Singaporeans are known to travel anywhere for good food. Now, how about fresh seafood, zi char, and Chinese dishes by the pool?
Located at a hidden spot within Sports Lifestyle Centre at Bukit Merah Central, Cheval Chibao 赤宝 is an ideal venue for a casual gathering with family and friends.
The restaurant used to be located at Bukit Batok HTNS, but has moved over to this bigger outlet which houses both Chibao Chinese Cuisine and Cheval Café Bar – a western concept.
To get there, it is found inside Sports Lifestyle Centre (where Bukit Merah Swimming Pool is), with free parking available at the private side road of the complex.
This is where you can enjoy al fresco pool side dining in a tropical Bali-like setting as you savour hearty Chinese food.
Or settle nicely in their air-conditioned dining room for a comfortable meal, good for corporate engagements.
Here you’ll find popular specialties like Singapore Chilli Crab, Signature Creamy Pumpkin Crab, Signature Truffle Fried Rice, Gong Bao Diced Chicken Cubes with Cashew, Mongolian Pork Ribs with Plum Sauce, and many more at wallet-friendly prices.
Dishes are prepared using traditional Chinese techniques but they also incorporate ingredients from other cuisines.
Here are some of the Cheval Chibao 赤宝 must tries for your next visit:
Creamy Pumpkin Crab ($80 for 800 – 900g, $105 for 1-1.1kg)
This dreamy crab dish deserves the centerpiece in your meal. Imagine large Sri Lankan Crabs richly slathered in a creamy sauce made from mashed steamed pumpkins.
Now that’s a healthier alternative to the popular salted egg sauce, but has the same shiok mouthfeel.
You will find the bright-coloured sauce remarkably sweet as they use only Japanese pumpkins aka Kabocha. This variety is known for its natural sweetness and nutty flavour.
Perfecting the sauce’s taste and texture is a sprinkle of curry powder, and cooking the sauce in French butter and evaporated milk. This adds a touch of spice and silkiness to the sauce, which goes well with the chunky crab flesh. Order a side of mantou for the dips.
If you are up for more, other styles of crabs available include the best-selling Singapore Chilli Crab, Salted Egg Crab, Fragrant Black Pepper, and Ginger & Spring Onion. Advance order is recommended for crabs.
Singapore Curry Fish Head ($48.80 for Whole Pearl Grouper, $29.80 for Whole Red Snapper)
The immensely popular Singapore Curry Fish is prepared at Chi Bao not just with a head but an entire whole Pearl Grouper (or Whole Red Snapper for a cheaper alternative).
Delight in this fish’s firm yet tender white flesh with a sweet and mild buttery taste.
Served in a large bowl of creamy opulent sauce, the fish soaks up the coconut milk-infused gravy with hints of sourish notes.
What makes the curry scrumptious is a special blend of curry powder imported from India. A bevy of spices, including cinnamon, star anise, chilies and garlic add even more interesting layers of flavour.
For seafood lovers, the Whole Pearl Grouper (or Whole Red Snapper or HK Style Cream Snapper Fillet) can also be prepared Sweet & Sour, Signature Steamed Hong Kong Style, with Cai Pu and Fragrant Soya Sauce, or Claypot Tofu Style.
Szechuan Hot & Spicy Seafood Soup ($5.80 for 1 pax, $12.80 for 3 pax)
Whet your appetite with this hearty bowl of hot and spicy soup. Prepared Szechuan-style, this soup is chockful of prawns, mushrooms, silky eggs and tofu.
The spicy-sour broth is enhanced with Sarawak white peppercorns from Borneo, known for its mellow, slightly fermented taste.
Ground finely, they deliver peak flavour to the soup without the black specks, making this ultra-comforting in the cooler weather.
Signature Grandma’s Prawn Balls ($15.80)
Whatever you order, make a note to get the crowd-fave dish of Grandma’s Prawn Balls – the dish which has been around since the beginning of the restaurant.
These crispy and succulent jewels are made with prawns, minced pork and chopped water chestnuts.
Compared to the typical Prawn Balls, they do carry a higher proportion of prawns and water chestnut bits for more of that crunch.
Share a plate with family and friends and let this signature dish take you on a nostalgic journey to warm your heart.
Signature Champagne Pork Ribs ($15.80)
Give in to lure of savoury pork loin ribs, specially prepared to enhance their texture and flavour minus the pork-y taste.
A signature dish fancied by meat and champagne lovers alike, it delivers a deep flavour that goes well with rice or noodles.
These baby back ribs are lean yet tender, thanks to a two-day marination in champagne. The infusion of sparkling wine into the meat makes it sticky and sweet with a caramelised finish.
Stir-Fried Chinese Chives ($12.80)
Complement your main with a side of stir-fry, like this simple and home style rendition of Royal chives or qing long cai (青龙菜), literally “green dragon chives”).
Chinese chives have a mild sweet taste, and are stir-fried briskly at high heat to keep them crisp, green and fresh.
Together with aromatic garlic and peppery ginger, this veggie dish also includes a generous portion of earthy, savoury King oyster mushrooms.
Chibao Signature Truffle Fried Rice ($13.80)
The humble fried rice is elevated to a higher level as it mingles with the modern, flavourful truffle oil.
Also included bits of premium truffle, egg and spring onions, stir-fried and tossed into the soft yet crisp rice grains. During the end cooking process, truffle oil is added to up the aroma, complete with wok-hei.
Enjoy this Chibao secret-recipe dish served with a garnish of dried scallops aka conpoy, a rich Cantonese dried seafood product.
Longevity Mee Sua Soup ($13.80)
Traditionally prepared and eaten during birthdays and festivities, Mee Sua or longevity noodles is a comfort meal like no other.
Rejuvenate as you slurp the smooth strands of vermicelli, swimming in a hot pool of chicken soup.
Adding heft to the dish are tender chunks of chicken prepared from Kampong chickens. The aroma from sesame oil and Hua Diao wine (a type of rice wine originating from Shao Xing, China) makes this soup utterly inviting.
Also available is a Stir-Fried Mee Sua ($13.80) alternative.
Mango Pomelo Dessert ($5.80)
The tropical floral taste of mangoes are combined with the sweet-sour citrus flavour of pomelo in this light, refreshing dessert.
What makes this extra special are the tiny popping boba pearls that deliver fun in every bite.
If you come in a larger group, you can also opt for the Teochew Yam Paste with Ginko Nuts ($13.80 meant for 4-5 pax) and Red Bean Pancake ($11.80) as desserts.
Peach Gum Dessert Soup ($7.80, available in hot or cold)
Whether you like it hot or cold, this dessert soup will hit the spot.
With peach gum in the spotlight, this dessert also features a mix of health-friendly ingredients, like wolfberries, longan and red dates.
Sooth or refresh your palate as you enjoy this soup’s medicinal benefits, including cleansing the blood and cooling the body.
Cheval Chi Bao 赤宝
Sports Lifestyle Centre, 3500A Bukit Merah Central, Singapore 159837
Tel: +65 6899 9188
Opening Hours: 11am – 10:30pm (Mon – Sun)
Delivery: https://chevalchibao.oddle.me/en_SG, GrabFood and Foodpanda
* This entry is brought to you in partnership with Cheval Chi Bao 赤宝.