Everyone loves a good traditional lotus paste mooncake (although there are some who are on the fence about whether they love it with a salted egg yolk or not). But the best part about the annual Mid-Autumn Festival is the plethora of exotic, exciting and unconventional flavours that are churned out by the most creative of the culinary industry here. For those with a more adventurous palate, the mooncakes available during this period is a gastronomical delight with plenty of surprises, as chefs try and outdo each other with their creations.
We tried some of the more unique offerings — from tea-infused mooncake with a peach centre to ones with Jambon de Bayonne and lavender to those with truffle carbonara and chrysanthemum and winter melon — and give each a rating. Taste is subjective, to be sure, but it’ll give you an indication on which are worth the price tag (and calories).
Known for its exquisite luxury teas packaged into gorgeous tins and boxes, it’s no surprise that the brand’s mooncake offerings are equally elegant and infused with some of its aromatic tea blends. What’s unique is that the chefs create each mooncake by hand in a traditional manner — using wooden moulds, instead of mass production — so every piece is painstakingly crafted with minor “imperfections”, such as a heart that isn’t right smack in the centre of the pastry. This year, the brand is serving four baked and four snowskin mooncakes that come in an elegant Moon Route Tea Mooncake gift box.
Available from Aug 8 to Sept 13 at all TWG Tea Salons & Boutiques in Singapore and TWG Tea e-Boutique at (self-collection at selected TWG Tea Salons & Boutiques). A set of two mooncakes paired with Moon Route Tea in the Haute Couture Tea Collection® is S$70, while a set of four mooncakes is S$60. Individual mooncakes are S$16.
Wan Hao Chinese Restaurant, Singapore Marriott Tang Plaza
Cantonese restaurant Wan Hao has prepared 11 mooncake creations that range from timeless classics to unique flavours that are the brainchild of executive Chinese chef Brian Wong. Each piece is also meticulously handcrafted, and both the baked and snowskin varieties have no added preservatives or artificial flavouring. This year, the mooncakes come in a chic two-tier Chinese cabinet with gold coloured knobs and ring holders and floral motifs that exudes a graceful, oriental vibe.
Available from Aug 8 to Sept 13 at Wan Hao Chinese Restaurant, Singapore Marriott Tang Plaza Hotel, 320 Orchard Road, Singapore 238865. Pre-order online at www.singaporemarriott.com/mooncakes or call 6831 4708. Alternatively, drop by at the hotel’s Forecourt Stall (by the hotel entrance).
Janice Wong’s offering this year is a unique twist to the Chinese festival snack. Her limited-edition Mooncake Box Set (S$65) showcases Japanese flavoured mooncakes, with each piece celebrating key ingredients from nine different prefectures in Japan. Housed in a pretty blue box, the nine snowskin mooncakes have distinctive and unique ingredients that were personally sourced by Janice herself, who travelled to each prefecture to get them. They include kinako (roasted soy flour) from Hokkaido, ume (Asian plum) from Wakayama, hojicha (roasted Japanese green tea) from Kyoto and chestnut from Kumamoto.
Available for pre-order online at www.janicewong.online. Orders reaching S$300 and above will receive free delivery.
The Ritz-Carlton, Millenia Singapore
Known for its exquisite mooncake cases, this year you’d be spoilt for choice. Go for traditional baked mooncakes such as White Lotus Seed Paste with Double Yolk, White Lotus Seed Paste, and the new White Lotus Seed Paste with Black Sesame, which are presented in a luxe red box, or get the hotel’s contemporary snowskin mooncakes, such as the Orangetini, ‘Mao Shan Wang’ Durian mooncake, or Mini Snowskin Green Tea, that come in a chic gold box. Both of them feature a magnetic top and front flaps which open up to reveal a magnetic desk calendar, a miniature photo frame, and a three-slot pen holder. It also has four side drawers. These will serve you in good stead as a stationery or makeup box on your office desk.
Visit www.rcmooncake.com.sg, call 6434 5190, or email email@example.com to make an order.
Jade Restaurant, The Fullerton Hotels Singapore
The Jade Originals Mooncake Collection this year comes in either an auspicious red or an elegant turquoise gift box that are adorned with ornamental jade and Oriental motifs. Besides the local-inspired flavours (which we will be reviewing below), there are also other flavours such as the Fullerton Golden Custard Mini Mooncakes, a combination of savoury salted egg yolk and sweet custard encased in light butter pastry; and the White Lotus Seed Paste with Egg Yolk Snow Skin Mooncake, which features a smooth salty-sweet white lotus seed paste. A new addition is the Mixed Nuts with Dried Apricot Baked Mooncake, a rich medley of almonds, walnuts and pine nuts studded with morsels of dried apricot and encased in a baked pastry, if you’re into something healthier.
Available from July 30 to Sept 13 at The Fullerton Cake Boutique, The Fullerton Hotels Singapore, 1 Fullerton Square, Singapore 049178. Call 6877 8943, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit its online store at shop.fullertonhotels.com to order.
