Dinner @ Dehesa Singapore

December 3, 2016 in Spanish

Catching up over a table filled with many plates of good food is always a good idea. And for our next meet up, I suggested to my girlfriends to have Spanish cuisine as it has been a while since we last had Spanish. Or wait, it was a long while since I last met this group of girlfriends. o_O

Reservation was made using Chope. Oh yes, it was one of those days where I was feeling too lazy to talk. Haha. And it was a good thing reservation was made through Chope; We had to postpone our dinner to a week later, and I amended our reservation details with just a few clicks. Keke.

However, on the day of our dinner, 1 was still stuck at work at 7.30pm. So it turned out to be an intimate dinner affair between 2 ladies. But still over a table filled with many plates of good food. =p

And from the menu (pages 1, 2), we ordered:-

1) Duck hearts on toast, $14 (above) – We realised the duck hearts were not fully cooked. Ie, it was slightly raw in the centre. But we liked it that way. It introduced a good ‘crunch’, without it being too tough. I especially enjoyed eating the toast which was thoroughly soaked with the gravy. A must order.

2) Octopus, $28 (above) – Served on a bed of mashed potato, octopus was soft without the rubbery texture. Decent! My girlfriend especially liked the layer of lard served on top of the octopus!

3) Clams, $24 (above) – In sherry and jamon.

4) Crispy pig’s head, $28 (above) – With egg yolk, capers. Thankfully chef Jean-Philippe Patruno saved us from the gruesome sight of a pig head by serving this in the form of a really big fried meatball. Ha! And this was really good. If only the yolk that came with it wasn’t served to us broken. Sob!

5) Dehesa platter, $42 (above) – Having seen a few of these coming out from the kitchen during our dinner, my girlfriend and I decided to order cold cuts too. We intended to order the jamon joselito ($38) but decided to get variety with $4 more. A wise decision, indeed. Keke. Everything was so good. Including the bread which was soft and fluffy. A must order.

6) Arroz negro paella, $52 (above) – With squids, clams, prawns.

7) Chocolat, $14 (above) – With olive oil, salt. This wasn’t very impressive. Give it a miss and try the other desserts.

8) Torijas, $14 (above) – With plum, creme fraiche.

Would I recommend Dehesa? A definite yes. Except for the chocolate ice cream, every dish was a hit! My girlfriend and I were simply enjoying ourselves. Even though we over-ate and had serious bloating after dinner. Haha.

However, chef Jean-Philippe Patruno was the only person in the kitchen that Friday night. So when the crowd came in at 8pm, our orders took significantly longer to be served. And it was interesting that the staff was particularly concerned if my girlfriend and I could finish our food.

When we confirmed at 9pm that our 3rd friend wasn’t coming, the staff went on to say she will cancel our remaining order instead of asking if we wanted to proceed. And I must had been very baffled because the word “cancel” simply didn’t register with me. Thankfully chef JP came in the nick of time and saved us by serving our next dish! Please know we ladies could also eat as much (or even more) than guys. Keke.

And it’s read from their website that Dehesa is the only front-runner of nose-to-tail eating revolution in Singapore. With made-from-scratch and robustly flavoured alternative cut and offal delicacies, as well as succulent classic cut specialities with a commitment to whole animal usage.

12 North Canal Road, Singapore
6221 7790, Website, Facebook
Overall: 7
Opening hours:-
Food/Beverage: 8
Mon – Fri : 11:30 – 14:30 (Lunch)
Ambience: 7
Mon – Sat : 17:30 – 00:00 (Dinner)
Value: 7
Service: 7
* Closed on Sun

Dinner @ Gosso Omotenashi Dining

June 16, 2015 in Japanese

I realised I haven’t had yakitori recently. And so, dinner was organised with my buddy to check out Gosso Omotenashi. I got to know of Gosso through another friend. And I must say, it’s a great recommendation. =)

For me, besides the food, my ideal yakitori joint has to have the following:-

  (A) Counter seats: Where one can watch the ‘grilling’ actions
  (B) Dimly lit: Yakitori joint normally doubles up as an izakaya. So I prefer it be dim to set the mood. Haha.
  (C) Japanese clientele: Not a must, but it certainly adds to the ambience. No? =)

And from the menu (pages 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10), we ordered:-

1) Special yakitori set, $28 comprised of:-

(A) Gosso dama (2 sticks) (above) – White chicken liver wrapped in crepine and baked with bincho-tan charcoal. $7 if ordered a-la carte. And this was so good! Crispy on the outside and creamy on the inside. Because Gosso believes this is best consumed when it’s hot, they even have a timer set to 40 seconds to tell us to consume the chicken liver before 40 seconds is up. And yes, it’s possible to take picture and consume 1 stick of 2 pieces within 40 seconds. I managed to! A must order.

