Dinner @ Buona Terra

January 2, 2017 in Italian by thywhaleliciousfay

Determined to break what seemed to be a spell of bad dinners (Yes, one after another after another. Sob), I was positive Buona Terra was the antidote. I last dined at Buona Terra 3 years back, and I remembered enjoying myself. And their new menu looked pretty good too.

However, after learning Buona Terra was located within the same colonial building as Kakure (one of our disappointing dinners), my friend went “You sure? Same place means same standard.” But I insisted with “Same management but different chefs.” Ha. And after 2 failed attempts at making reservation as Buona Terra was closed for private events, we successfully made reservation for a weekday dinner on our third attempt.

Parking wasn’t an issue as there was ample parking space within the compound. One could either park one’s car or let the valet service staff assist. And upon entering the restaurant, I noticed the space was more brightly lit. Which was good for my photographs taking, but not for the romantic vibe. Haha. And when we were given the menu, the staff said we could customise our meal; Number of courses and what we wanted to eat. Yes… One could have a dinner of desserts only, if one wanted.

With 4, 5 and 6 courses priced at $128, $148 and $168 respectively, my friend and I decided to go with 4 and 5 courses. We actually intended to do two 5 courses, but as we neared the end of our meal, we realised we were too full for desserts. But that said, I couldn’t allow our dinner to end without a dessert too. Haha.

And so, from the menu (pages 1, 2, 3, 4, 5), we ordered:-

1) Pre-appetiser, Complimentary (above) – Assorted crackers with flavours of black rice, original with poppy seed and saffron.

2) Bread, Complimentary (above)

3) Appetiser, Complimentary (above) (above) – Ocean trout and salmon roe served on fried (ocean trout) skin, scallop tartar in cone, and ham mousse on deep fried dough.

4) Dal mare (from the sea) with options of:-

(A) Gambero rosso (above) – Marianted “rosso di mazara” sicilian red prawns with caviar and prickly pear cold soup. The prawns were to be plated as deshelled prawns as per the menu description, but I requested for the tartare version by showing the staff instagram pictures of what chef Denis Lucchi had prepared for the private events. Haha. And this was lovely. Honestly, one can’t go wrong with this combination. But the portion was small; I could easily finish everything in one mouthful. But I controlled and savoured it slowly with 3 small bites.

(B) Cappesante (above) – Seared hand dive scallop with braised pork belly, apple chip and marsala reduction. I like this. I especially like the addition of crispy pork ‘crumbs’ which gave the dish a very strong, fragrant aroma.

(C) Rombo (above) – Wild caught turbot stuffed with Sicilian purple prawn, black rice crust, mussel, heirloom carrot and saffron sauce.

5) La pasta (pasta) with options of:-

(A) Tagliolini ai pioppini (above) – Homemade truffle tagliolini with girolle mushroom, 36 months parmesan cheese sauce and truffle. Since Alba white truffle was in the season, we decided to top up $10 per gram for it instead of having the seasonal black truffle as per menu. And between my friend and I, we ate a total of 12 grams. And I enjoyed this, although my friend felt the pasta was served a little too wet.

(B) Capellini (above) – Angel hair with sea urchin, lemon and “giaveri” oscietra caviar. My friend and I agreed the dish could do with less sauce. Perhaps it’s chef Denis’s style; Wet pasta.

6) Dalla terra (from the earth) with options of:-

(A) Malale iberico (above) – Charcoal grilled iberico secreto pork with trombetta zucchini.

(B) Flietto di vitello (above) – Veal tenderloin with asparagus and herbs sabayon, sweet garlic cream and moscato sauce.

7) I dolci (the sweets) with options of:-

(A) Sigaro esotico (above) – Cocoa wafer “cigar” with white chocolate passion fruit mousse, mango and coconuts meringue. And we ordered this out of curiosity. We earlier overheard the staff introducing the dessert to our neighbouring table, and the dish looked so realistic when we stole a peak that my friend couldn’t help but ask out of bewilderment, “You allow smoking in the restaurant?” And this was certainly interesting. But it’s more a fun dish than a dessert that would fill one up. My friend stopped at two bites citing it’s a dirty dish. I guess it has that effect for diners who are smokers. My friend felt weird eating the ‘ash’. Haha.

8) Petit fours (above) – Chocolate, pate de fruit, cookie and nougat.

9) Coffee, Complimentary

Did we finally break the spell and enjoy a good dinner together? I guess we did. =)

I wouldn’t say we were blown away by the food at Buona Terra, but I was happy it didn’t disappoint. I liked that we can choose any dish from any category instead of the usual 1 from each category, since there’s times when I liked nothing from one category but 2 of the 2 options in another category.

And I was impressed with their service. The waitress appointed to our table regularly checked on us during the course of our dinner without being intrusive. And when she spoke with us, she made reference to our earlier conversation. Apparently when she took our orders, she didn’t just take them mindlessly. She remembered our preference when we asked for recommendation, etc. I appreciated that. It differentiated the just-working-for-the-sake-of-working staff from the truly-passionate-about-work staff.

However, at 10.15pm, only two tables remained in the restaurant. And I didn’t think it was appropriate when the staff started to change table lining of the empty tables.

29 Scotts Road, Singapore
6733 0209, Website, Facebook
Overall: 8
Opening hours:-
Food/Beverage: 8
Mon – Fri : 12:00 – 14:30 (Lunch)
Ambience: 7
Mon – Sat : 18:30 – 22:30 (Dinner)
Value: 8
Service: 8
* Closed on Sun