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Your last minute guide to the best mooncakes this Mid-Autumn Festival 2021

Mid-Autumn Festival 2021 is steadily approaching us once again.

In case you’re not up to speed, the exact date this year is on the 21st of September.

We may have gotten used to the restrictions that the pandemic has brought upon us this year, but that doesn’t mean we can’t send some mooncake cheer to our friends and family. After all, it doesn’t seem like we’ll be able to host or attend dinner parties in large groups anytime soon.

Chefs across the island this year are getting increasingly innovative when it comes to mooncake flavours. We’re talking options that range from quirky twists on traditional flavours to an unconventional selection of kueh lapis mooncakes that are almost too far-out to be true. Read on for the full list of best mooncakes to try this Mid-Autumn Festival 2021.

(Hero and featured image credit: Mandarin Oriental Singapore)

1

Raffles Hotel Singapore has seen many perennial favourites that residents around the island look forward to year after year. Besides the iconic Champagne Truffle Snow-skin Mooncakes, the heritage hotel has debuted two new innovative flavours this year. The Da Li Rose and Strawberry Chocolate Snow-Skin Mooncake, for instance, takes inspiration from yì by Jereme Leung’s signature Da Li Rose Petal Ice Cream, while the Yunnan Dark Brown Sugar and Rum Truffle Snow-Skin Mooncake seeks to present a decadent treat that’s perfect with a soothing cup of Chinese tea.

Those who prefer to make in-store purchases at the Raffles Hotel Singapore Mooncake Booth (North Bridge Road Atrium of Raffles Arcade) can enjoy a 15-percent discount from now till 31 August 2021. Cardholders that make online orders paid through HSBC, AMEX, Citibank, CIMB, DBS/POSB, Maybank, OCBC, Standard Chartered, and UOB can enjoy a 20-percent discount from now till 15 September 2021.

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2

Pine Garden might not be a luxury brand when it comes to mooncakes, but we’re certain you’ll be hankering for a second bite after a taste of their handmade goods. This year, they’ve brought back the Baked Black Sesame Paste with Mochi, an aromatic number with a delightfully soft and chewy mochi centre. Another one to look out for? The Pandan Coconut Dodol that’s packed with Southeast Asian flavours — think an aromatic pandan paste that’s elevated by a chewy coconut dodol centre and thin, glossy baked crust.

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3

One would think that there would be a creative limit to mooncake flavours, but Regent Singapore has clearly proven us wrong. The storied hotel has once again unveiled a delectable snowskin mooncake collection this year, inspired by each of its award-winning restaurants. From Basilico, we refreshed our palates with the Amalfi Limoncello & Basil mooncake, before embarking on an alcoholic journey with the fruity Kyoho Grape and Kyoto Dry Gin alternative from Manhattan.

Make it a set with the Luxury Box — it comes with two Journey cocktails by Manhattan (crafted with Buffalo Trace bourbon) and two crystal whiskey glasses to pair your mooncakes with.

 

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4

The Single Yolk Lychee Lotus Paste makes a return to JW Marriott Singapore South Beach’s baked mooncake selection this year, together with the new flavours like the Green Apple with Soju Truffle snowskin mooncake.

While mooncakes boxes usually steer towards more classic designs, the treats from JW Marriott Singapore South Beach this year come encased in two palatial designed gift boxes, each one shaped in a “月”, the Chinese word for “moon”.

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5

To be completely honest, we weren’t quite sure what to make of Goodwood Park Hotel’s Tropicana mooncake when we first caught wind about it. Our worries were unfounded, however, at first bite. The refreshing natural sweetness of the coconut and passion fruit puree left us completely addicted, while the little studs of pineapple cubes and coconut flakes made for a wonderful textural addition to the dessert.

Goodwood Park Hotel has also brought back favourites like the Cempedak snowskin mooncake and the Blue Pea Flower with White Lotus Paste and Melon Seeds, two invigorating flavours that are dressed in vibrant colours to make anyone’s day.

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6

The Peninsula has always been synonymous with luxury, and we’re especially glad to experience the hospitality icon through their mooncakes this year. The Peninsula’s Mini Egg Custard Mooncakes are one of the most sought-after seasonal delights year after year too: buttery, soft, and incredibly sinful, these mini bakes are crafted with premium-grade duck eggs, butter, and coconut milk for an indulgent treat unlike any other.

If you’d like to try something a little different, Chef Tang has conceptualised two irresistible new mooncake flavours as well, namely the Walnut and Fig Flavoured Egg Custard, and Red and South Date Lotus Seed Paste, both of which can be found in the Star Chef Mooncake Gift Box. The Peninsula’s entire mooncake collection is available for sale from now till 21 September 2021.

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7

Mandarin Oriental Singapore introduces a slew of new and time-honoured mooncakes this year in celebration of Mid-Autumn Festival. Traditionalists can revel in the Low Sugar Silver Lotus Paste with Double or Single Yolk, while those with more adventurous palates can try the Japanese-inspired Chestnut Paste with Hokkaido Milk, Apricot and Melon Seeds baked mooncake.

