Archive for the ‘singapore’ tag
i spent a little under 48 hours in singapore over the weekend to go to the laneway music festival. initially, i wasn’t really interested in joining another music-centric holiday unless an artist/band made it compelling enough. and when i heard feist was joining this travelling show – I WAS IN.
singapore heat and 14 hours under the sun? You had to dress for comfort. i can’t imagine how people can go all out in that setting.
my initial reaction as soon as i entered fort canning was “THIS IS IT?”. i was probably expecting the expanse that was the california desert similar to Coachella. there were two stages right next to each other so there will be a more efficient transition for the acts – as one performs, the other sets up. smart.
we positioned ourselves strategically under a huge tree with these interesting things hanging on it. the tree provided shade from the southeast asian sun which was scorching that day.
not surprising, there were a battalion of pinoys who travelled to laneway including at least 20 people i know. laneway felt like i was back home hanging out in saguijo or cubao x. so many friends and familiar faces! btw, concert buddies were essential to save your perfect spots so you can take turns to get food, drinks or go to the bathroom.
the crowd was mostly southeast asians but there were a good number of expats and even backpackers who i’ve befriended while waiting in line for drinks (more on that part later). like i told my friend L, asians are mostly more pleasant and less rude than north americans so there weren’t any super annoying confrontations. none of that stampede/crazy moshpit i had to endure before MGMT’s coachella set a few years ago.
loads of people watching and bad tattoos all around. like this one. what was this girl thinking?!?!?!??
aside from the expensive drinks(S$4 for water??!??! S$8 for beer?!?!?) and bad food, the most excruciating part of the laneway experience were the LINES! one hour to get food and one hour to get drinks. such a pain! you had to schedule food/drink buying duties during the acts you’re not exactly hot about. the worst part of the food/drink lines were the very slow concession people.
and don’t get me started on why they didn’t give out the caps for the bottled water.
and for a singapore event, the place was filthy. i could not find trash bins and people just left their rubbish everywhere. you end up sitting on used paper cups and plates. ugh.
but despite all of that, i still had super fun! it was all about the company and of course, the music.
feist was AMAZING!!! my other favorite acts were chairlift, the drums, toro y moi, twin shadow and M83. but feist. sooo good. LOVE!
i sometimes feel like i’m getting too old for these things, but the music and the vibe are just too hard to resist. til the next one!
I am currently in Singapore to attend Laneway Festival which deserves a whole different post. I didn’t have a lot of time to hangout as I’m just here for the music, so one proper meal was planned.
I love brunch and my friend Oliver picked Wild Honey at Mandarin Gallery where I also met Cels.
The wait was a little bit of a pain, around 1 hour! I had time to have my money changed, walk around and shop at h&m! thankfully, the wait was worth it.
We ordered iced lattes and on top of that, I ordered Orange Juice and lemme just say – it was THE BEST!
Wild Honey’s specialty are brunch sets mainly with egg. so if you’re not into egg, you might have to skip this place. The resto also has salads, sandwiches and pancakes.
Cels ordered the Californian – scrambled eggs with tofu, yellow and red peppers, fresh herbs on char-grilled ciabatta. Robust and healthy, it needed a little bit of salt but I think it’s because it was the “healthy” choice. hehehe. Very hearty though.
Oliver ordered the Tunisian – sizzling pan of red pepper, onion and tomato stew stuffed with sliced chorizo sausage and crowned with two fried eggs. I didn’t get to taste it but I’m sure it’s good, it was one of Wild Honey’s bestsellers.
I ordered the European – Wild Honey’s version of Eggs Benedict. Two poached eggs, sauteed mushrooms and prosciutto on toasted homemade brioche and hollandaise sauce. It was DIVINE!!!
Wild Honey Orchard Road
333 Orchard Road Mandarin Orchard Singapore,
i love watching daniel boulud on his food-centric shows being aired on cable tv, i especially love “after hours with daniel boulud” – a behind-closed-doors look at the late night dinners, by chefs and for chefs. when i heard he was going to open db moderne at the marina bay sands in singapore, i was determined to have a meal there!
db moderne is boulud’s take on french bistro complete with deep red leather seats, dark mahogany wood and brass hardware all around the place. although marina bay sands is very..let’s just say..inorganic and a bit cold, db moderne had a warm and homey vibe. we were also welcomed by our friendly filipina server and this..
they were gruyere puffs and one bite of these things and your eyes would pop! it was amazing. these balls of awesomeness set the bar for a great meal ahead.
we started off with a foie gras terrine, quince duo, mâche salad and homemade brioche. i personally thought it was one of the best foie grad terrines i’ve had.
also had tarte flambe, an alsatian flat bread, bacon, white cheese and onions aka fancy pizza.