Li Bai Cantonese Restaurant, Sheraton Towers Singapore
Handcrafted by the culinary team of the award-winning cantonese restaurant, the mooncakes this year are housed in an intricate blue lattice patterned box. Unlike other cases, there’s also a fascinating augmented reality portion called “Coming Together” you’d enjoy with your mooncake box. Designed by young visual artists from The Business Times Budding Artists Fund (BT BAF), your box turns into a lovely art piece, where against a backdrop of gentle falling petals, children play and families meet under a brightly lit moon (you’d have to download Artivive, a free app from the Apple or Google store to see the box come alive).
Available from Aug 1 to Sept 13, at Li Bai Cantonese Restaurant, Sheraton Towers Singapore, or lobby level booth, 39 Scotts Rd, Singapore 228230. Call 6839 5636/5623, email email@example.com or visit http://shopatsheraton.oddle.me for orders.
Summer Palace, The Regent Singapore
The creations this year are housed in a unique vertical box that takes inspiration from the structure of the hotel’s bubble lifts – its most distinct feature within the John Portman-designed atrium. Another interesting feature of the sturdy red box is that it sports the same gold Oriental panels seen in Summer Palace. The doors of the box close via a bronze lock that adds a luxe factor. Besides the gorgeous eight-piece Snowskin Collection, the hotel also has traditional baked offerings, with flavours such as the usual White Lotus Paste with Single/Double Yolk and Melon Seeds and Parma Ham and Pork Floss with Assorted Nuts.
Available from Aug 8 to Sept 13 at Regent Singapore Lobby Booth, Level 1, or Summer Palace, Level 3, 1 Cuscaden Road, Singapore 249715. Call 6725 3288, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit shop.regentsingapore.com.sg to order.
Feng Shui Inn
Created by Executive Chef Li Kwok Kwong, this new offering from Feng Shui Inn at Resorts World Sentosa was inspired by the molten lava mooncake which was first made popular in Hong Kong before becoming all the rage throughout Asia.
22. Crispy White Lotus Custard Milk Mooncake (S$78 per box of six)
What is it: Instead of the usual baked skin or snowskin, Chef Li has encased the rich liquid goodness of salted egg yolk within a round crispy pastry shell — its shape a nod to the harvest moon’s symbolic representation of family unity and completeness.
Our view: It’s a messy affair when you indulge in this mooncake, with flaky pastry and sesame seed flying everywhere as you try to cut into its spherical shape (it’s too big to simply pop the whole thing into your mouth too). But Feng Shui Inn’s unique twist to the traditional mooncake offerings gets the thumbs up, as we love the buttery crispy skin that’s not too chunky. It cradles the highlight of the pastry — a salty, creamy molten egg yolk and not-too-sweet white lotus paste. The taste is familiar but not entirely usual, thanks to the nuanced flavours of custard, coconut milk and salted butter that is well balanced with that of the savoury sesame seeds.
Available from Aug 16 to Sept 13, while stocks last, at Feng Shui Inn, Crockfords Tower, Level G2, Resorts World Sentosa, Singapore 098138. Call 6577 6599, email FengShuiInn@rwsentosa.com, or visit www.rwsentosa.com/mooncakes2019 to make your orders.
Crowne Plaza® Changi Airport
If the splendid mooncake boxes delight you every year as much as what’s in them, then Crowne Plaza® Changi Airport’s gorgeous case might just be the one to tickle your fancy. The hotel’s mooncake offerings this year come in a limited edition travel-themed suitcase — a sturdy and adorable trunk that is in a vibrant shade of plum and gives off a retro chic vibe, thanks to its brown trimming and gold hardware. Bonus: The inserts can be removed so you can reuse it to store your jewellery or as a handy purse on the weekends. Its mooncake flavours are not lacking in ingenuity either. For baked mooncakes, besides the usual traditional offerings, there’s also the White Lotus Paste with Jackfruit (real juicy jackfruit bits included) and Black Sesame Paste with Melon Seeds which comes with a sprinkle of gold dust at the top. Snow skin mooncakes are even more intriguing, with each box containing four tea-infused flavours — Chrysanthemum with Winter Melon Bits, Red Date with Wolfberries, Earl Grey with Tapioca Pearls and Matcha with Adzuki Beans.
Available till Sept 13 at the Lobby Lounge in Crowne Plaza Changi Airport, 75 Airport Blvd, #01-01, Singapore 819664. Collection of mooncakes will be from Aug 13 to Sept 13. Traditional baked mooncakes are available in a box of four from S$70 to $88 while snow skin mooncakes are available in a box of four at $85. Call 6823 5367 between 9am and 7pm, email LobbyLounge.email@example.com or visit bit.ly/cp-mooncakes-estore to order.
The Capitol Kempinski Hotel Singapore
This hotel’s first foray into mooncakes is led and crafted by Hong Kong Chef Alvin Leung, who has been nicknamed The Demon Chef and has four Michelin stars under his belt. The mooncake range includes classics such as white lotus seed paste with egg yolks and American fig mooncakes.
The signature offering this year is the Mini Theatre Combo set, which comprises four mini mooncakes each of the Mini Golden Corn and Caramel Mixed Nuts in a box.
