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29 Oct 2019

Drink & Dine in Singapore: 9 wine pairings you have to try

Drink & Dine in Singapore: 9 wine pairings you have to try

When the restaurant scene is as international and competitive as it is in Singapore, eateries have to do something to stand out. One of the most elegant choices? Curated tasting menus featuring delicious meals with wine pairing. Here are nine restaurants currently courting favour among foodies that are just as well-read on their wining as their dining. 

1. Club55

Source: Club55

 

High above the promenade, on the 55th floor of Marina Bay Sands, a food-and-drink takeover is taking place every evening at 8pm. They call it the ‘Flights of Fancy’ and it involves three drinks and three ‘petit plats’ – which ones, are up to you. Of the seven flight and bite menus you have to choose from, six are dedicated to wine: reds of the old world and new world, whites, bubbly, sake and dessert wine. Lesser fans of the humble grape may enjoy the refreshing beer flight. (There’s also a light and fruity mocktail flight for the drivers among the drinkers, however this one doesn’t come with food pairing – sorry folks!) 

If you opt for the old-world reds – and can tear your eyes away from the view - take note of the way the soy-glazed ribeye brochette enhances the velvety plum flavour of the French Merlot you have in hand. Similarly, the tangy citrus seared scallops are the ideal accompaniment to the glass of chilled French champagne from the Sparkling Jewels flight. One particularly undervalued combination is the Portuguese Ruby Port and blue cheese with fruit bread that delivers a mouth-watering contrast between the sweetness of the wine and saltiness of the cheese. 

Whichever flight you choose, even the most inexperienced palette will struggle to deny the flavour combinations are well thought-out, well-presented and impeccably executed. And the panoramas aren’t bad either. Even better? Go on a Wednesday and get 50% off your chosen flight.

Address: 10 Bayfront Avenue, Level 55, Hotel Tower 2, Singapore, 018956

Opening Hours:
Monday-Thursday: 8pm-12am
Friday-Sunday: 8.30pm-12am

Book your sky-high seat at Club55 here.

2. Buona Terra

Source: Facebook

 

Intimate Italian restaurant Buona Terra is sure to satisfy your gastronomic cravings with its six-course wine pairing, courtesy of chef Denis Lucci and sommelier Gabriele Rizzardi.

Their fare is a fine-dining homage to traditional Italian cooking. Familiar flavours crafted with premium ingredients and a touch of flair make this degustation menu a piece of culinary artistry, with every step of your meal designed to impress. In fact, the impeccable service – that manages to be both formal yet unpretentious – begins the moment you step inside the colonial Scotts Road bungalow, and is testament to their seven years of success. 

Upon being shown to your seat, diners are politely given the opportunity to tailor the meal that is to come. The dishes on the degustation menu change daily and can be personalised to your preferences and dietary requirements; for example, no seafood, mushrooms or dairy. This personalisation reduces the likelihood of paying for a course you dislike, and means each diner’s table is topped with something a little different. 

Given that no two days’ menus are the same, you may not be able to predict the dishes but you can have confidence in the quality. From king crab salad to squid ink pasta, pappardelle ragout or hearty roasted pigeon, the taste and presentation are exceptional. And it doesn’t end there. Elevating each bite to new heights of flavour is the degustation menu’s wine pairing. You’ll be grateful you allowed the expert sommelier to choose the bottle, as their wine menu is no less than 15 pages long and contains more than 250 labels, including rare and vintage wines from around the world. The result is well worthy of that one Michelin star.

Address: 29 Scotts Road, Singapore, 228224

Opening Hours:
Monday-Saturday: 12pm-2.30pm, 6.30pm-10.30pm

Colonial decor and fine Italian fare await at Buona Terra.

3. JAAN By Kirk Westaway 

Source: JAAN

 

A celebration of modern British cuisine and fine wines from the old and new world await at JAAN, the one-Michelin-starred eatery in Swissotel The Stamford, Singapore.

The ethos here is to craft sustainably-sourced, organic ingredients into seasonal dishes inspired by Chef de Cuisine Kirk Westaway’s Devon home on the south coast of England. And their eight-course set menu is no exception.

Beautifully-plated dishes from the first to last course include those from both land and sea, all paired with a carefully-selected glass from their 500-strong wine cellar. Irish oysters and caviar set the tone for the rest of the meal with their pairing of a crisp Australian Riesling from the Clare Valley. Latter courses worth a mention include the poached snapper served with the sparkling Nyetimber blanc de blanc, Scottish langoustine with a soft Burgundy rouge and the much-talked-about ‘egg in an egg’. From this signature dish, expect to be presented with an organic egg yolk on a bed of pickled mushrooms, rosemary and caviar, all served inside an ostrich-sized egg. 

