Award-winning grand lobby bar and restaurant ATLAS introduces a new dining menu by recently appointed Executive Chef Lachlan ‘Loki’ Lynch.
There were literally audible groans in Singapore’s dining circles last year when former ATLAS executive chef Daniele Sperindio announced that he’d be leaving our shores for Hong Kong in his next career move. The Genoa native had made his mark in Singapore through his stints at the Spa Esprit Group, helming at some point its restaurants such as Open Door Policy and Open Farm Community before joining ATLAS. At ATLAS Sperindio unleashed even more culinary creativity, partly to match its eye-popping Champagne collection as well as cutting-edge cocktails, but mostly because he could.
Singapore’s loss is Hong Kong’s gain.
So in comes a new executive chef at ATLAS. Australian Lachlan ‘Loki’ Lynch was most recently head chef of The Coogee Pavilion working for Chef Jordan Toft with Merivale for four years before making the move to Singapore, and before that he grew through the ranks working for Chef George Diamond at The Keystone Group.
With his background wildly different from that of Sperindio’s, Lynch brings a remarkably different take with ATLAS’ new dining menu – and his first. Where Sperindio often opted for flamboyance – be it with more exotic ingredients or flashy plating – Lynch’s approach is an elevated take on comfort dining with a focus on the freshest produce possible.
Which isn’t easy, Lynch admits. “In Australia we could call our supplier for a specific rarer vegetable from a nearby farm and it would be delivered to our doorstep the next day,” Lynch shared. “Here we’d need to place an order a week in advance to be able to procure it”.
But that doesn’t stop him. The baby radishes on his Taramasalata, Radish, Zaatar, Green Olive Oil, Bagel Chip ($20++) are crunchy fresh, and altogether the appetiser is some of Australia’s immigrant cuisines in a single bite. Likewise you can taste the ocean freshness of the shellfish in his Mini Lobster Roll ($26++, $65++ with caviar); the crustacean may have been sourced from some foreign body of water, but it definitely was alive until very recently.
Another beautiful plate is the Potato Gnocchi, Pancetta, Broad Beans, Ricotta, Basil ($28++), an exceedingly well-balanced dish of flavours and textures. We’re also very impressed with his Spaghetti, Carpet Clams, Cuttlefish, Chilli, Pangrattato ($32++), Lynch’s take on the classic Venetian vongole with its explosion of fresh ocean flavours threaded by pasta so al-dente an Italian matriarch would be impressed.
Make sure you save some space for the Smoked Beef Short Rib, Kohlrabi Mash, Pickled Turnips, Kale, Mustard Jus ($38++), the meat fall-apart tender and infused with savoury umami notes from the smoking process. Yet for us the highlight of the dish were the little pickled turnips, whose crunch and tanginess helped contrast the flavour and texture of the short rib.
You’d be remiss if you didn’t order the Banana and Caramel Cream Pie ($16++) for dessert; it’s somewhat incongruous to be lapping up such a homely pie in the glorious setting that is ATLAS, but for us it’s a guilty pleasure.
Indeed one of the criticisms we can be throw at ATLA’s new dining menu is that it may be more appropriate in a fancy Australian beach side cafe than here in such an immaculately elegant setting. But that, we suspect, is more down to Lynch is being cautious about coming across as too fancy right off the bat in a market he’s not quite yet familiar with. Given time, that is most likely to change.
So while we wait for the next menu iteration, we’d gladly come back for his signature spaghetti vongole and those unctuous smoked ribs.
Address Parkview Square, 600 North Bridge Road, Singapore 188778
Opening Hours 10am to 1am Mondays to Thursdays; 10am to 2am on Fridays, 3pm to 2am on Saturdays, closed on Sundays
Tel (65) 6396 4466