With the recent sad news that Loke Woh Yuen has closed down, it was pleasing to hear about a new vegetarian place opening up in the Tanjong Pagar area recently. This new place came to my attention on Prefer Vege’s blog. It is directly opposite Tanjong Pagar MRT, inside International Plaza. Prior warning, this plaza is like a maze, and can be tricky to locate. Inside this plaza is also a Loving Hut and Gong Cha (the best milk tea in Singapore). For more general information on Xin Yi, you can view their facebook page here.
CLOSED DOWN – As of 03/01/2013
Xin Yi Vegetarian
Location: 10 Anson Road International Plaza #01-50A
Opening Hours: Mon – Sat, 11:00 am – 3.00 pm, 5:00 pm – 11.30 pm
A quick look at the menu at Xin Yi shows a lot of clear pictures of appetising looking dishes. The menu is not very vast, with set meals, snacks, noodles, rice, dim sum and drinks to choose from. There are not many ‘unique’ looking dishes, and the prices are quite steep. On a side note, this restaurant (and building) is completely lifeless on the weekend, so if you want somewhere peaceful to go, this may be a place to consider. However, during the weekday it may well be more frantic, due to its proximity to the CBD.
I was curious to kick this meal off by sampling one of their dim sum dishes. After much deliberation, I was tempted by the Spicy Dumplings. While the high price tag is a deterrent, the quality of the dish is certainly above average. The dish was surprisingly not spicy (as the name would suggest) and there were a lot of smooth and clean flavours to be enjoyed. In particular, the wrapping skin was not too dense and slightly chewy – Just how it should be. Inside was mock ham, mushrooms, carrots and an unrecognisable Chinese vegetable. Simple and delicious flavours made this dish a real hit.
Price: $5.80. 8/10
The first of two ramen dishes sampled – Firstly, we have the Sesame Ramen. This was another clean and fresh dish. Cold ramen dishes, such as this, always give me that refreshed feeling upon consuming. On top of this dish was numerous vegetables, such as sprouts, carrots, red cabbage and lettuce. Underneath this was the ramen noodles, and finally at the bottom was a subtle tahini sauce. Tahini often gives a dull and chalky flavour, so those wanted a dish that bursts with flavour might not want this offering. Nevertheless, it was a cool and light meal, which I enjoyed.
Price: $6.80. 7/10
The second ramen dish sampled was the Bean Paste Ramen. Immediately upon first taste it was clear that this was a surprisingly spicy dish, that had much more flavour than the previous dish. For me, it was a little too spicy. Each of the ramen dishes came with clear soup on the side. This soup is derived from some root vegetable, and is practically tasteless. As well as the noodles, there is shredded cucumber, which helped provide some fresh relief from the spice of the sauce. The paste had diced mushrooms, carrots and TVP inside, and overall was nice to eat. One problem with both ramen dishes is the extremely long noodles, which makes it tricky to eat.
Price: $6.80. 7/10
What’s better than something free? To cap the meal off, we were provided with a free dessert. This is Mochi – A soft glutinous ball which can contain a variety of fillings in the centre. In this instance it was filled with lotus paste. On the outside there is shreds of coconut that cover the ball. It was a nice way to finish the meal. Free food can never fail with me!
Price: FREE. 7/10
Conclusion – Those who are cost conscious will be able to find cheap food elsewhere. However, overall I was quite pleased with what Xin Yi had to offer. Although the price of the ramen dishes was high, the quality and quantity were both commendable. What I loved was the freshness of all the dishes, although perhaps many eaters would find some of the food too bland. For me, sometimes simple is best.
Food – 7/10
Service – 6/10
Value – 7/10