in places reeking of exoticism, such as Fiji and the Seychelles.
And while at first glance, Duxton road might appear to be lined by nothing more than a stretch of bars, this area is also known for one of the prettiest streets in Singapore.
While the row of heritage shophouses that the Six Senses is located in faces the front of the street, walk just behind and you’ll find the highly popular (and verdant) enclave housing restaurants like Lucha Loco, Latteria Mozzarella and L’Entrecote.
But back to Six Senses. Fitting right in with its location in Chinatown, the décor is undoubtedly chinois-inspired but not cliched at all. Modern touches harmonise well with the Chinese accents, with bright yellow pops of huge fans adding colour to the overall “black-lacquered” look of the hotel.
Espousing the ethos of the brand is the hotel’s restaurant, Yellow Pot which serves sustainable modern Chinese cuisine, and one that features no additives or preservatives.
We started with some Tomatoes that had been soaked in an infusion of herbs, licorice root, mint leaves and rock sugar ($8) – skins off, they’re little tangy bursts in your mouth.
Then, the perfectly, and I mean, perfectly seasoned seared Pork Cheek ($12), that were so tender and tasty. All thanks to the marinade of lemongrass, shallots, garlic and celery, I’m sure. There’s some cumin chilli powder for lovely added heat.
Given the choice between a Chicken soup ($12) and the Hot and Sour soup, I chose the chicken. Apparently chicken is simmered for 3 days to extract maximum flavour – well, if you like delicate, light flavours for your soups, then go for it.
Then came the Roast Duck ($32), and again, just like the pork cheek, these were delicious. Glazed, crispy skin, shining atop tender and thankfully, not too fatty duck meat. What’s interesting is the marinade: made of fermented bean curd consisting of star anise, bay leaves, cinnamon and 5-spice powder; and thereafter, being roasted over hickory wood chips, you get an overall earthy aroma in the dish.
Another star of the night was the organic grass-fed Beef Tenderloin ($36) – wok-seared to a medium-rare doneness, the cubes of goodness featured a honey peppercorn marinade. It came with fried garlic, and my only complaint? More garlic please!
The Braised White Cabbage ($12) is decent, it comes in a housemade chicken stock of conpoy and Shaoxing wine but frankly, I am a bold flavour-loving kinda girl, and this was just that bit too delicate for me.
But the Eggplant ($14) – now we’re talking! The hot bean paste with honey, vinegar and Nanyang soya sauce (again, one that doesn’t have any additives or preservatives) gave maximum flavour to a bland vegetable like eggplant. Various mushrooms provided that extra bite to the dish.
Featuring an “Asian pesto” of ginger, coriander and spring onion, the steamed Barramundi ($22) which you might expect to be served swimming in soy sauce, came instead in a housemade stock made from fish bones, anchovies and trimmings, allowing for a zero-wastage attitude to the cooking. And yes, the fish was lovely.
Finally, some carbs to end the night with – the Mee Sua ($18). This upmarket version features tiger prawns and scallops, and good with all that pickled green chilli that you should definitely ask for.
Dessert – well, after all that, what we had seemed really simple, a little boring in fact, but I suppose the Lemongrass and Calamansi jelly ($8) provided a refreshing end to the meal. (I mean, don’t think any lesser of me just because I went home and scooped up a ball of Movenpick swiss chocolate).
I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the fabulous range of Chinese-inspired cocktails that Yellow Pot has. Really. We’re talking green chilli-infused gin and pandan-spiked rye, among several other concoctions.
The wine list is not extravagant nor extensive, and features a decent selection of whites and reds by the glass and bottles.
Would I return to Yellow Pot? Well, the lunch menu of a 6-course at $65 for 2 pax sounds reasonable. As for dinner? Good food, the meats especially, and lovely ambience, yes why not?
Address: 88 Duxton Road
Contact: 6914-1420, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Daily Opening Hours:
6.30 to 10.30am
11.30am to 2.30pm
5.30 to 10.30pm