Showing posts with label Jamon. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Jamon. Show all posts

Sunday, July 7, 2019

TXA Pintxo Bar @ The Alkaff Mansion - Bringing Basque Culture And Lifestyle To The Greenery Hilltop


1-Group has taken over the space at The Alkaff Mansion, restored and relaunched it with Basque-centred TXA Pintxo Bar on the ground floor and UNA on the second floor, bringing Basque culture and lifestyle to the greenery hilltop. It also houses the all-day flora cafe Wildseed Cafe. The purpose of my visit is to check out TXA Pintxo Bar. The first bar in Singapore dedicated to the unique Basque pintxo experience.

Aceituna Rellena De Vermouth 3.5/5

Our pintxo experience started with the Olive ($2.90) stuffed with vermouth jelly and orange zest and topped with fennel flower. Olive on itself can be sour, so the stuffed vermouth jelly provided the balance with its sweetness.

Crudiente de Jamon 4/5

The Iberico Cracker is sandwiched with smoked cod roe sauce. It is presented like a bikini sandwich. It may look simple, but it is packed with texture and flavour. The crispiness of the Iberico ham is a winner for me.

Boquerones con piperrada 4/5

Next, we had the Boquerones con piperrada ($3.90). Sitting atop the toasted bread is the picquillo cream, pickled anchovies and sauteed green and red bell pepper. The sweetness of the picquillo (a typical Spanish red pepper) is enhanced by the acidity of the tangy anchovies.

Pintxo Igeldo 4/5

The Pintxo Igeldo ($6.90) in a glance may look similar to the Boquerones con piperrada. A closer look you will notice that the toasted bread is made up of confit tomato, tuna, anchovies and piparra. The different ingredients come across complex but harmonious in flavours.

Crema de Roquefort Con Manzana Y Nueces 4.5/5

Initially, I was hesitant to try the Crema de Roquefort Con Manzana Y Nueces ($4.90) because I am not a fan of blue cheese. After much encouragement from my fellow diners, this turned out to be my favourite for the night. The pintxo is not as piquant as I thought. In fact, the sweetness of the apple jam cuts the acquire taste, and the walnut gives it a nutty finish. In short, it turned out to be a heavenly combination. A must order.

Pimiento Del Padron Con 4.5/5

The Fried Padron Pepper and Maldon Salt is another dish which I enjoyed. The Padron pepper named after the city it is from is not spicy at all. In fact, it is tough to find one that is spicy. You can add on Jamon Iberico de Bellota for an addition $3 for 5 gram.

Croquetas de Jamon Iberico 3.5/5

Many will be familiar with croquette, and it comes in every Spanish restaurant, in different forms and varieties. The Croquetas de Jamon Iberico ($14 for 4pc) deep fried to golden brown comes with a crispy breadcrumb exterior and soft interior with cured serrano ham.

Piquillos Rellenos de Brandada 3.8/5

The piquillo pepper is used again in the Piquillos Rellenos de Brandada ($4). It is stuffed with salted Atlantic codfish (bacalao) and paired with piquillo emulsion. The piquillo emulsion plays a vital role in holding the dish together, for the flavours to come together in harmony.

Txangurro a la Donostiarra 4/5

The Txangurro a la Donostiarra ($14) uses fresh crab meat and cook in sofrito base. Flour and seafood stock is then added before the mixture is poured into the empty crab shell. It is then topped with breadcrumb and butter and grilled. The appearance reminds me of a similar-looking Chinese dish, but the taste profile is very different. I thought it tasted like having french onion soup with crab meat, probably from the caramelised onion in the sofrito base.

Black Rabas "A Fuego Negro" 4.2/5

The Black Rabas "A Fuego Negro" ($22 for 5pc) is a traditional dish presented in a contemporary style. Squid and squid ink are blended together with other ingredients and fish stock. It is then formed into a donut shape using a mould and frozen. To serve, it is coated with flour, egg, tempura batter and deep fried. Pick up the squid ink donut with your hand and bite into a crispy exterior. The inside is soft with bits of diced squid.

Pulpo a la Parrilla con Pure de Nabo 4/5

Grilled to a perfect tender with hint of smokiness is the Pulpo a la Parrilla con Pure de Nabo ($8). It is paired with turnip cream, honey and picada oil. A well-thought dish with each components coming together for the delicious plate.

