In our June’s edition of Spirited Eats, Spirited’s food editor Esther Lim continues to highlight the gamut of delicious gastronomic experiences in town. 

It’s been an intense month of new restaurant openings in Singapore’s dining scene. Na Oh, for example, the Singapore outpost by Chef Corey Lee of San Francisco’s three Michelin-starred Benu, is the talk of the town with its unique take on Korean cuisine. Also top of mind for gastronomes is multi-concept 1-Flowerhill by 1-Group on Sentosa, converting a conservation building into three different concepts – pet-friendly Wildseed Café for casual dining, Wildseed Bar & Grill, and French-Japanese Camille.

We’ll soon check out 1-Flowerhill, but in the meantime there have been plenty of updates at some of our favourite restaurants as well. From the more elegant dining tasting menus at venues such as Revolver and Altro Zafferano to more casual offerings at the likes of Tilly’s and Chara Brasserie, here’s what sated our appetites this June.

HEVEL - Kingfish & Mussel

HEVEL takes maturation to a whole new tasty level

Chef-owner Stefan Liau of contemporary European restaurant HEVEL on Keong Saik Road has unveiled a whimsical new tasting menu that puts the art of maturation front and centre. His new creations showcase the age-old kitchen practices of pickling, fermentation, aging, and curing, offering a dining experience that should perk your interest as much as tickle your palate.

With flavours that range from tangy and sweet to sour and salty – or any combination of the above – you’ll explore how maturation can change the complexity of any dish. You have the likes of Cashew Tart, the cashews’ sweetness enhanced by a 48-hour lacto-fermentation process, or the savoury panna cotta-like Custard, the fermented homemade buttermilk sauce creamy, indolent and bursting with all kinds of flavour.

There’s also Spanish Turbot, brined and aged to intensify its flavours, while Kingfish comes two ways, as crudo served in a tart shell that’s air-dried to enhance its crisp texture, as well as house-smoked tetaki.

The new chef’s tasting menu is priced at S$138++ per person. Be sure to opt for the accompanying wine or cocktail pairing flight – S$98++ and S$78++ per person respectively – for the complete HEVEL experience.

HEVEL | 1 Keong Saik Rd., #01-04, Singapore 089109 (Google Maps link) | 6pm to 10.30pm Tuesdays to Thursdays; 6pm to 11pm on Fridays and Saturdays; closed on Sundays and Mondays | | 9622 6679 | online reservations

Revolver - Tajima Striploin, Ginger & Fennel, Sauce Kashmir

Revolver fires off explosive new Bullet 13 tasting menus

Bullet 13, the latest iteration of the tasting menus over at Revolver, continues the snazzy modern Indian restaurant‘s penchant for firing a flame-forward culinary experience packed with explosive flavours in the diner’s direction.

As always the best way to enjoy the arsenal at Revolver is through its all-encompassing multi-course Experience menu. From the crisp caviar-topped corn-filled bao as part of your canapés to kick start your meal to the saffron-tinged madeleines to end it, your palate will be teased and challenged throughout. The Paneer here is always a treat, this time smothered by a rich onion mash, while the masala-filled Courgette Blossom amazes with its delightful simplicity. My favourite from the menu was the Scottish Scallop, seared over an open flame and doused in a pepper sauce, with the Black Cod a close second, the buttery flesh of the fish combining perfectly with the heat and sweetness of the mango habanero sauce.

The eight-course Experience menu at Revolver comes in at S$229++ per person, the eight-course Vegetarian menu is S$199++, while the six-course Discovery and six-course Vegetarian menus are S$169++.

Revolver | 56 Tras St, Singapore 078995 (Google Maps link) | 11.45am to 2.30pm and 6pm to 10.30pm Tuesdays to Saturdays; 6pm to 10.30pm on Sundays; closed on Mondays | | 6223 2812 | online reservations

Altro Zafferano - Ravioli

Spring into seasonal flavours at Altro Zafferano

If like us you enjoy the seasonal Italian cuisine at Altro Zafferano, you’re going to love its current spring menu bursting with fresh, vibrant flavours. The fine-dining Italian restaurant has curated a prix fixe menu that allows you to build your own gastronomic experience, selecting your choice of starter, pasta, mains, and dessert from the ala carte menu.

