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Where to Celebrate Lunar New Year This Weekend, February 8-10

Exhibition organised by the National Heritage Board at the Exhibition Room, Gardens by the Bay (via Flickr)

We haven’t done Friday Fun Fact time in a while, have we? Here’s a good one: Starting February 10, we’ll be heading into the Year of the Snake, according to the lunar calendar. For Chinese people, this is a very sad event. Nobody likes snakes. Dragons are powerful and revered, and people do their best to have weddings and babies during the Year of the Dragon. (I was born a snake, but that didn’t stop my relatives from giving me dragon necklaces and bracelets to remind me of my Zodiac failure.)

On the upside, I’m making dumplings and eating nian gao with my family on Saturday. Even though the new year starts on Sunday, it’s customary to have a big fishy family feast the night before. We eat, drink, and exchange red envelopes.

If you’re looking for ways to celebrate the Year of the Snake, here’s where you should head this weekend:

1. Tonight On February 15, the Crow Collection After Dark is doing a free Year of the Snake celebration between 6 p.m. and midnight. There’ll be food trucks, art activities, performances, banners, and lanterns.

2. Five Sixty by Wolfgang Puck

Executive Chef Patton Robertson will kick off the festivities with a hands-on dumpling class on Saturday, February 9th. Attendees will learn to make Five Sixty’s signature dumplings, enjoy a dumpling feast served family style, and sip on sparkling wine and special “Year of the Snake” Punch. The class is priced at $75 per person (exclusive of tax and gratuity) and will run from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m.  For reservations, please call the restaurant at 214.741.5560.

Five Sixty also will host its annual Chinese New Year extravaganza with Master Chef Wolfgang Puck on Wednesday, February 13th. Featuring live entertainment, the restaurant will offer a six-course tasting menu, designed to evoke themes of the Chinese New Year, and will include Chinese Dumpling Dough Knot Soup, Lapsang Souchong Tea Smoked Snakehead, Wok Fired Maine Lobster, Crispy Whole Quail, Prime Dry Aged NY Strip and Chinese Style Steamed Tangerine Cake. The celebratory menu is priced at $135 per guest, or offered with optional wine pairings for $185 (tax and gratuity not included).

During the dinner, Five Sixty also will offer a festive dim sum reception in the lounge from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. For $50 per person (tax and gratuity excluded) attendees will enjoy dumplings and sparkling wine. Reservations for the dim sum reception are limited; if interested, please contact the restaurant to reserve space.

During the two-week Chinese New Year, Five Sixty will offer a special “Year of the Snake” menu, in addition to its a la carte menu, from February 11th to February 23rd during regular dinner hours (excluding Valentine’s Day). The menu is priced at $135 per guest, or offered with optional wine pairings for $185 (tax and gratuity not included). Reservations are required and can be booked by calling 214.741.5560.

3.  Steel Restaurant and Lounge

Highlights: 3 course dinner, $45 per guest, a Chinese lion dance on Sunday, February 10, at 8:00 p.m. Full menu available here: Steel’s Chinese New Year menu.