Carrillera estofada al vino tinto con espuma de patata 4.2/5

The Beef Cheek ($8) is stewed in red wine and paired with potato foam, caramelised apple cubes, parsley and garlic oil. The melted in the mouth beef cheek comes with a sweet winery flavour which goes well with the smooth potato foam. The caramelised apple cubes also help to cut through the richness. Another well-executed dish on the menu.

Buñuelos de Viento 3/5

The Buñuelos de Viento ($7.90) is little Spanish donuts that that an airy interior. The dough which is made from flour and eggs is deep fried and then dusted with icing sugar.

Tarta de Queso "LA VIÑA" 4.2/5

The Tarta de Queso "LA VIÑA" ($4.90) is a burnt cheesecake inspired from the popular La Vina in San Sebastian. It comes with a molten creamy centre and a caramelised flavoured crust. In a way or another, there is no need to fly all the way to Spain to know why the cheesecake is so famous.

If you are one that can't decide with choices, then you can go for the Pintxos Experience ($55++), in which the Basque Chefs will decide and prepare the different pintxos for you. Look forward to 10-12 savoury pintxos and 2 sweets. I find it somewhat similar to Japanese omakase experience, in which you leave it to the chef and served 'al momento'.

Note: This is an invited tasting.

TXA Pintxo Bar
The Alkaff Mansion
10 Telok Blangah Green
Singapore 109178
Tel: +65 67730070
Nearest MRT: Telok Blangah (CC Line)

Opening Hours:
Tue-Sun: 5pm - 11pm

1) Alight at Telok Blangah MRT station. Take Exit A. Walk to bus stop opposite Telok Blangah MRT station (Stop ID 14169). Take bus number 176. Alight 2 stops later. Walk down Henderson Road. Turn left onto Telok Blangah Green. Walk to destination. Journey time about 20 minutes. [Map]

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Oak Room Restaurant & Bar @ Hotel Royal - An Unexpected Find In A Hotel I Have Not Heard Of


When I was told that we are going to Oak Room Restaurant & Bar for dinner, I did a search on the web and I realized that it is located at the Hotel Royal in Newton. I have to admit that I have not heard of the hotel and not to mention the restaurant located on level 3 of the hotel. The restaurant which used to be at Bukit Timah is helmed by Executive Chef Darrence Wee before relocating to its current location in July 2016, offering modern European cuisine.


Stepping into Hotel Royal is like being transformed into the 80s. The decor of the hotel seems to be stuck in time. Worried not as Oak Room Restaurant & Bar welcomes you with a warm, cosy ambience in a modern setting.

Lobster Bisque 4.2/5

Dinner at Oak Room started on the bright side with a delicious Lobster Bisque ($18). The bitter sweet crustacean flavour shone through the creamy and robust soup.

Jamon Serrano 4/5

Next we had the Jamon Serrano ($28). The parma ham which is aged for 18 months is further dried by the chef to intensify the flavour. This is beautifully paired with tomato and a few drips of balsamic.

Grilled Spring Chicken 4.2/5

As my dining partner does not take seafood, the chef was kind enough to do an off the regular menu item from the Chef's Table 8-course menu. The Grilled Spring Chicken paired with parma ham and tomatoes was juicy and tender, However the highlight is the cajun rub on the chicken that make it a notch different from the rest.

UK Kurobuta Pork Chop 4.2/5

Next up we have the UK Kurobuta Pork Chop ($30) with bacon sauce, apple chutney and parmesan mash. This is one of the best pork chop I have eat. The texture was so soft and tender that I would have easily mistaken it as chicken in a blindfold. The portion was also very generous and affordability priced.

Prime USDA 4.5/5

The finale has to go to the Prime USDA Ribeye ($45) which is grain fed and dry aged for 28 days. The perfectly cooked pinkish meat is served with parmesan mash, greens, baby carrots and natural jus. When you have a premium piece of meat, there is no need to do anything fancy but just let the natural flavour does its own talking.

