AYANA’s New Chef – Jusman So

October 14, 2011 by  
Filed under Exotic South East, Gourmet, Luxury Travel

The AYANA Resort and Spa Bali is proud to announce the appointment of Jusman So as Chef de Cuisine at Dava, the signature fine dining venue at AYANA Resort and Spa Bali. Jusman is founder-chef of Singapore’s much-awarded Sage restaurant, and was the winner of Singapore’s Best Rising Chef (WGS 2008). He will be introducing a new menu highlighting his signature style, which combines a blend of classic European techniques with the highest quality imports and local ingredients paired with modern presentation. The results are visually stunning dishes which will delight all the senses. Jusman’s arrival at Dava follows six years at Sage, a fine dining restaurant which he founded in 2005. The restaurant has won a slew of awards, such as Best New Restaurant at WGS 2008, one of Singapore’s Best Restaurant by Singapore Tatler, as well as being named on the prestigious Miele List.

The DAVA Restaurant at AYANA Resort and Spa Bali has welcomed a new Chef de Cuisine, Mr Jusman So. Jusman is the founder-chef of Singapore’s much-awarded Sage Restaurant, and he will bring along his signature style to DAVA. The new menu will blend classic European technique, high quality imported materials and local ingredients. All this will be paired with a modern presentation that is sure to delight. Jusman boast a long list of experience – six years at Sage, a restaurant he founded in 2005 to critical acclaim, prior to which he worked at the Hilton Hotel Singapore.

The well-traveled chef is a passionate surfer, and will be relishing the prospect of squaring up against the waves in the Island of the Gods. He also pointed to the freedom of creativity and the chance to provide a unique dining experience to guests of DAVA as his reasons for coming over. The new menu at DAVA will feature one of his all-time favorite foie gras creations, sauteed and served on raisin corn bread with a combination of beetroot capellini, dried orange and topped with black grape emulsion.

Graze at Martin No 38

July 19, 2011 by  
Filed under Gourmet, Personality

Graze at Martin No. 38, the latest addition to the Epicure collection, is now open. Located within the stylish Robertson Quay neighborhood, it is a vibrant informal space sure to be a classic hangout spot for all day dining and relaxation. Unearthing Asia talks to the brain behind the venture, young Singaporean entrepreneur Yenn Wong, who also had a hand behind JIA, Hong Kong’s first boutique hotel and the first hospitality venture in Asia by French design guru, Philippe Starck.

Hello there, can you share with us about yourself? What do you do for a living? What is your passion?
I’m Yenn Wong, a Singapore entrepreneur dabbling in hospitality and tourism. I’m the owner of JIA Boutique Hotels, which is currently located in Hong Kong and Shanghai. I also own and operate a few restaurants such as Kha, a casual chic Thai restaurant, the original Graze in Rochester Park, Singapore, as well as 208 Duecento Otto in Hong Kong and Issimo at JIA Shanghai. Food and travel are two of my passions, as can be obviously deduced from my choice of ventures and business dealings.

Tell us more about Graze, your newest restaurant in Robertson Quay
The trend worldwide is to pair up good food with a cool neighborhood atmosphere, and that is exactly what we try to do with Graze. We provide a casual-chic ambiance in a hip neighborhood, not just for lunch, dinner or weekend brunch, but for all-day hangout where you can enjoy artisan coffess or freshly cut charcuterie to nibble over a glass of wine.

What makes Graze special? What can customers expect when they dine here?
Graze has a great “urban country” atmosphere. It is a cool neighborhood bistro in a hip residential enclave with a dash of bohemian vibe – it’s the perfect place for dining or just hanging out over drinks. Guests can expect fresh full-flavored cuisine, an excellent wine list and freshly-brewed artisan coffess from all around the world. And you can choose as well where to enjoy this – in the casual chic interiors or at one of the al-fresco tables outside.

Define Graze in 5 words
Casual-chic, fresh, relaxing, delicious, friendly.

Tell us more about Singapore, what dining trends are you seeing in Singapore? What makes it different compared to other countries?
The Integrated Resorts have helped to attract higher level of celebrity chef and restaurant offerings in Singapore, creating greater awareness and profile for the industry. Italian eateries and ethnic foods like Thai cuisines are gaining more popularity, and there is also a number of chefs dabbling in the modern molecular movement.

The dining scene has definitely moved up a couple of notches over the years, with more quality concepts coming up for the customers to choose from. It truly is a Food Paradise now, consisting of various local and international cuisine. Singapore is also quite fortunate in the sense that there are plenty amazing spaces for restaurant venues as compared to other cities.

How do diners expectations in Singapore compare to diners in other cities in the world?
Singaporeans love to be the first to check out new places, they like variety. The dining public are much more interested and more knowledgeable in food safety, country of origin, status and more. There is also a growing awareness and appreciation for eco-movements such as carbon footprint, organic status and other similar movements.

