Keropokman a.k.a Philip Lim is a full-time systems analyst and accidental food blogger. We put the jovial geek to work at the steamboat buffet at M Hotel and discover his serious foodie inclinations.
Who: Keropokman (www.keropokman.com)
Blogging since: 2006. “I have a ’hobby’ of buying domain names. I have over 20, which costs me about US$10-15 each annually. After buying www.keropok.com, I started signing off on online comments as ’Keropok’ with the added ’Man’. My wife is KopiKosongGirl on the blog.”
Almost another man: “I tried to buy www.rotiprata.com, but later I was informed someone got it 30 minutes before I did.” He owns www.bojio.sg and www.currypuff.sg as well, among others.
On the ’other’ P.Lim: “I receive email for Phillip Lim, the designer: Parents request to have their daughters on the runway.”
The techy speaks: “I’m a systems analyst doing coding in the same company for 15 years. I don’t have a blogging style, but I’m very interested in food–I buy dozens of magazines and love technical books with cooking in it. I guess you can call it cooking for geeks.”
Blogging pet peeves: “Food bloggers need to read up before they go out. To describe something well, you have to understand it first; for instance the correct temperature to cook prawns. It doesn’t matter if you don’t have good grammar or writing skills, you should be able to give your readers clear, direct information. On that note, you have to dare to try all kinds of food. How can you write about it if you can’t describe it?”
Ultimate comfort food: Good bitter chocolate, especially Pierre Herme. “I have a separate fridge just for chocolate, ice cream and ice. It keeps them from being contaminated by food smells, and it saves electricity as I run the fridge at 8 °C.”
Don’t offer him: “Turtle. I just can’t eat it, I have no reason why.”
The buffet: Steamboat buffet at The Buffet, M Hotel ($53++, Mon-Thu 6-11pm; $63++ Fri-Sun 5-11pm)
Time of visit: 9 October, 7pm
Strategy: “At buffets, I usually go for the meats (like wagyu) first, but here, I go for fish. Walk one round to eye the different stations first–there is the drunken prawn station with live prawns in a tank, a carousel with the raw ingredients, and two stations for dessert.”
On the steamboat spread: “The range is quite reasonable and offers fresh picks. You can tell the pomfret is very fresh–the eyes are clean and glossy.”
Steamboat soup pick: “Teochew fish? Never had that, so let’s try it. And the tom yam, because the laksa sounds heavy and herbal chicken is normal.”
Didn’t eat: Dessert. “Too full, and they didn’t have chocolate ice cream!”
Took photos of: The dip station with 12 condiments to mix and match.
Second helpings of: Drunken prawn. “The prawns are so fresh, and the soup is strong and herbal, but a little diluted.”
Most memorable: “It’s good that this place has pomfret and especially the cockles–it’s a risk for buffets but it’s good to see it. They told us that customers really like to add cockles to the laksa broth.”
How many BiTES?
Value for money: 4/5