Meiji Run 2015 Race Recap: If Only All Races Could Be So Delicious!

I doubt anyone joined this Race for the run because when an event is promoted as “the world’s most delicious race” including a Meiji Buffet consisting of “a feast of chocolate, fondue, milk, yoghurt and more“, who remembers a 5 km run?!

The first ever Meiji Run 2015 was held the past Saturday on Palawan Beach in Sentosa. With the sheer amount of food, yoghurt-beverage and, race staff, it seemed no expense was spared to organize this event. Extremely well-organized from the Bag Depository system to the run itself and carnival thereafter, my girlfriends and I had such a good afternoon. My IG and FB posts from the event attracted heaps of envious comments and of course, many likes.

Let me first recap the most boring bit of the afternoon: the race route. The running route was part-road and beach. The running path on the road was cramped. A lot of weaving in between walkers. But as I mentioned before, NO ONE WAS THERE FOR THE RUN. I certainly did not mind. Running on the soft sand was hard but good. My thighs definitely got a good workout! We ran past many beach bars and many beach volley-ballers. I hope us runners were not too disruptive. In the middle of the route, there was a Meiji Cracker Maze. Doesn’t it sound amazing?!

Well in reality, it was not desirable. It had rained the entire morning before the race so the crackers were soaked through and either falling off the walls or squishy. And the smell was horrendous. So gross!! Soaked Meiji Crackers is not a pleasant smell. My girlfriends and I couldn’t fathom walking through the maze. So we walked out through the side.

There were distance markers along the way but we were certain they were incorrectly placed. When we saw this marker, we had only ran for 12 minutes. Was it 3km ran or left? Who knows. None of us remember after the race…

Another really bizarre but amazing part of the race was the sheer number of water stations for such a short distance: three. Plenty of water and sports drinks at every station. At the last station, full-size bottles of sports water were given out!

When the race ended, we were each immediately handed a plastic Meiji Land bowl and cup before heading into the Carnival area. A funny story. At first one of my girlfriend did not want the set but the volunteer remarked it was necessary for the “buffet”. Immediately she went back and grabbed a set. When we entered the Carnival area, those Meiji Land bowls sure came in handy because that’s when the real fun began!

There were EIGHT booths with each booth serving a particular Meiji product. Four of the booths were food and unlimited! I’m talking FREE FLOW of Hello Pandas! Do you know how heavenly it was?!

Us girls simply could not stop eating bowls of it.

You like Meiji crackers? This booth would have been your dream come true. I got a lot of packets for my brother-in-law.  You guys like Yan Yan?

Help yourselves to Strawberry and Banana-flavoured ones.

And very randomly and definitely can’t be Meiji-brand: Chicken Burgers

On the other side were the Drinks booths. Unfortunately these were only limited to one drink per booth per person. Still, it is wise not too drink too much milk, anyway.

I don’t usually purchase yoghurt or milk drinks but I sure enjoyed Meiji’s. This Paigen yoghurt drink tasted exactly like Yakult but in a bigger bottle.

Meiji milk especially the chocolate flavour is always yummy.

The new Bulgaria yoghurt – so tangy and YUMMY! New in Singapore, these were featured in the Sunday Life yesterday and rightly so.

There was a Photo Booth tent but the queue(s) was sooo long. 

The loot of five girls. We learnt from many around us and took a box to contain all our goodies. 

The Race medal and the chocolate crunchy biscuit pack at the back was very good by the way. None of us have seen it in the Singapore shops before.

UNFORTUNATELY, no one was allowed to leave the carnival with more than one pack of each food. A lot of big bags of Hello Panda and Yan Yan were seized by more than three security guards. Every bag was checked before we could leave. Don’t ask how I managed to smuggle the Meiji crackers out.

At the entrance of the race, there was a Meiji Fair. Super cheap snacks and yoghurt were sold. People were having a field day with this one. 

