Thursday, April 24, 2014

Kimchi @ Suntec City

Special thanks to Joaqim for the invite and Natasha for hosting us!

kimchi





New to Singapore, Kimchi Korean Restaurant aims to offer an array of traditional korean favourites and unique regional specialties to suit the local palette. Executive Chef Choi Minchul has put together a slew of dishes that are a reflection of the best Korean flavours along with regional favourites from Busan and his hometown of Andong.

Together with his all-Korean team of chefs, each dish has been tailored to the local palate and diners can experience a tasty meal at an affordable price. 

banchan3

Seaweed, korean salad, stir fried anchovy, kimchi, spring onion kimchi, white radish kimchi ($1 each)

banchan2

Banchan is not complimentary at Kimchi but are reasonably priced at $1 each. 

banchan

No refills are included as well but all dishes are delicious! I had a hard time naming a favourite. 

salad


Beancurd Kimchi ($8.90)
Stuffed bean curd, minced porkmeat, stir fried kimchi, korean salad

kimchi cakes

Unlike the pictorial representation of this, these were kimchi croquettes. Well flavoured bites that made eating kimchi somewhat different yet terribly satisfying.

bimbimbap


Andong Jjimdak ($15)

A hot pot of braised boneless chicken thighs marinated in Korean light soy sauce – this dish packs a spicy punch when paired with a fresh green chilli pepper that comes from Andong, inspired by Chef Choi's own family recipe. The fieriness of the dish is masked by its seeming mild exterior - a powerhouse in waiting. 

kimchi soup


Kimchi Soup  ($9.80)

An iconic dish and the quintessential comfort food for Korean families, Chef Choi serves it as a jjigae, a thicker broth to bring out the rich kimchi flavour. There is a less spicy option but my advice is stick with what they have for the real deal on authentic korean dining. 

chicken porridge

Ginseng Chicken Juk

The porridge is simmered in a rich chicken stock and premium Korean ginseng. Chinese herbs are also used to form a comforting and nourishing dish. Very hearty and tummy warming dish that may pale in comparison with the rest of the dishes but it was too good to ignore. 

sweets

Busan Hodduk ($9)

This is a Busan street snack - A light, fluffy and crisp hotcake stuffed with red bean paste and topped with toasted nuts and Korean black sugar syrup. 

red bean pancake

Almost like our fried ham chim peng, only healthier with the toasted nuts topping. 

black sesame

Black Sesame Homemade Icecream ($4.50)
Black sesame soup in icecream form, very organic. Me like!

On top of the dishes we mentioned above, Kimchi also offers Korean barbeque where built-in electric grills allow diners to grill their food without smelling of smoke. I was most looking forward to this - smokeless bbq! 

Afternoon tea sets including hodduk or mochi with tea starts from $11 and it's available from 2-530pm daily.  

wagyu beef

We had a go at their wagyu beef short ribs ($29)

meats

The sizzling did not last too long and before we all knew it, it was cooked. 

grill

Wagyu is best savoured seared or barbequed and it was all too good - oil, never tasted this good. 

wagyu beef

Nom.  

pear

A must have at every korean meal!

crushed pear

Fragrant and best of all there's pear pulp inside!

kimchi pork





The chef packed some kimchi for us to sample, a great pity that these are not available over the counter and we promptly put it to good use with our homecooked version of pork belly kimchi! 

Kimchi, as tongue in cheek as it sounds, is a place to look out for. Upcoming and gaining popularity, I would definitely return for some kick ass korean cuisine. 

