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Catalunya @ The Fullerton Pavilion

catalunya

The El Bulli alumni tag makes Catalunya irresistible. I may have dreamt of a visit to their restaurant even with a 2 year waiting list but with its sudden closure, there is a gaping hole in what’s to replace. With a waiting list that long, it has to be decent if not more at the very least. Joy is us to have the ex-staff (not necessarily the head or sous chef) to create some magic. Bookings are very necessary and I applaud their care in ensuring your reservation is fixed.

1) I tried to make a reservation through the restaurant hotline (note that the reservation hotline is separate though I do not understand why that should be the case)
2) Two followup phonecalls – one to confirm the reservation and the other to remind me to turn up.

Impressive service for a start. The place is situated in between Fullerton Bay Hotel and One Fullerton – walking into the sphere was dreadful with the rain and uneven planks yet on a normal day, it should be quite a sight. 

menu

Menu.

view

View great for fireworks viewing or simple nightly light displays.

upclose

Bottle tree piece.

tree

Mersmerized.

bar

Bar counter love!




xmas

Christmas touches.

ornaments

All ready for a jolly good time.

ceiling

Grand ceiling.

corners

Cosy corners.

martini

Flamenco Martini ($19)
Eggwhite, lime juice, ginger, passion fruit puree, home made cinnamon syrup, belvedere vodka

Ladies drink with sweet notes. Easy to slurp and definitely can pass off as fruit punch or mocktail. Partricularly loved the balance of passionfruit here, not an easy ingredient to work with - yet I am so loving it!

sangria

Catalunya Sangria ($19)
Lemonade, bacadi superior, orange, martini rosso, sugar, protocolo red wine

When in Spain, drink as the spainiards do. Like cough syrup the pal winced. 

j drink

The gal pal had something that tasted like mojito. Grassy and not too friendly.

 bikini

Ham, Cheese and Truffle “Bikini” ($18)
Ham, cheese, truffles sandwich

Underestimate these not, four simple looking sandies that whacked the sensors so hard with a deep whiff of truffle. Ham and cheese could go so well and done so right with toasted bread, seconds anytime! Reminds me of the cheapskate fried ham and cheese toasts that most bakeries do, this is an upmarket comfort food version with prices to match. 

suckling pig

Roasted Suckling Pig with Lemon Puree ($18)

If we had the capacity, it should have been an order for a full suckling pig. This was two measly cubes of what would a table rack of pork. Enough to make me a fan, enough to make this a must order the next visit! The crispy skin and tender meat is such gastronomical happiness. Alas, one that does it so right! The lemon puree however was hardly complementary. 

croquette

Jamon Iberico Croquette 4 pcs ($12)

While the rest thought this just ordinary, I thought it quite brilliant. Jamon Iberico in the creamy mixture surely made a difference with the flavour.

iberico

“Estrellados” Eggs with Fries and Chorizo Iberico ($16)

Of the two, this was recommended by the waiter. Portions for these were most generous as compared to the other tapas dishes. Scrambled egg white is actually delicious, given scrambled eggs in any form does not go well with me. Loved the chorizo iberico that was not overly salty and potatoes with a lovely crispy finish and glaze. So good, we ordered yet another!

ham

“Estrellados” Eggs with Fries and Paletilla Iberica ($18)


I reckon it could be a case of declining marginal utility as this did not taste as good as the first. Iberica ham paled in flavour as compared to the chorizo. 

tartar 

Tomato Tartar Confit ($18)

crisp

Served with bread crisps, this supposed signature of El Bulli was not all that great as compared to the other stunning tapas. Resembled a vegetarian tuna tartare in all its rosiness and presentation, while it did not lose out in flavour, something was missing. 

foie gras

“Escalibada” with Foie Gras and Smoked Eel ($19)

Foie Gras is absolutely misleading in this – hardly discernible and possibly just a spread! Smoked eel stood out with its savouriness. 

lobster rice

Lobster Rice    ($55)
Short-grain rice with lobster cooked in fish broth

Arriving in a casserole that was clearly too big for the portions but quality is always preferred. A burst of the sea in every mouthful, rich and embedded with seafood chunks. 

lobsters

The lobster was sweet, despite its size. 

rice

Almost like risotto this was but one risotto that I would gladly dream day and night of. We left scraping the bottom for more but like all great things, they end faster than good ones. 

birthday

Warm Creamy Almond Tart ($12)

Blood orange sorbet hardly complemented the warm almond tart that could pass off as a molten chocolate cake. Loved the charred nutty fragrance and molten center but the texture of the tart was odd – lacked a biscuit or pastry base, it was just cake.

Service is not dreadful, helpful somewhat but mostly ignored. I could have a parade of waiters and waitresses waltzing up and down without casting us a look. Are they really that busy? I lost count of the number of times we were ignored for additional orders. An interesting thing to note, their entourage of servers are hardly Chinese. That being said, there were thoughtful moments of getting my knife replaced without asking but once the bill was signed, it was hard to elicit a simple “goodbye”.

Snotty service aside, the tapas is good enough for seconds. Until then!

Catalunya
The Fullerton Pavilion
 82 Collyer Quay

A foodie born to eat, shop and travel. Forced to work.

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