After graduating with a Finance and Economics degree in Melbourne, Janice Wong started her pursuit in where her passion truly resides – the talented chef enrolled in a prestigious pastry course in Paris’ Le Cordon Bleu where she subsequently learnt from some of the world’s best chefs, including US luminaries Thomas Keller and the prodigious French pastry chef Pierre Hermé.
However, the native Singaporean had concluded that her home country is where she should develop her career – where it was proven a wise decision with her highly-acclaimed ventures both at the Marina Bay Sands and Holland Village. Subsequently, the prospective chef has seen opportunities in Hong Kong and Japan, where she dipped her toes out of her origins, bringing gastronomical sweet treats to Cobo House by 2am:dessertbar in Hong Kong and Janice Wong Dessert Bar in Tokyo.
Hence, we are thoroughly excited when the two-time recipient of San Pellegrino Asia’s 50 Best announced her first flagship restaurant at the National Museum of Singapore recently.
Janice’s belief of her philosophy: “Your world is your imagination” can be sensed in every corner of the 1,500 sq ft restaurant. From the chocolate-coated paintings hung up to the gumdropcovered glass windows (where she spent a good three hours guided by her endless imagination), Janice’s portrayal of her thirst for freedom of expression does not just stop at the art installations.
Scattered throughout the 40-seater, even the table tops are pieces of art layered with edible chocolate paint, born right from the hands of the 33 year-old. Janice aspires that her latest establishment will be the only sweets boutique in Singapore that creates interactive, edible art for imaginative souls, in an era that craves personal expression and embraces nostalgia.
Together with her attempt to introduce a whimsical concept of new age, she believes the filtration of art and fashion into the design of her restaurant is another determining key factor.
Janice pairs each of her specially curated dishes with their complementary plates, with all 25 of them belonging to a different dish itself – the natural series will be used to plate pandan-themed desserts, water series to contain the frozen ones and the earth series to hold the baked desserts.
It is evident that Janice possesses a huge potential both in the creative and culinary fields – so much so that even industry’s connoisseurs are excited to partner with her – after a past collaboration with Chef Ma, a previous chef from Tung Lok, they have since came up with a Mod-Chinese savory menu in the new flagship restaurant that includes the Signature 5 and the Crispy Charcoal Nest.
Signature 5, $15.00+
Introducing a flour-forward menu, our notable chef has carefully created 5 renditions of the most well-loved dim sums, with special attention spent on delivering the best combination of flavours and textures.
It starts with a revolutionized edition of our popular ‘Siew Mai’, with an elastic skin holding a chockful of ratatouille fillings, representing a fusion item at its best. The explosion of flavours is followed by a crunchy prawn dumpling wrapped in a tight crystal skin that seems to reflect an array of pleasing rainbow colours.
Its neighbour turns up a notch with a chewy potato starch skin that engulfs the flavourful mushroom bits and the chicken gyoza that will never go wrong topped the ranks with the tempura crisp and oozing meat broth, making it an even stellar combination with the purple potato and lemon paste topping. The last item on this signature platter features a modern twist to the traditional yam puff with cured pork accompanied by the mild fragrance from the potato.
Needless to say, the organic appeal of Janice’s brand does not just lie in their focus of food. To complement the Signature 5, the detail-oriented lady also makes her own concoction of chilli sauce that packs more than just a punch.
Crispy Charcoal Nest, $22.00+
The base of the charcoal noodles is a collagen broth that is a result of a 48-hour process of boiling chicken to mouthfuls of rich, flavourful slurps while the charcoal noodles have that satisfying bite.
It would not be a Janice Wong dish without an expression that she seeks to bring forward – her favourite poem by Henry David Thoreau is printed on cocoa which she then spreaded on mushroom puree. With so much thought put into this bowl of edible art, one does not simply polish off the bowl without reading through the thought-provoking lines.
Strawberry Caprese, $24.00+
This inviting dessert resonates with Janice on a personal level – where her inspirations for the dish stems from the days in Japan when she was a child. Together with sakura pearls, yoghurt Tonka Snow and strawberry ice cream, the Chartreuse lent a herb-like after-taste to this unique invention. It was sweet yet tangy, and a delight to have.
Chocolate H20, $22.00+
The winning creation of 65% Dark Chocolate, Salted Caramel and Kochi Yuzu Sorbet, the brainchild of one with both a sweet tooth and culinary genes. The above is made to shape like a silhouette of 2 rocks hugging each other, highlighting the contrast from the usual prim and proper notion that we see around. It signifies the importance of finding perfections in imperfections, and “the celebration of the beauty in the broken”, as quoted by Janice herself.
Using Java, Ethiopia and Java coffee beans that are roasted and blended in-house, the aftermath is a guilty pleasure of joe that whiffs of a darker roast, emiting a chocolatey, malt flavour. Not too light and acidic, this dose of caffeine is tempting even at the later parts of your day.
Janice Wong Singapore
93 Stamford road, 01-06 National Museum Singapore , Singapore 178897
Monday – Saturday 1100 – 2300, Sunday 1100 – 1800
+ 65 9712 5338