Kimchi 
Suntec City

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Zott's @ Amoy Street

Special thanks to Amanda for the invite!

entrance

ZOTT’S TRUE ALPS offers an epicurean adventure, trekking through the Alpine ranges of Europe to taste exquisite und authentic local dishes from France in the west, all the way to Austria in the east. 

menu

We were in for a treat as Chef Lorenz-Maria Griesser put together two gourmet travel ‘itineraries’ for tasting. Each of the 5 course menus promised to take me on a journey through several ZOTT’S culinary regions. 

napkin

From the pen of Mr Zott's daughter, a really dark tale of cannibalism from an animal's point of view drawn. 

art

Decor of the place is well thought through, especially when Mr Zotts has placed huge emphasis on experience of the restaurant. The restaurant doubles up as a art gallery showcasing Polish artist Konstantine's works, art lovers can look forward to rotating exhibitions every quarter. 

art installation

Art installation on the walls. 

glasses

Glasses ready to be filled with bubbly.

toilet

Guess what lies behind these doors. 

toilet

I love the toilets and if one day I am adventurous enough would take up Alexis' challenge of starting a blog on toilets. 

sink

The pretty sink and tap. 

cow bells

Modelled after the barn with lots of wood, cow bells, Aesop handcare range and recorded barn sounds, I could stay all day in the toilet! 

aesop

This is love. 

towels

Napkins in a lust worthy bag. 

table

Alot of thought went into every thing they placed on the table and truly, it was a joy just marvelling at the table cloth artwork or the cutlery. 

more bread

Bread, bread on the wall..which is the yummiest of them all. Chef wants his diners to be drawn to the fresh bread smells off the walls. 

bread

Delicious sniffs. 

fresh bakes

How about some dessert? 

wall

The rest of the items on the wall. 

bull

Before we began the meal, we were shown Mr Zott's late pet - the taxidermied  Hieronymous. 

Chef Lorenz maintains that his cooking style focuses on preserving the integrity of the ingredients without over flavouring it and presenting it in its best and natural form as much as possible.

towel

I have to mention the little details that the team at Zott's pay attention to - their hay infused napkins that smell so incredibly good. 

zott's

Menu. 

bread

A bread platter comprising of Konig Ludwig Brot – traditional Bavarian rye, spelt and malt bread, made in-house daily, served with chives, radish and lard made the opening statement already interesting. 

bread

I thought the red radish went well with most types of bread. All bread are freshly baked in house and daily, so freshness if guaranteed!

apple x carpaccio

“Carpaccio d’espadon” ($28)

Marinated, thinly sliced swordfish with a frozen Topaz apple creation

apple mousse

Anyone remembers Snow White and her evil apple? The plating of the dish reminded me so - a beautifully moulded apple mousse and slivers of thinly sliced sword fish. While I thought the cold apple mousse overshadowed the swordfish, it was a creative attempt. 

anchovies


Anchois Provencale –  $22
Pickled anchovies with melon sorbet and pistachios

I love my anchovies. Melon sorbet was both a palette cleanser and neutraliser of this heavily salted anchovy. 

salmon x potatoe

Sudtiroler Apfelsuppe ($26)
Cream apple soup with kaolin potatoes and marinated “Saibling” (char, lake fish from the Alps) 

soup

Served deconstructed, the soup was administered via another bottle. A sweet based cream soup that reminded me of curry somehow. Special mention goes to their kaolin potatoes, looking just like charcoal potatoes.

seafood soup

Bouillabaisse Marseillaises ($87, 2-3pax) 
Provencal fish broth with poached fish and fennel, served with toasted ciabatta and sauce rouille (red scorpion fish was specially imported from the alps)
ciabatta


The real bouillabaisse is made with 4 types of fish and one of the most important ingredients was red scorpion fish, not easily and readily available here.

ciabatta

The theatrics behind the toasted ciabatta and sauce rouille (a combination of egg yolk and butter) was both creative and interactive - take the ciabatta and douse it with sauce before soaking it in the broth for a hearty bite. 

Of all the fish used, red scorpion was tender and soft!

bondage chicken


Bondage Chicken, Bavarian style ($36)
Juicy roasted poussin, served with truffle mayonnaise or fruit sour cream.

This was done bavarian style: seasoned with sweet paprika powder, curry and cayenne pepper with the chicken served upside down. Think beer chicken only this is best eaten ripped apart in pieces and dunked in their condiments.




