Friday, December 30, 2011

Pizzeria Mozza

Finally managed to visit pizzeria Mozza which is reputedly the pizza restaurant to beat. We needed a quick bite before watching the awesome "wicked" (which I have had the pleasure of watching in my previous London visits - but well this is a food blog or else I could wax lyrical about the show huh ) - so w popped by the pizzeria. Thank god that notwithstanding the fact that the restaurant was packed, they still had one table that they could give us provided we evict by 730- alls good, since it meant that we could catch wicked in time.

First up was calamari which was expertly done - seared nicely on the outside to give it the charred flavor while remaining soft inside and paired with a zesty sauce. Yummeh! 8/10

The chicken wings were done competently as well - full of flavor and juice and with a spicy sauce to go alongside it. I enjoyed this too 7.5/10

The pizzas then arrived and my word were they good - possibly the best crust I have eaten so far as far as pizzerias in Singapore go - the crust was salty , chewy , crisp enough , and with the right texture and taste of dough that made each mouthful a delight. Paired with the toppings of Parma ham and rocket, the classic combination didn't fail and was given new life by the presence of the lovely crust. 8.5/10

The other pizza we had was the fennel sausage . This was full of spring onions ? the sausage had a Thai influence to
It which took a while to grow on me - 7.5/10- still prefer the prosciutto e Parma pizza heh

Overall pizzeria Mozza is a wonderful restaurant serving great pizzas and nice sides and won't burn a hole in your wallet thankfully. Highly
Recommended .

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

I have decided to create a new "category", i.e. "exceptional", for food that is so amazing that putting it under "excellent" won't do it justice, i.e. you have to separate the Audi R8 from the Audi A4, which, though good, will never be an R8. Get the drift? (pun intended).

Anyway, there aren't that many places that fall into the category of "exceptional", however, all those that have been listed there truly belong to such a description. Highlights would include:

a) Steirereck in Vienna;
b) L'Atelier Joel Robuchon in London
c) Oysters from Borough Market

and so on. 


I have really no idea why I'm blogging about Gunther's, because any food blogger worth his calories, salt, sugar, etc. would have already visited this esteemed fine-dining establishment in Singapore many times over, and still have cash to spare. I digress. But really, Gunther's is a household name in Singapore, as it was voted one of the places to eat in the world (by San Pellegrino), and is consistently in Miele's Top 5 list. So of course I had high expectations.

I went for lunch, and was duly escorted into a large private dining room. Just so happened that we got the corner seat, which was fine by me. It was a little stuffy, but soon the "specials" trolley arrived...Alba white truffles, large lobsters, etc. Pretty much my kinda thing, except for the horrible prize tags. Oh well. Never mind.

The humbler bread rolls then arrived, which was pretty much di rigeurwhen you consider that, when I went to Steirereck in Vienna, there was a huge bread basket with different kinds of loaves, and different permutations of flour, style, etc, to choose from. But well, it wasn't bad, though to be honest I much prefer the humbler fluffy bun as opposed to this phallic looking thing.

We all ordered set lunches, with a serving of their signature Cold Angel Hair Pasta with Truffle Oil and Caviar to share. It arrived first, and it was good, of course. Served chilled, it was full of umami, with a distinctive Japanese flavour (I believe, from the use of kombu), heightened by the lashings of truffle oil. Good stuff. I wasn't exactly blown away (I seldom am, actually) but this was good. Delicious, and too bad there was only that much on my plate (since we were sharing the course). (8.5/10).

The main appetizer arrived soon after, a delicately plated Asparagus with Foie Gras Ravioli. This was absolutely delicious, very delicately flavoured, with the pan seared foie gras flavours coming through at the end, in the aftertaste, as it burst through the thin ravioli wrappings and into my mouth. The sauce was great as well, tasty, with the right creamy texture, and filled with foie gras essence. Overall, a delicious dish, well executed. The asparagus was extremely tasty also. (8.5/10)

Sadly, the main course didn't live up to my high expectations. We ordered the chef's special, a duck confit, but well, while the duck confit itself was competently done, and I mean the skin was actually very delicious since it was cooked in its own fat (artery clogging too), the accompaniments were quite a letdown. Tomato rice - and not even risotto. It felt like eating chicken rice with duck confit. I'm serious. Nothing wrong with chicken rice, of course, but for me, not a good companion to the confit. (7/10)

The panna cotta we had for dessert was just average, actually. Milky, but with not enough vanilla bean. I think I have been eating too well so this dessert was just, NAH. (6.5/10)

We ended with some petit fours. Okay only. Don't bother to rate.

