If you are a foodie in Singapore, you’ll know that the only obstacle to planning your next dinner out is an over-abundance of choice. With inviting restaurants, cafes and bars popping up seemingly overnight, diners on our island are faced with a constant decision fatigue that can be difficult to navigate—poor us! To help you along in picking the best new spot to try, Vogue Singapore rounds up the crème dela crème of all the latest additions to our culinary scene, from inventive takes on homegrown flavours to exotic cuisines from around the world.
CLUB STREET WINE ROOM
When the folks behind Cure, Butcher Boy and Catfish add a fourth restaurant to their portfolio, you can be sure that it’s going to have two things: a highly conceptual menu and well-designed interiors. The new Club Street Wine Room delivers on both counts—presenting a chic, laid-back version of traditionally formal and intimidating wine bars. In fact, service at this establishment is so ready and familiar that it feels closer to a diner than a fancy bar, though the impressive wine list that sommelier Amir Solay whips out within moments of seating you is a quick reminder that this place is very serious about vino.
For Club Street Wine Room’s wine programme, Solay’s keen curatorial eye is focused on bottles that are intriguing both in flavour and provenance. A good example of this is one of the restaurant’s most exciting offerings: the Chateau Kefraya Collection Amphora 2018. Hailing from West Bekaa Valley, Lebanon, these bottles are amphorae-aged—meaning that they are fermented, stored, and transported in vessels made of terracotta clay following an ancient practice of winemaking. Along a similar yet completely disparate vein is the Sea Soul No. 4, which immediately captures your attention with its ship-wreck-esque design complete with barnacles clinging onto the curves of the bottle. It looks like this for good reason—this bottle is sea-aged and submerged underwater for months at a time to aid fermentation and enhance taste. Other interesting but more accessible offerings include the homegrown Sachi soy wine. With a savoury, almost umami flavour, this is a bottle unlike anything you have tried before.
The food at Club Street Wine Room manages to perfectly walk the line between hearty bar grub and refined dishes that pair beautifully with the glasses you are imbibing on. Depending on your mid-drink munchies, you’ll be able to enjoy delicate oysters topped with caramelised bacon jam in the same sitting as juicy, perfectly cooked pieces of deep-fried chicken. A standout plate is the Woodfired Scallop & Prawn Vol Au Vent Thermidor, which features a wood-fired grilled prawn, scallop and thermidor sauce mix enclosed within flaky pastry and balanced with gruyere cheese.
Spending an evening (or afternoon) at Club Street Wine Room feels like pure respite, between the titillating wine varietals, comfort food and friendly service. Lean back and relax as Saloy launches into one of the restaurant’s favourite rituals: serving up a glass from an unknown bottle to everyone in the house, then letting customers take turns guessing its origins. It is a fun opportunity to flex your wine knowledge—or simply try something new.
Having opened its doors with all the boisterousness and festivity one would expect of a restaurant inspired by India itself—Firangi Superstar is pure theatrics, right from the moment you step into the place. The establishment is divided into four different rooms, each one equally bejewelled and wondrous to look at. From the Old Railway Road to the aptly named Jungle Lodge (you’ll find several trophy heads of wilderness tamed and mounted on the walls—all shockingly realistic yet completely artificial, much to our relief), each quarter boasts a careful, intentional mix of interior décor and music to set the mood for guests, helping them journey through the mystical sights of colonial-era India.
The food is equally exhilarating—though instead of drawing from the past, it looks to the future of what modern Indian cuisine might look like. Helmed by Chef Thiru Gunasakaran, the kitchen turns out one unexpected dish after another. These are plates that combine inventive technique with familiar flavours, sometimes Frankenstein-ing two separate identities for memorable results. This is best-exemplified by creations like the Prata Waffle, a take on the classic American favourite Chicken & Waffles which sees Madras-style fried chicken with curry leaves and garlic set on a waffle pressed prata and served with butter chicken sauce and jaggery syrup. It’s difficult to imagine how delicious this is until you take a bite, but once you do, it’ll have you saying: “Don’t knock it till you try it.”
If you do manage to get a table at this hotspot, don’t neglect the cocktail menu. It holds several desi-inspired concoctions that will help you end your night with a nice, flavoursome buzz. The Chai Masala shot, which is sweet as it is potent, includes 19 different spices and Firangi’s special house-blend dark rum, while the Mango Collins is a true treat—a delicious, refreshing mango lassi combined with the poison of your choice.
While the flagship Bedrock Bar & Grill is best known for its credentials as an award-winning steakhouse, the new installation to the homegrown brand finds its place closer to sea. Housed in the scenic Oasia Resort in Sentosa, Bedrock Origin boasts a breezy, coastal view alongside an apt menu: elevated surf & turf.
