Sol & Luna in 1-Arden by the 1-Group brings a celestial Latin-European bistro experience into the heart – and heights – of Singapore’s Central Business District.
Located within one of Singapore’s newest towering skyscrapers CapitaSpring is 1-Arden, an ambitious integrated lifestyle hospitality project by the 1-Group that will see not one, not two but a whopping five new F&B dining concepts open up there. The first among them to launch is Latin-European bistro Sol & Luna, comfortably nestled within a lush, sky-high urban oasis.
Sol & Luna, Latin for ‘Sun & Moon’, is so named for its all-day dining concept. Much like those of hotel restaurants, its opening hours run from 7am when it opens for breakfast, all the way till closing time at 10.30pm. It is also open every day, unlike most other restaurants in Singapore’s Central Business District that do not operate on Sundays.
The swanky bistro is tucked within the lush greenery of CapitaSpring’s Green Oasis; an elegant glass-enclosed pavilion of wrought iron, bare brick, and live creepers.
We can already see a wedding reception happening here.
Sol & Luna’s dining concept is Latin-European, which we take to mean the cuisines of the Mediterranean but leaves out those of the Levant and Maghreb. In that sense you’re looking at the cuisines of much of southern Europe, ranging from Portugal and Spain in the west, to southern France, and then Italy and Greece.
There’s Smoked Duck & Foie Gras Rillette with Crostini, Pickles & Olive Oil Caviar, for example. Rich and flavourful, this twist on the French delicacy will have you reaching more. Also French-inspired is the Baked Camembert Cheese, stuffed with pungent garlic and topped with fragrant rosemary.
We enjoyed the Spanish-style Smoked Grilled Octopus, the smoky, briny flavours of the Galician octopus playing off very well with a piquant romesco sauce. Likewise Spanish is the ‘Escalivada’, a traditional Catalan dish of smoky grilled vegetables. Here it is rendered down into a ragout – rather resembling baba ghanoush – that demands to be eaten with bread or as a side for your main course.
We love the Fried Soft-Shell Prawn, which inspired by Portugal. We’re more familiar with spicy Portuguese Shrimp Mozambique; this version – deep-fried and then tossed with salt and parsley – is more akin to Japanese izakaya-style sakura ebi. Crunchy and sweet, they are scrumptious when downed with some white wine.
For carnivores, the Italian-style 12 Hours Slow Cooked Welsh Lamb can hit the spot. It is braised in the typical manner for two hours, starting off with a mirepoix and herbs followed by adding a hunk of lamb shoulder (instead of the usual shank), and then red wine and lamb stock. Where it differs from the usual stewed lamb? After braising, the lamb shoulder is removed and then baked for another 10 hours in an oven. The result is moist fork-tender lamb with just a hint of smokiness. The pangrattato dusted on top gives it additional texture and flavour.
Our favourite dish had to be the Wood-Fired Sardine. Such a simple-looking dish, yet so demanding of meticulous preparation. This is deboned fresh sardine that’s filled with a stuffing of mussels, herbs, nuts and raisins, and the fish wrapped in parma ham and then grilled over a wood fire. You may just moan a little with each bite, a myriad of flavours bursting with every mouthful.
In all we did wish that Sol & Luna was more edgy and illuminating with their dishes. But we understand the need to play it safe with familiar European and Mediterranean favourites, so as to cater to the CBD office crowd that the bistro is sure to attract.
There’s a bar at Sol & Luna with cocktails that reflect its Latin-European theme, which we have to return to try more of. We can totally see ourselves lounging in the alfresco Green Oasis space outside over some tipples and bar bites.
Sol & Luna
Address 88 Market Street, CapitaSpring #17-01 Singapore 048948 (Google Maps link)
Opening Hours 7am to 10.30pm daily
Tel (65) 8031 4316