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DearBorn: Chef Christopher, a master of many trades

7:15 AM 0 Comments

After seeing Dear Born appear on 8 Days, my interest was piqued at his prior experience with Waku Ghin. I'm sure the name already sells and for me particularly I wanted to see what techniques from Waku Ghin Chef Christopher would bring to table - were there similarities? What makes Dear Born tick?


Booking a table was not the easiest task on earth - we went through so many emails over the dates that kept getting sold out. Then the surprise menu that nobody knew what exactly we were having except it fell in the category of grains, greens and seafood. Audacious I'd say in this gourmet private dining scene and nearly everyone is raring to showcase what they can do with an assortment of proteins.


When we first entered his humble abode, we were treated to a round of drinks. Gin was the showcase and I'm sure the guys had more fun at this table actually!


Hi Chef Christopher!


Table setting.


Edamame Hummus 
Local Snapper Riclette 


Starters had me at wow, the presentation itself is stunning and each was an exquisite display of craftmanship. I love how the vegetarian ones actually stood out more the non-vegetarian. Edamame hummus was an oddity but man, did it work.


The grittiness of it and the flavours of edamame on a light as a feather but crisp as can be cracker - heaven.


Green apples, hokkaido scallops, coarse radish, celery 

Fresh sashimi scallops paired with a tangy medley of apples, celery and radish for that biting pleasantries that greet at the end.


Handmade agnolotti pasta with sunflower seesd, pecorino cheese, lemon zest, peas 


Paying homage to his Italian roots, Chef Christopher put together a homemade vegetarian pasta dish, and I was floored.


How could vegetables put meat pasta to shame, the wholesomeness of the dish and it actually works is a huge mystery.


Indian brinjal, charcoal, seeds, goma sauce, tomato relish, quinoa puffs, jalapeno relish, chicken mayo jus 

Then comes a brinjal dish without skin and it's served with so many toppings, I even mistook the tomato relish for cod roe. Refreshing, sweet and a burst of flavours I cannot quite explain. It definitely tasted more complex than it looks. Brilliant.


Squid ink fried rice 


Inspired by fried rice, this reminds me more of claypot rice actually and a squid ink version.


The gritty bits give so much texture to the otherwise fluffy rice dish topped with prawns and baby squids. Perfectly timed such that the seafood was still incredibly tender.


Homemade sourdough with handchurned butter 


We were called to the counter for this course and Chef Christopher introduced us to his "larry", hs sourdough starter and did a live cutting of the bread - that crack was music to the years.


I love crusty bread and he totally nailed it with the right thickness in crust and the level of acidity in the bread - a well balanced kind of sour.



Lather on butter and this is possibly the best sour dough I have ever eaten.


Cauliflower steak 


With all the highs, we finally reached the main course and I was actually wondering when the cauliflower bouquet would make a grand appearance and when it finally did, I questioned how could this ever replace steak proper.


How wrong, it even came with seared lines! So tender and fragrant, texturally for sure it is no where meat proper but the flavours itself wins it so many points. Plus the vinegered florets made all the difference and on second thoughts, maybe I would give vegetarian steak a shot the next time I see it on the menu.


Seaweed madeleine and fresh creme 


Pre dessert course of freshly baked seaweed madeleines and a dollop of fresh creme, I love my madeleines and this made me love freshly baked ones far more. It's moist, fluffy and incredible - the balance of savoury and sweet is done so right. Chef Chris has done these in yuzu and pepper too - sigh can he sell me some?


Coconut icecream, coconut meringue, lime zest

Coconut is not the friendliest of ingredients to work with and Chef Christopher definitely pulled a brilliant one on this without coconut being too over bearing, I loved the textures and lime zest which is all important in balancing that tropical flavour out.


I laughed when I saw these all too familiar with chinese takeaway boxes. Purely ornamental though part of me wanted to siphon one back.

Fortune cookies


Beat that, handmade fortune cookies.


My fortune for the meal written by the previous diner and the wafer thin fortune cookie. A first for homemade and I am lovin' it.


Dearborn Maple and Cranberry Granola

Our farewell gift to remind us of this impeccable meal at DearBorn's - breakfast for days thereafter.

$128 is the steepest so far for private dining but I do think this was well worth it with the showcase of mastery in all his dishes. Waitlist is expectedly long - so join the queue!

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

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