we ordered two burgers – the frenchie burger and the original db burger since noee, majella and i shared the burgers because we figured we wanted to try both so we asked if they can cut each one into four. the one above is the frenchie – it’s a regular burger topped with pork belly confit, caramelized onions, morbier cheese, arugula and cornichons. this comes in a black pepper bun. the patty itself was juicy and very tasty, loved the bun.
this one is the much-touted original db burger -sirloin patty filled with braised short ribs and foie gras on a parmesan bun.i thought the braised short ribs were unnecessary but the execution of the foie gras in the burger was the best i’ve tasted so far.
to be healthy, our friend eric ordered roasted john dory with truffle risotto. no real comments as i was too focused on the burgers!
i thought the meal was good and our bill turned out to be surprisingly affordable. i’m still thinking about those gruyere balls. hmmmm.
db Bistro Moderne
Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands
Galleria Level, B1-60
2 Bayfront Avenue,
I am one of those people who get slightly depressed when a favorite “cult” band or artist becomes popular or mainstream. I cringe whenever Adele’s Rolling in the Deep is butchered in production numbers by the Sunday Variety Shows and I get nauseous when I hear Florence and the Machine’s Dog Days are Over being overplayed on local radio two years after it was initially released. So the thought of The National going to Asia for a couple of shows gave me mixed feelings of excitement and doubt — are they going to sell out just to please the audience?
Brooklyn-based, Ohio-bred band The National was originally booked to play shows last March in Singapore and Tokyo. I had absurdly planned to spend approximately 24 hours in Singapore just to watch their concert but the Japan earthquake struck and they scrapped the Asian tour all together.
This left fellow fans from the Philippines extremely disappointed. I could not listen to any The National song for a couple of weeks and even bitterly watched their Coachella performance through livestreaming as I muttered “You suck” in between songs. But the truth was, they had an amazing set and I prayed that some day I would see them perform live.
This was probably God’s little gift for me, but on my birthday last August, it was announced that The National was re-booking their shows in Asia for this November and I was beyond ecstatic. I immediately made arrangements to see their show in Singapore.
The National’s music is often described as smart art rock by critics and the Esplanade Theatre with its intimate conventions, steep balconies and perfect acoustics is an ideal venue to experience it. The audience in Singapore was a mix of local youths and an expat crowd of “yupsters.”
Coined by New York magazine in 2006, “yupsters” or “grups”(as in grown-ups) are professional working adults ranging from their early 30s to 40s who appreciate indie musical and lifestyle sensibilities and are sometimes referred to as “hipsters with health insurance.” It actually felt a little more like an audience you would see in Boston or New York rather than in Southeast Asia.
To read the rest of the article, please go to this link here.
Photo Courtesy of The Esplanade By The Bay Theatres
xiao long bao or shanghainese soup dumplings are hard to come by in manila. although crystal jade, lugang and shi lin have opened already, they all seem like not-so-great alternatives. one has to go to taipei, hong kong, singapore or the “mother city” shanghai to have an XLB fix.
as soon as i booked my trip to singapore to catch the national, i also had my own list of places to eat with my friends. i initially craved for din tai fung but joie had suggested to try out paradise dynasty and their flavored XLBs.
touted as the world’s first flavored xiao long baos, paradise dynasty offered 8 flavors – original, ginseng, foie gras, black truffle, cheese, crab roe, garlic and szechuan. we zeroed in on the foie gras(white) and black truffles(black).
i thought the black truffles had a very slight and subtle taste in the broth compared to the foie gras that had such a burst of flavor on the very first bite.
we also ordered pork dumplings in chili sauce which were pretty good. the chili oil was light and wasn’t too overwhelmingly spicy. a perfect contrast to the subtle flavors of the soup dumplings.
2 Orchard Turn, #04-12A
ION Orchard Singapore
Tel: +65 6509 9118
The National cancelled their concerts in Singapore and Japan and I am still in denial. The big secret was I was going to meet the band in Singapore. *tear* oh well. Cancelling my Singapore trip as well because there’s no point. *sigh* There are worse things in life. Let’s all just pray for the people of Japan.
For those who were planning to fly to SG just to see the concert, here are the details on ticket refund.
And since I’m not going to Coachella this year, I don’t know when I will ever see The National live. So I guess I will try to console myself by watching their new video for “Conversation 16″
Til the next time, The National.
Florence and the Machine (FATM) and The XX, two of the most critically acclaimed British musical acts of 2009, performed at the Esplanade Theatre on Feb. 7 to a sold-out crowd of young Singaporean hipsters and expatriates from the region. And thanks to Audrey Carpio and Twitter, I was able to catch the concert.
I first heard of FATM and the XX through a friend Tina, whose taste in music is typically diverse and up-to-the-minute. She included both bands in a couple of playlists she posts on her blog (http://wysgal.blogspot.com) and I liked their songs instantly.
read more about the concert here.
download the fantastic version of FATM’s “you’ve got the love” remixed by The XX here.