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Japan Gourmet 2015 is the fourth edition of a festival celebrating Japanese cuisine with 22 events over a span of six weeks. (Above) The gourmet Kushikatsu set.

Rocks Urban Bar + Grill is back in the same place at Marina Bay after a six month absence. Doors reopen next Tuesday

Rush & Crush Tent Sale.

English National Ballet stages "Le Corsaire" at the Esplanade.

Chef Lee's TAO Pig Trotters with Sea Cucumber is made using sea cucumber from the Philippines which is rich in collagen, and Hakka rice wine for its gravy.

The critically acclaimed "Ida" is a winner of the 2015 Oscar for Best Foreign-Language Film.

This weekend, the "Getai Ethnica", will take place at the rooftop of People's Park Complex, as part of a two-day event.

City buzz

BT writers' picks of what to see, do or talk about
May 8, 2015 5:50 AM



Till May 31 Tel: 6319-2153

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IF YOU'RE a fan of Japanese cuisine and haven't gotten your tickets to this year's Gourmet Japan 2015 yet, don't fret - there's still time.

The six-week-long festival continues till the end of this month with a total of 22 events, and is organised by Sphere Exhibits, a wholly owned events subsidiary of Singapore Press Holdings. This includes dinners at new establishments, brunches, cooking workshops, as well as whisky or sake-paired dinners.

This is the fourth edition of Gourmet Japan, and it features three international guest chefs - Hal Yamashita from Syun; Iron Chef Chen Kenichi from Shisen Hanten and Iron Chef Hiroyuki Sakai from ME@OUE, as well as 18 other Japanese chefs in Singapore. Mr Ian Lim, Senior Manager, Gourmet & Festivals, of Sphere Exhibits, said: "Gourmet Japan was started as a platform to showcase the Japanese Culinary scene in Singapore... and where diners have a chance to experience the best Japanese cuisine Singapore has to offer. We hope people who attends the festival will leave with an appreciation and understanding of the very diverse styles of Japanese food."

Some upcoming event highlights include a seven-course dinner of Osaka-style cuisine by Chef Seiichiro Arakawa paired with Suntory whiskies at HAN on May 13, a Japanese-French fusion brunch at Lewin Terrace by chef Ryoichi Kano on May 24, and a sake dinner by iron chef Hiroyuki Sakai and chef Chen Kentaro at ME@OUE rooftop on May 30.

By Rachel Loi

BT Lifestyle is giving away tickets to the Art of Japanese Cuisine Workshops on Instagram. Just follow 'BTLifestyle' for a chance to win


Rush & Crush Tent Sale

AS any true Singaporean would know, when the words "rush and crush" come together, it signals something good, and worth rushing and crushing the competition out of the way for. But we jest.

Rush & Crush is a two-day tent sale that DREAM furniture store is having on its premises. The theme - Rush (games featuring drinking and eating at random times during the event) & Crush (squeezing partners and vendors together) is inspired by the morning rush hour.

This is DREAM'S biggest event, as it is collaborating with more than 30 design and lifestyle trendsetters and innovators. Here's what visitors can expect: a bazaar of belt-busting treats, live music, "rush-hour" games and activities. Some of the partners taking part include F&B names such as Meat Saucery, Momolato and Cocoloco. On the retail front, Gnome & Bow, Fictive Fingers and Weekend Warrior will have products for sale too.

DREAM's designer furniture and accessories will also be sold at heavily marked-down prices.

By Tay Suan Chiang

Rush & Crush Tent Sale is on May 9 & 10 from 11am to 7pm at DREAM, 456 River Valley Road. Admission is free


Le Corsaire by the English National Ballet

MADE famous in the 19th century by the legendary Marius Petipa for the Mariinsky Theatre, Le Corsaire is a very accessible and enjoyable ballet.

In this production by the well-regarded English National Ballet, the romantic story of a swashbuckling pirate and a beautiful harem girl is a brisk and entertaining affair that takes place in gorgeous settings, including a busy marketplace, a majestic palace and a pirate ship. Even insusceptible male audiences are likely to be enthralled by the superb sword and knife fight scenes.

Principal ballerina Alina Cojocaru, who dances the female lead in two of the five shows, is a stunning performer. Technical aspects are top-notch, with set and costumes designed by Hollywood film designer Bob Ringwood, who worked on the Batman movies and Alien 3.

By Helmi Yusof

Le Corsaire opens next Thursday at Esplanade Theatre and runs till May 17. Tickets at $60, $100, $140, $180 and $220 are available from Sistic


Mrs Lee's Favourites

MUM will definitely give her stamp of approval for TAO Seafood Asia's Mother's Day menu. After all, the dishes are the favourites of Mrs Lily Lee, wife of chef Lee Yong Kuon, who heads the kitchen.

Chef Lee would often cook these dishes for his wife and kids at home. During one such dinner at home, Chef Lee's boss and son, Adrian, was inspired by his father's dedication and his deceptively simple yet masterfully executed fare, and he sought his father's blessings to share these with their regular clients.

Mrs Lee's favourites include TAO Pig Trotters with Sea Cucumber, Claypot Braised Chicken and Abalone with Rice Wine and Chef Lee's Homestyle Wok-Fried Prawns.

The TAO Pig Trotters with Sea Cucumber is the winner. Chef Lee uses sea cucumber from the Philippines, and Hakka rice wine for its gravy. Both the sea cucumber and pig trotters are rich in collagen, which will aid in Mum's youthful looks.

The dish is priced at S$48++. The pot is ideal for four diners. (A two-day advance order is required).

By Tay Suan Chiang

Mrs Lee's Favourites are available from now till May 31. TAO Seafood Asia is at 12 Marina View, Asia Square Tower 2, #02-10. For reservations, call 6844-9969


GV theatres

SINGAPORE'S oldest foreign movie event, the European Union Film Festival, returns for its 25th edition from next week. It will be the biggest to date with a total of 29 films from 29 European countries - including Latvia, Malta and Serbia participating for the first time - screening.

The core theme in this year's selections is passion and the festival will open next week with The Connection, an action-thriller based on the French Connection drug smuggling scheme and starring Academy Award-winner Jean Dujardin.

The closing film is Serbian comedy, See You in Montevideo, based on the Yugoslavian football team taking part in the first official World Cup in 1930.

Other critically acclaimed films making their premieres in Singapore include Ida, winner of the 2015 Academy Award for Best Foreign Language film. Animation fans will want to look out for Mr Hublot (2013), which won the 2014 Oscar for Best Animated Short Film. Twenty-nine short films by students from the Puttnam School of Film, Lasalle College of the Arts will precede each feature.

By Dylan Tan

The 25th European Union Film Festival runs from May 14 to 24. Tickets are priced at S$12 and are available online on the GV website at and through walk-in at GV box offices islandwide. More ticketing and full programme details can be found at


Come Lepark With Us

LOOKING for somewhere to "lepak" this weekend? Drop by at the People's Park Complex rooftop in Chinatown and check out Come Lepark With Us.

This two-day event combines a live music festival - Getai Ethnica (tickets cost S$10 inclusive of a free beer), an outdoor film screening of a black-and-white Cantonese movie (with English subtitles) Moon Over Malaya, live graffiti by Band of Doodlers, pet adoption drives by Animal Lovers League, a charity car wash, as well as a series of outdoor sports such as parkour.

Of course, there will also be food and drinks available in the form of Asian tapas, and an outdoor garden bar.

By Rachel Loi

Come Lepark With Us runs on May 9 and 10 at the People's Park Complex rooftop (level 6). General admission is free, while tickets to Getai Ethnica are S$10 each. Visit the Facebook event page for more information