With a new children’s corner, kid-friendly activities and delicious food, The Garden at Sofitel Singapore Sentosa offers a bevy of brunch delights…
Ever on the hunt for family-friendly dining that also happens to taste good, I’m delighted to tell you about a recent meal and the new menu at The Garden, the “conscious-dining” restaurant at Sofitel Singapore Sentosa Resort & Spa. I can personally say that it is toddler-approved.
So what is “conscious dining”, exactly? It’s knowing what you eat, including calorie counts and nutritional info, but I’d venture to say it’s also increasing your all-around awareness of ingredients to enhance their flavours and tastes. The Garden’s chefs make every effort to construct dishes that are colourful, bold and clean in presentation. Like a spa for your palate!
Take, for example, the gorgeous Salad Construction ($18) we started off with. Guests can add up to eight items to this superfood marvel, with ingredients like kale, quinoa, farro, lentils, pomegranate, pumpkin seeds, blueberries, and edamame (among many others). The result is a bright and flavourful start to the meal that won’t weigh you down for subsequent courses.
At this point I also need to pause to gush over The Garden’s beautiful setting: as you stroll in you just might see a pack of peacocks crossing your path (as we did). Then there’s the live tree that’s sprouting through the middle of the room. Light streams in through big picture windows. And soaring ceilings highlight this charming conservation building that’s won awards for its stylish design choices. As at any good spa, every sense is stimulated and catered to here.
Next up was a Tuna Tataki ($16) starter with a gorgeous Shimeiji mushroom relish and seasame soy dressing atop peppercorn-seared tuna. With flowers and a dainty little symphony of alfalfa sprouts, this one was almost too pretty to eat, but the tuna was so succulent that once I took once bite the entire plate seemed to disappear in a matter of seconds. This signature dish is a great one for sushi-lovers looking for a protein fix.
In fact, all of the starters and soups looked pretty appetizing, from the Unagi Nori Roll ($14 and just 91 calories!) with Japanese pickles, carrots, cucumbers, alfalfa sprouts and quinoa, to the Chilled Gazpacho Soup ($12) featuring heirloom tomatoes.
Meanwhile, Maggie was having a grand old time with specially-prepared dishes from the kids’ menu, including a wholesome Tomato Basil Cream soup ($8) with those same gorgeous heirloom tomatoes, and Capellini Pasta ($12) with vegetables, turkey ham and tomato sauce. Not only does the kids’ menu include healthy, wholesome options like a Grilled Portobello Mushroom Burger and “Little Royal” salad, but on weekends children 4 and up can even take a cooking class with the restaurant’s chefs. How cool is that?!
My favourite mains were the Wasabi Miso-glazed Chilean Seabass ($38) with a moreish green tea broth poured over it tableside, and a stunningly plated Slow Cooked Chicken Breast ($28) with spinach mousse, roasted baby vegetables and Champagne sauce. The presentation on this dish was so fantastical that Maggie had to be restrained from trying to play with each little piece of asparagus and broccoli. Who could blame her, as the sauce looked like artful strokes of the paint she’s so fond of using at preschool.
My foodie toddler was equally enticed by dessert, a Dark Chocolate and Avocado Mousse ($12) topped with luscious mixed berries with Raspberry Sorbet on the side. At just 185 calories, the almost-guilt free chocolate mousse just may have been my favourite item on the menu – it’s rich, and flavourful, with a velvety texture perfectly complemented by the ripe, juicy fruits like strawberries and raspberries (not to mention tiny little peanut butter balls!).
Following lunch Maggie and I adjourned to the brilliant new children’s corner, Villa des Enfants, where attendants are on-hand to keep a watchful eye on engergetic kiddos so parents can dine in a bit of peace. Maggie literally ran from one room to another in the bright, engaging space: one moment she was rocking on a wooden horse, the next she was climbing up an indoor rock wall (!), then she was pulling books (including some real classics!) off the shelves. There is SO much there to keep every kiddo entertained (including video games and movies and arts & crafts projects on weekends) – I was tempted to let Maggie amuse herself while I nipped downstairs to the spa for a quick massage!
I resisted the urge (I’d promised Maggie we could walk down the street to look at all the boats from the beach), but just might make another visit soon. There are so many more items I want to try on The Garden’s menu, after all!
The Garden Restaurant is open daily from 11am to 9pm for lunch and dinner. For reservations, call (+65) 6708 8310 or email [email protected]. Admission to Villa des Enfants is $10++ per hour, and complimentary for the first two hours for dining or spa guests with a same-day receipt of at least $180.