You’ll be hard-pushed to pick a favourite course but a write-up of this tasting menu wouldn’t be complete without allowing the ivory caramel and chocolate dessert to enter the race. It forms an impressive finale alongside the plum, vanilla and coffee notes of your glass of Italian red. (Those with a preference for plant-based will be pleased to hear that a vegetarian version of the tasting menu is also available with wine pairing.)

As for the restaurant, it’s the ideal place for a special occasion. The undisturbed view of the Bay and CBD only just manages to distract from the stunning interiors, designed as the epitome of neutral sophistication complete with Murano crystal chandelier. 

Address: 2 Stamford Road, Swissotel, Level 70, The Stamford, Singapore, 178882

Opening Hours:
Monday-Saturday: 11.45am-1pm, 6.45pm-8pm

Reserve your table for Michelin-starred dishes at JAAN.

4. Bam!

Source: Facebook

 

International Sake Day 2019 has been and gone, but if you – like us – enjoy year-round appreciation for the Japanese rice wine, this epicurean journey at Bam! will be right up your street. 

This trendy Tras Street enclave is Singapore’s first modern shudo (sake showcase through food). Now omakase only, Bam! left the a la carte offerings of its previous locale behind in favour of a more traditional Japanese dining style in which each experience is curated by the chef to highlight the freshest ingredients of the season. The dishes change regularly, but are always served in the same format; beginning with light, cold dishes that get warmer and heartier as the courses go on. Expect Japanese food with a European twist, in a nod to executive chef and owner Pepe Moncayo’s Catalonian upbringing.   

In the four, six or eight-course omakase menu, each dish is served alongside an exceptional sip from their 100-bottle sake cellar. Their picks change according to the dishes served, but don’t worry if you’re not a connoisseur. Their sake sommeliers are on hand to explain the origins and taste profile of each one. 

And it’s not all about the savoury either. Their Dessert Omakase has become so popular that many people sidestep the main omakase in favour of this, keen to sample the skills of Bam!’s dedicated pâtissiers. The accompanying sake cuts across the sweetness of each dessert, balancing the flavours perfectly. 

Address: 38 Tras Street, Singapore, 078977

Opening Hours:
Monday & Saturday: 6pm-10pm
Tuesday-Friday: 12pm-2pm, 6pm-10.30pm

Make a beeline to Bam! for outstanding omakase. 

5. Tanjong Beach Club

Source: Tanjong Beach Club

 

Who says all wine pairings have to a) be fine-dining style and b) require you to wear shoes? Bucking the norm is Tanjong Beach Club; the only place in Singapore where you can enjoy a curated wine pairing with the sand between your toes.

Their ‘Dinner Under The Stars’ is a relatively new addition to the TBC menu, where guests can savour three courses of delicious food, paired with three glasses of something equally as delicious. Set on one of Sentosa’s most pristine stretches of beach, there’s no denying it’s romantic but that doesn’t mean it’s just for couples. This al fresco dinner party set-up is just as perfect for small groups of six or eight.

Feeling sceptical about the quality? Their wine list might not be the most extensive but their careful pairings with each dish work extremely well in enhancing the flavours of both the food and drink. The Marlborough Babydoll Rose, for example, is served alongside a barbecued octopus salad and proves they know more than the casual vibes may suggest. For the main event, diners have the choice of spaghetti alle vongole with a refreshing chardonnay from the Chilean Colchagua Valley, or Angus prime ribeye with beetroot remoulade and a glass of ethically-made red from South Africa’s famed Stellenbosch region. A sweet treat bookends the meal; a lavender-infused peach bellini as you sit down, and a chocolate parfait served with orange gel and crème brûlée ice cream to conclude.

The ambiance is pleasantly relaxed, and as the night and courses roll on, you’ll have the candlelight and gentle wave soundtrack to thank for forgetting you’re a mere 10-minute cab ride from the city. 

Address: 120 Tanjong Beach Walk, Sentosa, Singapore, 098942

Opening Hours:
Monday-Friday: 11am-10pm
Saturday-Sunday: 9am-10pm

Beach-side dining calling your name? Make your reservation here.

6. Zafferano

Image source: Zafferano

 

This classy rooftop bar and restaurant has more to offer than just skyline views. With such a premium selection of fine wines and high-class chefs at the helm, the Zafferano style of dining is more of an epicurean experience than a meal. 