If you’re a red-meat lover, expect the usual premium steak offerings, with standouts like a first-of-a-kind in Singapore Tankaku Wagyu Striploin, coming from a rare Japanese breed that forms only 1% of all Wagyu cattle in the country. But where Bedrock Origin truly shines is in its seafood. Start your meal with the beautifully plated Kingfish Sashimi, with slices of the delicate raw fish painted with a moreish ceviche-soy dressing. Then enters the pièce de resistance: an enormous oven-roasted Aged Kühlbarra Barramundi Tail set triumphantly atop a bed of fresh thyme and roasted garlic. The fish is flaky and buttery—brined in a salt water solution for an hour before a week of dry-ageing in the fridge to intensify and lock in its flavour. It is set off perfectly by a herbaceous, tangy chimichurri that’ll have you licking your plate clean. For an unexpected hero dish, try the Spicy Brussel Sprouts, charred on an applewood fire grill for an addictive smokiness and tossed with chilli oil for an added hit of flavour.
For dessert, the Palm Torte provides a layered experience with a mélange of flavours and textures. The creation features a gula melaka chiffon cake frosted mascarpone cream cheese and a Bailey’s Irish Cream & Brandy infused walnut-raisin tapenade, finished off with a zesty, house-made carrot-orange marmalade. It’s a pleasure to eat, especially when seated within the modern furnishings of the new establishment—with elements of classic steakhouse (plush leather chairs and rustic wooden table tops) mixed in with a lighter islandic design aesthetic befitting of the restaurant’s oceanic surroundings.
Chef Louis Han’s professional culinary career started when he was just 17. He has since lived in Seoul, Lebanon and Abu Dhabi, cinched the role of sous chef at a two Michelin-starred restaurant, and tended a home farm developing an understanding of Korea’s seasonal produce. Now, Chef Han has brought together his life experiences and latest sensibilities in Nae:um—his first restaurant in Singapore. The sleek, minimalist space is delightfully cosy—a palette of dove-grey and off-white against a raw cement floor—and seats 28 lucky people at any one time.
Some might shy away from the concept of Korean fine dining, which is hardly prevalent on our island, but dining at Nae:um is like coming home. The flavours in his creations are familiar, yet layered with surprises along the way. His duck galbi tart, a Feuille de Brick tartlet topped with a grilled minced duck ball with a rice cake centre, is served with a secret sweet-savoury gochujang sauce. It calls to mind the rich flavours of Korean street food, elevated to perfection via a binchotan in a completely different setting.
Nae:um’s menus are episodic and reflect various food stories in Chef Han’s personal life. He is also committed to transporting his guests to their past with the flavours he puts across. One of his favourites is hwae (sashimi), and there is a dish popular with Koreans in the summer called mulhwae, a cold spicy raw fish soup. We loved Chef Han’s spin on it—instead of a soup, he offers a refreshing salad, where a yuzu chilli sauce is drizzled tableside over slices of aged fish, shaved cuttlefish and koji-fermented daikon. Also look forward to Chef Han’s uni somyeon, a Korean-made buckwheat noodle tossed with chopped white kimchi, chives and truffle oil. Its aroma is mild, but satisfyingly refined, and the combination of the noodles, uni and caviar are wonderfully crowd-pleasing. Eat slowly and let it set your palate for the heavier mains—an elegantly simple steamed red grouper in beurre blanc sauce, and a deeply-flavoured Irish duck breast glazed in gochujang.
Save space for dessert, because Chef Han’s charcoal jujube, is a medley of complex textures with a dehydrated and deep-fried puffed multigrain and a delicate charcoal tuile. It may be your first time at Nae:um—or even giving Korean fine dining a go—but it certainly won’t be your last.
Refreshed every 2 months to stay fresh and seasonal, Revolver’s tasting menus offer a plethora of inventive plates highlighting the unique flavour of grilling. The modern Indian establishment’s highlights include the Stuffed Courgette Flowers, filled with spiced potato mash, flavoured with curry leaves and onions and lightly finished with a zingy mango pickle—and an unconventional take on a classic: the Chicken Scotch Egg. Served on a bed of crisp potato nest, turmeric and chives aioli, this is a one bite wonder that brings together a smorgasbord of textures, temperatures and flavours for a unique gastronomic experience.
Even among a host of expertly-spiced dishes using the most novel ingredients you could think of, the true crown jewel of the newly-opened Revolver is its fiery open kitchen. Particularly, the view of the woodfired grill and beautiful hand-built Tandoor that the countertop seats offer is enough to make your meal memorable. You’ll see a brigade of chefs—helmed by rising talent Saurabh Udinia—flitting around the space, cooking and assembling each piping hot dish before it is placed in front of you, ready to be relished. And don’t underestimate the chef’s ability to introduce the grill into the one part of your meal you don’t expect to find it: dessert. Revolver’s latest menu introduced the Dessert Kulchette, a sweet version of the tandoor-cooked flatbread commonly served with savoury dishes. This iteration, however, is stuffed with Indian milk fudge and topped with ghee, jaggery, pistachios, almonds and kulfi gelato, for candy-sweet ending to your meal.
Revolver, 56 Tras St, Singapore 078995
For inquiries: +65 6223 2812 / revolver.com.sg