Sticky Medjool Date Pudding, Tiramisu, Creme Brulee 4/5

Ending the dinner on a sweet note was a trio of dessert samplers. From the left, we had the Creme Brulee, Tiramisu and Sticky Medjool Date Pudding. The desserts were better than I anticipated, especially the sticky medjool date pudding. The warm cakey bake accompanied with the carmel sauce is both warm and comforting.


Overall I have to say Oak Room is an unexpected discovery serving above average modern European cuisine. The price may seen a bit steep but this is justified through its quality and portion. It is a bit sad to see the restaurant was empty during our visit. I think they deserved more. I really hope they can get more awareness and business can turn better.

Note: This is an invited tasting.

Oak Room Restaurant & Bar
Hotel Royal
36 Newton Road
Singapore 307964
Tel: +65 97116490
Nearest MRT: Newton (DT Line, NS Line), Novena (NS Line)

Opening Hours:
Mon-Sat: 12pm - 3pm, 6pm - 1030pm

1) Alight at Novena MRT station. Take Exit B. Walk to bus stop at Novena Church (Stop ID 50037). Take bus number 5, 54, 143, 162 and 167. Alight 1 stop later. Journey time about 8 minutes. [Map]

2) Alight at Newton MRT station. Take Exit A. Walk to bus stop at Newton MRT station (Stop ID 40181). Take bus number 5, 54, 124, 143, 162 and 167. Alight 2 stops later. Cross the road. Walk to destination. Journey time about 10 minutes. [Map]

3) Alight at Novena MRT station. Take Exit B1. Walk to Newton Road. Continue walking along Newton Road. Walk to destination. Journey time about 12 minutes. [Map]

Saturday, May 17, 2014

My Little Spanish Place @ Bukit Timah Road


Priding themselves as having the most complete Jamon Bar in Singapore, it was really quite a sight with the different types of cured ham being displayed at My Little Spanish Place along Bukit Timah Road. Founded by Chef Maria Sevillano and co-helmed by Chef Edward Esmero, the restaurant has a very homely feel. The whole decor and ambience make one feels like they are being transported to a home style restaurant in Spain.

Torrada de Esparragos 4/5

With such a great selection of Jamon, it is fitting that the chefs showcase them in a specially designed HAM-Made Brunch. We started our brunch with the Torrada de Esparragos ($20), grilled asparagus with Jamon and fried farm eggs on toasted country bread. I enjoyed how the rich creamy texture complemented the egg and bread.

Coca de Cebolla con Pimientos Y Anchoas 4/5

Chef Edward describes the Coca de Cebolla con Pimientos Y Anchoas ($24) as his hangover food. I think he is too humble. The traditional Catalan flatbread toasted with caramelized onions, roasted peppers, anchovies and Manchego cheese was very delectable with medley of flavours playing on the palate.

Bocadillo de Cerdo Desmenuzado 4.2/5

Lastly we tried the Bocadillo de Cerdo Desmenuzado ($16). The crispy and spongy baguette is sandwiched with Spanish braised pulled pork, sliced tomatoes and cucumber. The pulled pork was not only flavourful but tender and succulent. Special mention to the garlic aioli that is freshly made daily and goes very well with the fries.

Crema Catalana 3.8/5 and Almond Ice Cream 4.2/5

I was already feeling quite full after the lovely brunch but the chef was very kind to offer us dessert. The flavour of the orange and lemon infused Crema Catalana was nicely balanced but it lacked that crackling burnt caramelized crust. After having the Almond Ice Cream, I regretted telling the chef I was too full for dessert. I hoped he could give me a whole tub of the almond ice cream. It was so good.

The restaurant was full house during my visit on Saturday for brunch. If you are interested to check out the brunch on weekend, it is advised to make advance reservation. I understand the chef will also rotate the brunch menu quarterly. There is more reason for me to go back again.

My Little Spanish Place
619 Bukit Timah Road
Singapore 269720
Tel: +65 64632810
Nearest MRT: Tan Kah Kee (DT Line)

Opening Hours:
Tue-Fri: 630pm - 11pm
Sat-Sun: 930am - 3pm, 630pm - 11pm
(Closed on Mon)

1) Alight at Tan Kah Kee MRT station. Take Exit A. Turn right onto Bukit Timah Road. Walk down Bukit Timah Road. Walk to destination. Journey time about 8 minutes. [Map]