Restaurant Labyrinth has always been on my food bucket list. I finally had the chance when my friends expressed their interest. The waiting time to secure the reservation can be long and we managed to book it a month earlier. The restaurant has been awarded World’s first new Singaporean One Michelin-Starred Restaurant since 2017 till date (2022). Labyrinth by Chef LG Han serves modern Singapore cuisine and consider a new expression of Singapore cuisine.
The restaurant offers two dining settings, which are lunch or dinner. We decided to go for Lunch Menu S$208++ per pax excluding wine pairing. Due to constant seasonal changes in produce, their menus are not presented on the website. Guests will need to email them directly if you wish to view a sample menu beforehand.
The New Singaporean cuisine showcases unique flavour combinations whilst staying true to the heritage of not just quintessential Singaporean dishes but also unique traditions and culture of Singapore. Chef LG Han cooking draws inspiration from his childhood memories and personal anecdotes growing up in Singapore, as well as his roots as a Hainanese growing up as a kid in his grandfather’s restaurant, Cairnhill Steakhouse (One of Singapore’s first premier Hainanese Style Steakhouses).
For our lunch menu “Homage to My Singapore”, we started off with “Memories of Newton Food Centre”. The service staff presented us with the mini round table which resembled the table at hawker centre followed by a tissue. The tissue is used to “chope” in Singlish or we called it reserve a table by leaving an item on the tabletop before we off to get our food from the food stalls in hawker centres. The tissue is customized with the restaurant name. It was so cute, and the details were amazing.
We were then presented with familiar hawker centre food in mini sizes. Roti John uses all parts of the tomato with clarified tomato water fashioned into a faux baguette and the leftover tomato flesh triple cooked to resembled minced meat texture, which then folded with shallots, curry powder, chives and spices traditional to that of a Roti John filling. Hainanese Satay, which is the chicken tsukune served with peanut butter sauce as the side. The Orh Luak is served round like a Takoyaki ball is fried battered oyster topped with caviar and uni while Chef uses Japanese Spanish mackerel, Sawara, and finger lime for the Otah. Splendid! Delicate details and flavours.
Old School Bread | Soy Caramel | Kopi Butter
Freshly made fluffly old school bread with enhanced “charred” surface visual with soy sauce caramel glazed served along with kopi butter that represent a popular Singapore breakfast dish. It originated from the Hainanese community and was traditionally served with kopi (coffee) or teh (tea) but with a modern twist. It is also served with seaweed butter to complete the essential Singaporean breakfast experience of bread, butter and coffee.
Pandan Air Waffle | Ichigo
Airy and crispy pandan waffle filled with faux foie pate, strawberry compote and assam. This fun snack is served in a customized Labyrinth paper bag to evoke memories of how we da bao the waffles from the local bakeries. Totally relatable!
Chili Crab 9.0 | Local Flower Crab
Chef LG Han signature chili crab dish has been evolved throughout the years of creation and here we had the chili-tomato ice-cream with ulam rajah and custard apple. Refined sweetness of the crab and enjoyed the combination ingredients that gives different taste profiles to the dish.
Hainanese “Chicken” Pie | Local Frog’s Leg
The presentation reminds me of McDonald’s Apple Pie and love the detailing of the presentation. The pie fillings include locally farmed frog’s leg meat and luxed it up with caviar, heirloom carrots, sweet corn, sugar snap peas and shiitake mushrooms and served in the customized pie box.
Prawn Noodle Soup | Aka Ebi
Prawn noodle soup served with wu xiang cracker platter, which the idea comes from chef’s childhood memories of eating Hae Mee Tng ( aka Prawn Noodle Soup). Instead of the usual noodles, Chef LG Han uses inaniwa somen and the broth is made using prawn shells and pork bones cooked in a pressure cooker seasoned with fermented sauce, prawn garum. Light and delectable broth. The wu xiang cracker is a traditional prawn head cracker dusted with seaweed powder and dollops of chilli sauce and Chinese style pink sausage.
I am allergy to prawns, so I got the fish noodle soup instead. Fish fillet wrapped in delicate seaweed with full bodied broth. Love it!
Rojak | Local Herbs from EGC
The local herbs used in rojak are from Edible Garden City (EGC). EGC focuses on creating social change through community-centric agriculture. The plate of rojak is a combination of ingredients include the ginger flower sorbet and fermented honey that replaces the lime ( traditional version include lime as one of the key ingredient). Splendid!
“Tribute to Cairnhill Steakhouse”
Sizzling Plate Steak | A4 Tochigi Wagyu
Taking us back to “Cairnhill Steakhouse”, a popular place to celebrate birthdays, anniversaries, and special occasions in the 70s with the signature red checked tablecloths and red candlelight to create the ambience. The steakhouse is owned by the chef’s grandfather. We were served with A4 Tochigi Wagyu with Hainanese red wine sauce and local golden spring mushroom. And to our surprise, the red candle was made out of pure beef fats where the melted red “wax “can be enjoyed with the bread.
Ice Kacang | White Fungus
Ginger snow layered with housemade syrups and served with compressed muskmelon and lemon mochi. An iconic local dessert in Singapore and was showcase in front of us. A refreshing take on palate cleanser after the mains.
Orh Nee | Jerusalem Artichoke
Inspired by the traditional Teochew dessert, chef uses Jerusalem Artichoke in place of yam then wrapped it in a chewy mochi-like served atop Kabocha ice-cream and “soil” fashioned from crystallized gingko nuts. It is so brilliant in every element in terms of visual, texture and taste profile.
Kaya, Teh Tarik & Eggs | Hainanese Kaya
Unlike the usual kaya toast, we had in coffee shops, Labyrinth serves it with a generous slab of cold butter and kaya coconut jam between the toasted bread. There is also the element of soy cured egg yolk. What an apt as the last dish to end the journey of the lunch theme.
We also surprised a friend with birthday dessert specially made by chef and ordered a couple of wines to go with our lunch dates. Our total bill was S$900++ for the 3 of us and we had a great afternoon.
It was a gastronomy lunch at Labyrinth where we experience the heritage, culture, and traditions of Singapore with such an innovative approach by Chef LG Han. The service is impeccable too! If you would like to experience and learn about Singapore through food exploration in a modern twist, Labyrinth can be a good choice. Every dish has its own story of its own and each detail in terms of visual, taste and texture are taken into consideration. It is truly a reimagination version of mod-Sin.
Address: Restaurant Labyrinth
8 Raffles Avenue #02-23
Esplanade Singapore 039802
Opening Hours: Wednesday- Thursday 6:30PM -11:00PM
Friday- Sunday 12:00PM-2:30PM | 6:30PM-11:00PM
Closed on Mondays & Tuesdays