To snag a table at three-Michelin-starred chef Alvin Leung’s Bo Innovation usually includes at least a couple of hundreds (throw in another hundred or so for a wine pairing) and a plane ticket to Hong Kong but come 24th June, diners will get the chance to sample the cuisine of the self-proclaimed “demon chef” at only $100 thanks to Citibank‘s $100Gourmet culinary initiative.
Bo Innovation’s blue shrimp, black truffle, umami oil, dried shrimp floss
Organic “long jiang” chicken combined with a 9-year aged acquerello rice, yellow chicken stock, wooden fungus and sand ginger
Crispy suckling pig paired with a roasted pineapple, sichuan pepper caramel sauce and pork jus
Bo Innovation’s tomato that’s braised in “pat chun” paired with an organic yellow tomato, “lam kok” fermented chinese olive mayo, tomato marshmallow with green onion oil
Carabinero red prawn accompanied by black truffle and a delicious rice cake
The culinary initiative began in March, with its first installment seeing one-starred Niklas Ekstedt of Stockholm’s Ekstedt working with our home team luminaries from CORNER HOUSE, and French chef Laurent Peugeot with Saint Pierre and Fat Cow. Following that, an onslaught of culinary greats found themselves visiting the country for a weeklong collaboration with at least two locally-based chefs.
Tong Le Private Dining‘s salt-baked dried abalone
Man Fu Yuan’s trio of assorted dim sum
Alvin Leung, the self-proclaimed “demon chef” of the X-Treme Chinese cuisine that Bo Innovation is known for
This month, Leung will be collaborating with a couple of Singaporean chefs that specialise in Chinese cuisine – Man Fu Yuan’s Eric Neo and Tong Le Private Dining‘s David Liew. We chat with Leung to find out his plans for the collaboration set to take place next week, the irony of the best advice he’s ever gotten and what the rockstar chef needs in his kitchen to function.
What can the diners expect from your collaboration with some of the country’s best Chinese chefs?
I think it’s going to be an interesting experience for both the diners and all of us chefs involved. My food has always combined traditional Chinese flavours with modern techniques and combinations. To add chef Eric Neo, whose cuisine is very traditional, and chef David Liew’s innovative creations into the mix, I think will push me to a higher challenge at both ends of the spectrum and I like that.
We were told that you chose to collaborate specifically with Chinese chefs. Why not Malay or Indian?
Chinese cuisine is the base of my work so that is in a sense, my comfort zone. But I have worked on and created dishes inspired from Singaporean and Malay classic recipes such as a chili crab souffle and a Nasi Lemak ice cream.
Will we be seeing some of Bo Innovation’s signatures on the $100Gourmet menu?
I do not choose favourites from among my own dishes. That is like choosing favourites among my children.
What is your favourite food memory?
Eating butterscrotch during my days in university.
Talk to us about a signature dish on your restaurant’s menu. What is it inspired by and what are some of the techniques employed in it?
A dish that everyone seems to like but I am almost embarrassed by the simplicity of my molecular Xiao Long Bao. When I first ate at Ferran Adria’s El Bulli years ago, I got to try his spherical olive which was essentially the flavour of an olive encased in a thin membrane. That was my first exposure to what people call molecular food and it was a revelation. It was incredible, theatrical and innovative. It made me want to create a dning experience for people that goes beyond taste.
What is the best advice anyone has ever given you?
To never open a restaurant. Obviously, I didn’t take it.
What is the one thing in your kitchen that you must have at all times?
Coffee maker. A cigar lighter. And people with brains.
The discounted price of $100 is reserved for Citibank card members but non-members may also make a reservation for $180++. Reservations for the collaborative meals can be made here. Tickets are selling out quickly so we suggest that you act fast.