After all of that, I only have 2 words left to say:
We ate at:
#01-01 One Fullerton,
After all of that, I only have 2 words left to say:
We ate at:
#01-01 One Fullerton,
I love blogger meetups.
We ate at:
Star City Casino
80 Pyrmont Street
Pyrmont NSW 2009
1800 700 700
Upon hearing about my trip back to Singapore, Mel very excitedly told me about this new place with really good food. Given that we’re both fries fiends, I very excitedly went along with her to this mysterious cafe.
We decided to order 3 dishes. The Caesar Salad with Dukkah Croutons, S$19.00 was an unimpressive start to the meal – while the croutons were nice and crusty, they lacked the distinctive nutty crunch of flavour that I’ve come to associate with dukkah.
The Truffle Fries, $15.00 were full of promise, having been described as shoestring fries lightly tossed in truffle oil. The golden fries came infused with the heavenly smell of mushroom-y goodness. But as divine as the smell was, biting into the fries just came up with a faint tingly flavour. They were good, but not the deep flavour of truffles that I was looking forward to. Although, considering the portion, it’s something nice to share between a few people as a snack.
There was something really fantastic that came out of the trip though – the Mudcrab and Caviar Rigatoni, $28.00 was a more-than-pleasant surprise. Topped with freshly shaved Parmesan, the rigatoni in its creamy sauce cunningly hid a mound of mud crab meat that infused the sauce with gorgeous crustacean flavour. A must-try, this had us mopping up the remainder of the sauce with the last pieces of rigatoni left in the plate. Beautiful.
Apparently the branch at Dempsey is the best, but there are also others that are easier to get to if you want to give it a try but catching a taxi in is more effort than you’re willing to go through. Still worth a try though! I recommend going in a group to get the best value/variety for your cash.
We ate at:
28B Harding Rd
+65 9070 8782
I really like the Carrot Cake at Cedele, and through the power of positive association, I thought it was a good idea to try some of their savoury dishes.
The service was ok – the staff tried really really hard – but for me, if the food wasn’t entirely up to scratch, it’s not as worth going. There is a saving grace however – the scrambled eggs were very nicely done and had notes of butter through it. If nothing else, order the scrambled eggs!
We ate at:
501 Orchard Road #03-14
+65 6732 8520
This is a really really popular lunching outlet with the office crowd nearby, so remember to go there early in order to secure yourself a table. Also, the service is not the most patient, but when it’s bustling like the day we went, I’m not expecting much in terms of service, because the food is so good!!!
We ate at:
91 Bencoolen St
+65 9838 2851
Yesterday, the heir to the Ferrero fortune – Pietro Ferrero – passed away in a bicycling accident. He, with his brother Giovanni, were joint Chief Executives to the company that also owns Nutella, Kinder and Tic Tacs.
Pietro’s father Michele, with the Ferrero family, was named the richest man in Italy, surpassing Italian president Silvio Berlusconi.
My mom brought me to Tetsuya’s WAKU GHIN!!!!! From what I’ve read, Waku Ghin is Tetsuya’s first restaurant foray outside of Sydney, and eating there really fueled my desire to try Tetsuya’s in Sydney.
I’ve been waiting for an opportunity to eat at Waku Ghin since before they opened, and my mom decided to bring me there for dinner as a graduation present. (Remember this bit, it comes in later.)
The food was absolutely GORGEOUS, and the attentive staff really rounded out the experience.
It was a 10 course degustation menu starting with the Flan of Oyster with Bacon and Spinach.
The oyster was briny and plump, and a great companion to the soft, silky chawanmushi it lay on. The spinach – for me – added body, and gave it a great base note that grounded the dish.
Just as we were finishing up the last silky morsels on the plate, a chef came out and presented us with this:
And he explained to us that we were going to eat what was on that box, before disappearing (alas with said box) as mysteriously as he appeared. So exciting!!!
Then came the Marinated Botan Ebi with Sea Urchin and Oscietre Caviar.
This was the pièce de résistance for me. I conveniently have a new addiction to Uni (Sea Urchin), and this absolutely fueled it further. It was sweet, without aftertaste, and boosted the sweetness of the Botan Shrimp. There was a thick, creamy, egg yolk sauce on the bottom, and added to the richness and left a great feeling in the mouth. The caviar contributed a light saltiness and great texture.
I’m not entirely an asparagus fan, but I quite enjoyed the Soup of White Asparagus with White Miso Cream and Caviar. The bitter aftertaste of the asparagus was tempered by the creaminess of the soup and the cream, and well, I think we’ve established that I really really like caviar. And for all of you who say that caviar is too salty and fishy, you have not been eating the right stuff. It was so subtle, and added dimension to the creaminess of the soup. The only thing that distracted me a little was that, even though I enjoyed the flavour of the asparagus thoroughly, I could taste the potato in the soup. And after the previous dish, it was just a teeny weeny bit of a let down.
