Who: Daniel Ang (danielfooddiary.com)

Blogging since: May 2008, current blog started in 2011. “I wish I had a fanciful history and
a snazzier name. I wanted to call it The Food Diary, but on a Twitter poll everyone said, ’Why not put your name there?’ And it just happened. I set up my blog in a day.” 

Family matters: In 2011, he left his full-time job. “I needed to spend more time with my mum; life is not really about making money. I’m glad to have the opportunity to do things I like without sacrificing as much. Income-wise I did take a bit of a cut–no bonus, medical, CPF. So you have to be very disciplined.” 

Shake it off: He’s been teaching group exercise classes (aerobics, step, zumba) for a decade. “I used to be quite fat and failed my IPPT except for sit-ups. I was determined to lose weight, and be fitter. After struggling for two years, I became a fitness instructor.” 

(B)eaten: Eight restaurants in a day. “Terrible; by the third one I couldn’t take anymore. Nevertheless, it was a good experience to learn how to pace myself.” 

Big spender: Daniel has cut down on attending media tastings since early 2014, and pays his own way for his cafe stories. “The average bill is $50, but some easily come up to $200. I post daily, with a minimum of 30 posts a month.” 

Blogging pet peeves: “There’s still a lot of negative perception about blogging. You don’t see the
other side where, for example, bloggers organise a charity event (Ultimate Hawker Fest). It’s myopic here, unlike in some countries where bloggers work with print media all the time for information and sources.” 

Ultimate comfort food: Wanton mee. “I like Kok Kee Wan Ton Noodle (from the now-defunct
Lavender Food Square) but they’re gone.” 

Don’t offer him: “I’ve eaten things from praying mantis to centipedes; even balut. But I don’t eat
reptiles, or pets–it’s not worth the anguish.” 

New Year plans: To publish a book and “uncover the newest places and hidden finds no one’s heard of.” 

On being runner-up in awards: “I’m happy being number two because it gives something to work towards. But awards matter, of course! Who doesn’t want to win?” 

Exercise tips: “Find an activity that you really enjoy, so you won’t find it such a pain. Three
times a week, 150 minutes, that’s the Health Promotion Board’s guideline. Always remember,
input versus output; it’s a simple equation.” 

 

The buffet: BBQ & A La Carte Buffet at Han Geun Doo Geun, Chinatown Point ($36.90++, daily 5.30-10pm)

Time of visit: 16 December, 7pm

K-BBQ: “I’m very neutral when it comes to Korean food. I somehow haven’t caught on the Korean wave at all.“

Strategy: “I start with banchan (side dishes) because it helps get my appetite up. This is followed by mains like meat. I normally eat for the quality rather than the quantity. This is my body, I shouldn’t mistreat it.“

Highlight: Spaciousness. “When you get your food, what I really hate is bumping into people.” 

Ventilation: Not too smoky, but you’ll still smell of the grill.

Best dish: The tender bulgogi sliced beef which are not overly marinated. “The potato salad, kimchi and spicy soup are good too.”

Not even on his mind: Gimbap (Korean sushi). “Sorry but leave it to the Japanese, please. And the rice fills you up too quickly.” 

Missed: Tteok galbi or beef short ribs (not available), ramyeon (no tummy room).

Shouldn’t have taken: Spinach banchan. “It’s really not good. There are some things I order purely for colours, for photo-taking.” 

How many BiTES?
Taste: 3.5/5
Value for money: 3/5
Service: 3/5

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