If you’re looking for new restaurants to try in the new year, mama, here are four very different cuisines made for four super dining experiences!
Amidst the celebrations and feasting galore of December, I found time to grab a few great meals across the island and I’m going to fill you in on the same. Whilst some of these restaurants aren’t new perse, they all feature new menus. And they were new to me!
First up, I visited Martin Road’s Argentine gem BoCHINche. Whilst I was familiar with the place and the consistently good food served there, the restaurant recently rolled out a new ‘small plates’ menu and I was there to sample everything. BoCHINche didn’t disappoint! Diners can now look forward to small cold plates such as cured trout, watermelon salad with mozzarella cream (pictured above), Iberico cold cuts and other delights along with hot tasters like veal sweetbreads, lamb shoulder empanadas and my personal favourite, the well-loved classic Provoleta with almonds and oregano honey. Bochinche serves up the best cuts of specially imported, Argentine beef so if it’s a good burger or a hearty beef steak that you are after, look no further!
BoCHINche, 115 Amoy Street, #01-02, Singapore 069935, Tel: (+65) 6235 4990, www.facebook.com/bochinchesg
My next conquest was a Persian delight not too far away from BoCHINche. Along Roberston Quay you’ll find the underrated Shabestan. I use the word underrated because there have been times in the past when we visited for lunch and found ourselves to be amongst very few diners there – rather surprising given the outstanding authentic Persian cuisine on offer. This time, however, the restaurant was busy (maybe fellow foodies in Singapore have discovered it at last!) and the food was as usual, great! A word of caution though: don’t get carried away by the outstanding appetizers and dips served with warm Iranian breads because the kebabs (the lamb kebabs are my favourite!), lamb fillets and chops are an absolute delight. There is also an interesting selection of Persian stews, rice dishes and of course, dessert if you have room for anything more! Being Parsi myself, I may be a tad partial to the cuisine, but go check it out and I’m certain you will be back for more too.
Shabestan, The Pier @ Roberston, 80 Mohamed Sultan Road, #01-13, Singapore 239013, Tel: (+65) 6836 1270, www.shabestan.sg
Another new venture worth checking out is boutique bar Kakure. Started by the team behind omakase heavy weight Ki-sho and housed on level 2 (above Ki-Sho) of the beautiful black and white bungalow at 29 Scotts Road, this is the perfect place to get an insight into the hidden world of sake. To complement the sake, we sampled a variety of the bar cuisine and my favourite was definitely the smoked oyster, with the shoyu braised pork belly coming a close second. The menu is highly selective as is typical of a sake bar, and guests can choose to spend the evening with the Sake Sommelier at the bar (very interesting and informative conversations transpire here, as we experienced!) or dine at Japanese-style niches set up in discreet nooks.
Kakure, 29 Scotts Road, Level 2, Singapore 228224 , Tel: (+65) 6733 5251, www.ki-sho.com.sg
Last but not the least, I visited Le Bistrot du Sommelier for a wholesome French meal. The restaurant receives consistent praise from the French community in Singapore and this comes as no surprise to me as the food is delicious, the portions uber generous and the ambience very homey. Do start your meal with the melt-in-the-mouth Duck Rillette and end it with the largest hazelnut soufflé you have possibly ever eaten! Pure indulgence!
Le Bistro du Sommelier, 53 Armenian Street, Singapore 179940, Tel: (+65) 6333 1982, www.lebistrotdusommelier.com
Bon Appétit, mamas. Here’s to a delicious 2016!