Comforting, heritage cuisine by esteemed Chef Damian D’Silva at the Straits Clan
Launched by famed chef and Masterchef Singapore judge Damian D’Silva together with the Lo & Behold Group, Kin is discreetly located at the members-only club Straits Clan, showcasing traditional heritage fare that draws upon the heartfelt memories of Chef D’Silva.
The hype: Launched by famed chef and Masterchef Singapore judge Damian D’Silva together with the Lo & Behold Group, Kin is discreetly located at the members-only club Straits Clan, showcasing traditional heritage fare that draws upon the heartfelt memories of Chef D’Silva.
The vibe: Housed within the Straits Clan compound at Bukit Pasoh, Kin is hardly seen nor heard by anyone, due to the fact that it’s hidden behind the lobby’s Clan Cafe and only accessible through an inconspicuous door. Beyond the entrance, the heritage restaurant exudes an old world charm while emulating a homely space by accommodating communal-style dining.
The food: You will be tempted to over-order when you’re at Kin, but refrain from doing so, in order to savour every bite and flavour of the offerings.
Go straight for the head chef’s personal highlight, the life-changing Chap Chye Masak Rempah Titek ($30). This is a warm and ever-comforting bowl of mildly-spiced stewed vegetables, that is actually less like the usual Chinese chap chye and more reminiscent of a sayur lodeh (which it is inspired by), thanks to the robust seafood flavour and smooth curry gravy.
And rarely seen outside Peranakan households but available here is the Babi Masak Assam ($38), a braised pork belly and rib that’s bathed in preserved bean paste, tamarind and Chinese mustard. Don’t forget to get the unforgettable Sambal Buah Keluak ($24) too, which is their housemade sambal of chilli, belacan, minced pork, candlenut, buah keluak and coconut milk, that goes incredibly well with some fragrant Turmeric Rice ($4).
For dessert, skip the Sugee Cake if you must, for the Kueh Bengkah is an unmissable delight. Served with palm sugar syrup and vanilla ice cream, the baked tapioca cake has a delicate pudding-like centre that is rich and completely addictive.
The drinks: The traditional cuisine pairs surprisingly well with wine, whether it’s the Sambal Buah Keluak with a glass of creamy red like the Domaine du Vissoux Beaujolais (Origine) Tradition ($20); or a crisp and bubbly Fritz Haag, Riesling ($19) to accompany a refreshing starter such as the Heritage Salsa. But of course the kuehs go best with the Wellness Tea Blends (also selected by chef himself) like the Lemon Pu’er ($10) and Pu’jicha ($10).
Why you’ll be back: With such comforting and flavourful dishes that should be enjoyed communal-style, Kin is your best bet for traditional heritage favourites. Reservations might be hard to come by, so better call in as soon as you’ve got a headcount.