So build wisely. The Hokkaido Scallop Crudo, for example, is a beautiful masterpiece of briny-sweet scallop slices along with baby zucchini and smoked salmon ikura in a creamy almond milk sauce. Otherwise the Tajima Wagyu Carpaccio makes for another great starter. For pasta the House-made Pappardelle with morel mushrooms and black truffle is excellent, as is the Pork Cheek Ravioli, the parcels of guanciale and pecorino swimming in a moreish, piquant broth.

Meat lovers need to pick the Jac Wagyu MBS 7+ Striploin as their main, while the delicately soft and creamy Wild Dover Sole, doused in a splendid prosecco sauce, will please any pescetarian. For dessert? Definitely the Giffoni Hazelnut.

The Altro Zafferano build-your-own Experience menu is S$148++ per person (available only for the entire table).

Altro Zafferano | 10 Collyer Quay, Level 43, Ocean Financial Centre, Singapore 049315 (Google Maps link) | 12pm to 3pm and 6pm to 11pm Mondays to Fridays; 6pm to 11pm on Saturdays; closed on Sundays | | 6509 1488 | online reservations

Kaarla - Sanchoku Wagyu Sirloin MBS 6

Kaarla smokes up an Australian-Japanese feast

Kaarla Restaurant & Bar at 1-Arden by 1-Group recently refreshed its dining concept, moving away from a more fine-dining contemporary coastal Australian cuisine approach using native bush ingredients and locally grown produce introduced during launch. Now it offers a unique Australian-Japanese slant, albeit still with an ethos on ethically sourced, farm-to-table ingredients, with a slate of dishes in communal sharing format good for group dinners.

Expect moreish fare like the addictive Lotus Root Chips and gorgeously grilled Pork Belly Skewers to an unctuous Australian Beef Tartare you scoop up with gruyere chips. The Coal Roasted Tiger Prawns is a must order, the large prawns heavily charred for maximum flavour while retaining their juiciness. Don’t miss out on the ubiquitous-sounding Natural Pork Loin; this is a well-executed slab of scrumptious tender-pink porcine goodness kissed by wood-fire for smoky notes.

Be sure to check out Kaarla’s reworked cocktail menu too. The Old Fashioned Kaarla is a fun twist on the classic using bust tomato syrup for a savoury hit, while the Wood-Fire Smoked Negroni – infused with burning orange wood – gives our favourite Italian aperitivo cocktail an added layer of complexity.

Karlaa | 88 Market St, #51-02, CapitaSpring, Singapore 048948 (Google Maps link) | 11.30am to 2.30pm and 6pm to 11pm Mondays to Fridays; 11.30am to 3pm and 6pm to 1pm on Saturdays; closed on Sundays | | 8518 3763


The FYSH Roast at FYSH in The Singapore EDITION

FYSH roasts up a Sunday brunch experience

Australian celebrity chef Josh Niland’s signature restaurant FYSH at The Singapore EDITION has unveiled its debut Sunday brunch experience that puts its sustainable seafood approach up front and centre. The quintessential Australian weekend brunch tradition gets elevated with the seafood-centric FYSH Roast, a curated selection of personal and sharing-style dishes with a particular focus on the bounty from the sea.

Seafood lovers will revel in the likes of Abrolhous Island Scallop, the FYSH Egg Tart of trout roe and soft eggs, and Malaysian Slipper Lobster with fish bone noodles in a delectable broth, among others. The centrepiece of FYSH Roast is surely the Mooloolaba Yellowfin Tuna, served in a number of innovative ways. You can enjoy it as a curry puff, as tuna tartare, and grilled on the bone.

Pro-tip: Go as a group of four so you’ll get the full FYSH Roast treatment with a signature platter bursting with all manner of surf and turf delights.

The Fysh Roast experience is available every Sunday from 12pm to 2.30pm and comes priced at S$108++ per person. Top up S$88++ for free-flow Australian bubbles, or S$118++ for free flow champagne, both inclusive of coffee, tea, juices, soft drinks, selected wines, spirits and cocktails.

