Tag Archives: Salt

Salt Tapas & Bar

Dukkah crusted Tasmanian trout with Israeli couscous in a cucumber, tomato and dill broth

Salt Tapas & Bar at Raffles City is a place to sit back and relax and enjoy lots of little (or larger) plates of tapas with a modern Australian influence. They have a lunch menu on weekdays – where you have a selection of entrees, larger plates and sides.

I started with slow-cooked octopus with celeriac, apple, saffron rouille and dried black olive. The octopus was sweet and tender with no hint of toughness that can sometimes come with octopus (I watched a Greek cooking show where they tenderise the octopus first by bashing it repeatedly on a rock until its “soapiness” is released on the rock. Apparently in commercial kitchens they do this in a cement mixer !). The celeriac and apple were finely julienned and provided a crisp freshness to the rich saffron rouille.

Slow-cooked octopus with celeriac, apple, saffron rouille and dried black olive

For my main I had dukkah crusted Tasmanian trout, Israeli couscous, cucumber, tomato and dill broth. This is the first time I’ve had Israeli couscous and it’s delicious. It has a very satisfying springy, chewy texture that I equated to the tapioca balls in the Taiwanese “bubble teas”.

The trout was perfectly cooked so it was still pink in the centre and that broth it came swimming in – absolutely divine. It really brought that entire dish together with the acidity from the tomatoes and was so fragrant from the dill. And the dukkah crust on the trout gave the dish a lovely nutty flavour and texture.

You can also order a la carte during lunch but I was in a “can’t decide” mood and the only thing I ordered off the lunch menu was a side order of Jamon Iberico. Not because I felt I needed it because the portion sizes are pretty generous here. Just because I could.

Salt Tapas and Bar
#01-22A, Raffles City Shopping Centre
No 252, North Bridge Road

Tel: +65 6837 0995

Salt Grill at Level 55 Ion

Passionfruit and banana soufflé with a marscapone sorbet

I love this place for more than the food. They’ve done such a superb job of making you feel like you’re somewhere special, from the strange entrance through an art gallery to a starfilled private lift area and lift that takes you to only one floor – 55. And from that darkness you enter a spacious room that is flooded with natural light.

The food though, is the real reason to go to Salt Grill. Previous visits gave me enough incentive to try new dishes. This time, a roasted gnocchi with pork and fennel sausage, and his signature dessert, a liquorice parfait with lime.

Roasted gnocchi with pork and fennel sausage

I don’t normally choose gnocchi – I find it a bit too doughy and heavy for my liking, but I loved the sound of it with the sausage and was delighted to find that the dish was lightened with the addition of brocolli tips/flowers and pangritata.

Pangritata is a Southern Italian stroke of genius. Modest ingredients – stale bread, herbs, garlic and anchovies or olives, fried until crisp and golden. It gave the dish a completely different texture normally associated with gnocchi and was delicious with a cold glass of pinot grigio.

Luke’s liquorice parfait with lime

Then to desserts. I couldn’t help but share a photo of my friend’s dessert above – a banana and passionfruit soufflé with a marscapone sorbet just because it looked so damn good. For my dessert, I again ordered something unusual – liquorice parfait served with a sweet tuille and lime syrup. It’s one of the strangest combinations that I could think of for a dessert. And yet somehow, the creamy, slightly anise flavoured parfait worked wonderfully with the sweetness of the lime syrup and the sharp tangy bits of fresh lime. Still not sure I would order it again, but it sure is unique.

I think I really should try this place out for dinner just to experience what would be a completely different ambiance and menu.

Salt Grill by Luke Mangan
Level 55 on ION Orchard. Lift entry is on Level 4
Tel: 6592 5118

Salt Grill by Luke Mangan

Foie gras parfait with toasted brioche, fig and pickled onion

Another bright sunny day in Singapore, and D and I decided to visit Luke Mangan’s Salt Grill on level 55 at ION Orchard. I love clear blue skies, sans the horrific heat and humidity of Singapore – I still miss Sydney weather dearly, especially during winter where you get almost unreal azure blue skies married with a cool, crisp air. Salt Grill is all glass that lets in tons and tons of filtered light that makes the panoramic view of Singapore all that more breathtaking. Reminded me a lot of Kong in Paris (which has the slightly more historic view of Pont Neuf).

Charcuterie plate with bresaola, jamon iberico, saucison and cornichons

The meal started off wonderfully. The charcuterie plate had just four things on it – bresaola, Jamon Iberico, saucison and cornichons, each one of them full of their unique, strong flavours, and the foie gras parfait was light and airy but had the strong punchy flavour of the foie gras – and the pickled onion was delicious. Absolutely genius start to the meal, such clean and simple flavours served in clean and simple “Luke” plateware. Absolute perfection in Modern Australian fare.

Barramundi fillet with wasabi mayonnaise

A shame the mains were disappointing. To be fair, the Barramundi was actually good – very very crispy batter, served with shoestring rosemary fries, but the wasabi mayonnaise was too rich and the tomato sauce I asked for was served with the explanation “our tomato sauce is homemade, so you will find it tastes more like barbeque sauce than tomato”, which I thought really odd.  Homemade tomato sauce is great, but shouldn’t it taste of tomato sauce and not barbeque?

The burger that D ordered was served on a brioche bun that had the sauce swirled onto, but which made the rest of the burger, which was a beef patty, a single leaf of lettuce and thinly sliced beetroot, very dry and quite plain.

Of course there are plenty of other dishes we could have ordered, but a steak for lunch seemed a little heavy, and there seems to be no lunch menu on weekends (there is a lunch set during the week).  I think the ambiance of the place will bring me back to try other dishes, and this would be another place that will be transformed during the night. Otherwise, this is the perfect place for a lunch with the girls. Just stick to the starters and appetisers and keep the wine coming!

Salt Grill by Luke Mangan
Level 55 on ION Orchard. Lift entry is on Level 4
Tel: 6592 5118