Award-winning Peranakan restaurant, Candlenut, serves up contemporary Peranakan cuisine that preserves the essence and complexities of traditional food, with astute twists that lift the often rich dishes to a different level.
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Address

17A Dempsey Road
COMO Dempsey
Singapore 249676

Tuesday:
12:00pm - 02:30pm
06:00pm - 09:00pm

Wednesday:
12:00pm - 02:30pm
06:00pm - 09:00pm

Thursday:
12:00pm - 02:30pm
06:00pm - 09:00pm

Friday:
12:00pm - 02:30pm
06:00pm - 10:30pm

Saturday:
12:00pm - 02:30pm
06:00pm - 10:30pm

Sunday:
12:00pm - 02:30pm
06:00pm - 09:00pm

Monday:
12:00pm - 02:30pm
06:00pm - 09:00pm

Price

~$80/pax

What you should order at Candlenut

You should order these at Candlenut

Reviews at Candlenut

Reviews of good food at Candlenut
When #candlenut was still at Dorsett.

Roast Pork 🐖belly | very yummy crabmeat🦀 soup | buah keluak | and then there's buah keluak + valhrona 🍫ice cream | banana 🍌caramel pudding | and finally durian ice cream in durian purée! Love these double whammy flavours, just like tau huey in tau huey zui😋😋😋

Chicken Buah Keluak

You can tell Peranakan restaurant Candlenut thinks things through. They take into consideration not all customers are willing to dirty their fingers by handling the "buah keluak" nut, regardless of how delicious the dish is. So they actually scoop out the nut flesh and mould it into an elegant form that mimics the actual nut. This is then placed on a lime leaf balanced on the pile of chicken pieces for ease in eating.
However, do not mistake this as a cop-out in any way when it comes to flavour. There is incredible richness in the thick gravy due to the very generous amount of "rempah" and "buah keluak" used. I also like that the pair of drumsticks and two pieces of thigh meat in the serving were completely saturated from being stewed in the gravy.
This classic is done really well here in my opinion - it can almost rival my mum's 😜

Charcoal Grilled Local Chicken Satay ($16++)

A quartet of juicy, well-marinated chicken satay was what my friend Lynn and I chose to begin our long-overdue lunch with. We couldn't be more pleased with how good these turned out to be. Smoky from the charcoal grill, the skewers of whole chunks of tender yet fat-free meat were made even more irresistible dunked in the thick peanut gravy that's punctuated with the brightness of puréed pineapple.

Steamed Caramel Banana Cake ($14++)

This astonishing dessert comprises of two scrumptious parts and one very accurately-calibrated element of unexpectedness.
The former two are the soft and fluffy steamed banana cake with caramel sauce, and the spectacular gula melaka ice-cream (seriously, I would break into Candlenut's freezer for it! ). But for me, what pushed this dessert up a couple of notches to extra special-dom was the sharp tang from the zingy banana lime compote.
I am pretty sure even the most hyper-critical matriarchs of any traditional Peranakan family will give this a nod of approval.

Kuah Pai Tee

Not the traditional ingredients but an interesting reinvention of the classic dish.

$32

The dry curry 1824 grain-fed beef bone-in short rib is another recommendation from the staff and definitely made for meat lovers with that huge chunk of meat. But fret not, the meat was wonderfully fork tender and can be easily pulled apart. The curry is full of rempah flavor and probably a whole lot of other spices that are beautifully blended together to create a grainy yet smooth curry that is nutty and flavorful.

$28

You must order this when you dine at Candlenut — firm and sweet chunks of blue swimmer crabmeat in a sea of yellow aromatic curry filled with tangy notes that will definitely whet your appetite. Best enjoyed with a plate of white rice!

$22

I've heard that you can either love or hate the taste of buah keluak. This black nut is an iconic Peranakan ingredient that is commonly used with chicken. This was my first time attempting a full buah keluak dish and I really loved it! The depth of the flavor and how I didn't get sick of it is an indication of how much I liked it! There were 2 rather fat chicken legs and 2 thigh meat in the dish that were very tender — and remember to drench a generous amount of sauce over it!

$20

YAY to the ala carte menu back on Candlenut's dinner menu and this Wild Caught Baby Assam Squid was a recommendation from the staff (thank you for your wonderful service!) which wow-ed our tastebuds. The sweet and sour tamarind greeted us in a long and smooth manner, made more wholesome with the squid ink while we enjoyed the tender squid body fully coated with the sauce and topped with fried shallots.

Charcoal Grilled Kurobuta Pork Neck Satay, Kicap Manis Glaze

A stick of this on the tasting menu was blatantly insufficient; hence an order of 4 sticks more.... give.us.more (!!!)

Local Squid, Squid Ink, Tamarind, Chilli

Not everyday you get well handled squid ink that was ingeniously appetizing by the enabler: tamarind. I'd sense a tinge of pride when local squid tasted so right and chewy but mainly kudos to the chef handling it in the wok.

King Tiger Prawns, Fresh Red Chilli Sambal, Charred Garlic Chives

Plump prawns with fresh Sambal that would cater to most diners; the spiciness level was not tear inducing with its deceiving bright red appearance as if screaming red hot lip-smacking stuff here!!! Throughly enjoyed this despite being an avid chilli/anything spicy eater. If you are looking for a worthy spicy contender I'd recommend the blue crab curry which embodies zest and a rich coconut milk kick simultaneously- amazing execution anyone?

Taster Set Menu ($88++), Shellfish Bisque, Chap Chye, Ngo Hiang, Wok And Curry Dishes

Could count the number of legit Perenakan meals I've had with both my hands yet my amateur opinion rates Candlenut as number one for now.
I mean all wok dishes and curries we had fully embodied rich Perenakan flavors, of which most desirable to my palate- coconut milk and tamarind 😬
Rice is never plain when you can afford mixing it up with the rich gravies.... Mmhmm

Buah Keluak Ice Cream [$14++]

[One Michelin 🌟] Sounds quirky but it worked very well. It came as a medley of flavours, texture and temperature in a single dessert.
🔸
The cold buak keluak ice cream sits atop a bed of chocolate crumble, salted caramel and chilli specks, then topped with warm milk chocolate espuma. Evident is the popping candies and the sharp chilli. The earthy ice cream is light in its buah keluak taste, so the ice cream is still dominated by the 80% valhrona chocolate. Be sure to eat everything (espuma, ice cream and all the crumbles) together to enjoy the full spectrum of the flavours, texture and temperature simultaneously.
🔸
The friendly server Felix who’s just like your uncle next door said “Look, the ice cream has not melted. This is also whats special about it".

Kueh Pie Tie With Crab [Full Portion At $16++]

This isn't the typical Kueh Pie Tee.. It's contains blue swimmer crab, and a secret 'Yeye' curry. The curry isn't that spicy, so it works very well with the delicate crab. It's sweet, refreshing, and it's my favourite appetizer that evening.

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