Although the city has a 75 percent ethnic-Chinese population, the majority of Singapore's Chinese restaurants are surprisingly ho-hum or downright tacky. But a wave of openings is giving the cuisine new life. Foremost among them is My Humble House (8 Raffles Ave., Suite 02-27; 65/6423-1881; dinner for two $92), the first venture abroad for Zhang Jin Jie, a celebrity chef in her native China. The hyper-modern look and "post-Sichuan" cooking are anything but modest: fried rice with olives and crabmeat; scallops with fresh lily bulbs; seafood soup accented with wolfberries and served in a coconut shell. Hu Cui (391 Orchard Rd.; 65/6238-1011; dinner for two $58), a series of warmly lit dining rooms in the Ngee Ann City shopping mall, draws a trendy crowd that lingers over artfully presented dim sum, especially the Shanghainese dumplings filled with tangy broth. Si Chuan Dou Hua (80 Raffles Place; 65/6535-6006; dinner for two $58) sits atop a 60-story tower, offering skyline views through immense portal-style windows. Cream-colored fabrics and limestone walls make for a cool setting, while spicy dishes such as stir-fried prawns with chile and barbecued suckling pig pack plenty of heat.
—Peter Jon Lindberg
Si Chuan Dou Hua
The highest restaurant in Singapore, Si Chuan Dou Hua serves traditional Sichuan and Cantonese cuisine on the 60th floor of the UOB Plaza One skyscraper. The second of three Singaporean locations, the UOB Plaza branch has an Asian-inspired dining room with dark wood accents, large windows, and modern chandeliers with rectangular glass plates. Signature dishes include the Beijing roast duck and the Sichuan dan dan noodles (spicy sauce with preserved vegetables, chili oil, and minced pork, served over noodles). The Tea Master adds an element of entertainment, combining martial arts and dance while refilling teacups with a long-spout kettle.