Showing posts with label French Food. Show all posts
Showing posts with label French Food. Show all posts

Friday, January 1, 2016

Pardon My French @ Icon Village


Pardon My French? If you search online, the first thing that would come out is this " The phrase is uttered in an attempt to excuse the user of profanity, swearing, or curses in the presence of those offended by it under the pretense of the words being part of a foreign language." A couple of pages and you will find, there is actually a French restaurant by this name located at Icon Village. Barely a month old, I was looking forward to see what it has got to offer.  Judging by the name, would it be something quirky and bold?


With a small frontage, one may easily miss it. (it is right beside 7 Eleven). With only 3 tables plus another alfresco seating, its tiny space surprises me.  It holds a certain charm reminiscent of a small brasserie, and if warm lights were used instead of its current white, I believe it would be even cosier.  The menu is quite straight forward, with a few quintessential French dish - Poulet, Duck confit, Beef stew and Fish baked with ratatouille. Pastas are available as well.  It also offers quite affordable and interesting breakfast items for Saturday.  No coffee though, but its unique selection of teas makes up for it.

Paquet DePoisson 4/5

We went straight for their mains - Duck Confit ($25.00), Boeuf Bourguignon ( Beef stew $17.00) and my favourite dish Paquet De Poisson (Baked Fish Parcel $20.50) which seabass was the Fish of the Day.  The fish came to us hot in its baking paper. As we unveiled it, what intrigued me was the beautiful bright orangy sauce around it - Capsicum sauce, a twist to the original recipe created by the chef. Together with the huge slices of zucchini and just a tinge of seasoning, it enhances both the look and taste of the dish. Moist and tender, the fish even had a crisp-top even though it was baked enclosed in paper.

Duck Confit 3.8/5

Its Duck Confit ($25) has a slight twist to it as well, being paired with mashed pumpkin instead of potatoes. Thin and crisp skin with very tender meat, and it was not gamey at all.  However, I didn't feel the mashed pumpkin goes well with it. Something more starchy than the mashed pumpkin would have been better to counter the richness of the confit.

Beef Stew 3/5

Its Beef Stew came to us looking real promising but was also the most disappointing for me. The soupy gravy was very flavourful and I enjoyed soaking it up with the deep fried mantou which proves to be a yummy combination. According to the chef, Oxtail was used for its collagen, that will give the stew the rich consistency without having to add any fats to it. I expected the meat to be soft and tender and falling off the bones. That was what I had in Essen, my very first oxtail stew and I loved it!  However, this was simply too tough for me to chew.

Ruby Pear 4.2/5

As for dessert, Ruby Pear ($6.50) is a must-have here.  Soaked in red wine, the pear compote was served warmed with homemade Bailey's ice cream, adding on to its alcohol undertone. I have tried fruit compote served with vanilla ice cream which are often too sweet and dense, but this is light and tastes clean.  The only issue I have is with the ice cream, that melted so fast on the warm pear that 2 tiny bites were all I managed to get.

Pardon My French isn't as adventurous as I thought it will be, but after numerous big names sprouting in our small city, I appreciate such an earnest set up, without all the decorations. From the twists done to the dishes, I can see that the chefs have achieved a good foundation from their culinary training.  Certainly there are some rough edges (there are even handwritten strike offs & add ons in the menu), but as Derrick has cleverly pointed out, like its name, we should pardon them for being less of a French. (our expectations).

Written by Si An. A girl who is allured by travelling, loves the feel of freedom, smell of the rain and the aroma of fine coffee and food.

Pardon My French
Icon Village
12 Gopeng Street
Singapore 078877
Tel: +65 64109353
Nearest MRT: Tanjong Pagar (EW Line)

Opening Hours:
Mon-Fri: 1130am - 230pm, 530pm - 830pm
Sat: 10am - 230pm

Alight at Tanjong Pagar MRT station. Take Exit A. Turn left and walk down Peck Seah Street. Turn right onto Gopeng Street. Walk to the junction of Gopeng Street and Tras Street. Turn left onto Tras Street. Walk to destination. Journey time about 5 minutes. [Map]

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Shelter in the Woods @ Greeenwood Avenue (Bukit Timah Road)


Christmas brings joy and what joy is it to know that the popular Shelter in the Woods has finally reopened on the 12 November 2014. Besides offering the ever popular traditional rotisserie's dishes, the restaurant has up its game with the appointment of Consulting Chef Masashi Horiuchi who has more than 20 years of experience in Michelin restaurants across Europe, combining homely rusticity with finesse of execution.

