Wednesday, 1 April 2020

Shang Social MRKT – Casual Dining by Shangri-La Group

Dry Bamboo Noodle with Dark Soya Sauce and Crispy Pork Lard

Shang Social at Jewel is the Shangri-La Group first venture in standalone dining establishment outside of a hotel setting. The menu is curated by three Shangri-la’s Master Chef, specialised in Cantonese, Huaiyang and Sichuan cuisine. Shang Social is divided into three sections: formal DINING space, the casual MRKT and BAR to cater to every dining occasion.

Shang Social MRKT

LD and I have eaten at DINING and MRKT a few of times. This review is focused on Shang Social MRKT (‘MRKT’). Our last visit to MRKT is during the last week of March 2020, where MRKT is offering 50% discount for dim sum and dessert.

Shang Social MRKT

MRKT is focused on casual dining and retail market place. The menu consists of dim sum menu, Cantonese Roast, Comfort food of noodle, congee and rice.

The Menu Part 1

The Menu Part 2

Let’s begin the review from the dim sum selections:
Har Gow ($5.80, 3 pcs) & Siew Mai ($5.80, 4 pcs). The har gow has a nice crystal skin, supple with refreshing crunchy shrimp. For current restaurant standard, the size of the har gow can be considered small and it is easily consumed with one bite. The Siew Mai is juicy and succulent, topped with tobiko like the traditional way.

Har Gow

Siew Mai

Char Siew Bao ($5.80, 3 pcs). Fluffy bao with juicy and sweet char siew fillings.

Char Siew Bao

Pan-Fried Turnip Cake with Chinese Sausage ($5.80, 3 pcs). Crispy externally, moist internally and bursting with flavours from the lap cheong.

Pork Rib and Taro with Black Bean Sauce ($5.80). The pork ribs are tender and tasty, while the taro has a slight crunchiness to it. The black bean flavour is very subtle, you won’t notice it unless you see the black bean on top.

Pork Rib and Taro with Black Bean Sauce 

Chicken Feet with Bean Sauce ($5.80). A well balanced marinated which is sweet with a hint of spicy. The skin easily comes off the bones, allowing you easy access to devour it.

Chicken Feet with Bean Sauce

Pan-Fried Beancurd Skin Roll with Prawn ($5.80, 3 pcs). A thin layer of beancurd skin, filled with prawn paste. The prawn paste is bouncy and tasty; however, I find the beancurd skin is too thin & light, and it was slightly burnt for my liking.

Pan-Fried Beancurd Skin Roll with Prawn

Pan-Fried Beancurd Skin Roll with Prawn

Signature Pan Fried Bun with Pork ($2.50 per pc) and Suzhou Baked Minced Pork Bun ($2.50 per pc) are supposed to be the signature dim sums here. However, during our last visit, both these dishes were disappointing. The baked pork bun filling is sticky and lumpy. The skin is thin and fluffy, almost like tau sar pia.  For the pan-fried bun, the fillings also lumpy, missing the bursting meat jus. It seems the buns are overcooked and the jus dissipate.

Signature Pan Fried Bun with Pork

Signature Pan Fried Bun with Pork

Beng Hiang Kong Bak Bao ($7.60 for 2 pcs). The lotus bun is soft and fluffy. The pork belly is well seasoned and braised till fork tender. The ingredients for a delicious Kong Bak Bao is there, however, my peeve is with the size of the pork belly. Usually, the thickness of the pork belly should be the same as one side of the bun. This time around the pork belly is very thin, the thickness is less than one side of the bun. It is so thin, easily fall apart and easily cover by the lotus bun.

Beng Hiang Kong Bak Bao 

Moving on the rest dishes and noodles.

Four Treasures – Meat Ball, Pig Liver, Intestines, Stomach ($18.00). The first time LD and I tried this; we were impressed. The liver is smooth and velvety, the meatball is tasty and crunchy, the stomach and intestines are clean. The superior soy sauce and spring onions are simple yet produced an excellent taste of the four treasures. Impressed with the taste during the previous visit, we order the Four Treasure again during our last visit; but we were let down by it. The liver is stiff and hard, while the meatball is tasteless, pale in comparison to the previous visit.

