Monday, August 13, 2018

Ruth's Chris Steak House, Marina Mandarin Hotel

In an epiphanous flicker shortly after we got seated in Ruth's Chris (4F Marina Mandarin Singapore, 6 Raffles Boulevard, tel : +65 6336 9093), it all came back to me. I remembered having been here before. This was the location where the defunct Bologna used to be. I had a lousy experience then. It seemed that the ghost of the experience past had endured. 

Bread was kinda boring. That came with butter that was fluffy but not very buttery tasting. This was merely an observation and not a gripe. The real griping has not yet begun.

We had imagined that as a steakhouse, Ruth's Chris' lobster bisque ought to be dependable. I wouldn't condemn this as bad, but mediocre isn't too far from the truth. It was creamy without sufficient crustacean flavour. Every time I have a lousy lobster bisque, I inevitably compare them to the one at Morton's - which may not be the top in the world, but at least they were good. Wooloomooloo and Bedrock also made better bisque.

Lamb was tender. Distribution of fat was not so great but I expect that the restaurant take responsibility for the quality of the meat they use. Some parts of the ribs had a good mix of meat and fat while others had only meat. Moving from meat and fat to just meat only resulted in a sudden lack of flavour. Other parts were just chunks of fats. 

The restaurant had also recommended medium rare for these as they said that the plates would be sizzling hot and the lamb would cook a little more. The actual sizzling on the plate lasted a total of probably 10 seconds. The medium rare didn't even get a chance to turn medium. So while I thought that those guys at 665°F wasn't competent enough, they were better than Ruth's Chris.

Like the lamb, the sizzling went out of steam pretty fast on the ribeye. The colour of the meat didn't look right. There wasn't much of sear. I thought there was too much fat without a good marbling that some mouthfuls felt like just fat. 

The meat texture was bad in a way that the fibres didn't sustain their form and splayed at the edges of the cut. It was soft, not tender. At certain points, we couldn't identify which parts were meat or fat. We could tell the sinews though. So much for them trying to explain USDA Prime because it sure didn't feel like it. I kid you not when I say that even Aston's was more satisfying. I'm writing this place off on this alone.

We had thought that some brandy peppercorn sauce would salvage the steak. This tasted weird - in a herbal kind of way. We gave feedback and they replaced with fresh portion that tasted like they added more brandy. Didn't make things any better. This didn't taste like any peppercorn sauce because I couldn't taste pepper. By the way, Aston's is a very affordable entry level steak joint that makes black pepper sauce which blows this one away.

Those grilled shrimps on the side weren't too bad, but a few shrimps aren't going to be enough to salvage the experience.

You know that there's a big problem when there is talk about the potatoes being one of the better tasting items from the menu. These Lyonnaise potatoes were indeed one of the better tasting items.

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