Shelter Charcuterie Board 4.5/5

A great platter for sharing while waiting for the mains  is the Shelter Charcuterie Board ($40). The charcuterie board features the BurgundyTerrine, Foie Grs Au Torchon, Pork Hat Terrine and Pate En Route. A ideal platter to kick start with some drinks.

Pate En Croute 4.8/5

What really stood out on the Charcuterie Board is the Pate En Croute. This is really something new to me for the less travelled and shallow culinary knowledge. It is amazing how something that look quite ordinary which I thought was some sort of a pie can taste so beautiful.

Pate En Croute 4.8/5

Slicing into the Pate En Croute revealed the different layers of duck foie gras, pork, veal, forest mushrooms, pig liver and consomme jelly wrapped in pastry. The harmony of all the ingredients took me by surprise with the consomme jelly and buttery pastry complementing it.

Shelter Quiche 4/5

I have learnt that while quiche is a classic French dish, it actually originated in Germany. A signature at Shelter in the Woods is the Shelter Quiche ($12.50). The short crust pastry is filled with forest mushrooms, Swiss gruyere cheese, garlic/herb butter, eggs and Swiss cream. I am not a big fan of quiche but this actually tasted quite yummy with the cheesy and earthy mushroom flavours.

Endive & Roquefort Salad 3/5

I thought the Endive & Roquefort Salad ($26) could be a bit acquire in taste for some. While the salad has a refreshing finishing with the used of green apple strips, cherry tomatoes and honey dressing, the Belgian endives were on the bitter side for me.

Lyonnaise Salad 4.2/5

I would prefer the traditional Lyonnaise Salad ($20) to the endive & roquefort salad. The savoury and tangy combination of Dutch smoked bacon and confit pearl onions dressed in a sherry vinaigrette provided the zest for the crunchy greens.

Creamy Corn Soup Trio 4.2/5

The Creamy Corn Soup Trio ($12.50) showed a glimpse of the chef's finesse in execution. The Japanese corn and onions are boiled in water and then mixed with roasted corn, hence a hint of smokiness. Milk is added, blended and sleved. The soup is then garnished with roasted corn, pop corn and parsley oil. The detailed into a simple soup dish elevated the whole experience which used to be only know of its homely, rustic, tradition food.

DIY Steak Tartar 4.5/5

A great starter will be the DIY Steak Tartar ($18 for 100g). The Do It Yourself steak tartar of handcut Australian Black Angus beef comes with capers, cornichons, beet, onion, chives and served with toasted farm bread. Mixed them all together with the quail egg to bond all the flavours that burst into a blossom in the mouth.

Rotisserie Suckling Pig 4.5/5

I was expecting a whole Rotisserie Suckling Pig ($35) such as those you get in a Spanish restaurant. Once again I was given a glimpse into his fine dining trained experience. The plating was beautiful. Cooked in the traditional flame rotisserie, the suckling pig is served with rotisserie pineapples, confit onions and gravy made of veal jus and caramelised onions. Perfectly executed, the skin was crackling while still retaining that juiciness. The used of pineapple also freshen up the palate from the natural greasiness of the meat.

Seafood Casserole 4.8/5

Seafood Casserole 4.8/5

The Seafood Casserole ($35) is great for sharing. The luxurious pot of seafood features seasonal fish, prawns, mussels and clams. The highlight has to be the rich seafood broth made from fish soup, fish, prawns, lobster, fennel, leeks, celery. carrots, tomatoes and saffron. The hearty harvest from the sea will get all your senses singing in praise.

Rotisserie Rack of Lamb 3.8/5

I love my lamb but the Rotisserie Rack of Lamb ($39) fell slight short of my expectation. While it was cooked to a nice tender and juicy in the traditional flame rotisserie and bathed in a garlic confit oil, the NZ rack of lamb somehow was lacking that gaminess which I enjoy tearing it off the bone.