Four Treasures - Previous Visit

Four Treasures - Last Visit

Pork Liver

Meatball

Soya Sauce Chicken ($16). The soy sauce well infused into the succulent flesh. The skin is glistening and bouncy, while the ginger spring onion oil dip is very solid. The crunchy peanut served with the chicken provided a contrasting texture compare to the chicken. A superb soya sauce chicken.

Soya Sauce Chicken

Drunken Chicken with Yellow Wine ($10). This entrée dish is served chilled, packs with succulent meat infused generously with the yellow wine. On the earlier visit, it was lacking the wine flavour; however, during the last visit, the wine taste just hits you. Yum.

Drunken Chicken with Yellow Wine

Another entrée that we tried is their Jellyfish and Cucumber Salad ($9.80). We like the crunchy, clean texture from the cucumber and jellyfish. The touch of tanginess together with a mini kick of chilli helps to open up your appetite.

Jellyfish and Cucumber Salad 

Dry Bamboo Noodle with Dark Soya Sauce and Crispy Pork Lard ($5.80). This simple version of egg noodle is just delicious. The noodle is thin, springy, seasoned with superior dark soy sauce and pork oil. This type of noodle can be dry and difficult to swallow, but the version here has the moisture spot on. It is topped with pork lard, spring onion and some kai lan. I just wished that they were more generous with the pork lard.

Dry Bamboo Noodle with Dark Soya Sauce and Crispy Pork Lard 

The same noodle is also used on their version of wanton mee. Dry Bamboo Noodle with BBQ Honey Pork Belly and Shrimp Wanton ($13.80). The shrimp wanton is juicy and crunchy, while the delicious fatty pork belly is a #Porkgasm experience.

Dry Bamboo Noodle with BBQ Honey Pork Belly and Shrimp Wanton

Moving to desserts, we tried Soft Serve Ice Cream Yunnan Pu Er ($5) previously. The tea flavour is strong, yet delightful. We wanted to order it during the last visit, but it is disappointing unavailable.

 Soft Serve Ice Cream Yunnan Pu Er

We then decided to order Chilled Wolfberry Osmanthus Layer Jelly with Coconut ($6.80, 3 pcs). The layer of Osmanthus jelly is sweet and flowery, while the coconut layer added a rich creamy texture to the dish. The wolfberry added the distinct oriental sweetness to this dessert.

Chilled Wolfberry Osmanthus Layer Jelly with Coconut 

Traditional Almond Cream with Peach Gum ($6.80) is just awesome. The hot thick almond cream is tasty and packs of almond flavour, while the mini bits of peach gum gave a slightly crunchy texture and vegetarian collagen benefits to our body.

Traditional Almond Cream with Peach Gum

Traditional Almond Cream with Peach Gum

For the drinks, do try their signature iced tea. It is light, with a floral taste and refreshing.

Service is very good. The service staff are friendly and knowledgeable. We were politely informed on the dishes that are on promotion and those that are not. On our last visit, the food came very fast as it was during office lunch hour. The décor of the restaurant is casual, yet classy at the same time. We were seated facing the Shang Social Bar. It is unfortunate that the Shang Beer is also not available currently, as one of our “makan kakis” was looking forward to trying it.

Part of Dining Area at Shang Social MRKT

Overall, the food at Shang Social MRKT is very good. There is some consistency issue that needs to be iron out, especially those dishes that are not up to Shangri-La standard. Hopefully, they can do it soon. The noodles, soya sauce chicken, entrée and desserts are exceptionally good. LD and I will definitely come back in the future, but not sure when. Need to support other F&B as well. Cheers!!

Food & Drinks: 7.25/10
Value: 6.5/10
Service: 8.25/10
Ambiance: 7.75/10
Budget per Person: $26 - $50

Shang Social
78 Airport Boulevard
#01-219 to 222, Jewel
Singapore 819666

T: +65 6346 0260
IG: @Shangsocial
OH:
MRKT 11.30 – 22.00 (LO 21.30)
DINING 11.30 – 14.30; 18.00 – 22.00 (LO 21.30)


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