You never notice change if you are looking at something or if you are in the situation all the time. Somewhere along the years, Singapore started opening up, embracing different cultures and food and has the onslaught opening of new restaurants to show for it. Restaurants from casual bistros to gastronomy have been sprouting like mushrooms with both local and foreign chefs at the helm. Not all of them are good and below is our take of places that we love.
We love Absinthe and Nicholas for their classic French cuisine without burning a hole in your pocket. L’Atelier de Robuchon on Sentosa is a great venue to try decently priced gastronomy – the quality of all L’Ateliers globally is of the same standard! Jaan, Au Jardin and Les Amis are places for romantic or celebratory dinner but be prepared for the huge bill at the end. For something more casual, Le Bistrot and Brasserie Gavroche provide a close match to the bistros in Paris.
Besides pastas and pizzas, we don’t really go for fine dining Italian. After having amazing pizzas in his restaurant in LA, we were super excited that Mario Batali decided to open Pizzeria Mozza and Osteria Mozza at MBS. Though the pizzas are not big, they are very filling and I find myself unable to eat more than half of a pizza. The portions in the Osteria are small and therefore makes it expensive but the fresh Burrata cheese is worth the price tag.
There has been a recent influx of Spanish tapas bars and I love the concept, as I like to try a little bit of everything. The newly opened Binomio serves up traditional tapas cooked with the chef’s grandmother’s recipe in the bar area (there is a restaurant behind) while Esquina’s tapas have a modern take on them. I found it the most refined among the 3. Lolla puts a creative spin on their tapas and their squid ink sea urchin pudding is to die for. My only gripe is about their reservations policy – only Binomio accepts reservations. As there are not many counter seats, this pretty much leaves you standing by the bar waiting for a place if you arrive after 630pm!
Binomio 20 Craig Road
Food that doesn’t fit into a specific category goes into the Modern European box, much like the “others” in a Singapore IC. Kilo is perfect for a laid back dinner in an old school setting with tapas style dishes to share, while Keystone is more upmarket but has value for money degustation menus. Iggy’s by Ignatius Chan is one of the older standing restaurants in my list, and it has been consistently delivers outstanding dishes over the years.
I never heard of brunch growing up – it must be a cultural thing the foreigners brought with them in their suitcase. My idea of eggs and sausages was McDonald’s big breakfast! However, one of H’s favourite things on the weekend is to sit outdoors and have brunch. We have tried many places; some are either overpriced, or just tasteless. EM by the river and Rider’s café ticked all our boxes – decently priced, outdoors / open aired, surrounded by nature. PS Café at Dempsey outdoor seating is lovely but I find it on the pricy side.
Don’t you find a woman that eats attractive? I’m not talking about ordering carrot sticks and pushing food around the plate. I’m talking about finishing a bloody steak or a huge burger. Anything that I put in my mouth has to be worth it, otherwise it’s just wasted calories. &made and Roadhouse make burgers the way we like them – toasted sesame bun, thick juicy medium rare patties and just the right size to pick up and eat with your hands.
Even with all these options, we often find ourselves at a loss when it comes to deciding where to eat. “What to eat ah?”