Roasted Chicken 4.8/5

Being curator of the Ultimate Hawker Fest 2014 working with Tian Tian Chicken Rice and Toh Thye San Farm using the corn fed Anxin Chicken, I have known how good and sweet these chickens are. They are unlike the normally commercial boiler. I was quite excited to be reunited with Anxin chicken at Shelter in the Woods with the Roasted Chicken ($19 for half, $35 for whole). The rotisserie chicken is bathed in a garlic confit oil and served with roasted potatoes, mesclun salad and veal jus, caramelized onions gravy. I am glad that I can taste Anxin chicken again cause its sweetness is just so sweet on its own that you do not need any gravy or sauce.

Rotisserie Pineapple Crumble 2.8/5

I like the idea of using the pineapples crumble for the suckling pig and I have enjoyed it. However, knowing that it is available in another dish less the ice cream and having tried it, I am not sure I will pay the money for the Rotisserie Pineapple Crumble ($14). Putting the taste aside, it is too simple for a dessert and probably would not get the satisfaction out of it.

Tiny Crispy Apple Tart 4/5

Having a warm sweet finish to a delicious feast is the Tiny Crispy Apple Tart ($12). The tart topped with Fuji apple, butter and brown sugar is thin and crispy. Paired with a scoop of their house made vanilla ice cream for a comfort finishing.

Meringue Glacee 3.5/5

On a sweet note, there is the Meringue Glacee ($12) that come with a scoop each of the house made raspberry sorbet and vanilla ice cream, topped with baked meringue cones and pistachio.

The re-opening of the Shelter in the Woods with its new chef and revamped menu definitely made a return with a louder bang. Combining the chef vast experience and rustic tradition, it has bring the restaurant to a new height. The extensive menu is really worth a visit or two and everything on it is worthy for recommendation. It definitely falls into one of favourite restaurants his year that I would want to return to check out the rest of the menu.

Shelter in the Woods 
22 Greenwood Avenue
Singapore 289218
Tel: +65 64666225
Nearest MRT: Tan Kah Kee (DT Line)

Opening Hours:
Daily: 6pm - 10pm
Sun Brunch: 1130am - 230pm

1) Alight at Tan Kah Kee MRT station. Take Exit A. Use the overhead bridge to Exit B. Walk straigh to Hillcrest Road. Turn right onto Hillcrest Road. Walk down Hillcrest Road and make a left into Greenwood Avenue. Journey time about 15 minutes. [Map]

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

St Regis Singapore Christmas 2014


The festive season is just around the corner and it is time for all the feasting with families and friends. If you have not plan for your festive gathering, let me bring to you a glimpse of the offerings from Brasserie Les Saveurs and LaBrezza at St Regis Singapore. Be it the contemporary epicurean refinement of French cuisine or extraordinary handcrafted Italian delights, they are all thoughtfully curated for the joyous season.

Seared Yellow Fin Tuna with Sesame Seeds and Citrus Salsa 3.5/5

We started with an amuse bouche from Brasserie Les Saveurs, the Seared Yellow Fin Tuna with Sesame Seeds and Citrus Salsa. An interesting play of flavours with the citrus salsa's sharpness lending a much lift to the tuna.

Italian Antipasti Selection 3/5

Next up is a platter of Italian Antipasti Selection from LaBrezza. On the plate there were San Daniele Ham with Melon, Preserved Capsicums Insaata Russa, Veal Liver Pate, Smoked Salmon and Mascarpone. A delightful finger bites that are best accompanied with a glass of champagne.

Trio of Appetisers 3.5/5

A more refine execution from Brasserie Les Saveurs is the Trio of Appetisers. Starting from left to right, we have the Avruga Pearl with Poached Hokkaido Scallops, King Prawn Tempura with Avocado Dip, Coriander and Sakura Ebi and Pan-seared Wagyu Beef Tenderloin with Parmesan Espuma. It was a decent delicate plate with many little components being put together but I struggled to find the wow factor.

