Wednesday, 27 March 2013

Gem Bar

Just a stone throw away from Amoy Street, lies Ann Siang Hill. Another amazing street of many hidden finds waiting to be uncovered. And just in case if you're worried about this place being unaccessible, fret not. It's just a walking distance away from Tanjong Pagar MRT and is near to Amoy Food Centre and Maxwell Hawker Centre.

Discovered the existence of this dining place while strolling along Ann Siang Hill one day and I can't wait to try this place out. Hence, our destiantion for lunch one day!

The interior of the place gives diners a comfortable and cosy feel. Equipped with air-conditioners, you will definitely be glad you found yourself this place knowing that weather in Singapore can be so hot it's almost unbearable.

Right now, they are having this Set Lunch Promotion every Monday - Saturday at 11am - 3pm. One Soup/Salad + One Main Course at $10++. They will serve you chilled/warm water upon asking. Or if you prefer other beverages, you can always top up $2 for soft drinks and $3 for juices.

What if you can't make it for lunch due to a meeting? No issues. Head down to Gem Bar for a Late Crowd Promotion (Monday - Thursday at 3pm - 9pm) which you will be able to enjoy 50% discount off the main course. Do check out if there are terms and conditions!

Tradition green mix with a couple of tomatoes drizzled with balsamic vinaigrette. Some of the vegetable tasted way too bitter for me to handle. Left more than half the plate of greens untouched. Would have been better if they were more generous with the dressing though.

Beef Lasagna
Spaghetti tossed in creamy sauce with bacon and mushroom. Two words: Super Delish.

Bangers & Mash
Chicken Sausage and Mashed Potato with onion gravy.

Wagyu Beef Burger
Mushroom Burger
Beef Patty topped with Mushroom and Gratin with Gouda Cheese served with a side salad and cripsy fries.

Meat Ball Pasta
Spaghetti tossed in tomato sauce and wagyu meat ball.

Fish & Chips
Deep Fried Battered Dory served with a side salad and cripsy fries and tartar sauce.

Herb Crusted Salmon
Baked Salmon topped with Herb Crust laced with Mustard Cream Sauce with side salad and cripsy fries. My opinion? The slice of salmon certainly doesn't do justice to the amount of price paid.

Spent a total of $99 on this meal for 8 of us, thanks to the set lunch promotion. Definitely worth the money in my opinion.

If you happen to be in this area, do drop by for a meal! Or a drink, if you're in this area at night.

Gem Bar
10 Ann Siang Hill
Singapore 069789
Tel: 6423 9562

Monday, 25 March 2013

Zafferano - Contemporary Italian Cuisine

Restaurant Week 2013 was held on 18 - 24 March 2013, which just ended on Sunday. Within the short span of a week, have you managed to make your reservation at your favourite restaurant?

I've gotten a reservation for L and myself at Zafferano, and like the title of this post, the restaurant serves Contemporary Italian Cuisine.

Here's an extract from Zafferano's website:
Located 240 metres above the ground at the top floor of the Ocean Financial Centre along Singapore CBD’s bustling Collyer Quay, Zafferano offers gastronomes a winning hybrid concept that consists of a contemporary restaurant and chic rooftop bar. Enjoy the panoramic 270-degree view as you dig in to Chef Roberto De Franco’s neo Italian cuisine that’s a refreshed and modern version of the classics.

The description is enough for me to make a reservation almost immediately. The view is said to be to-die-for, isn' it?

We didn't get an al-fresco seating arrangement but the interior of the restaurant was impressive.

Having been to several italian restaurants, and being served just a single kind of bread before starting the meal, Zafferano was indeed refreshing as they offer not just a single, but a variety of bread. Which I am not complaining, I love bread sticks!

Tonno - Tuna & Avocado Tartar, Cherry Tomato Juice & Aromatic Salad

This was my choice of starter, and to be honest I wasn't attracted to the taste and even switched plates with L after a single bite. However, I have to admit that I hold a biased point of view in this case, because the smoked tuna tasted raw, and I don't stomach raw food. But the cherry tomato juice makes a perfect bread stick dip!

