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A Feast of Treasured Legacies

A Feast of Treasured Legacies

The Shangri-La Hotel derives its name from the wondrous Himalayan utopia depicted in James Hilton’s novel, ‘Lost Horizon.’ Like its  famous  namesake,  the Shangri-La Hotel has provided rest, comfort and serenity for travelers for nearly half a century, while epitomizing the best and finest in Asian hospitality.

And at the centre of Shangri-La’s culinary firmament has always been Shang Palace.

Launched in 1971 together with the Shangri-La Singapore, Shang Palace has been a constant star. Both hotel and restaurant would make history as  the first of their respective, and soon to be iconic, lineages. Shang Palace Singapore is the forerunner of an international chain of 38 Shang Palace restaurants worldwide; today Shang Palace Singapore is the only F&B concept remaining from the hotel group’s opening – and the flagship of Shang Palace brand.

The cuisine and the man behind it 

At the restaurant’s helm is Chef Mok Kit Keung, whose sterling 40-year career saw him bring Shang Palace Kowloon to its second Michelin star in 2011. Chef Mok is a master of Cantonese gastronomy who is dedicated to preserving traditional flavours and identities. This harmony of the historical and contemporary is expressed in his 3 new ‘menus’ – Nostalgia, Signature, and Innovation.

The first – Nostalgia – features dishes from yesteryear that are ‘lost’ or ‘rarely experienced’. Preparation of these heritage dishes is often painstaking, time-consuming and intricate – in other words, they call for the master’s hand. These dishes also require the master’s eye: Chef Mok has made considered edits by Chef Mok to preserve original flavours and textures.

These skills experience and passion are evident in dishes such as the Sautéed Fresh Milk, Crabmeat and Egg White accompanied by Deep-fried Pork Rolls with Preserved Bean Curd, which replaces buffalo milk with fresh milk and wraps the pork rolls with pork fat hand-sliced so thinly that they’re translucent – only possible with a master chef; as well as the in Boneless Quail Filled with Bird’s Nest in Supreme Broth, which replaces shark’s fin with bird’s nest and requires fastidious delicacy to retain the skin and form the tiny  game  bird during the deboning process, such that the final presentation is a dramatic unveiling of a plump whole quail.

In the Innovative menu, Chef Mok applies his distinctive brand of creativity to transform traditional flavours. His travels often colour his culinary perceptions – take, for example, the Stewed Coral Trout with Foie Gras and Black Garlic. His Parisian trips inspired the use of buttery foie gras to elevate the dish with silkiness, and black garlic’s sweet-sharp flavours to balance the richness.

Likewise, Chef Mok’s sharp observations of local markets and produce are deftly integrated to create new dishes so harmonious they taste like they have history. The Coddled Sliced Soon Hock Fillet and Young Coconut in Fish Broth is inspired by the ubiquity of coconuts in Singapore, and  uses  both young coconut water and flesh to make something fresh and light, sweet and savoury. In this menu, all the favourite flavours of Cantonese cuisine are present with clarity, with an elegant touch of familiarity.

The Signature menu showcases dishes that Chef Mok has made famous over the years, including a number that have brought him acclaim and awards – and often rightly so. These dishes, a mix of tradition and innovation, have all been filtered through his experience, his culinary mastery and his passion.

His Sautéed Boneless Chicken Wing Skewered with Abalone and Mushroom, for instance, and the Oven-baked Cod Fillet with Egg White and Dried Scallops are triumphs of mindful adaptation. Memories of beautiful  dishes were refined and elevated with precise, often labour-intensive techniques, and premium ingredients.

There are also deeply traditional dishes such as the Deep-fried Whole Boneless Chicken Filled with  Fried Glutinous Rice, meticulously recreated from scratch with kampong chicken, meticulously deboned, then stuffed with glutinous rice wok-fried with preserved Chinese sausage, dehydrated prawns, dried scallops and dried shiitake.

Throughout his constant explorations, especially in to new ingredients outside of China, Chef Mok remains  focused on traditional Cantonese cooking, underpinned by some 60 sauces that he makes in the restaurant. Th ere is no added MSG in the entire menu and Chef Mok works with producers to create non-MSG sauces. At Shang Palace sustainable sourcing of produce is  also a key objective actively practiced.

An indelible legacy of hospitality 

The Shangri-La, in its very name, resonates with the restful wonder of James Hilton’s lost paradise, and Asian hospitality at its finest. Every hotel, whatever  its location, shines with a familial warmth: a genuine caring concern for one’s personal comfort crystallised in the saying, “Great hotels are made of great employees.”

Each Shang Palace encounter forges connections  and builds relationships: between chef, staff and diner, between business and community. It does this by delivering the effortless service and hospitality that is in the nature of its staff. The multitudes who have dined at the restaurant throughout the years attest to this, including families across generations, and local gourmands and international hotel guests. “Joy comes from seeing my guest smile,” says Chef Mok, “when I cook from the heart.”

Yet behind and beyond impeccable dining experiences is a larger tale woven from the inspiration of its values – Shang Palace looks to leave legacies. Chef Mok often says, “It is the duty of the ch ef to pass down knowledge … and to share wholeheartedly.” – be it by training and imparting knowledge of traditional cooking to new chefs; by ingraining the spirit of Asian hospitality in new service staff; or, by safeguarding the roots of cuisine so that families can share stories of meals at Shang Palace from one generation to another.