Homemade Cannelloni 4.5/5

The presentation of the Homemade Cannelloni from Labrezza itself is already mouthwatering. Stuffed with boston lobster, bottarga and porcini mushroom and served with a king crab sauce, this is luxurious in a plate with its richness and creaminess. This is definitely one of the more memorable dish of the night.

Roasted Duck Breast and Duck Leg Confit 4.5/5

Flamed with Grand Marnier and served with winter truffle potato puree. this is East vs West from Brasserie Les Saveurs with the Roasted Duck Breast and Duck Leg Confit. The roasted duck breast not surprisingly won my palate over the classic french. I always prefer the Chinese technique of preparing the poultry as it allows not only the meat but the skin to shine.

Honey Glazed Gammon Ham 4/5

Honey Glazed Gammon Ham 4/5

What is Christmas without a Ham? Take away this gorgeous Honey Glazed Gammon Ham to delight your guests which was beautifully cured. The honey pineapple sauce with its sweetness and sharpness further accentuated the flavour to the fullest.

Frozen Ice Nougat and Crispy Wafer 4.2/5

Christmas is even sweeter with this plate of dessert from Brasserie Les Saveurs that comes with  the Frozen Ice Nougat and Crispy Wafer with 70% Amedei Savarin. This is indeed a sweet ending to the evening with everyone cleaning off their plate as clean as white christmas.

Homemade Stollen with Dried Tropical Fruit 4/5

How can we leave St Regis without trying their popular Homemade Stollen with Dried Tropical Fruit? I tried it last year and the flavour has since been lingering in my mind. I am glad that I get to try it again. This is indeed a great start to welcome the festive season.

For the whole list of festive dining menus at Brasserie Les Saveurs, LaBrezza and Yan Ting, please visit

St Regis Singapore
29 Tanglin Road
Singapore 247911
Tel: +65 65066860
Nearest MRT: Orchard (NS Line)

1) Alight at Orchard MRT station. Take Exit E. Walk towards Wheelock Place via ION. Exit Wheelock Place and turn left towards Liat Tower. Continue onwards to Forum Shopping Mall. Walk further down to Orchard Parade Hotel. Turn left onto Tanglin Road. St Regis is just beside Tanglin Shopping Centre. Journey time about 15 minutes. [Map]

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Immanuel French Kitchen @ Bukit Merah


When the foodies gang went down to Bukit Merah Salut Coffeeshop last month to check out Two Wings, my foodie radar picked up a lone figure at the other corner of the premises painstakingly preping for his stall hours before the opening. I could sense the passion in the man behind the chef apron. I made a mental note to return and try the food at Immanuel French Kitchen. After getting home that day, I got a message from Catherine who found the man behind the chef apron familiar, is non other than Immanuel Tee formerly head chef of Keystone at the young age of 26 who has worked in the kitchen of Jaan, Restaurant Andre, Guy Savoy Singapore and two Michelin starred in Pastorale in Belgium.

Duck Rillette 4/5

I was quite surprised that I can get Duck Rillette ($8.60) at a coffeeshop stall servicing casual French cuisine, served with gherkin and bread. I applaud the serving of gherkin to go with the duck rillette fatness. This shows the thoughtfulness of the chef in his food and for his customers. I look forward to trying the chicken liver pate in my next visit.

Foie Gras 3.8/5

For me the Foie Gras ($12.60) coated with black miso, served with dashi and daikon noodle has it hits and misses. I can't expect more in the quality of the ingredient as we are not dining at a restaurant. I like the pairing of the sweet black miso with the creamy foie gras, accentuating the enjoyment to a new level. I only hope that the foie gras could be more seared on the sides instead.

Frog 3.8/5

The Frog ($12.60) sauteed with shallot, garlic and parsley received mixed opinions among the gang. While we all agreed on the butter aroma, some felt that the seasoning can be heavier. I thought otherwise then. If the seasoning is too strong, it will mask the natural mild sweetness of the frog.

French Duck Leg Confit 3.5/5

A classic French dish is the French Duck Leg Confit ($15.90) that is served with mash potato, braised cabbage and au jus. I thought the braised cabbage was something very out of the norm and not French. Nevertheless, I did enjoy it. The fact that the braised cabbage comes with some acidity helped to cut through the gaminess and fatness of duck confit. The duck leg confit itself has a nice crispy skin while the meat could be more tender.