FYSH | 38 Cuscaden Rd, The Singapore EDITION, Singapore 249731 (Google Maps link) | 12pm to 2.30pm and 6pm to 10pm Mondays to Thursdays; 12pm to 2.30pm and 6pm to 10.30pm Fridays to Sundays | | 6329 5000 | online reservations

Alma - Miyazaki Beef, Eggplant

Get enticed at Alma by Juan Amador

Alma by Juan Amador’s recent appointment of a new executive chef in Chef Yew Eng Tong has brought a refreshing invigoration over at the award-winning modern European restaurant. The born and bred Singaporean – a seasoned culinary veteran whose accolades include leading Singapore to victory at the 2014 Culinary Olympics – gives Alma a much needed update with his debut menu introduced at the start of the year.

Chef Yew continues Alma’s contemporary European culinary traditions with Asian inflections. Whichever tasting menu you pick it’ll be a whimsical presentation of skill and quality produce. His signature Artic Char, for example, sees the prized fish come as a lovely roulade that he’s perfected over the years as a competition chef. Carnivores are likely to revel in the Miyakazi Beef A5, coated in charred leek ash for an added punch of smokiness, while the Blue Lobster Tail pays tribute to Juan Amador’s signature purple curry with its assam glaze and Japanese curry notes.

Alma’s six-course Entice and eight-course Excite dinner menus come in at S$198++ and S$248++ per person respectively. A four-course lunch is also available at S$68++ per person.

Alma by Juan Amador | 22 Scotts Rd, Goodwood Park Hotel, Singapore 228221 (Google Maps link) | 12pm to 2.30pm and 6pm to 10.30pm Tuesdays to Saturdays; closed on Sundays and Mondays | | 6735 9937 | online reservations

Tilly's - lunch specials

Head to Tilly’s for Irish-inspired lunch deals

Not that we often find ourselves in Chinatown during lunch time, but if we did we’d drop in again and again for the recently-introduced lunch deals at Tilly’s. Chef Andrew Walsh’s modern Irish gastropub concept pulls together a selection of pub favourites available for your lunch repast that are tasty and won’t break the bank.

You can kickstart your meal with options such as Tuna Ceviche, drizzled in a Vietnamese-inspired dressing, or a refreshing Kale Waldorf Salad, but it’s the splendid Tilly’s Scotch Egg you should go for. For mains, you can’t go wrong with the iconic Tilly’s Fish & Chips, while the delicious Grilled Pepper Crust Short Rib Steak Frites will definitely appeal to the carnivores among us. To end off your lunch? The decadent and indulgently drippy Sticky Toffee Pudding that is likely entice you into a post-meal food coma.

Tilly’s two-course or three-course lunch set deals are priced at S$32++ and S$38++ respectively, is available on Thursdays to Sundays.

Tilly’s | 31 Keong Saik Rd., Singapore 089138 (Google Maps link) | 4pm to 11.30pm on Wednesdays; 12pm to 12am Thursdays to Saturdays; 12pm to 12am Fridays and Saturdays; 12pm to 9pm on Sundays; closed on Mondays | | 8752 9578 | online reservations

Chara Brasserie - Live Rotisserie Station

Chara Brasserie offers up revolving daily buffets

Buffet lovers, this one is for you. Newly-opened Mercure ICON Singapore City Centre’s signature restaurant Chara Brasserie is among the latest additions to Singapore’s dining scene that offers a culinary buffet spread with Mediterranean-Asian influences.

Even better, Chara Brasserie rotates its spread daily, unveiling a different culinary theme inspired by a different country every day with over 100 dishes on rotation. Which means no two visits are going to be entirely the same. It was flavours of Southeast Asia and the Mediterranean when we visited; we feasted on plenty of seafood including whole baked sea bass, chilli crab, and sambal slipper lobsters. We hear there’s an entire rotisserie of whole baby lamb and various live meat carving stations available on Friday and Saturday, so a return trip is on the cards.

Chara Brasserie’s buffet spread is priced from S$58++ to S$68++ for lunch (S$34++ to S$40++ for children aged 6-12), and S$68++ to S$78++ for dinner (S$40++ to S$46++ for children aged 6-12).

Chara Brasserie | 8 Club St, #02-01, Mercure ICON Singapore City Centre, Singapore 069472 (Google Maps link) | 11.30am to 3pm and 6pm to 10pm daily | | 6213 4595 | online reservations

[Photos courtesy of respective restaurants]

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