Singapore

Regent Singapore, Summer Palace penalised after food poisoning cases

Kitchen staff linked to food poisoning case at wedding lunch in hotel

A Michelin-starred restaurant has had its food hygiene grade downgraded from "A" to "C" after patrons came down with suspected food poisoning after a wedding lunch at Regent Singapore, the hotel where the establishment is located.

Besides lowering the rating at Summer Palace, which serves Cantonese cuisine, the National Environment Agency (NEA) also downgraded the hotel's banquet kitchen from "A" to "C".

A total of 43 people who ate food at both establishments on Nov 11 last year were later hit with stomach flu symptoms, NEA said in an advisory.

But a spokesman for Regent Singapore told The Straits Times that the 43 people had dined at a lunch wedding banquet held at the hotel, and not Summer Palace.

The spokesman said kitchen staff of the Michelin-starred restaurant were involved in preparing food for the banquet.

Known for its dim sum, the restaurant received one Michelin star last year.

The authorities could not pinpoint the exact source of the suspected food poisoning but inspections revealed lapses in the kitchens of both establishments, the spokesman said.

This resulted in the downgrading of Summer Palace's food hygiene grade.

"It is unfortunate that this incident happened," the spokesman said. "All 43 guests were contacted by the hotel to acknowledge the situation and extend our apologies."

She said the hotel also compensated the banquet organisers, though she declined to reveal the details of the offer, and that Regent Singapore invited the 43 guests for a complimentary dining experience.

MEETINGS

The spokesman said since last November, the hotel has implemented weekly food hygiene meetings as well as walk-through inspections by the management team, in addition to holding monthly training sessions with food handlers.

She added: "We will continue working hard in this area to restore confidence in the hotel."

Regent Singapore said this was the first time that either establishment received a downgrade.

Eating establishments in Singapore are graded according to their hygiene, cleanliness and housekeeping standards.

Those that have a score of at least 85 per cent receive an "A" , while those that score between 40 per cent and 49 per cent receive the lowest "D" grade.

The "C" score ranges from 50 per cent to 69 per cent.

NEA said the rating for both Summer Palace and the hotel banquet kitchen will be revised in 12 months, and the premises of both will be kept under surveillance in the meantime.

CONSUMER ISSUES