Pork Belly 4/5

From the Foie Gras and now to the Pork Belly ($16.90) braised in Kakuni style shows that Immanuel likes to incorporate Japanese influence into his French cuisine. The braised pork belly is served with duxelle mushroom, onsen egg and potato foam. I like the interpretation of the pork belly but the portion seemed a bit small.

Actually I am quite excited to chance upon Immanuel French Kitchen. I didn't expect that the humble little stall is actually run by a top chef who has bags of experience working into various top restaurants. I am sure with his culinary training and experience, it is not hard for him to helm any restaurant but he has chosen to sweat it out in a tidy space labouring his passion for his food. I look forward to Chef Immanuel bring his vision and cuisine to the next level.

Immanuel French Kitchen 
Blk 119 Bukit Merah Lane 1
Singapore 151119
Nearest MRT: Queenstown (EW Line), Redhill (EW Line)

Opening Hours:
Tue-Sun: 12pm - 11pm
(Closed on Mon)

1) Alight at Queenstown MRT station. Take Exit A. Walk to bus stop at Queenstown MRT station (Stop ID 11149). Take bus number 195. Alight 3 stops later. Walk to destination. Journey time about 8 minutes. [Map]

2) Alight at Redhill MRT station. Take Exit A. Walk to bus stop opposite Redhill MRT station (Stop ID 10201). Take bus number 33 or 120. Alight 5 stops later. Walk to destination. Journey time 10 minutes. [Map]

Friday, June 20, 2014

Lewin Terrace @ Fort Canning Hill


For my birthday meal, Maureen brought me to Tamashii Robataya. In return for her birthday celebration, together with Celes we went to Lewin Terrace to celebrate Maureen's birthday. Lewin Terrace is located at Fort Canning Hill in a beautiful black and white bungalow featuring Japanese-French fusion.

Salmon Confit 3.5/5

We went for the five course lunch set menu at $70. The first course was an appetizer of Salmon Confit that comes with a 63 degree Celsius sous vide egg with raspberry sauce. The raspberry sauce lent some sweetness to the light flavour to kick start the lunch.

Foie Gras Terrine 4/5

The Foie Gras Terrine is beautifully paired with a passionfruit, mango sauce to cut through the rich and creaminess of the foie gras. The sheet of coat over the foie gras is potato crisp which is extremely thin and crispy.

Sea Bream Fricassee 4.2/5

There were mix opinions of the Sea Bream Fricassee that comes with wild asparagus, olives and clam jus. While the others felt that the clam jus was too salty, I actually like it. I thought it gave the dish a saltiness contrast similar to Teochew steamed fish in which sour plum or salted vegetables are used.

Lamb Cumin 4.2/5

The star of the lunch has to be the Lamb Cumin served on red and yellow pimento with celery root puree. The presentation may look kind of plain and simple but each component on the plate worked harmoniously together complementing one another. The lamb was extremely tender with lovely flavourful singing in the mouth. For those that is worried about the gaminess, I hardly could taste any in this dish.

Deconstructed Spumoni 3/5

The lunch is to celebrate Maureen's birthday so we got the kitchen to wrote some greetings on the dessert plate. The Deconstructed Spumoni comes in the form of Chardonnay jelly, campari foam and fromage blanc ice cream. It is definitely beautiful but not the type of dessert I would know how to appreciate especially when it comes with alcohol.

White Sesame Blancmange 3.5/5

For dessert, there was a choice of three from the set menu so we got all, one for each person. Besides the deconstructed spumoni, we have the the White Sesame Blancmange. I did not remember tasting any sesame but the coffee flavour was very distinct. The wobbly blancmange paired with the coconut ice cream was good and not too heavy.

Flourless Chocolate Cake 4.2/5

Lastly we have the Flourless Chocolate Cake that is served in custard sauce with a scoop of brown sugar ice cream. This is my favourite dessert among the three we tried. The three components simply came together to make this a sweet ending for a wonderful meal in a beautiful restaurant.

