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Restaurant review: La Barra on Vista Exchange Green in Singapore


La Barra

1 Vista Exchange Green (check website to confirm new location)

#02-21 The Star Vista

6694 2495 | la-barra.com.sg

Singapore may be a food paradise, but rarely do we get introduced to a genuinely new cuisine. So when Colombian restaurant La Barra opened in The Star Vista, I had to give it a try, even though humming along to a Shakira song is the closest I’d been to Colombian culture.

The menu was a barrage of tasty-sounding yet unfamiliar words. Thankfully, our friendly server sensed our distress and gave us an introductory spiel about popular Colombian foods such as corn flour fritters (empañadas) and flat bread (arepas). The gluten-free arepas come with shredded beef, chicken and avocado or with black beans and feta cheese.

We opted for the picada platter ($40). Enough for two, it’s a delightful mix of patacones (fried green plantains), papas criollas (bite-sized yellow potatoes) and the star of the night, the carne asada. Served on an arepa, the juicy grilled beef chunks and sausages were paired perfectly with chimichurri sauce.

There is a ritual for eating empañadas ($10): first, you take a bite at the tip to break into the filling; then, from the second bite onwards, you’re free to drizzle as much aji sauce as you want into the beef, chicken or cheese filling (we loved the cheese). Take note: no knives or forks allowed – hands only!

Besides trying the lulo pura shake ($6.50) – lulo is a subtropical citrus fruit from South America – we also tried the aguardiente ($8), otherwise known as “fire water”. True to its name, the strong liquor contains a fiery 30-percent alcohol.

Desserts change weekly, but we’re sure that the coconut caramel pudding ($8) we had will make frequent appearances on the dessert board. We will be back for more.

Michelle Ng