Eating is a national pastime in Singapore and buffets are extremely popular in Singapore because you get to try many different foods in one seating.
Buffet Town at the basement of Raffles City Shopping Centre is impossible to miss with its bright fluorescent sign, taking over space previously occupied by Shokudo Japanese Food Bazaar.
The first thing you see when you enter the restaurant are these towering glass tanks filled with seafood and ice. Seafood on Ice serves Crayfish, Black Mussels, Poached Prawns, Gong Gong (conch), Green Mussels, Live Oysters (available during weekday dinner, weekend lunch and dinner) and the small red crayfish that is hugely popular in China.
The oysters are miserably small and I would suggest skipping the small red crayfish altogether as the shrivelled meat is tasteless.
Besides the usual Tabasco sauce and lemon slices, there are various sauces such as balsamic vinegar and onion, garlic chilli and ponzu.
Next to Seafood on Ice is the sushi counter where you can find freshly-made sushi.
There are various types of sushi available, from maki and nigiri to handrolls and dons.
There are only 2 types of sashimi available, salmon and tuna, accompied by soya sauce, freshly-grated wasabi and pickled ginger.
I am still waiting for the day when I see more than 3 types of sashimi at a buffet restaurant in Singapore. I am still waiting.
Buffet Town has an area especially dedicated to tempura. There are around 18 types of common tempura and you can find 5 types here. They are the common ones such as ebi (prawn), French beans and satsuma (sweet potato).
Pickles are an essential part of the Japanese diet and Buffet Town offers Tsubo Zuke (pickled radish), Parikko Zuke (pickled vegetable), Shiba Zuke (pickled eggplant) and Edamame.
At the Teppanyaki Grill counter, you can choose from a selection of meats and the chef will cook it on the spot for you. The teppanyaki beef and chicken managed to retain its juiciness and tenderness despite being well-cooked.
You can create your own salad at the Garden Salads station with the 12 types of fresh vegetables and 13 dressings from the exotic Raspberry Vinegar to the luxurious Truffle Oil.
I am not a fan of carbohydrates, but the freshly-baked bread and 4 types of butter – Herb Butter, Olive Butter, Plain Butter and Garlic Butter – look so appealing.
The Mediterranean counter is a little hidden at the back of the restaurant, but the Meat Lover Pizza, Baked Fish with Mixed Herbs and Roast Pork Collar is definitely worth the search.
The cold kinds of pasta are a little soggy but it was fun trying out the different pasta sauces.
Both the Cream of Mushroom (Vegetarian) and Minestrone Soup are not worth the calories.
You can find many local delights in the cooked food section, such as Nyonya Curry Chicken, Braised Pork Spare Ribs with Garlic Sauce, Deep Fried Salted Egg Fish and Fried Noodles.
Chilli Crab is Singapore’s iconic dish but Buffet Town is definitely not the place to try it. The crabs are dry and meatless and the chilli sauce is too sweet. Black Pepper Crab has better sauce but the crab itself is still dry and meatless.
Buffet Town does a decent job with the Hainanese Chicken Rice, another of Singapore’s icon dish. While the chicken rice is a little dry, the chicken itself is tender. The garlic and chilli sauce definitely helps.
The Homemade Laksa is surprisingly tasty. The curry broth is rich and thick and beancurd skin has soaked up all the goodness of the broth. You can opt to have the clams or not, but I would advise having the clams. After all, the clams make laksa taste so much better, right?
Sadly, I did not actually get to taste the Village Style Satay because it kept running out. Judging from the number of servings everyone is taking, I think the satays should be pretty good.
The Double-Boiled Soup of the day was Wintermelon Pork Ribs Soup. The winter melon has almost dissolved into the soup and the pork ribs are still tender after hours of boiling.
Buffet Town offers 9 different sauces, there is something for everyone – Cheese Sauce, Tomato Sauce, Chilli Sauce, Wasabi Mayonnaise, Sambal Balachan, Thai Chilli Sauce, Mayonnaise, Teriyaki Sauce and BBQ Sauce.
Dessert is not a one-counter affair at Buffet Town. There are Crepes and Banana Fritters, Hot Dessert Bar where you can enjoy old-time favourites like Cheng Tang, Sweet Potato Soup and Red Bean Soup. You can make your own Ice Kachang, have cakes or have a cup of ice-cream from the Ice-Cream Palour.
Free-flow freshly-brewed coffee and tea is included in the buffet price. If you prefer cold drinks, there are Lemonade, Blackcurrant, Green Tea and Peach Tea to choose from.
Buffet Town even has a small playground for children so that the adults can enjoy the buffet while the children play. How thoughtful.
Buffet Town offers over 300 buffet items over 29 categories and its excellent location in Raffles City, it is an international buffet that caters to everyone.
Monday – Friday: Adult $26.80++ Child $18.80++, Saturday – Sunday, Public Holidays and Public Holidays Eve: Adult $35.80++ Child $19.80++
Monday – Friday: Adult $38.80++ Child $21.80++, Saturday – Sunday, Public Holidays and Public Holidays Eve: Adult $42.80++ Child $22.80++
Address: 252 North Bridge Road, Raffles City Shopping Centre #B1-44E, Singapore 179103
Opening Hours: 11.30am – 3pm (last order 2.30pm), 6pm – 10pm (last order 9.30pm)