    

I wrote in the Feedback Form provided afterwards for this event to be held again next year. At the same time, longer-distance races to be provided. I cannot imagine a better way to end a race then a never-ending supply of Chocolate Hello Pandas. ❤

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Peach Garden Catering

My eldest sister held her Chinese customary wedding at my place on a weekday afternoon and my Mum and I took the opportunity to order a slightly better caterer for my fewer-than-usual relatives. In our opinion, it had to be Peach Garden Catering. With prices from $25+ per pax, we expected good quality food for this special afternoon. We concluded that afternoon that Peach Garden Catering most certainly did not disappoint.

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The set up was pretty luxe. For $180 more dollars, guests helped themselves to ceramic plates and stainless steel cutleries. The dirtied plates just had to be placed in a big plastic container provided by the caterers; so convenient! The selections might not have extension but they made up for in the quantity and quality of the food. The customer base of Peach Garden catering must be predominantly Chinese because different types of chillis were generously served for each dish.

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The huge pot of Fried Carrot Cake with X.O. Sauce was the first dish that greeted us and it was impressive! Although the turnip cubes were soft and overcooked, it was wonderfully aromatic with subtle tastes of smokiness and spicyness.

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This Fried Bean Skin Roll with Seaweed was unsurprisingly a huge hit with my Aunties due to it’s cute nugget look and deep-fried crispy skin. Each roll was fat and filled with a crunchy prawn paste; so addictive! At the end of the afternoon, many euphorically went home with ziplock bags full of these rolls that crazily remained crunchy two hours later.

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The Roasted Boneless Chicken with Prawn Paste was a little monotonous and soggy on the inside. The deep-fried element saved this dish and in the end, I did not see much leftovers.

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This vegetable dish contained many yellowish broccoli heads. My Aunt said it was overcooked but the generous servings of mushroom and crabmeat gravy made this a popular dish.

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HOW I LOVE THIS DISH! The exterior was light and satisfyingly crunchy! Each piece was meaty. The plum sauce was the perfect contrast to the savouriness.

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This Fried Mee Sua/ Mian Xian topped with generous amounts of scallops stole my heart too. The noodles were soft but not overdone, and fried so aromatically. I had two helpings. 🙂 I could have gone for more if not for the evening 8 course dinner at Four Seasons Hotel.

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There were two desserts, this Chinese Pancake filled with lotus paste, and a sweet soup. I did not try both as I had gone for two rounds of the savouries. There was simply no need for any more satisfaction after the two rounds. 🙂

Steamboat Buffets = Comfort Food

This afternoon, I gave the oven a rest and popped down to Newcastle, England with my housemate, J. It is about 10 minutes by train from the little town where I study and in Newcastle, there is a (rather small) Chinatown. In this Chinatown, there is a buffet restaurant. Chinese buffet restaurants in England, in my opinion, are horrible. But there is something about the wide selection of greasy deep-fried or stir-fried “chinese” food that is rather comforting. A restaurant my friends and I recently discovered is No. 1 Oriental Buffet Restaurant. For 12.99 pounds, you get both the cooked food buffet and a steamboat/ hotpot buffet too. It actually is quite a good deal since it is a pain to make our own steamboat. What I really like about this place is that they have a wide selection of pork dishes and one of my all-time favourites…

Tofu!! :))) I heart Tofu. But every time I look at them in the supermarket whilst grocery shopping, my heart breaks a little. Here is why. I always buy the Organic Firm Tofu from Waitrose which used to cost 1.38 pounds. However it is no secret food prices have hit sky-high and my tofu have also been affected. Right before I left for my New York holiday at the end of March it increased to 1.45 pounds per pack and when I came back a week later, the price had climbed to 1.55 pounds. With that, I ended my love affair with tofu. Thus when I first visited this restaurant I was so beeswaxly excited about the tofu that I ate all I could!

Anyhow moving on to the buffet. One can not expect Wagyu beef or abalone but one can expect luncheon meat, more tofu, crabs, fishballs and crab sticks. Er yes, I pay 12.99 to eat all the luncheon meat my tummy can hold. Oh, and another thing this place has, Bubble Tea. Er yes again, I pay an extra 2 pounds for Bubble Tea. Rest assured this is not an everyday thing.

Bubble Tea in a pint glass. Only in England

Left is a Chicken Stock Base and on the right, Chongqing Spicy Soup.