I was invited to a tasting of Chinese cuisine at JU DIAN (聚点) at Smith Street by Streetdirectory.com sometime last month before I lost my camera. Sadly, my photos of that session together with my camera are now lost FOREVER.

Thankfully, the great folks at Streetdirectory.com managed to get me a couple of great shots, if not I’ll be unable to share with you about this Chinese restaurant!

JU DIAN serves up a diverse menu of yummy Chinese dishes from various parts of China. Of course the recipes have been tweaked to suit our Singaporean tastes. You don’t have to worry that you’ll be unaccustomed to the extremely oily and salty food that the Mainland Chinese are fond of! Of course, if you’re in for the real deal, just let them know and they’ll give you the unadulterated version.

When I stepped into JU DIAN I was pleasantly surprised by how clean and hygienic everything looked. I am ashamed to admit that I definitely had my preconceived notions on what the place would be like when I heard that the restaurant was at Chinatown, I imagined a dirtier and less modern and pristine environment.

I was blessed to be able to try quite a few dishes and I’ll be highlighting a few of my favourites!

BBQ Skewers

JU DIAN offers a wide variety of BBQ skewers and each stick can cost from $1.00 to $5.00 depending on what type it is.

The BBQ skewers have got to be my favourite. The well marinated meat was tender and juicy with little bits of fat which lent it so much flavour.

This dish originates from Sze Chuan and is a popular midnight snack for party-going, alcohol guzzling Chinese. In Singapore, we seek out a piping hot bowl of porridge or some dim sum after a night out. In China though, skewers are the choice post alcoholic-binge snack.

Broccoli & Mixed Vegetables

This is light on the palate and is a great complementary dish when you’re having loads of oilier meaty items. The fresh vegetables are sauteed in a light sauce and a hint of garlic.

Fried Seafood Noodles

Okay, I am such a carbs girl. I was wolfing the noodles down like non-stop. I am super not shy as I grabbed seconds. The fried seafood noodles are smooth and flavourful. There’s something very comforting about these noodles – maybe it’s that almost wholesome “home cooked” quality of it. It is slightly saltish but delicious food usually is!

Sweet & Sour “Squirrel” (松鼠) Fish

This is sweet and sour fish with a great twist – you don’t need to fear choking on any bones. The chef has expertly de-boned the Sweet & Sour “Squirrel” fish.

This is so very Singaporean! The thick gravy is more sour than sweet and this is what I like about it. The fish is deep fried till crisp and then the gravy is slathered over. I had no trouble eating this because I didn’t have to worry about the bones. Very intelligent of the chef to have it boneless because then everyone would be asking for seconds!

By the way, this might go into your little black book of night time eats because JU DIAN is open till late (2am in fact)! They’ve got quite a range of beers and wines and mind you, not just Chinese ones!

If you’d like to get an alternative review on JU DIAN, check out Jess’ blog for her review here.

Thanks Streetdirectory.com and Mr William Sun for kindly hosting us for dinner!

Kreta Ayer Shop Houses 
14 Smith Street, Singapore 058928 

Tel: +65 6222 5166

Open daily from 11.00am to 2.00am

Check out their Streetdirectory website for more photos, menus and details.