Eating is mostly social here. Most of us live to eat, often using it as a means to a night out with family and friends. That sense of novelty from
stuffing our fat faces at new restaurants and bars and sharing our verdict as suggestions to those who have yet to visit. So we'd like to propagate this culture with our monthly recommendations of places to check out, from savoury feasts to sweet desserts. See if you agree.
If Black Marble is home to veteran Chef Otto Weibel's signature cuts, sister restaurant White Marble is an ode to his travels in the Mediterranean. For those who already love the spiced and balanced diet, this one's unsurprisingly good. The Octopus served with fried shredded potato, pistachio and chilli oil is a different take on the Spanish version we're used to, but with an equally enjoyable chargrill texture. And just when you're not expecting pasta, they hit you with the Prawn Bucatini Puttanesca; think fat spaghetti with a hollow thread to soak up all the sautéed goodness.
The heart of the culture though is one we're not unfamiliar with. Communal dining, which counts the Chicken Leg Bone-in Tagine in its list (hot tip: add the Pine Nut Pilaf Rice). The classic Moroccan stew is served in traditional cone-lidded pot to deepen the slow-cooked marinate of olive, dates, capers, tomato and preserved lemon in tender meat. While there are the hearty Skewers, we feel that the quintessential dish is the Mezze Plate, a grazing selection of Chef Otto's favourites. The Tabbouleh with quinoa? Eggplant Moutabbal? Good thing communal dining allows for bigger portions.
White Marble is located at Orchard Rendezvous Hotel #01-09, Singapore 247905.
The rooftop Italian restaurant retains its name from before the hotel change, but has completely overhauled its menu and setting. It still sits an intimate group, but it's a lot more casual with dishes that follow suit. Such as your 10″ pizzas, and even set lunches from SGD28. The sustainably sourced/responsibly farmed seafood is just one more bonus to seal the deal.
We're not too crazy about the antipasti we tried (the Impossible meatball the exception) so what you should order though, are classics like Cacio & Pepe and black ink risotto El Nero. Desserts are also perfect for the sweet-toothed, especially the Panna Cotta alle Nocciole, a hazelnut praline panna cotta with caramel fudge and citrus marmalade—a favourite of the chef. For the best ambience, make your visit after sundown.
iL Cielo is located at voco Orchard Singapore Level 24, Singapore 238883.
Ken Japanese Restaurant
Here's the thing: most of us do not know the difference between kaiseki and omakase. Before you start feeling offended, chill, because you're not to blame. Outside Japan, the terms aren't always used accurately. So when Head Chef Ryo Endo, who has 10 years in Miyajima and Hiroshima under his belt, took over Yamato Japanese Restaurant, his purported 'kaiseki-style omakase' can understandably confuse. It's no new concept, but without mansplaining (since you probably are already googling), it simply means you can look forward to seasonal ingredients of Chef's discretion in traditional tasting courses.
The curations mostly showcase produce from the Yamagata prefecture where he's from, including many of the fine sakes that can be paired with. From SGD88 for a six-course lunch, you can see why the restaurant already has regulars. Fret not if you don't want to commit yet. You still have the freedom of à la carte options like Kaisen Don and Wagyu Shabu Shabu to enjoy.
Ken Japanese Restaurant is located at 1 Goldhill Plaza #01-17, Singapore 308899.
The inaugural restaurant by Chef Marvas Ng (whose style you may have previously encountered at S.E.A Aquarium) in collaboration with 1855 F&B is essentially comforting East Asian flavours executed in French finesse with a price point to match. You'll first be taken in by the sublime interiors with the open kitchen as centrestage, with private rooms and even a chef's table—which somewhat looks like fancy corner in the kitchen in honesty.
If you're not enjoying set lunch, dinner comes communal style and the one star dish we see as an anchor to the restaurant is the Signature Butter-Roasted Herb-Brined French Poulet. The scent of Chinese herbs (angelica root, codonopsis, lovage root) minimally brined for 16 hours really permeate the meat, which has been made especially tender by generously slathering unsalted European butter on every single part of the chicken. This is uniquely served with refreshing sword leaf lettuce rolls individually wrapped by hand with slices of daikon and a Hong Kong scallion salsa. To eloquently sum in two words: big yum.
Path is located at Marina Bay Financial Centre Tower 3 #01-05/06, Singapore 018982.
If you enjoy it thick, hidden in proper pozzettis (that's right, we know our shit), and coming in innovative flavours, this is one to add to the list. It's also an obvious incentive that it's helmed by Italian Chef Loris Massimini of sister restaurant Ristorante Pietrasanta. A sure testament to the standards is when classics like Chocolate and Pistachio are hefty in flavour and texture.
Unconventional ones like Burrata Balsamico while more balsamic than burrata, together with seasonals like Osmanthus Tea With Pear Swirl, all translate decently. If you're on site, both cones and waffles are pretty damn good too. Otherwise, islandwide delivery for pints is free for orders above SGD55 or at a flat fee of SGD15—and receive them by 8pm on the same day when placed before 3pm.
GelatiAmo is available online and in store at Fusionopolis #B1-11, Singapore 13863.
Wayne here! Once more, highjacking Joy's weekly food and drinks round-up. This time, it's House and it is every inch a speakeasy. Enter the Regent Singapore hotel and the bellhop's cursory gesture towards House leads you… to a wall. So, you stand there, flummoxed and staring at your surroundings like you're teasing out an image from a magic eye art piece. Then, you notice, a seam in the wall. You place a hand on the surface and push…
Within, is a room in the half-light. At the back is another space where the bar is (and a cramp corner where the food is cooked). The back wall is a showcase of sakes—La Isojiman; Ohmine Sake Storm Cowboy Natural Press. The drinks menu offers a lot more of its whiskies. But it is the cocktails that is the crowning jewel to this hidden oasis. There's the refreshing highball called Chu-Hai, a shochu mixed with St Germain liqueur and soda and topped with a piece of grapefruit; always a perfect start to the evening. Then there's the sublime Nihon, a martini made with Isle of Harris Gin, Junmai Ginjo and sakura bitters. Its taste is as deceptive as it looks—simple to behold but if you're not careful, the drink might floor you.
There are bar food to accompany your drinks though, it feels like more than your contemporary bite-sized fare. The Shizuoka Amera Tomato offers a naturally sweet-tasting to the proceedings; the Snow Crab Claypot Rice with its charred grains and shredded snow crab, satisfies our palate and lined our belly with more drinks. The Miyazaki Beef Sando is a delight but the bread could use more toasting, in order to hold in the meat.
House is located at Regent Singapore #01-02, Singapore 249715.