Burrata - Burrata Cheese, Cherry Tomatoes & Basil
L's choice of starter, which ended up became mine heh. This dish went well. I really love how fresh the tomatoes were and how they tasted after the chef's work. But to be honest, I would prefer less servings of cheese and more of the tomatoes.

Our mains! L got Short Ribs, and since I don't take beef, I got the latter - Astice. Okay, confession time. I got greedy after seeing 'lobster' on the menu.
Short Ribs - Slow-cooked Beef Ribs, Port Wine & Black Truffle Sauce with Polenta, Taleggio Cheese & Briased Vegetables.

Huge thick chunky piece of tasty tendy meat on your plate. Who can resist?
Astice - Boston Lobster Ravioli, Celeraic Cream & Asparagus
To be honest, I wasn't expecting any dumpling-like dish. I mean, I want to see Lobster. But then again, to be really fair to the chef and his works, this dish is tasty and the taste of lobster is too obvious to miss.

Favourite course of the meal: Desserts!

Caffee' - Coffee Mousse, Mascarpone Cheese Foam & Homemade Chocolate Ice Cream

Was a little hesitant to order this since I am not a fan of mousse cakes, but this impressed me. The chocolate ice cream was delicious, just that it melts a bit too quickly. The coffee mousse was sweet and chilled, but the coffee was overwhelming that the aftertaste gets a little bitter. Great for coffee lovers though!

Tiramisu - Traditional Expresso Tiramisu
The serving of coffee icecream which comes along was really good. Tiramisu didn't quite impress and it tasted too bland. Or rather, since it was accompanied by desserts that are way too sweet, the tiramisu turns out pale in comparison. Have yet to try any tiramisu worth raving about. Do you have any recommendations?

Total bill comes up to a total of $129 for just the both of us. Worth a try, especially if you're a diner who pays attention to the ambience and interior of the restaurant.

Ocean Financial Centre, Level 43
10 Collyer Quay
Singapore 049315
Tel: 6509 1488

Tuesday, 19 March 2013

Red Pig Korean Restaurant

Amoy Street is one of the areas whereby there are alot of hidden finds. And by that, I meant restaurants waiting to be discovered. Since my office is situated just afew streets away from Amoy Street, my colleagues and I decided to drop by a Korean restaurant for a lunch one day.

Was pretty disappointed when we found out that buffet is only available for dinner, and that only the ala carte menu is available in the day. And it certainly didn't help when the lunch ala carte manu is pretty limited. But it did cheer me up a little, to see the high volume of korean customers and of course, the bosses!

Budae Jjigae - Spicy Sausage Stew (S$45)
This comes in 2 sizes - Small (S$35) and Large (S$45). Since there were 4 of us, and all three of them were guys, we opt for the large sized one. I love maggie noodles. I love spicy stew. So basically, I love this dish. With a tinge of spice, yet not overwhelming, the stew was so good we ordered more noodles to be added in.

Doijibulgogi - BBQ Pork Hotplate (S$10

We ordered Dakbulgogi (BBQ Chicken Hotplate S$10) as well which I failed to take a close up shot. Personally, I prefer the chicken dish over the pork as the chicken pieces are really tender and tasty. The pork pieces tends to be a little dry and tough to chew after the dish is cooled.

Haemul Pajeon - Seafood Pancake (S$18)
This was served piping hot, and other than being slightly oily, I really cannot find fault with this dish. Many raved about this particular dish and how this is a must-try if you dine here. I wouldn't go as far to say it is a must-try, but this is definitely worth a try in my opinion.

And as usual, all Korean restaurants will serve you many sides during your meal. This is one of my favourite here.
Egg Roll
However, do note that although most of the sides are re-fillable, this isn't. Limited to one piece per person. A little stingy, I would say.

If you dont have such big appetite, then don't over-order! Because the sides can certainly fill you up. And be prepared to stink a little after dining here! Service wasn't very efficient and especially since we were seated in the room. The only time we can order/request for additional sides is when the waitress decided to pop by the room. Selection on the menu is limited, so don't expect too muh variety of food! 

Can't wait to be back for the buffet at night one of these days though.

Red Pig Korean Restaurant
93 Amoy Street
Tel: 6220 7176