Singapore

Pastry Chef Janice Wong: An Interview with an Artist

Antoinette Bruno
May 2013

Biography

Restaurant

by Caroline Hatchett
Antoinette Bruno
May 2013

Recipes

  • Mixologist Ryan Clift Tippling Club - Singapore,
  • Mixologist Zachary Connor de Git Tippling Club - Singapore,

Restaurant

There’s nothing quite like yogurt sake and muesli to start your morning off right! Or evening, if you happen to be dining at Chef Ryan Clift’s Tippling Club in Singapore.

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by Caroline Hatchett
Antoinette Bruno Antoinette Bruno
May 2013

Biography

Recipe

Restaurant

Octaphilosophy

Working for two decades in formidable kitchens has a way of shaping a chef—with the habits and passions of mentors seeping into your bones.

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by Rebecca Cohen
Antoinette Bruno
May 2013

Biography

Recipe

Restaurant

To Andres Lara, Bruce Lee isn’t just a kung-fu superstar—he’s a guru, “a role model in a spiritual sense, to the max.” But what could a martial arts icon have to teach a pastry chef?

by Emily Jacobs
Antoinette Bruno
May 2013

Biography

Recipe

Restaurant

Button Mushroom Stats:

Cost:
$4.50-$5 per pound for organic domestic white button mushrooms

Availability:
White button mushrooms are available year-round

Alternatives:
Crimini mushrooms

Reuses:
Royer uses the mushroom tea scraps for duxelles, which he uses for stuffings

With expansive views of Singapore's bustling city streets and the sea in the distance, dining at Chef Julien Royer's Jaan feels like you're sitting on top of the world.

top pairing
by Jeff Harding with photos by Antoinette Bruno
Vol. 36
May 2013   
Restaurant
Who
Sommelier Ignatius Chan

When asked what he drinks on his nights off, the award-winning sommelier, restaurateur, and founder of Iggy’s, Ignatius Chan slyly replies, “Yes.” The wine cellar at his landmark restaurant at The Hilton Hotel in Singapore holds 25,000 bottles, and Chan currently has 8,000 labels on his list. The opened-minded and convivial entrepreneur adheres to one important mantra when selecting pairings for a menu: “It’s never absolute, and it’s all relative.” It has taken a career that spans nearly three decades to develop that simple yet supremely wise sommelier rule to live by.

Chan began his professional life as a waiter at Singapore’s historic Goodwood Park Hotel. He pursued a formal culinary education after receiving sponsorship from the Mandarin Oriental Hotel to attend courses at the Singapore Hotel Association Training and Education Centre. Upon graduation, Chan continued his career at the Mandarin, where he worked in the hotel’s French restaurant, Fourchettes. In 1989, his diligence and dedication began to bear professional fruit. Chan won a scholarship to stage at the Ritz-Carlton in Madrid, Hôtel de Crillon in Paris, and Hôtel Royal Champagne in Reims. During this time he also toured and studied in Beaujolais, Burgundy, and Bordeaux. The next year he won a second scholarship: the prestigious Veuve Cliquot Champagne Scholarship, and in 1991 he became the cellar master at Raffles Hotel, playing a key role in the reopening of their Grand Dame restaurant. Chan is the first Asian member of the Grand Jury Européen and in 1999 was inducted into the Jurade de Saint-Emilion.

The last time Chan worked for someone besides himself was as executive director of Vinum Fine Wine Merchants. He left that position to open Iggy’s in 2004 at The Regent Hotel. Since then, the restaurant has doubled in size (mainly increasing in kitchen space) and moved to the Hilton. Chan has been a prominent and influential player on the world culinary stage ever since.

Wine
Mizubasho “Pure” Sparkling Sake, Gunma, Japan, NV
Dish
Chu-Toro and Saba Sushi (Tuna Belly and Mackerel)
Pairing Note

“Mizubasho ‘Pure’ is an avant-garde sake, possessing a floral, melon-like aroma. On the palate it has a silky, sweet attack; a delicate, refined mid-palate; and a clean, dry finish,” says Chan. “‘Pure’ has the finesse of a daiginjo sake with bubbly characteristics that make it a unique and contemporary style of wine that pairs perfectly with our unconventional sushi.”

“Tuna belly is always garnished with wasabi and chrysanthemum flower, and mackerel is often garnished with grated ginger,” Chan explains. Typically, the heat of the wasabi and savory notes of the flower balance the fatty tuna. Mackerel, also rich in oils, can sometimes have a dry aftertaste, and the classic pairing of ginger can help mask lingering fishy notes. But that balancing act and masking isn’t necessary for Anuar. He creates a soy meringue, pipes it into individual rice-like grains, dries them, and uses the meringue to form sushi rolls—a twist typical of Iggy’s style of sushi.

The crispy meringue “rice” wakes up the palate, and Chan’s exuberant pairing gives the dish an energetic spark. Mizubasho’s “Pure” Sparkling Sake from the Gunma prefecture is rice wine made in the methode traditionelle. This progressive style of sake makes a thoughtful and frolicsome pairing. The space created by the tiny bubbles in the meringue generates a crunch, and the bubbles mirrored in the sake make the flavor pop. The crackle and fizz are also great counterpoints to the sumptuous, fatty texture and flavors of the fish. “The crunchy soy meringue and the umami-filled, tender, juicy texture of the tuna works well with the purity and fine taste of this sake. The delicate effervescence gives it balance and refreshes the palate,” says Chan.

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