Shiok was recommended by my teammate Gio, who discovered it while on the hunt for good Singaporean food. My first foray in trying out Hainanese Chicken was a bust, despite the place I tried it being highly recommended. Frankly, I didn’t find anything special about a dish that tasted like a bland tinola. So when Gio suggested we eat at Shiok for the team’s shared birthday dinner, I said that it should offer more than Hainanese Chicken.
Shiok is located at the Forum Building inside the Bonifacio Stopover, a small enclave of restaurants and establishments. My landmarks include St. Luke’s Hospital and the flyover heading out to Buendia. It offers Singaporean, Hong Kong and Malaysian food. The place is small, very unassuming and perfect for hanging out with friends and family. Gio says it “smells like Singapore”. I’ll let you know if it does in a months’ time. 🙂
We decided to let Gio pick the dishes we were to eat. His choices: Hainanese chicken, Nonya spiced pork belly, crispy pork, Sambal Kang Kung, Beef Brisket Curry and cheese prata with curry dipping sauce for appetizer. We chose our own drinks and I went with Michael Jackson. Ang kulit di ba?
I won’t go into details about how much I enjoyed the food (I have yet to go beyond the “must try!” or “tastes wonderful” platitudes when it comes to describing food). All I can say is walang patapon sa lahat ng inorder namin. I tried a little of each dish and enjoyed each one immensely.
I am also happy to report that Shiok’s Hainanese Chicken is so much better than the first one I tried. It doesn’t taste like bland tinola anymore, even without me adding the sauces. My other favorites were the Sambal Kang Kung, Nonya Spiced Pork Belly and the Cheese Prata. The Michael Jackson drink is also a winner (it’s milk tea with condensed milk and grass jelly).
Overall, my experience with Shiok was very good. The staff was attentive and very nice. I forgot our waiter’s name, but he answered all my questions about the food patiently (even if they sound stupid sometimes).
For dessert, we had my friend Ian’s homemade cupcakes. He made some the weekend before and he gave me one of each kind. Lemon-Orange Coconut Cupcakes, Triple Chocolate Cupcakes with Ganache and Red Velvet Cupcakes with Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting. The Red Velvet is really good, and the Triple Chocolate was just so rich, I could only eat half. Thanks Ian! Until the next batch!
P.S. I told my friend Toni about Shiok, and she’s been having her lunches and dinner there on a regular basis. She lived in Singapore for two years, so if she says it’s close to the real thing, then it must be. We’ll be back!