Malay Wedding Reception

In October of last year I had the opportunity to go to a Singaporean Chinese wedding reception and I was really impressed.  The food was incredible.  Everyone was dressed well.  It was formal and elegant.  It was also a sharp contrast to the Malay wedding reception we went to.  Not in a bad way of course.

I suppose the best way to put it is to say that the Malay wedding reception was more lively.  There were drums, bright colors, dancing and the atmosphere was much less formal.  I felt a bit overdressed in my fancy slacks and button up shirt.

We arrived just in time to see the groom arrive.  In fact, we were kind of lost and when we heard the drums I said, “I wonder if that’s the wedding?”  So, we walked quickly over and saw a group of guys wearing red shirts playing drums, with a guy in a light purple garment walking at the front.  Sure enough, we’d found the wedding reception.

The music was really, really cool.  I tried to take some video of the event.  You can see it embedded below.  I had a problem where my camera didn’t want to focus properly and I think it has something to do with the shade of red that was being worn by the drummers, and the red cloth that was hanging behind the bride.  My camera uses a reddish colored light to focus its picture.  Regardless, it’s worth watching if for nothing more than to hear the drummers.

In the beginning, the video shows the groom’s retinue approaching the reception hall.  Then, it shows the groom sitting on the opposite side of the hall from the bride, with one of the drummers doing a ceremonial dance.  It looks almost as if the drummer passed something off to the groom.  The last two portions are when the groom is already seated beside the bride.

Here are a few photos of the event:

Year of the Tiger decorations in front of the reception hall.

The bride, waiting on the dais next to her mother, with a fan hiding her face.

The groom at the stage, with his friends offering small envelopes (presumably with money inside) to the bride’s mother, to secure the groom’s position by his bride.

The bride and groom leaving the reception.

The car they’re taking.  They’re definitely riding in style!
We had a great time at the reception and enjoyed the music, the dancing, and the food.  I’m glad we had the chance to take part in the celebration.  It was a learning experience for us, and one I’m glad we didn’t miss out on during our stay here in Singapore.

Singapore Wedding Dinners Kick Ass

So, a guy where my wife works got married in May.  Tonight he had his celebration dinner.  I was thinking it would be a small thing.  A get together of a few friends and office colleagues.  I thought wrong.

This celebration was held at the Furama Hotel in Chinatown here in Singapore.  They really went all out.  There was music.  There were slideshows.  There were speeches, toasts, and tributes.  It was a lot of fun!  There was wine, beer, soda and tea, with free refills even.  The food was definitely great.

The food was served in a large serving platter in the center of the table and everyone at the table helped themselves to a portion.  I was impressed with how fast they managed to change out the dishes and keep the food coming considering how many tables there were in the banquet hall.

The meal came as 8 courses:

Furama Cold Dish Combination

Braised Shark’s Fin Soup with Crabmeat

Steamed Live Prawns With Chinese Herbs

Braised Black Mushrooms With Sea Cucumbers and Broccoli

Steamed Live Tiger Garoupa In Hong Kong Style

Deep-Fried Crispy Chicken With Prawn Crackers

Braised Ee-Fu Noodles With Golden Mushrooms

Hot Red Bean Paste with Dumpling

The menu.

This fruit dish wasn’t served to every table.  Only a few were brought out after the meal.  I’m not sure where they came from and it wasn’t on the menu.  Someone mentioned that there were finger foods outside the banquet hall though, so perhaps it was a leftover from that.
The food came slowly, over the course of about two hours, and the portions were moderate, but even still it was a very filling meal.  I think the last dish that got cleaned was the chicken.  The server took away half of the ee-fu noodles because most everyone was full by that time.
The red bean past with the dumplings was really good!  I’m not sure what was in the dumpling but it tasted almost like cookie dough.  Our table was one guest short, so I snagged the dumpling from the extra bowl.  No one else seemed to be making a move for it so I didn’t hesitate.  Strike first!  And eat!
The only dish on here that I found a bit odd was the sea cucumber.  I actually ate a piece of it before I found out what it was.  The last time I had sea cucumber was about 20 years ago and it made me vomit instantly.  I was able to keep it down this time, and it wasn’t that bad at all.  I was told that it’s a delicacy that can take up to five days to prepare and that it is very expensive.  I was told that a small bushel of these sea cucumbers can cost up to 200 SGD.
As for the other dishes, they were all fantastic.  The chicken was just right too.  It wasn’t dry at all and the skin was very crispy!
Furama sure knows how to put on a dinner party, and this was definitely a fantastic wedding celebration!
Congratulations, and best of luck to Raymond and Anna in their marriage!