Is has been said before that many young Singapore chefs are preferring to study western cuisines instead in traditional local cuisine. How true do you think this is and is it a problem?
Singapore is a melting pot of ethnic cuisines and global populations. It would be such a shame if more local chefs did not show a greater interest in their local cuisine/heritage. Due to the influx/growth of international tourism, the industry finds itself having to offer a greater range of cuisines/foods to its customer base – and it just so happens, that some western cuisines are in greater demand, not only in Singapore but globally.
That said, this presents a wonderful opportunity at this country’s doorstep to educate, inform, titillate and excite both local residents and inbound visitors, just how wonderful some of the heritage foods and established dishes of Singapore really are.

What do you enjoy most about being in the F&B industry in Singapore?
There is a great diversity of food cultures in Singapore. You can never go hungry and generally it is still very economical to eat out, be it at one of the upmarket restaurants, funky cafes or local hawker stalls. We have fantastic access to some pretty amazing food and materials from all over the world.
What do the best restaurants need to do to stand out or get a solid reputation in Singapore?
A good restaurant need to have a clear identity, a well planned concept and defined product/offering. They need a good team of people to consistently deliver on the key values and key selling points of the establishment. It is pertinent that there is always consistency in the food and the service. And last but not least, they need to offer good value to the customer.

What’s your favorite local food? What do you like about it so much?
I think my favourite would have to be crab bee hoon, soup or fried. It’s so exclusive to Singapore, and the seafood taste works really well with bland noodles like bee hoon. You can really taste the freshness.

Thanks for your time Yenn! Good luck with the new restaurant!

Graze is a casual-chic all-day restaurant featuring fresh, full-flavored cuisine with crisp, clean flavours and seductive taste combination. Located at Martin No 38, Grazy is a vibrant space with an informal and fresh approach. Find out more about the restaurant at www.graze-martin38.sg.

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Introducing Dempsey

June 15, 2010 by  
Filed under Attractions, Exotic South East

Dempsey, Eden in the City

Dempsey, Eden in the City

Listen to the cacophony of the traffic dwindle into a distance as you pace your way towards Dempsey Hill. Within minutes, tranquil and greenery unfold with every step up Dempsey road, leading you gently into a hidden paradise right at the doorstep of Singapore’s bustling Orchard Road.

Hardly a hill per se, Dempsey Hill has a history as a nutmeg plantation in its primitive days. It also housed the British army barracks a century ago and it was the headquarters for young Singaporean soldiers serving their national duty in the 1970s. Today, it has become a popular hangout spot for urbanites seeking the perfect escapade from the chaos of the city. Its colonial architectures are delicately preserved and restored, composing a rustic, yet homely aura. Rows of single-storey houses are lined up in an orderly fashion, well spaced from each other with lush flora encapsulating the vicinity.

“Every corner brings you something different!” raved Ms Kee Luah, PR and Marketing Consultant of Dempsey Hill. Over here, a galore of restaurants, galleries, furniture and lifestyle retail stores, bars and cafes keep you entertained. In the day, Dempsey Hill is a place perfect for solitude time away from crowds and the normalcy of life, luring creative individuals to hang around for fresh inspirations. The lunch crowd gathers, but it is nothing compared to how the area transforms as night falls.


A chill-out place popular amongst the locals, the hill ruptures with life at dusk. Ferraris, Lamborghinis and BMWs fire in and the arena bustles with elites dressed to the nines, all ready to let loose for party-going. Unlike the claustrophobic metropolis, people in Dempsey emanate a festive feel, leaving you feeling refreshed and enlightened.

With over 20 restaurants and bars offering a vast variety of cuisine from all over the world, not only does the natural charm of Dempsey enhance every dining experience, it is also a place where we witness culinary craft of a whole new dimension.

Read on – Culinary Treats at DempseyDempsey, Art Village

Culinary Treats at Dempsey

June 13, 2010 by  
Filed under Exotic South East, Gourmet, News


Did you know that gunpowder can spruce up your palate indulgence? Well, it is so at Dempsey Hill. The Prime Society restaurant has a 150-seater dining capacity. With crimson brick pillars extending to the high ceiling, its ambience offers you a sense of grandeur filled with the thick aroma of pan-Asian spices and, maybe, a tinge of gunpowder.

Australian chef Mr. Damon Amos sizzles with passion as he shares his extensive knowledge on the various cuts of steak on offer, the different cattle-rearing methods and how these methods lend each cut of steak a unique flavor.

“In short, we (The Prime Society) are all about diversity,” says Damon, who affably introduces himself as Dee. This belief is evident in their assortment of steak selections available on their menu. The gunpowder steak is one that captures attention.

Gunpowder is essentially made up of elements such as potassium and magnesium, which are required parts of a balanced diet. The gunpowder that is used goes through stringent checks to ensure that there are no traces of sulphur in its content before serving. The question is, where do they get the gunpowder? “I concoct it myself,” Dee reveals. For those game enough for novelty, this is one dish you’ll have to try.


Watch how food engages not just our taste buds but entices our visionary and creative senses as well. Gourmet artistry is what The Tippling Club is all about. A blend of aesthetics and science, it is a wonder to see food in an unconventional presentation, yet still taste remarkably good. To enjoy the overall experience, the golden spot is at the bar where guests get to witness the owners in action. Award-winning mixologist Matthew Bax and Chef Ryan brought their expertise from down under Australia, and are now capturing the hearts of the local market with their degage concept tinged with élan.

Read on – Introducting DempseyDempsey, Art Village