Gunther's is a nice place, but overall some hits and misses. The thing is, it wasn't too pricey I guess, for the chance of eating at a fine dining establishment. Still, wish it had made small adjustments here and there and I would have given it an exceptional rating.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Coal Pit Central Otago Tiwha Pinot Noir

This was ridiculously tasty - lots of ripe fruit on the palate, complex structure, and a long finish. Bob Campbell gave it 94 points and I'd have to agree.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Guatamala el tambor cup of excellence

Had this amazing coffee at Tobys estate today and it is truly a delight. Vanilla scents and extremely sweet (in a good sort of way) on the palate. Pineapple sweetness is a good way of putting it I guess - at first I thought pear but pineapple is more accurate. Very sweet and long sweet clean finish. Notice how many times I've used the word sweet yet? Great. (9/10) comparable to the costa rica I had at seven seeds in Melb

Skyve Elementary Bistro and Bar

A friend of mine who works at Chope highly recommended this place, Skyve Elementary bistro and bar, so G and I made our way there today after work to check it out. Located in a school complex in Windsted Road, Skyve (for short) is one of those charming little places. The bar area is decadently plush, with sofas and dim lighting, while the bistro (i.e. dining area) is bright and cheery, which makes for good photographs, of course.

Skyve offers a breakfast menu, oysters, the usual appetizers and mains, and dessert. It boasts an extensive wine list but that time G wasn't planning on having wine - he was just in the mood for the creative. So he ordered a lemongrass drink - which was not bad, came with sugar cane which was unusual. The owner, Celene, came along, introduced herself, and recommended, for appetizers, the steak tartare. We were like, why not - so we agreed and ordered the same, and boy was it pretty amazing. Just simple, the minced beef was lightly charred on the outside, and the egg was prepared sous-vide (probably), and there were some garlic crackers and also wasabi mayonnaise which went very well with the beef. The whole combination worked brilliantly, the beef was flavourful and paired well with the wasabi mayonnaise. Good job. (8.5/10)

G had the pork belly sous vide, while I had the sous vide ocean trout. The pork belly was pretty amazing and one could tell that G was very happy with his meal, which was great. Tasty, with good crackling, and well seasoned, the pork belly I tried from him was up to the mark.

I had the sous vide ocean trout, which was great - the fish was perfectly cooked, slightly pinkish in the middle and still retaining its sweet delicate flavour, nice and red. Flaked so easily. Paired with a simple sauce of olive oil, this was another winner. What i liked about the food was its attention to detail, for e.g. the shitake mushrooms that accompanied the dish were very tasty and probably of very good quality. (8.5/10)

Excellent food in a wonderful setting. Highly recommended.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Sarnies (Revisted)

When one is working, one settles for cheap thrills, i.e. literally cheap treats throughout the day that can satisfy one's miserable working life routine and the humdrum of it all. Sarnies is one of these places for cheap treats that don't bust a whole in your wallet, but gives you wonderful happy-times.

I've blogged about the wonderful coffees Sarnies serves, but today I discovered something brilliant as well - lovely scrambled eggs. Their scrambled eggs are creamy, eggy, and just the way I like it, as compared to Toby's where it's a little tougher.

And their house blend of coffee was back, i.e. the costa rica - ethopian yirgacheffe blend. I had it as a cappuccino and it excelled again with just enough acidity to bring out the coffee flavours. Good stuff.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Smitten Coffee and Tea Bar

Darren and hongyuan are one of the nicest fellas in the Coffee industry, and Smitten is their little cafe at the Quayside, along the Robertson stretch which I incidentally love. A little hole-in-the-wall, it serves delicious coffees and a selection of pastries and confectioneries from all over the island, such as Gobi's cakes, and macarons from ET Artisans. Do try their "black sesame" macaron - it's delicious.

In terms of coffee preparation, they use a Mirage, and the beans are roasted in-house from all over the world. They also offer other 'slow-brew' methods such as a cold drip, and also other pourover methods such as the v60 and the chemex. Recently, however, they've come up with the "Prancing Elf" Christmas Blend for the holiday season. I popped by on Sunday and was suitably impressed - this was an impressive drink. A mixture of Sumatra Blue Batak and Ethiopian Yirgacheffe, the Christmas Blend was very spicy, i.e. full of spice notes, with notes of cloves, cinnamon, dark chocolate, and roasted nuts, particularly pistachos, with a long nutty aftertaste of pistachos. My friend said she could discern cranberries and turkey, but I would not go that far, as yet. Even so, it is a great blend - one should check it out. [8.5/10]

Their usual blend is called the Thumper, and it's great if you like fruity coffees. It's a 4-bean blend, although I have forgotten the exact composition of beans. This one is nice and it's constantly evolving; well balanced. [8/10].

Do check out this place!