The Slow Cooked Tasmanian Petuna Ocean Trout with Witlof and Yuzu, I’m told, is an updated version of the Confit of Petuna Tasmanian Ocean Trout at Tetsuya’s – apparently the most photographed dish in the world.A sliver of melt-in-your-mouth fatty (in the best way) trout was gingerly laid upon a bitter leaf of witlof. I think I enjoyed the dish a whole lot more with less witlof in the mouthful, but I’m not as big a fan of bitter flavours as some may be. The bitter-sour-sweetness of the Yuzu really added a complexity that was slightly addictive. The trout, on the other hand, was a work of art in itself. It was so tender that it was ready to fall apart just with a look.
After this course, another chef came out from beyond the doorway and presented us with a plate with abalone on it.
He explained that these were Tasmanian Abalone, seasoned it, and promptly put it on the oiled teppan grill with a satisfying sizzle.
The chef was so incredibly polite, and patiently answered any questions that we had. He told us exactly what was going on the plate, so that there wouldn’t be any mystery ingredients in there for us.
And so on an innocuous pile of rocket went the Tasmanian Abalone with Fregola and Tomato.
The abalone had a wonderfully salty crust on crunchy (for a lack of a better word) fresh flesh. I’ve never had abalone so tender and with such lovely bite! Abalone has always been a soup thing in my household, and according to the chef, the smaller size is the key to cooking tender abalone this way, as boiling it in a soup for long periods adds to the toughness of the abalone.
The fregola gave me the impression of being the fat cousin of Cous Cous. It was wonderfully light, and carried the acidity in the tomato sauce really well.
The chef took this out, and I nearly drooled in excitement.
He first lightly seared the lobster before adding a broth and braising it. Next went in a variety of ingredients – of which I missed before I was just so anxiously waiting for the dish.
Now I’ve always seen lobster as the prawn’s less flavourful cousin, but only because I’ve only ever seen them pre-boiled and cold. But this, this is lovely. The meat still had great texture, and a depth of flavour that was greatly accentuated by the broth. At the end of it, I was even scraping the bottom of the bowl to try and slurp up any that was left.
As mentioned before, I’m a big fan of fat (ha. ha. No fat jokes please!), and the feel that it leaves in the mouth. And the next dish really hit the spot for me.
The Wagyu Beef with Wasabi, Citrus Soy Sauce (Ponzu) and Grated Radish was a delight every step of the way. The Australian Wagyu beef was cooked to a delicate medium rare, with the thoughtful chef giving us the option to make it more done should we prefer it so. Besides the ponzu, the beef was served with fried garlic chips and finely sliced spring onions, which added texture to the otherwise divine melt-in-your-mouth-ness of the beef.
And the wasabi.
The wasabi was freshly grated on a wooden board covered with sharkskin. Sharkskin!! Excuse me for sounding unsophisticated, but the only time I’ve seen this is on Iron Chef! The reason why Sharkskin is used is because using any other sort of grater alters delicate taste of the wasabi. The fresh wasabi also lacks the strong nasal hit that has come to be associated with what is served at sushi bars.
The chef then presented us with this:
Pearly sushi rice with a piece of seasoned fish daintily sitting atop. He then explained that chicken soup was going into the bowl as well.
The Consommé with Rice and Hirame – I later found out – was a fine dining version of Ochazuke. Ochazuke is a Japanese dish that involves green tea being poured over rice and various toppings. Personally, this tasted quite reminiscent of Teochew rice porridge, which is nice in its own way, but I really would rather have tried the green tea version.
And to end the main part of the dinner before we started dessert, the chef brought out a little tea set.
It is important with green tea to make sure that the water is not too hot, as hot, boiling water will scald the leaves and kill the delicate flavour of the tea. There is an elaborate, somewhat necessary ritual to ensure this, which involves pouring the water through different vessels before finally allowing the tea leaves to steep.
What’s special about this Gyokuro tea, however, is that it doesn’t just involve water that is cooler than boiling, but still warm. No, it requires room temperature water! Apparently water any warmer than that will bruise the leaves and a strong bitter taste will eradicate the fragile flavour of the tea.
We first noticed that the tea had a savoury flavour to it, which – to our surprise – the chef informed us that it was umami!! Umami is one of the 5 basic tastes (yes 5 – throw away those outdated textbooks children!) together with salty, sweet, bitter and sour. It’s a savoury taste (it reminds me of Nori, the seaweed that you wrap your sushi with), and – as I have learnt off my TV education (Heston’s Mission Impossible) – Umami is a flavour that is almost unaffected by the pressurized cabin and low humidity of an aircraft.
I really wish I could have had another cup.
And finally, the desserts.
The Granita of Grapefruit with Chartreuse Jelly was the first dessert to be served. Granita, to my understanding, is made of shaven ice, with a sugar syrup and flavouring. It was light, and delicate, but kind of reminded me too much of a high-end, refined version of an Ice Kachang. Excuse my plebian tastebuds, but it wasn’t a knock-me-down dish for me.
And here comes the lovely surprise. Remember I told you earlier that this meal was a graduation gift?