(B) Hatsu (2 sticks) (above) – Chicken heart. With grated garlic sauce. My buddy was grumbling when he learnt I had ordered the ‘special set’ cause he wasn’t interested to try the non-normal items like chicken heart. But when he tried this, he knew better to trust my instinct when it comes to ordering. Haha. These were grilled to perfection; Chewy without being too chewy. Hmm… Haha. $3 if ordered a-la carte.

(C) Sunagimo (2 sticks) (above) – Chicken gizzard. With yuzu pepper. $3 if ordered a-la carte.

(D) Umesiso-yaki (2 sticks) (above) – Sasami fillet wrapped with shiso leaf. With plum pulp sauce. And it was a interesting combination of chicken fillet and shiso leaf. $5 if ordered a-la carte.

(E) Negima (2 sticks) (above) – Chicken thigh with leek. $6 if ordered a-la carte.

(F) Tsukune (2 sticks) (above) – Chicken minced ball. This was really good. With chopped vegetables mixed into the patty, the meat ball was juicy and flavourful. $6 if ordered a-la carte. A must order!

2) Butamaki shimeji, $6 (2 sticks) (above) – Shimeji mushroom wrapped with pork belly and grilled with miso sauce.

3) Butamaki omochi, $6 (2 sticks) (above) – Rice cake wrapped with pork belly and grilled with soya sauce. I love how the rice cake stretched with every bites. Ha. A musty try.

4) Isobe-yaki, $5 (2 sticks) (above) – Sasami fillet wrapped with seaweed and grilled with yakitori sauce.

5) Cheese-tsukune, $7 (2 sticks) (above) – Chicken minced ball with cheese. I preferred the original flavour over this. With a generous portion of meat, the amount of cheese seemed to be on the low side. I was hoping for the cheese to ‘burst’ out.

6) Omotenashi fried chicken, $5.80 (2 pieces) (above) – Deep fried drum stick marinated in special sauce.

7) Gyo-za, $6.80 (above) – Deep fried home made dumpling. With chili sauce. The dumplings were really oily but so good! The skin was crisp while the meat filling within was tender and juicy.

8) Tsukune gohan, $9.80 (above) – Chicken minced ball rice.I purposely enquired with the staff if this was ‘grilled rice ball with chicken within’ or ‘chicken placed on top of rice’. However, I must have somehow misinterpreted her “giant version” as ‘giant grilled rice ball’ when she really meant ‘giant version of chicken meat ball (placed on steamed rice)’. I say skip this and order more yakitori sticks. If one really needs carbohydrate, try the chicken porridge (item 10) instead! But if you must order this, add $1 for an additional raw egg.

9) Torisuki, $14.80 (above) – Chicken sukiyaki. Soup made from yakitori sauce. My buddy found the soup a little salty, but I thought it was okie. And when this was first served, all we could see was tang oh. Leave it alone (to boil) for almost 10 minutes before tucking in.

10) Rice porridge, $4.80 (Add on) (above) – Optional add-on to chicken sukiyaki (item 9). And when we were almost done with our torisuki (with some soup left), the staff brought our pot back to the kitchen to prepare our porridge where rice, egg, chicken and spring onion were added. And this was so gooey-ly good! I really liked it.

11) Chocolate daifuku, $7.80 (above) – We had wanted to order the mango daifuku, but the staff told us chocolate was also available. And since chocolate daifuku was not always available, we decided to go with it. Mochi stuffed with chocolate ice cream and berry sauce. I might by slightly bias since I like mochi. Generous portion of rich chocolate ice cream wrapped with a thin yet chewy skin. Yum.

I highly recommend Gosso Omotenashi. Firstly, the prices are wallet friendly. I know of other yakitori joints which charge more. And the ambience was great. Although my buddy and I were engrossed in our conversation and not paying much attention to our surroundings, please go for the counter seats. I would sometimes look up and watch the staff grill the chicken sticks. But if one is coming in a group, there’re indoor booth seats or alfresco seats.

Service was great too. From my observation, a Japanese lady seemed to be the lead waiting staff. When I reached at 7.30pm, the staff were really busy as 2 other groups had arrived at the same time as me. And while I was waiting quietly (since I made no prior reservation), the lady saw me and asked me to wait. I was a little afraid I would be forgotten since they were really busy directing the customers and checking their other reservations for the night. But she came up to me nontheless and arranged (my favourite) counter seats! =) Of course, there was another young female staff who was quick and attentive. Our empty plates were cleared promptly.

