Paradise Gastronomy 食味堂 is a name that those who are in-the-know with the F&B scene should find pretty familiar, considering how they had been in business since a while ago at The Bencoolen.
Taking over the former premises of now-defunct 糖心风暴甜品 Sweet Tornado Desserts at Yishun 10 where GV Yishun is also located, Paradise Gastronomy had revamped the outdated space with some modern touches, such as the brick walls and a mural of the Taiwan cityscape at the side of the shop. Otherwise, the interior is well-furnished, focusing more on function than aesthetics (pretty evident from its rather odd seating layout); the front counter also displaying the various Taiwanese snacks available whilst also being the cashier where orders are being placed. The menu is pretty much almost similar to that which is being served at The Bencoolen, consisting of Taiwanese-favorites such as the Taiwanese Braised Pork Rice and Taiwan Mee Sua; patrons can also go for the various Taiwanese snacks available on the menu, or also go for the bento boxes which comes with a combination of items served with rice. Set meals are also available with the Taiwanese Braised Pork Rice and Taiwan Mee Sua, which allows patrons to also go for fried salted chicken and Taiwan Milk Tea at a flat price. It is noted that the beverages menu at the Yishun 10 outlet is seemingly more extensive than that of the outlet at The Bencoolen, which carries cheese tea, though were not available on the day of our visit.
(Taiwan Fiery Mala Chicken)
Giving their fried salted chicken items a try, we went for their Taiwan Fiery Mala Chicken. Essentially chunks of fried chicken that came with the signature seasoning of salt and pepper that makes Taiwanese Fried Chicken what it is, the Taiwan Fiery Mala Chicken is the variant that is not shy with its spiciness and numbness. While the mala powder exudes a choking spiciness when the item is being first served to the table, the level of spiciness was pretty manageable; it is, in fact, the numbness that caught us off-guard. Seemingly shiok at the start, the chunks of fried chicken were deceptively addictive, only to numb the taste buds and overwhelming all other notes of peppery, saltishness that the chicken carries after a few pieces, replacing them with the slight hint of pepper-ish aroma and immense numbness of the Szechuan peppers used in the powder. The chunks of fried chicken were bite-sized; easy to eat whilst crisp on the exterior. An item that is easy to underestimate in its flavour, though would certainly hit Mala lovers well.
(Taiwan Braised Pork Rice)
Having had their Taiwanese Braised Pork Rice a number of times at their The Bencoolen location, it is noted that Paradise Gastronomy’s variant may not be as stellar as the version we have had at Eat 3 Bowls, but still one that deserves a mention considering its respectable quality. Coming with fried onions, braised egg and salted pickles, we were glad that there was enough braised pork to go together with all the rice; the rice being pearly without becoming all mushy having soaked in the sauces from the braised meat. The braised liquid carries a savoury note with evident hints of the spices used, such as star anise and cinnamon which provides a contrast of flavours, while the braised pork was a mix of both lean and fatty cuts to give it a melt-in-the-mouth texture, yet with a bit of bite. The fried onions, accompanying the salted pickles at the side, helped to add some crunch, while the salted pickles gave a refreshing crunch that cuts through the meatiness of the entire bowl. A rather well-executed variant of Taiwanese Braised Pork Rice that deserves some mention.
(Taiwan Oyster Mee Sua)
We also had the Taiwan Oyster Mee Sua, which came with both shredded chicken as well as oysters. Coming with a rather light but savoury and flavourful starchy gravy, the Mee Sua was sticky and slurpy whilst warm; vinegar had been added prior to the serving, which provides a slightly sweet and tangy note to the savoury notes of the gravy for a slight contrast of flavours. The shredded chicken was fibrous, yet carried a bit of chew, but the oysters were the highlight being fresh and plump without being too fishy. It is noted that the Taiwan Mee Sua here is an item that would taste better whilst still hot; the starchy liquid quickly becomes more watery and liquid as it cools down, which affects the overall experience quite a bit.
Given how we had visited their initial shop at The Bencoolen a while before, we can say that the quality of food served at Paradise Gastronomy’s latest branch at Yishun 10 is somewhat consistent to that served at The Bencoolen. While the set meals are not something we would call exactly wallet-friendly, it does provide quite a substantial number of add-ons that would fill up those with larger appetites. Flavours are largely authentic, though there is definitely some room for improvement where it concerns the gravy of the Taiwanese Mee Sua in terms of consistency of texture. Known to be a wallet-friendly option for some pretty well-executed Taiwanese fare at The Bencoolen, its new location at Yishun 10 is certainly a great dining option for those living around the north of the island; a location that is worthy to go for some quality and hearty Taiwanese fare without resorting to the commercial takeaway options usually found in malls. A pretty welcome addition to the North, and a place we would not mind dining at yet again (just like how we have had been doing so at their The Bencoolen location).
Paradise Gastronomy 食味堂
GV Yishun (formerly Yishun 10)
51 Yishun Central 1