Food Review: Jumbo Seafood at Ion Orchard | First Outlet in Orchard Road with Innovative Dim Sum featuring Chilli Crab
The Place Most Singaporeans should be families with Jumbo Seafood, one of the most well-known seafood restaurant which first opened at East Coast Seafood Centre in 1987. I still have fond childhood memories of dining at the East Coast branch, little to expect that it would one day open at the heart of Orchard Road. The latest outlet opened at level four of Ion Orchard last December, taking over the space of what was previously Paradise Dynasty (which has in turn shifted to level one of the adjacent Wisma Atrium).
For one, the look of the Ion outlet is bright and welcoming, which offers a view of the bustling Orchard Road if you manage to snag a table by the window. Otherwise, there are a few private rooms and intimate table setting even if you are dining alone or with a partner.
The Food The highlight for the Ion outlet is really the dim sum and high tea offerings for me. Given the prime location in town, it makes perfect sense to offer something different from its other far flung outlets at different times of the day. Due to the proximity of Chinese New Year, we first started with the Prosperity Salmon Yu Sheng (S$58/medium; S$88/large) which is available till 19 February 2019. I like this version as it retains the traditional Teochew flavour without much fancy ingredients, just the way I remember Yu Sheng to be.
Try the dim sum if you have the chance to, which is only available during lunch and high tea hours. I tried a trio of the Baked Jumbo Chilli Crab Puffs (S$8.80), Pan Fried Jumbo Chilli Crab Buns (S$8.80) and the Chilli Crab Meat Sauce with Sliced Fried Mantou (S$16.80). These are probably the most lazy way to enjoy chilli crab, and I like the Sliced Fried Mantou in particular, which is a mini version of the usual fried mantou except that this is much crispier.
The Pan Fried Jumbo Chilli Crab Buns are pretty good too, which is filled with heaps of crab meat.
Some of the new dishes and only exclusive to Ion Orchard are the Crispy Fried Cod Fish with Nonya Sauce (S$22), Cod Fish Otah in Coconut (S$16.80), Homemade Beancurd and Mixed Seafood Braised with Abalone Sauce (S$18/small) and King Prawns and Fragrant Rice in Rich Seafood Broth (S$38).
Go for the Cod Fish Otah in Coconut, where you get a generous portion of the cod fish mixed with otah in the coconut. The otah and cod fish blends well together, where I appreciate that both elements are fresh and enjoyable.
The King Prawns and Fragrant Rice in Rich Seafood Broth is another of my recommendation if you are looking for something soupy. The prawn broth is rich and flavourful, after being prepared for several hours with prawn shells.
One of the signatures at Jumbo is the Geoduck Clam blanched with Superior Stock (S$18.80/100g). Here you get sashimi grade Geoduck Clam which you can enjoy as sashimi slices, or have it in the superior broth. The broth flavor is quite light, so it should make for a good soup before the other dishes which have a heavier flavor profile. It is also served with side condiments like Fried You Tiao.
Another of Jumbo’s signature dishes, the Cheese Baked Mentaiko King Prawn (S$16) is delicious. You get a cheesy and creamy mentaiko texture on the prawns, which is already sliced up and easy to enjoy.
Rants Not often you want to dig in into your Chilli Crab, and make your hands dirty while in Orchard. Perhaps more innovative takes of its signature items will elevate the dining experience in Jumbo Seafood even further.
Will I Return Again? The dim sum and high tea idea at Jumbo Ion is a good one. It is great to enjoy some of the seafood in its dim sum renditions, along with some unique dishes at this branch. The location in town also makes it more accessible to have seafood if you do not drive.
This was an invited tasting, though all opinions expressed are our own.
Taste bud: 4/5
Hole in the pocket: 3.5/5
Overall Experience: 4/5
Jumbo Seafood (ION Orchard)
2 Orchard Turn, #04-09/10
Tel: +65 6737 3435
Daily: 11:30am to 3:30pm (last order at 2:45pm), 6 to 10:30pm (last order at 9:45pm)
High Tea (on weekends and public holidays only): 2:30pm to 5:30pm (last order at 4:45pm)
Ranted by The Ranter