How cool is this?? The staff had asked my mom beforehand whether this was a celebration and she told them that it was because I had graduated. Even when they asked our names before, I hadn’t suspected a thing! It was such a lovely surprise and really ended my night on a high note.
And don’t let the excellent service detract from the cheesecake, which definitely held its own.
The Ghin Cheesecake has little bits of silver leaf on the top, and Ghin means silver, like in the restaurant’s name. It was light, fluffy, and there was a burst of flavour from the little pocket of equally light lemon curd in the middle. It was so light that eating it was almost like trying to catch a dream. You just wanted more and more until, oh no, it’s all gone. /sad face.
The service didn’t end there though. As a memento, we were presented with the menu of what we had, and, surprise surprise, mine had my name on it! How thoughtful was that?
There was also a box of petits fours for us to take home.
Definitely an experience that I’d love to repeat, and I would encourage anyone with the opportunity, to go. The food is to die for, and the service supports it every step of the way. Divine.
We ate at:
10 Bayfront Avenue,
#L2-02, Casino Level 2
Marina Bay Sands, Singapore
+65 6688 8507
I met up with Fiona for dinner today, and she brought me down this little alleyway, where we were faced with a bustling little eatery, packed to the brim with anxious, hungry people.
Being anxiously hungry people ourselves, we decided to order a variety of smaller dishes.
The Olive Fried Rice was lightly savoury, and the Pandan Chicken – marinated chicken thighs wrapped ingeniously in a pandan leaf and then deep fried – was an addictive surprise. The chicken flesh was firm, fragrant and an absolute delight in the mouth. The Seafood Tom Yum Soup was tart with a heat that built up slowly from the throat, and the seafood within was not overcooked, which – considering some seafood soups I’ve had – I consider a feat in itself. The Claypot Glass Noodles with Prawn had a chewy bite to the noodles that I’ve sorely missed, and a deep crustacean flavour and permeated the mouth. And finally, the Cereal Soft Shell Crab. Usually done with prawns, this dish utilises the crispiness of fried oats, the sweetness of malt and dairy creamer, and the savoury spice of chilli and curry leaves, all mixed in with the lovely crispy-on-the-outside, creamy-on-the-inside texture of the soft shell crab. Bad for the heart, but good for the soul.
If you’re in the country, this place is definitely worth a shot. Just remember to come early-ish, because the tables get real crowded real fast, and I don’t think that reservation is really an option on the busy nights.
We ate at:
First Thai Food
23 Purvis St
Ph: +65 6339 3123
For days on end, Sean tells me of this place that he passes everyday on his way to work. Mouthwatering aromas float gently out of every crevice – as if the place was oozing with the promise of good food, its sirens’ song beckoning…beckoning. (Yes that was a Sweeney Todd reference, for those who know.)
So after some persuasion, Sean agreed to bring me there.
First, the food.
As a starter, we ordered the Carpaccio De Carne ($16.90). Fresh, translucent, tender slivers of pure beefy goodness were lovingly coated in a tart dressing. I especially loved the salty hit of parmesean with the tongue-tingling dressing following it. It was quite unassumingly addictive, and Sean – who isn’t a raw meat type of person – absolutely enjoyed every mouthful.
As a main, I had the Gorgonzola Gnocchi, $15. Each home-made (restaurant-made? I think the idea is that it did not come out of a factory) morsel had a pleasant texture to it – it was tender, but there was enough of a spring to the bite to allow the flavours in the sauce to almost expand into your mouth and really hit you with its full-bodied creaminess…almost to the extent that I got the impression that the gnocchi was really just a carrier for the sauce.
A word of warning though – I absolute love Gorgonzola. Or in fact, any strong (or indeed, just any) cheese. I would not recommend this dish for people who are a little bit squeamish about blue cheese – just like most other dishes we ate, flavours are unapologetic and bodacious.
Sean, ever the classic-lover, chose to have the Fettucine Polpette, $14 + $1.50 for homemade(?) fettucine. The pasta again had lovely bite to it, and the sauce was rich and complex. The fettucine more than held its own here, no small feat considering the size of the GIANT MEATBALLS.
Ok, maybe not GIANT per se, but still pretty large. Sean, who will happily wolf down as many as he can stuff into his mouth at a time, had to break them up to eat them. But what a joy it was. Each bite was tender, and had its own flavour that did a lovely tango with the flavour of the sauce. Definitely something that we would order again when we go back.
For dessert, we ordered the Tiramisu, $7 (I think). It was served with two chocolate cigars playfully planted in the creamy mascarpone. The thing is, after the delightful starter and mains, this was rather…normal. It was perfectly good Tiramisu, just that the rich mouthfuls didn’t send me to heaven and back.
In all, I would recommend Spigolo. The food is reasonable, and the staff are lovely. They are prompt and attentive, without being overbearing and breathing down your neck while you eat. We had someone check on us (once) during the meal to make sure everything was going alright, and then were left to eat in peace.
I just have one thing left to say.
GIANT MEATBALLS!!! (Could you imagine meatball Godzilla?)
We ate at:
60 Riley Street
Sydney NSW 2000
(02) 9356 3288