Calling crab fanatics to a sumptuous feast.
After succeeding in the first launch of its well-received “Crab Madness Buffet”, Penang St. Buffet brings back its halal crab-themed buffet. Given the name “East vs West Crab Buffet”, this new promotion is extended to a three-month availability, from 1 Mar to 8 May 2016.
Penang St. Buffet has put in much effort this time round to improve its menu even further. I was surprised and delighted to find out that Penang St. Buffet has fifteen different flavours of crabs in store. If you’re a crab lover like me, I’m sure you can relate to the sheer joy I had upon hearing the good news.
Without further ado, let me expose you to some of the fifteen flavours of crabs and crab-based dishes. Just a note that the restaurant only makes use of mud crabs, as they tend to be richer in terms of their meat texture.
Salted Egg Crabs
Apart from the signature Chilli Crabs which Penang St. Buffet has in the house, I must highlight that the salted egg crabs was one of my favorites. Coated with a layer of hardened salted egg, the dish exuded an aromatic fragrance the moment I lift open the chaffer.
The salted egg coating had a powdery, luscious texture. At the same time, the pleasant bursts of saltiness was a splendid pairing with the rich and chewy crab meat. Comparable to good salted egg crabs found in zhi char stalls.
It was a first for me to hear of the pairing of kimchi with crab and oh boy, I was really impressed by the kimchi flavoured crab available in the house.
The kimchi was both sour and spicy, not for the faint-hearted. But to me, it was a delightful, tart burst of flavour. This has become a new-found favourite flavour of crab for me.
Contrasting the first two strong flavours, the miso crab is pretty much the similar to the classic steamed crab. The only exception lies in the slight tinge of saltiness from the miso flavour. It was good, but not something which I will long for in the midst of the sumptuous buffet spread.
Another of the more ‘exotic’ eastern flavours, the balinese crab is served Padang style. The sauce base is a mix of Indonesian sambal and coconut bits. A tangy, delightful taste. I felt that the coconut bits were soft and sweet, providing a good balance of flavour with the spicy sambal sauce.
Wok Fried Bee Hoon simmered in Crabs
This is a very appetising crab-based dish here at Penang St. Buffet. The bee hoon simmered in crabs had an exquisite wok hei a.k.a wok-fried char fragrance to it. Fried bee hoon simmered in the crabs’ essence was aromatic and gave a soft but springy texture upon bite.
Crab meat was rich, flavourful and chewy. Entire dish was a well-adjusted and conjured flavour. A must-try dish here at Penang St. Buffet.
Now we’re on to the Western flavoured crabs up for this East vs West Crab Buffet feast. The best of the Western crab spread I feel, is this crab served in carbonara sauce.
Being one of the most familiar Italian sauces that is used extensively in Singapore, I must emphasize that the carbonara sauce concocted at this restaurant is up to par. Pre-dipped and coated in the sauce, the crab meat was creamy and savoury.
Espresso Coffee Crabs
One of the lighter flavours, the espresso coffee crab has a tinge of sour taste as a whole. Not my personal preference of taste, as it was odd to have my favourite beverage paired with a seafood delicacy.
Peri Peri Crabs
Another flavour with a fiery tang is this peri peri crabs available in-house. The powdery texture of the peri peri exudes a delightful fragrance with the rich meat. The dish was a good balance of sweet and spicy making it an adequate rendition of a Western crab dish.
Apart from the extensive variety of crab dishes, the buffet also entitles diners to the plethora of good eats available as part of the buffet spread.
The ice seabed was a seafood paradise. I especially love the prawns which were fresh, cold and delectable. I could probably finish up a whole plate of it. Other items such as scallops, mussels, the Snow Crab legs and King Crab legs were very fresh and delicious.
There’s also the Grill Station – something new to the restaurant, with many grilled seafood dishes available. Included in the menu are the bbq stingray, bbq sotong, bbq lala as well as the tantalizing bbq prawns.
The bbq prawn meat paired with in-house chilli sauce was fragrant, tangy and savoury at the same time.
Nonetheless, I still prefer the fresh seafood available on the ice seabed here at Penang St. Buffet. The former was fresh seafood with standard. Whereas the grills tasted normal to me.
And of course, what is buffet at Penang St. Buffet without some Penang food?
If there’s someone in your group of friends who is not a crab fanatic nor a seafood appreciator, fret not. There are also plenty of Penang hawker favourites and Western delights to choose from the buffet. One of the highlights, as well as my favourite, is the Penang Hokkien Crab Noodles.
I love the soup for this traditional, genuine bowl of Penang hawker delicacy. Made from crab stock, the soup was an enhanced flavour with a spicy tang which leaves me salivating for more.
Topping your meal off, there are plenty of dessert options for us to choose from. I must affirm Penang St. Buffet for their lovely assortment of dessert items available on the spread.
My favourites are the creme brulee and the bread pudding. The former was sweet with a caramelised flavour that is not too thick whereas the latter was warm and hearty. Not forgetting the Penang Durian Cendol which was a well-adjusted flavour of sweetness, making use of gula melaka that does magic to this particular sweet treat.
On the whole, I am very much gratified upon my dining experience here at Penang St. Buffet. There was so much good food! Not only did it meet the satisfaction of a crab-lover in me, the dining experience was very much a hearty one which was a very accurate depiction of the Penang cuisine – traditional and genuine.
Penang St. Buffet is an ideal place for heartwarming catch-ups and socialisation with family and friends, very much a friendly environment, one that you won’t feel ‘paiseh’ in getting your fingers dirty in the midst of cracking open crab shells.
Expected Damage: Weekday dinner $59.90++ (mon-thur) | Weekend dinner $63.90++ (fri – sun, eve of public holiday & public holiday)