“Tellerfleisch” ($75)
Several cuts of beef boiled in its own juice, served in three courses:


oyster blade

1st course: Baked “Schulterscherzl” (oyster blade) with parsley dip and sauce tartar

beef

Fried like a tonkatsu, delicious breadcrumbs coated around a tender cut of beef. Easy to love and very easy to eat. 

raviolio

2nd course: Broth with homemade oxtail raviolo and bone marrow


This in comparison was a lighter tasting consumme, very hearty to taste with a raviolo stuffed with oxtail which was in my opinion lacking in meat. 


meatloaf

3rd course: Haunch and prime rib with carrots, leeks and freshly grated horseradish


Almost like a meat loaf, naturally flavoured beef eaten with the carrots, leeks and horseradish was a lovely contrast. 

fritters

“Topfen-Nougat-Knödel”
Poached curd cheese dumplings, filled with nougat and served with rhubarb ragout and
yoghurt ice cream


The cheese dumplings were too clumpy and yogurt icecream possibly the best of the dessert. I am not a fan of this though. 

olive spheres

“Insalata di finocchio arance e olive” ($26)
Fennel salad with oranges, olives and goat cheese mousse


All hail olive blobs, almost like molecular gastronomy with the rich olive juice captured in a sphere. That was the draw of the otherwise healthy toss up. 

fish


“Saint Pierre” ($56)
John dory fish with sugar snap peas, “plum coals” and kumquats


"Plum coals" took the stage for best feature of this dish, I would describe it as plum tempura. John dory fish was less stellar in the taste department being overshadowed with the plum and kumquats. 

foie gras

“Kaiserschmarrn”
(As a starter: $29 / As a main: $45)
ZOTT’S style, with pan-fried foie gras and pineapple-goose liver ice cream


This dish is meant for those with a sweet tooth and would not mind dessert for mains. Your wishes have been heard and meet Kaiserschmarrn, in short I call it the foie gras dish. The slab of foie gras could send me straight into a cardiac arrest, and the uber smooth pineapple-goose liver icecream so laden with fats, food coma was on full blast. I would give up salted caramel icecream just for this pineapple-goose liver combination. 

Mind you, the portion shown above is only starters, I cannot quite imagine how detrimental the mains portion would be.

schnitzel



“Wiener Schnitzel” ($48)
Thinly sliced veal escalope, breaded and pan-fried, served with potato foam and red
radish salad



schnitzel

They say, the only way to tell if a schnitzel is done well is to notice the separation of crumbed skin and meat, if it sticks together it ain't considered a schnitzel. 

potato foam


Well of course, this separates perfectly and the potato foam is more than just gimmicky, a creamy concoction of raisins and nuts. 



pancake

“Griessbrei” ($16)

Semolina pudding served with pear ice cream, cinnamon sugar and mint basil butter


The batter tasted like undercooked pancakes, very dense and mushy. 

We had two cocktails and an Austrian white for the night.  Waldie, the amazing mixologist served up two specialties. The bar will be fully operational in May so till then do pop by to have a feel of their bar. 

haystack

These were laid out way ahead for their creation. 

first ingredient

Concoction in progress. 

drinks 

Such is Waldie's concentration. 

pear liquer

The magic ingredient for our first drink. 

concoction in progress

Almost ready. 

haystack

Haystack  ($24)
Vodka, Birndl pear liqueur, lime juice, Rose’s lime juice, sugar and matcha tea

This is one cocktail that needs no introduction - served in a test tube and a heap of hay that makes drinking very experiential.

tusks

Buttermilk ($24)
Buttermilk, elderberry syrup, blackcurrant syrup, Kernlos plum liqueur, Vodka and cream

buttermilk


Amanda saved this for the last promising that we would all love it and I definitely did. Creamy and somewhat like a fruity milkshake than a proper cocktail but the potency of it was saved for the very last - one ultimate finish and tipsy I probably was but it is definitely a chick's drink. Heart and soul for another dosage of this. 


austrian white


Last but not the least, the Austrian white we had for the night. 


white


A smooth and fruity white.

chefs

Thank you to the talented yet very serious team for the amazing night out. There were of course hits and misses - the do fine seafood yet flavouring may be contentious since it may come across as bland at some points. I would however return for the amazing foie gras mains, oyster blade and definitely buttermilk!

Zott's 
97 Amoy Street