We scour the island’s restaurant scene to bring you the new and the noteworthy – it’s a tough job, but somebody’s got to do it! Here, Anthia Chng checks out a classy dining spot in town, 28 Wilkie.
Housed in a conserved shophouse on 28 Wilkie Road, this undiscovered gem boasts a gorgeous set-up: white walls and simple, classy décor with muted brown and cream accents. Step into the 60-seater and you’ll enter the beautiful lounge, where cosy armchairs and digestifs go hand-in-hand with post-dinner conversations. Although 28 Wilkie is most known for its fine caviar, this dining spot also offers a stellar selection of fine wines and well-executed modern Italian cuisine.
Bite on this:
We kicked things off with the Capesante Con Caviale ($32), featuring perfectly seared Hokkiado scallops, green pea purée, Siberian caviar and a refreshing lemongrass foam. This antipasto dish is a must-try for caviar lovers – those tiny Siberian gems were rich, decadent and entirely exquisite.
Next came a Japanese-inspired risotto ($28), a combination of unagi, crispy seaweed and onion confit. A twist on the popular classic – and a personal favourite, too – this dish was entirely comforting. The rice was perfectly al dente while the crunch from the seaweed added a delicious variation. Another worthy pick is the Dentice Rosso ($32) – red snapper, green pea purée, artichoke and mushroom jus. Featuring crispy, well-seasoned skin and tender meat, this main would be a hit with seafood fans. If you’re out to indulge, go for the Il Wagyu ($52), one of the restaurant’s specialties. According to founder Benjamin Goh, the meat is taken only from the female cow due to the ideal marbling. The dish was a winner, even if it didn’t quite hit the level of tenderness we were expecting.
Oh, one other thing: forget what you think you know about focaccia; 28 Wilkie’s is the best we’ve ever had. Freshly made in-house and served alongside 15-year-old balsamic and extra virgin olive oil, the bread was light, flavourful and incredibly fluffy – stopping at two pieces was a challenge!
Drinks and desserts:
Wine connoisseurs and novices alike will appreciate the restaurant’s succinct but on-point wine list. We downed glasses of Campana Barone Prosecco Extra Dry ($20 per glass), a dry, floral pick that was easy on the palate. On the dolci page, expect to find the regular suspects like panna cotta ($18) and crème brûlée ($20). We went for the tiramisu ($18), a classic that didn’t disappoint. The mascarpone filling was the silkiest I’ve tasted, while the espresso and amaretto-soaked biscuits added a strong punch. A delightful mix of sweet, creamy and boozy, it was the perfect way to end the meal.
28 Wilkie is a fantastic spot for an intimate dinner date, but you can also book the restaurant space for a private event or a cosy wedding celebration. In fact, my partner and I spent the evening discussing about how lovely it’d be to hold our wedding here – now we’re just waiting for the proposal to happen!
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