The fire of our portable stove (for our torisuki) was blown in our direction due to the air conditioner. It’s not the staff’s fault yet the staff came up to us and apologised.

So yes, I highly recommend Gosso Omotenashi. I guess I just found a new favourite yakitori joint.

64 Boat Quay, Singapore
6533 5152, Website, Facebook
Overall: 8
Opening hours:-
Food/Beverage: 8
Mon – Fri : 11:30 – 14:30 (Lunch)
Ambience: 8
Mon – Sat : 17:30 – 00:00 (Dinner)
Value: 8
* Closed on Sun
Service: 8

Dinner @ Satsuma Shochu // CLOSED

July 25, 2014 in Japanese

And it seem like these days I have been eating quite a fair bit of yakitori. Keke. And this time, my friend and I were off to Satsuma Shochu. Located at Gallery Hotel in Robertson Quay.

Reservation is recommended as they were running at full house when we arrived. We were lucky to reserve the last (available) table for the night by calling just 10 minutes before our arrival.

We got a little disorientated as we tried to find our direction to the restaurant. Upon reaching Gallery Hotel, the signboard directed us to step behind and out of Gallery Hotel. To get to Satsuma Shochu, one will need to keep right and walk straight to the last of the 3 cylinder-looking buildings. Easily identifiable with its sakura cut outs.

And from the menu, we ordered:-

1) Vegetable stick, $5 (above) – This was placed on our table once we were seated. I would not have ordered this (from the menu) had they not placed it on our table. But we are happy to part with our $5 as it allowed us to munch (mindlessly) away as we looked through the menu and while we waited for our dishes to be served. In fact, my friend really liked the raw cabbage. We even asked for second helping of the dipping sauce. Keke.

2) Assorted raw fish, $56 (above) – Ordered under the sashimi section, $56 gave us 5 different types of sashimi. I enquired if the $79 will give us premium fishes, to which the staff replied that the $79 gives us 2 more fishes. So with that, we opted for the $56.

3) Chopped bluefin tuna belly with spring onion, $39 (above) – From the cold dishes section, this was pretty good to my surprise as I don’t normally expect quality sashimi in yakitori restaurants. And don’t underestimate the quantity. There’s more than enough for 2 to share in the funnel-shaped bowl.

4) Chicken wing, $7 (above) – From the charcoal-grill section of menu, the wings were so good! You know how there’re 2 bones within the wing? The chef broke the bones up such that it’s easier / more straight forward to tuck in. But most importantly, the wings were grilled to perfection. Skin was crispy while meat was succulent! So good!

5) Prawn rolled with basil leaves & pork, $15 (above) – Similarly, from the charcoal-grill section of the menu, this was good! Prawn was thick and juicy. We liked how there’s that little saltiness from the pork, and how the basil leaves pulled everything together.

6) Meat bar served with raw egg, $8 (above) – Under the charcoal-grill section, this is a must try! Two bars of meat soaked in a mixture of raw egg and teriyaki-like sauce.

7) Tofu with spicy cod roe gratin, $15 (above) – Curious to try more, we asked for recommendation which the staff suggested this. And it’s something different. I don’t remember seeing anything similar in other restaurants. The first mouth was pretty cheesy. But once we got a proper spoonful of the thin layer of tofu and mentaiko topping, it’s not too bad. An interesting combination of the smooth tofu against the cheesy mentaiko gratin.

8) Spicy cod roe spaghetti, $17 (above) – From the rice/noodle section, I did not like their warm rendition of the mentaiko noodle. I had better elsewhere.

9) Green tea ice cream with red bean, $8 (above, left)

10) Black sesame ice cream with red bean, $8 (above, right)

We enjoyed ourselves tremendously! Food was good, ambience was nice and service was great. Clearing of our plates and topping up of our drinks (hot green tea and iced water) were done promptly. I will definitely be making a second trip back as there’re many interesting items on the menu which I will like to try. Like the ‘pork rice ball tea soup’, ‘Japanese mackerel with plum’, ‘steam custard with foie gras’ and ‘small abalone with truffle sale’.

Ohhh, I am a glutton. Haha.

1 Nanson Road, Gallery Hotel, #01-10, Singapore
6235 3565
Overall: 7
Opening hours:-
Food/Beverage: 7
Mon – Fri : 12:00 – 14:30 (Lunch)
Ambience: 6
Fri – Sat : 18:00 – 01:00 (Dinner)
Value: 7
Sun – Thur : 18:00 – 23:00 (Dinner)
Service: 7