Saturday, December 03, 2016

Naughty Nuri's, Capitol Piazza

There was some buzz when Naughty Nuri's (#01-84 Capitol Piazza, 11 Stamford Rd, tel : +65 6384 7966) opened up because they originate fromd Ubud in Bali and are supposed to be some kind of big deal over there. While I haven't been to that one, I've looked at some pictures of it online and it makes our local shop look like plastic. But what do I know right? This place is what it is and the location being where it is doesn't come without some sanitization.

The food was enjoyable though. The ribs that they're famous for had fat laced meat that slid off the bone with ease and yet, bordered by pretty respectable burnt ends of sugary crisp. We liked pretty much everything we had tried off their orang dua platter. Ayam bakar was properly grilled and sweet; cumi bakar could have benefitted with a bit more char; crispy pig ears had a very nice seasoning that worked with the garlicky toum-like sauce. Those thin pencil asparagus topped with what seemed to be the same sambal terasi as the squids was pretty good eating with just plain rice. 

Perhaps the grilled corn was a little boring. The satay looked nothing like the meaty looking ones on the menu because the actual ones were kinda tiny. 

But definitely a good enough experience to come back. Now I'm curious about how the original one in Ubud is like.

Thursday, December 01, 2016

Putien, Kitchener Road

Earlier back in the middle of the year, the Michelin Guide for Singapore announced its very first results for whom they had bequeathed their stars. With no disparagement intended, Putien wasn't a place I had thought would make the list. We've eaten at their restaurant in Marina Square and City Square Mall. This was our first visit to the flagship branch (127 Kitchener Road, tel : +65 6295 6358). The one with the star.

This visit happened to coincide with the First Harvest Seaweed Festival which serves the first batch of harvested seaweed for the year from Wheat Island in Fujian. They apparently grow in nutrient rich and pollution free water. The first harvest refers to the limited window ideal for the seaweed harvest where the quality is supposed to be the best.

And how do I know these things? How the hell does anyone know anything these days? It starts with a 'G' and ends with an 'oogle', that's how. 

The pre-food snacks have always been fried seaweed at Putien. Together with toasted peanuts, was pretty good munching.

We had an order of century eggs. Their style. Fried with vinegar and sugar which provides that tart/sour dimension which is normally provided by pickled ginger. If I had to pick an option on how century eggs alone are to be had, the best way to eat them would be with vinegar and sugar.

Putien's braised intestines are good. They have a light chew across a taut nine layers and the flavour is almost like sausages. The braising liquid is awesome with rice/noodles and such.

Here's seaweed with dried baby shrimps. The seaweed is tossed in vinegar, a little chilled and eats well alone or with any of their starch dishes.

That's a pan fried omelette loaded with seaweed in case anyone was wondering. Something that's not part of their regular menu. This also happened to be the one of those items that looked better in the real thing than in the picture on the menu. That picture looked like it was matted hair on a scalp off someone's head. This tasted pretty good by the way.

Here's claypot rice with seaweed. The rice was cooked in a broth of seaweed and dried oysters. The dominant flavour actually came from the dried oysters that were used in the cooking. Pretty good tasting rice I would say.

Stewed seaweed - seaweed that's boiled in chicken broth with bits of pork belly and cubes of yam. 

And even more seaweed in oyster soup. This was served with vinegar on the side which honestly, took off some of the monotony of the flavours. At this point of time, we were all pretty seaweeded. This meal would also mark the most seaweed I've ever eaten in one seating.

We ordered the braised luffa because the menu described it as something slow cooked with with generous portions of dried scallop. While we liked the luffa, the portions of the dried scallops were anything but generous.

The second starch of the meal was their fried Heng Hwa bee hoon. It's only now that I actually noticed that their bee hoon were finer than general factory made ones. In spite of appearances, they are actually quite flavourful. Good enough to eat on its own.

I've never thought that Putien is great with desserts. They still aren't. This loquat with herbal jelly wasn't too bad. Wasn't the traditional herbal jelly I was thinking of because it tasted citrusy, but I'd eat this again. 

