ASIAN CLASSICS WITH A TWIST
Even if you dislike fusion food, give newly opened Route 65 in Suntec City a chance.
The lifestyle bar and kitchen concept serves Asian classics with a twist by head chef Anthony Ng, 36, who deserves praise for his valiant versions and zeal in making a variety of condiments from scratch.
The Signature Hokkien Mee ($16++) comes on an opeh leaf. The texture of the noodles is tender without being overcooked and there is a generous serving of squid, prawn and roast pork.
The sambal chilli is cooked in-house from scratch. The noodles are braised in a bisque-like prawn broth, but the dish can do with more pronounced seafood flavours.
Other mains to try are the beautifully glossy and flavoursome Grilled Half-spring Chicken Panggang ($16++) and Superstar Beef Rendang ($25++), which comes with a beef short rib that I find a little strong in meaty odour. The accompanying belacan fried rice for the rendang was tasty, but the grains are too broken for my liking.
The Cheesy Lobster Carrot Cake ($20++) is not on the list of mains, and is good for sharing between two and three people.
The radish cake is a little too soft and too garlicky, but it is beautifully presented as a 24cm disc-shaped omelette garnished with pork floss and an edible flower.
There are also chunks of slipper lobster in the dish. The accompanying belacan cheese sauce sounds like an odd combination, but turns out tasty. Chef Ng successfully matches the savoury pungency of belacan and cheese with onion and chilli.
Route 65 is having a one-for-one promotion for its main courses for dinner.
WHERE: Route 65, 01-434 Suntec City North Wing Tower 5, 3 Temasek Boulevard MRT: Esplanade OPEN: 11.30am to 1am daily INFO: www.facebook.com/route65sg
DINING WITH A VIEW
Italian restaurant Zafferano is offering a four-course International Women's Day Menu priced at $68++, with the option to order sparkling wine Spumante at $10++ a glass.
The first course is charcoal-grilled white asparagus on a bed of apple wood-smoked mascarpone cream, cured egg yolk, housemade dill oil and a sprinkling of sumac.
It is followed by housemade tagliolini served with red prawn crudo (above left). The pasta is freshly made in-house with imported eggs from Japan's Yamanashi Prefecture. Head chef Andrea De Paola, 28, says the eggs are especially creamy in texture and give the pasta an elastic texture.
For mains, it is a tough choice between roasted halibut and Italian fennel confit with a light lemon butter sauce, and a charcoal-grilled 200-day grain-fed Black Angus beef striploin served with roasted sunchoke cream and French blue-foot mushrooms.
End the meal with chef De Paola's version of millefoglie (Italian custard and puff pastry) with apple, paired with olive oil sponge and housemade calvados (apple brandy) ice cream (above right).
The menu is available till tomorrow. Reservations for it must be made with the restaurant via phone (6509-1488) or e-mail ([email protected]), and diners should quote "International Women's Day".
WHERE: Zafferano, Level 43 Ocean Financial Centre, 10 Collyer Quay MRT: Raffles Place OPEN: 11.30am to 3pm; 5.30pm till late (Mondays to Fridays); 6.30pm till late (Saturdays) TEL: 6509-1488 INFO: E-mail [email protected]