The restaurant is located at the hill behind the central fire station. Surrounded by greenery, it has a quiet and romantic ambience that is perfect for couple. If you are driving, park at the carpark beside Registry of Marriage. Take the flight of stairs at the carpark to the top of the park. Turn left and continue walking . You will locate the white and black bungalow down the path. If not, the shortcut is to take the path beside Singapore Philatelic Museum. Look out for the metal gate beside the museum. There should be a sign of the restaurant which is quite hidden. Walk in and take the flight of stairs direct to the restaurant.

Lewin Terrace
21 Lewin Terrace
Singapore 179290
Tel: +65 63339905
Nearest MRT: City Hall (EW Line, NS Line)

Opening Hours:
Mon: 630pm - 1100pm
Tue-Sat: 12pm - 230pm, 630pm - 1100pm
(Closed on Sun)

1) Alight at City Hall MRT station. Take Exit B. Take left onto North Bridge. Walk to the traffic light junction of North Bridge Road and Coleman Street. Cross the road towards Peninsula Plaza and continue walking towards the junction of Coleman Street and Hill Street. Cross the road to the central fire station. Continue on Coleman Street until Singapore Philatelic Museum. Look out for the metal gate before the museum, turn left in and take the stairs to destination. Journey time about 15 minutes. [Map]

Friday, June 6, 2014

The French Table @ West Coast Plaza


People in the west should rejoice with the opening of a new casual French dining concept in The French Table at West Coast Plaza. The less than a month old new restaurant at West Coast Plaza is already attracting a crowd when I visited the place on a weekend for dinner. Browsing through the menu, the tell tale sign is quite clear it is almost a carbon copy of Poulet. It is not a surprise as the men behind The French Table is non other then Chef Nelson (ex Poulet) and a ex Poulet manager.

Wild Mushroom Soup 3/5

The Wild Mushroom Soup ($5.80) which is served with Alba truffle oil was flavourful but it was on the creamy side. The flavour of the mushrroom and truffle oil is missing from the creamy wild mushroom soup.

Shellfish Pot 2.5/5

The Shellfish Pot ($9.80) which is sauteed fresh mussels and clams with vegetables served in butter nage. My partner had some sandy clams and mussels which was disappointing. While I could taste the white wine in the soup, the butter nage was lacking a body. It felt like I was drinking diluted butter water.

Lamb Navarin 3.5/5

I actually wanted to try the pork belly but it was not available so I went for the Lamb Navarin ($16.80). I was expecting a whole lamb leg but instead was cut into pieces. The lamb leg is braised in white wine and served with french beans, carrots and tomatoes. The lamb although not melted in the mouth but it was cooked to fork tender. It was a decent dish and the portion was substantial but a bit one dimensional. Probably adding a mash or puree will make it a more dimensional and enjoyable dish.

Oven Roasted Half Chicken 3.5/5

The Oven Roasted Half Chicken ($15.80) definitely fell short in flavours compared to Poulet's rotisserie chicken. The sweet onion sauce was also kind of boring and one dimensional again. It felt like the oven roasted chicken is swimming in a french onion soup. I would preferred something more savoury to pair with the chicken.

Overall I think the concept will work but the food still needs more fine tuning. Opening at West Coast Plaza is also quite strategic offering something different for the neighbourhood. Judging from the crowded restaurant, it is quite well received. While the food is not to the mark yet, I hope when things settled down they can fine tune their offering and maybe even provide some characteristic of their own in their food.

The French Table
West Coast Plaza
154 West Coast Road
Singapore 127371
Tel: +65 67779483
Nearest MRT: Clementi (EW Line)

Opening Hours:
Daily: 1130am - 10pm

1) Alight at Clementi MRT station. Take Exit B. Walk to bus stop at Clementi MRT station (Stop ID 17179). Take bus 189. Alight 2 stops later. Walk to destination. Journey time about 10 minutes. [Map]

2) Alight at Clementi MRT station. Take Exit B. Walk to bus stop at Clementi MRT station (Stop ID 17179). Take West Coast Plaza shuttle bus to West Coast Plaza. Journey time about 6 minutes. [Map]