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Revisiting Bar-Roque Grill

We didn't think so much of Bar-Roque the last time we ate here, but that had been quite a long while ago and I had forgotten that I had meant not to come back. But back we came, lured by the prospect of their Beef Wellington.

We tried one of their rum infusions. This was known as Sing, something with pineapple, red chilli and vanilla. The chilli existed as an aromatic with none of the heat. I suppose it would have been much much more interesting if there was something prickly in it.

We had a tarte flambée with snails and bacon. This was quite nice. Cheesy, salty and a nice flavour coming from the pesto.

The other cold starter was their quail terrine en croute with black trumpet mushrooms, foie gras and raisins. Not bad.

We had mixed fillings on their Beef Wellington. The doneness of the meat was quite spot on and the buttery crust was good. But there wasn't any mushroom duxelle - there was a paste on the tenderloin in the crust which tasted like meat. The foie gras was a pan fried one on top of the pastry rather than in it. Though those mushrooms bits that came with the spinach was amazingly fragrant. I couldn't say that I didn't like this because I did in some ways - but this liking didn't feel definitive somehow.

We were lured by an off menu special. Lamb saddle - how could we have resisted? In retrospect, this wasn't one of the more enjoyable ones we've had in the vicinity. There was quite a bit of garlic flavour in the meat (along with rosemary and something else) and I supposed we just like lamb to mostly taste like lamb without too much detraction from the natural flavours. I'm pretty sure we've had better.

Monday, November 28, 2016

Eating like an emperor at Kaiserhaus

Kaiser Franz Josef I of Austria....not Karl Franz of Aldorf

The following Kaiserhaus meal Essen wie ein Kaiser was apparently a favourite of Kaiser Franz Josef I, former emperor of Austria if the literature in the menu were to be believed.

This first plate was not part of that. This was a linguine in lemon butter with duck foie gras starter which we though would be a nice addition to the meal. The liver was very tasty and oozing with rendered fat.  

The main item in the Essen wie ein Kaiser was the tafelspitz - beef rump and oyster blade served in a copper pot with beef bouillon and mixed root vegetables.

Accompanying that were their very delicious buttery rosti, a garlicky creamed spinach and horseradish sauce. The latter was awesome. It was like the non-cream version of Lawry's horseradish cream for their prime rib. There were equal parts to the sharpness and sweetness.

There were dumpling options for the beef broth in the pot. I picked the leberknödel - liver dumpling.

Here be the obligatory look at the tasty dumpling in the broth.

The beef bouillon came with a couple of bone marrow. So bone marrow, butter and bread. Mmmmm...

This was what a prettied plate of the food looked like. That's the oyster blade which was tender and delicious. Made extra delicious with their horseradish which I couldn't get over.

Dessert wasn't part of the Essen wie ein Kaiser so we ordered a slice of their raspberry truffle to end. 

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Imperial Treasure Noodle & Congee House, 100AM

First time dim sum-ing down at Imperial Treasure Noodle & Congee House (#02-10/11, 100AM, 100 Tras Street, tel : +65 6543 6668). We've been to the one at ION quite a number of times and the food had never been disappointing as far as I can remember. 

pan fried radish cake
har gow
rice rolls stuffed with roasted duck
dumpling soup...
...which they said didn't contain coriander but actually did!
deep fried intestines
frog porridge with century egg
This branch wasn't too bad. There were some items on the menu that I've never noticed. One of them were the rice rolls with stuffed with chunks of roasted duck - I rather liked that. The deep fried intestines here tasted "meatier" than those we had in the past and this shop at 100AM doesn't do barbecued chicken livers. Tried their frog porridge for the first time - those slurp-off-the-bone-tender frogs, we were informed, had been slain only upon order. So any fresher we'd have to eat them live.

They screwed up with the ordering twice. We are normally very easy going with such things but I thought I would mention since this were outward fuck ups over what could have been non-issues. We ordered the dumpling soups after confirming with the staff that there wouldn't be any coriander and those dumplings in the end did have coriander. Ditto with the frog porridge which we had done the same for regarding ginger and the same screw up happened. Service recovery was quick, we did ultimately enjoy the food so we didn't hang anyone.