If you have a tea aficionado in mind, perhaps the fragrant Tieguanyin with Macadamia Nuts baked mooncake or the BiluoChun Green Tea with Guava and Chestnut snow skin mooncake would be a better option.

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8

What happens when you put a mooncake and a traditional local snack together? You’ll get these Marble Lapis Snowskin Mooncakes from Peranakan restaurant, Chilli Padi. While the name might raise an eyebrow or two, we guarantee it’s worth a try. Four flavours make up the marble lapis mooncakes this year, and we found a favourite in Lychee Kisses, a perfect blend of buttery kueh lapis, fresh lychee flesh, smooth white chocolate, and hand-whipped cream for a fruity and indulgent treat.

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9
St. Regis Singapore

You won’t have to look any further if you’re searching for a mooncake set that’s sure to impress. St Regis Singpaore’s selection comes in three different exquisite glass boxes — a fiery orange-red, a dainty pink and an energetic blue.

As for mooncake flavours, expect favourites like the Black & White Sesame Paste with Salted Peanut Truffle to make a comeback, or try the new Pandan Paste with Macadamia Nuts and the Yuzu Paste with Lemon Citrus. Those looking to gift can choose the Noble Collectible Gift Set, consisting of four baked or eight snowskin mooncakes, complete with a canister of Oolong Osmanthus tea and a collectible from the Palace Museum.

10

Resorts World Sentosa has always been the one to look out for our health during this season of indulgence, but it doesn’t mean that the health-forward treats lose out on any flavour. The snowskin treats come lower in sugar, and are infused with premium American Ginseng, grapeseed oil and yuzu for that perfect balance of taste and visuals. If you’re not up for snowskin mooncakes, the establishment’s one Michelin-starred restaurant, table65, and Japanese restaurant, Syun. The two restaurants come tougher to introduce an exquisite 2-piece ensemble, featuring a rich, aromatic Golden Bamboo Charcoal with Australian Black Truffle that’s generously packed with Australian black winter truffle, walnut, black sesame paste and custard, as well as the (Hibiki Harmony) Whisky Soaked Yuzu Peel with Sakura, filled with a smooth low-sugar Sakura white lotus paste and an traditional salted egg yolk centre.

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11

Homegrown bistro The Marmalade Pantry is churning out mooncakes once again this year, each one crafted with a low sugar and no lard recipe. Those who enjoy local-inspired flavours will enjoy Pandan Kaya with Melon Seeds for a bit of nostalgia, while the Classic Earl Grey Infused Lotus Paste makes for a great midday snack with its namesake tea.

Instead of a box, the mooncakes will be housed in a limited edition bag made with woven rattan webbing and scarlet red PVC-leather, creating a sleek, reusable carrier that’s made for everyday use. From now till 22 August 2021, customers who pay using Mastercard will also be entitled to a 15 percent early bird discount for both online (enter the code “MCG15” at checkout) and in-store purchases.

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12

Lady M finds itself as one of our favourite confectioneries in town for a dependable, sweet treat, so we’re glad we can count on them this Mid-Autumn Festival too. The Celebration of Lights Gift Set evokes childhood memories with a rotating Ferris wheel box (that lights up, no less!), complete with six mooncake compartments. This year, they’re working with the established Kee Wah Bakery to dream up two iconic flavours for diners: a rich, buttery Custard Mooncake and silky, cocoa-custard Chocolate Mooncake that’s perfect for guests of all ages.

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13

Ditch your tea, because you’ll want to bust out your best Scotch for this one. Created in partnership with Raffles Hotel Singapore, The Macallan Double Cask 12 Years Old Snow-Skin Mooncake is infused with a generous infusion of The Macallan Double Cask 12 Years Old. The single malt imparts flavours of honey, citrus and ginger — the perfect accompaniment to the rich milk chocolate and cream in these pretty, baby blue-hued treats. For the full experience, pair these snowskin mooncakes with a dram of The Macallan Double Cask 15 Years Old and The Macallan Double Cask 18 Years Old.

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14

Another whisky-mooncake collaboration worth your Mid-Autumn celebrations this year is this one boy Glenfiddich. The Scotch whisky label teamed up with local creative agency Chun Tsubaki for this exclusive collection of snowskin mooncakes. The first incorporates a Glenfiddich 12 Years Single Malt Whisky-infused truffle within a Matcha-pistachio snow skin and a roasted barley and dark brown sugar filling. The second spotlights the Glenfiddich 15 Year Solera Reserve Single Malt, with dark ganache, hints of pepper, and chilli within a honey and orange blossom filling.

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Jocelyn Tan
Senior Writer
Jocelyn Tan is a travel and design writer who's probably indulging in serial killer podcasts or reading one too many books on East Asian history. When she actually gets to travel, you can find her attempting to stuff her entire wardrobe into her luggage. Yes, she's a chronic over-packer.