Sunday, December 11, 2011

Latteria Mozzarella Bar, Duxton Hill

Quietly and unbeknownst by many, The Jackson Plan fell apart and was replaced by Latteria Mozzarella Bar (40 Duxton Hill, tel : +65 6866 1988). Run by Beppe de Vito of Forlino and Il Lido. This new restaurant which was barely 2 weeks old had kept intact, the decor and even the land line from the previous establishment.

We were served some hard and crusy bread at the start. It would have been tough for my poor teeth and rather bland if not for the accompanying olive oil and vinegar.

We hit up a pan of their garlic prawns, chick peas and pesto. The prawns were fresh and crunchy and the flavors were surprisingly quite moderated. The garlic didn't dominate the palate like how most garlic prawns tend to taste and one could even taste the natural flavors of the chick peas.

This came from the specialty section of the menu which contains mostly mozzarella based cheeses in various forms. This was known as a stracciatella, which consisted of "rags" of mozzarella with burrata cream. Heaped on top of roasted zucchini and topped with bottarga. I liked the idea of serving the cheese in this manner, but the actual dish fell a little short as there was vinegar in the zucchini and the flavors of the creamy cheese was outstanding. This really just relegated the "moderated" portions of bottarga to second or third place. I could hardly taste them.

We ordered the Latteria mac and cheese pretty much for the novelty of having mac and cheese baked and served in a squash. The fact that it has four cheese in them helped, but the flavours of the cheeses were very subdued to the point that it tasted just milky. I could only positively identify the mozzarella on top. Lol.

Portions were extremely generous. I do mean extremely. What really shone for this particular bake, was actually the pumpkin which was nice and naturally sweet.

As usual, we were bought in by their smoked mozzarella risotto with black truffle puree. No prizes for guessing what made us order this. The risotto turned out to be the better of the mains which we ordered. I guess it was because this was simply a nice savoury blend of flavors that were buffed by the truffle puree and smokey accents of the mozzarella. Said flavours were saved from being overly monotonous by the rockets.

At this point, were already quite stuffed. We couldn't even finish the mac and cheese. It was quite a testimony to their lemon panna cotta that we still managed to finish most of the dessert in spite of the huge portions. The texture of the panna cotta wasn't so wobbly, but rather heavy and creamy. The flavours were milky and light and very much aided by those balsamic vinegar strawberries.

Wouldn't mind coming back to try more of their cheeses.