Wondering where to eat in Singapore? Every month we bring you the scoop on what’s hot and buzzing across town – from the latest brunch spot to new menus at old favourites, as well as new restaurants and bars. Author’s cuisine, Peranakan flavours and a breezy new restaurant bar are on the platter this month!
Monochrome magic at Preludio
Instead of being restricted by ingredients from a specific culture or geographical location, there are no fixed rules when it comes to “Author’s cuisine”, a modern culinary concept at newly opened fine dining spot Preludio. Executive Chef Fernando Arévalo is guided by “chapters” (or themes) that change every 12 to 18 months. As for décor, dark wood and muted colours decorate the spacious restaurant, while black and white artworks adorn the walls and tables to match the restaurant’s first “chapter”, Monochrome. Preludio’s minimalist style will adapt according to the successive chapters of its menu.
Staying true to the monochrome theme, you’ll find that each dish is presented with an element of surprise. Highlights include the White Opal: rich Patagonian toothfish brined in clear tom yam broth for 24 hours, then cooked sous vide and coated with dehydrated Kalamata olives, and accompanied by cauliflower puree, crunchy shallots, leek, almond milk bubbles, pickled almonds and black olive powder. Another must-try is the Japanese-inspired, savoury-sweet Irezumi, a umami-heavy dessert featuring a salted black sesame ice cream and a unique sesame snow made with sesame oil. Prices start from $55 for a four-course lunch.
Violet Oon’s new flagship restaurant
Popular Peranakan restaurant Violet Oon Singapore’s new flagship is a 100-seater, all-day brasserie with a retail area for a new food merchandise line. Decked in the restaurant’s signature black and gold theme, the space also incorporates iconic Peranakan design elements as seen across other outlets. We recommend booking in advance, as it gets super busy during meal times!
Start with the all-time favourite kuay pie tee ($17) to share. This delicious snack of a deep-fried “top hat” cup is filled with turnip and bamboo shoot, then garnished with prawn, chilli sauce and a sweet fruit sauce. We also enjoyed the Mulligatawny soup ($16), a British-Indian favourite featuring a creamy curry broth with chicken, served with spice-infused rice. Love meat? The fork-tender and flavourful beef rendang ($23) is another classic for sharing. Finally, don’t leave without trying the indulgent cakes, which are freshly baked and also available for takeaway. Our gula melaka tea cake with coconut ice-cream ($15) was wiped out within seconds!
Farm-to-table creations at Subrosa
Celebrating a special occasion? Subrosa Private Dining offers a one-of-a-kind experience that doesn’t break the bank. Here you’ll be spoiled with exquisite East-meets-West plates featuring locally and regionally sourced ingredients. The stars of the kitchen are Executive Chef Steven Snowdown who has cooked in Michelin-starred restaurants and five-star restaurants in London, and Consulting Chef Francis Lee who boasts decades of experience as a private chef.
Prices start from $108 for a five-course lunch, and each meal begins with a spread of freshly baked breads (one of the best we’ve had) paired with truffle butter. Highlights include Prawn-Star – a rich dish of jumbo king prawns and cauliflower cream, sitting in an intense, umami-laden shrimp bisque – and the cheekily-named Quaking Cod That, a brilliant rendition of Teochew steam fish elevated by duck consommé, mushrooms and golden-fried onion shards. Another must-try is Remember Mee, which serves as a tribute to the local favourite Hokkien Mee. This version features top-notch ingredients including fresh lobsters from a private farm in Singapore, as well as an aged sambal chilli that takes days to prepare. Customised menus and private bookings are available upon request.
Plant-based plates and tipples at The Botanic
Previously known as Salt Tapas & Bar, The Botanic is a fresh, casual dining concept offering plant-based and gluten-free dishes. The menu showcases Mediterranean and Asian flavours, complemented with a sustainable, organic and biodynamic wine list, as well as fruit-based cocktail offerings.
Start your meal with the vegetarian Scotch egg ($15), an organic free-range egg from Japan wrapped in a flavourful falafel, and paired with a refreshing cucumber and yogurt base. The gnocchi ($25) is another must-try; the combination of parmesan, asparagus, preserved lemon, ricotta and fennel makes for a satisfying starter that isn’t too heavy on the palette. If you’re extra hungry, order the grilled squid ($22), served with a generous portion of inked rice, herbs and dried tomato. Wash it down with a refreshing sundowner; we highly recommend Nature’s Tonic ($18) – gin, elderflower, lemon juice, sugar syrup and tonic.
Splurge on a champagne dinner at Stellar
Celebrating a special occasion? Stellar at 1-Altitude’s Dom Pérignon Plénitude Suite offers an exclusive, multi-sensory dining experience that’ll please any gourmand. The secret dining space seats up to eight guests, who will be treated to a feast for the senses through a series of video projections, accompanied by a spectacular, seasonal-changing 10-course menu ($350 per person) designed by Executive Chef Chris Millar. There’s also a full champagne pairing experience (additional $550 per person), where you’ll get to sample rare champagnes from Dom Perignon. And, if you’d like the whole suite to yourself, you can book it with a minimum spend of $1,500!
The multi-course dinner highlights Chef Millar’s personal relationships with artisanal producers from around the world, and one of them is leading French caviar producer, Sturia. Here, the exquisite caviar is served with an Iberico cracker atop Hokkaido Uni custard and chorizo crumbs. As with all dining experiences at Stellar, your meal at the Plenitude Suite concludes with a show-stopping dessert presentation.
Tasty Mod-European plates at Maggie Joan’s
As part of modern European spot Maggie Joan’s third anniversary, the restaurant has recently undergone several noteworthy changes – a refreshed menu, revamped interiors and a new head chef. From top to toe, Maggie Joan’s exudes industrial cool, underground chic vibes as soon as you enter the nondescript entrance. It almost felt like we were led into a speakeasy!
You won’t regret starting with the house-baked sourdough with smoked beef fat butter ($4), which was worth every calorie. For something lighter on the palate, try the hamachi crudo, almond, salmon roe and edamame ($23). Vegetarians and meat lovers alike will enjoy the roast carrots, ricotta, apricot and rosemary ($10), which turned out to be the most memorable of the lot. Sweet, savoury and creamy, this dish was absolutely divine. Moving on to the heartier plates, the barramundi, mussels, cavelo nero and parsley nage ($34) was faultless, but if you can only pick one main, we highly recommend getting the uber-tender Duroc pork chop with apple puree and pork sauce ($42).
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