About Chef Mok Kit Keung Shang Palace, Executive Chef 

Executive Chinese chef Mok Kit Keung  helms the Chinese restaurant, Shang Palace, at Shangri- La Hotel, Singapore, where he oversees an experienced team of Chinese chefs and is responsible for all of the hotel’s Chinese food production. Prior to his current position, Chef Mok was the executive Chinese chef of Kowloon Shangri-La, Hong Kong, in charge of its two Michelin-starred

Chef Mok trained in traditional Cantonese cuisine at a young age and has over 40 years of experience.

He came to Singapore at age 28, where he spent almost two decades working at a number of prestigious establishments, international luxury hotels, and convention centres including Raffles Hotel Singapore, and Suntec Singapore International Convention and Exhibition Centre. In 2010, he joined the Marina Bay Sands, Singapore, as chef de cuisine heading the kitchens of four Chinese restaurants, and more than 75 chefs, before moving to Hong Kong in 2015.

Having prepared meals for many prominent dignitaries and celebrities from around the globe, including King Mohammed VI of Morocco, the president of Russia, and the former and current prime ministers of Singapore, Chef Mok joined the Shangri-La Hotel, Singapore, in October 2017, bringing with him his distinctive gastronomic mastery.

Inspired by the unique ch aracter of Singapore’s culinary culture, Chef Mok infuses his Cantonese creations with an artistic and modern presentation, while remaining true to the flavours of tradition. He eschews added MSG and is devoted to artisanal practices – he makes more than 60 sauces  in-house –  as well as sustainability in the kitchen. His signature dishes include Oven-baked Cod Fillet with Egg White and Conpoy, Baked Sliced Abalone with Inaniwa Noodles, and Braised Spare Ribs with Chin Kiang Vinegar.

Awards and Accolades 

In addition to Michelin-star recognition, Chef Mok has garnered numerous accolades over the years including the Gold Medal Award in Chinese Cuisine from the Restaurant Association of Singapore in 2001 and 2004, and the Gold Medal Award in the Food Hotel Asia 2008 Imperial Challenge, Chef Mok also participated in Singapore’s annual Asian Masters event in November 2013. In July 2012, he was invited as a guest ch ef at Shangri-La’s Far Eastern Plaza in Taipei, Taiwan, and conducted a cooking class that was well received by the local audience. In March 2012, he cooked for the Melbourne Food and Wine Festival’s “Stars of Stars” event in Australia, the top-calibre epicurean event  that saw a constellation of European and Asian Michelin-starred ch efs  – eight in total.

On the same year, he was invited by Hong Kong Tourism Board to sit on the panel of judges for the Best of the Best Culinary Awards. In 2011, Chef Mok was invited to judge at the Cathay Pacific Hong Kong International Wine and Spirit Competition (HKIWSC) at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre. In partnership with the London-based International Wine & Spirit Competition, which has been  running for 40 years, the Cathay Pacific HKIWSC is Asia’s first and largest wine and spirit competition.

In April 2014, he was one of five foreign guest chefs invited to participate in the sixth annual Chinese Restaurant Awards in Vancouver, Canada. As the only chef with two Michelin stars under his belt, Chef Mok worked alongside other award-winning chefs to cr eate a meal for 300 people in recognition of the culinary cultural exchange between Canada and China. Prior to th is event, he guest-cooked at Shang Palace at Shangri-La Hotel, Paris, creating specially curated menus that was lauded by French palates.

Today, Chef Mok continues his explorations in to all aspects of cuisine, including the use of ingredients and methods drawn from the region and new, innovative combinations of flavour, in order to offer diners an elevated and  truly memorable dining experience at Shang Palace, Singapore.

About Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts 

Hong Kong-based Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts currently operates over 100 hotels with a room inventory of over 41,000. Shangri-La hotels are five-star deluxe properties featuring extensive luxury facilities and services. Shangri-La hotels are located in Australia, Canada, mainland China, Fiji, France, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Maldives, Mauritius, Mongolia, Myanmar, Philippines, Qatar, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Sultanate of Oman, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates and the United Kingdom. The group has a substantial development pipeline with upcoming projects in Australia, mainland China, Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia and Saudi Arabia. For more information, please visit www.shangri-la.com.

About Shang Palace 

Located in Shangri-La hotel, Shang Palace has held a reputation as one of the foremost Chinese restaurants in Singapore for 48 years. As the flagship of 38 Shang Palace restaurants worldwide, it is helmed by veteran ch ef Chef Mok Kit Keung, who brought Shang Palace Hong Kong to its second Michelin star in 2011. As an expert on Cantonese cuisine, he brings to the table a delectable harmony of old and new; including ‘lost’ dishes, his award-winning signatures, and a selection of innovative creations inspired by his travels. The restaurant’s cooking has no added MSG and features more than 60 sauces made in-house. Combining stunning décor and the pinnacle of Asian service and hospitality, with impeccable Cantonese dining, Shang Palace remains the gastronomic icon in Shangri-La’s international group of hotels.

Press Contact

Simin Chong
Assistant Marketing Communications Manager

Phone

(65) 6213 4599

Address

22 Orange Grove Road, Singapore 258350

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