26. Mini Theatre Combo Set (S$68 per box of eight)
What is it: Traditional baked mooncakes with caramel mixed nuts or golden corn fillings.
Our view: For traditionalists who want to toe the line this Mid Autumn Festival, this combo set will tickle your tastebuds. The caramel mixed nuts mooncakes struck a good balance between chewiness and crunchiness, and the caramel added a pleasant burnt sugar taste. The golden corn mooncakes was reminiscent of traditional plain lotus seed mooncakes, but with a fragrant corn taste that added dimension to the taste. Both had thin, evenly baked skin, retained a traditional taste, and just the right amount of sweetness that would appeal to a large audience.
Available from Aug 16 to Sept 13, while stocks last, at The Capitol Kempinski Hotel Singapore, 15 Stamford Road, Singapore 178906. Call 6715 6871, email firstname.lastname@example.org to make your orders.
Shang Palace, Shangri-La Hotel Singapore
Shang Palace’s mooncake offerings this year come in pretty metal floral tins — tiffany blue for its new dual-flavour Mini Snowskin Mooncakes and crimson for its limited edition Hong Kong-style Mini Baked Custard with Bird’s Nest. Both tins sport delicately placed sweet blossoms on the lids, and make a great gift for both friends/family and business associates. There’s also the Shang Palace Four Treasures which includes, apart from the usual single/double yolks in lotus paste, a Mixed Nuts with Chicken Ham. These are presented in a gorgeous case covered in fine silk-satin of a rich red hue, with embroidered floral patterns, two drawers and a mirror.
Available from July 9 to Sept 13, at lobby level, Shangri-La Hotel Singapore, 22 Orange Grove Road, Singapore 258350. Call 6213 4398/6213 4473 or email email@example.com to order.
Antoinette is known for its pretty packaging and even prettier pastries, so it’s no surprise its mooncakes are the same. There are three traditional baked favourites on offer: The Salted Yolk Hae Bee Hiam, Single Yolk and Double Yolk, concealed in a charming pastel pink box that sports its iconic logo in the centre surrounded by gorgeous florals. There is also an assortment of mini snowskin mooncakes with four flavours Salted Yolk Truffle, Crunchy Chocolate Pearls, Ondeh Ondeh and the new Peach Truffle.
29. Salted Yolk Hae Bee Hiam (S$60+ per box of four)
What is it: A sweet, spicy and savoury pastry with a housemade hae bee hiam and salted egg centre, encased within a smooth low-sugar white lotus paste with pumpkin seeds.
Our view: A savoury mooncake with the taste of spicy dried shrimp? We have to admit, we were apprehensive when we had to try it. Surprise surprise, this turned out to be very palatable. Kudos to the chef: The hae bee hiam was deftly infused into the salted egg yolk and was so well-balanced with the sweet lotus paste and salty powdery yolk that you get just a hint of hae bee hiam with every bite. But it’s aromatic and spicy enough for you to want to reach for another piece. This is a unique flavour done right.
Available at 30 Penhas Road, Singapore 208188, and #01-28, Millenia Walk, 9 Raffles Boulevard, Singapore 039596. Call 6293 3121 or visit www.antoinette.com.sg/mooncake2019 to order.
Choose between a retro yet elegant four-tier tiffin-style carrier that sports bold floral motifs, or go for the limited edition luxurious designer handbag packaging that sports bamboo handle and a chinoiserie wrapping of oriental graphics and floral motif, to make your gifting this year a conversation-starter. Golden baked mooncakes include the usual traditional ones as well as a wholesome purple sweet potato with walnuts mooncake and the hotel’s new creation, the citrus peel apricot with white lotus mooncake. Snow skin offerings include blueberry cheesecake, passion fruit with mint snowskin mooncake, lychee chocolate truffle and dark chocolate with crunchy pearl snowskin mooncake.
Available from Aug 10 to Sept 13 at D9 Cakery, Lobby Level, Hilton Singapore, 581 Orchard Road, Singapore 238883. Visit www.hiltonsingaporerestaurants.com/offers, call 6730 3392, or email D9Cakery@hilton.com to order.
Goodwood Park Hotel
Besides the usual traditional baked favourites, the hotel’s repertoire this year is a range of tropical-based — Mango with Pomelo, Cempedak, D24 Durian, and new flavour Kiwi Dragonfruit Manuka Honey — snowskin mooncakes, a premium black and white coloured duo of ‘Mao Shan Wang’ and Black Thorn Durian snowskin mooncakes that are bursting with luscious pulp of the beloved fruit and a gorgeous Blue Pea Flower with White Lotus Seed Paste and Melon Seeds snowskin mooncake. They are presented in an elegant yellow hard box that’s embossed with intricate golden peonies.
Available from Aug 8 to Sept 13 at The Deli, Goodwood Park Hotel, 22 Scotts Rd, Singapore 228221. Call 6730 1868 (general enquiries) or 6730 1867 (corporate enquiries) from 9am to 7pm (Mondays to Fridays) and 9am to 1pm (Saturdays, Sundays, and public holidays), visit http://festivepromotions.goodwoodparkhotel.com or email the order form (available at the hotel or at www.goodwoodparkhotel.com) to: mooncake@
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