The food is fancy Italian fare at its best, with glorious must-tries like the ‘Kagoshima’ wagyu beef striploin that’s served with black garlic purée and a tangy, pickled mustard and fermented pepper sauce. Add a wine pairing to your meal and you’ll be glad you did, as this dish is culinary perfection when enjoyed with a robust glass of Allegrini Amarone della Valpolicella Classico; an Italian red with notes of balsamic, leather and cherries. For pescetarian palettes, a chilled glass of the Pascal Jolivet Pouilly-Fumé Indigene Sauvignon Blanc really brings out the flavours of the delectable French turbot with roasted daikon and saffron dashi. If you’re keen to try other bottles, there’s a stellar list to choose from, with labels imported from the finest wine regions around the globe.

Along with their a la carte offerings, Zafferano also plays host to wine pairing dinners that are well worth keeping an eye out for. Through collaborations with premium wine makers, the experts in food and wine combine their talents to create a truly exceptional meal. 

Address: 10 Collyer Quay, Level 43, Ocean Financial Centre, Singapore, 049315

Opening hours:
Monday-Wednesday: 11.30am-3pm, 5.30pm-11.45pm
Thursday-Friday: 11.30am-3pm, 5.30pm-1am
Saturday: 6.30pm-1am

Get up to 30% off at Zafferanos with ChopeDeals.

7. Tippling Club

Source: Tippling Club

 

Tippling Club is a former Dempsey Hill favourite that recently relocated to a fresh new space in Tanjong Pagar. Their shining combination of modern gastronomy, quirky interiors and fantastical signature cocktails has won them accolade after accolade, and the tasting menu is just one more thing tempting many a foodie through the door.

There are two tasting menus to choose from: the classic and the gourmand. Both can include a wine pairing and feature exceptionally crafted dishes served fine dining style. The concept is all about melding classic recipes with modern gastronomy, and it works perfectly. Pay particular attention to the incredible textures and flavours that are present from the first to last course, and you’re sure to fall in love with plates like the foie gras cheesecake with pistachios and mandarin from the gourmand menu. We also have a great love for the aged bresse pigeon with XO cabbage and shiitake dashi. The richness of the latter is enhanced by a glass of full-bodied French red; specifically, Les Banquettes Escarpees 2016 from the Rhone Valley. 

Other fantastic pairings on the curated menu include the gunkan maki with aged shoyu and koshikari rice, that’s served alongside a crisp white wine from the highly-praised Badenhorst family vineyard in South Africa. 

Address: 38 Tanjong Pagar Road, Singapore, 088461

Opening hours

Monday-Friday: 12pm-3pm, 6pm-12am
Saturday: 6pm-12am

Head to Tippling Club for fine dishes and even finer wines.

8. 13% Gastro Wine

Source: Facebook

 

Is there a more indulgent combination than cheese or hummus and wine? We think not. As for where to get your hands on it in Singapore, one place that immediately springs to mind is 13% Gastro. Luckily for you (and us), there are three outposts of this cosy wine bar across the city - in Telok Ayer, Kampong Glam and River Valley - with the same laidback and unpretentious vibes abounding in all three locales.

The food here is mainly Mediterranean - featuring flavours from across the region like grilled Spanish octopus and crisp Turkish falafels with hummus and babaganoush - but it’s clear the kitchen has a particular penchant for the French. In fact, there’s an entire section of the menu and two counters dedicated to the best of their culinary exports. Go for the cheese and charcuterie boards that are designed for sharing, and be sure to seek the advice of the staff as their knowledge of which meats and cheeses are best paired with which wine is impressive. The preference here is for bottles from boutique, family-run vineyards; making for a selection that’s sure to delight even the most well-heeled of connoisseurs. 

If you’re seeking a la carte recommendations, don’t even think about leaving without ordering the absolute heaven on a plate that is the baked camembert with honey and thyme, served with grilled bread. It might sound like a simple dish, but its gooey goodness is sure to keep you craving it for days to come. 

Address:
  • 23A Telok Ayer Street, Singapore, 068592 
  • 14 Aliwal Street, #02-01, Singapore, 199907 
  • 117A Killiney Road, Level 2, Singapore, 239554 

Opening hours:

Telok Ayer

  • Monday-Thursday: 12pm-2.30pm, 5pm-12am 
  • Friday-Saturday: 12pm-12am 


Kampong Glam

  • Monday-Saturday: 5pm-12am 


River Valley

  • Monday-Saturday: 5pm-12am

ChopeDeals is treating you to 30% off your 13% Gastro feast!

9. Nox Dine in the Dark

Image source: Facebook

 

Themed restaurants can be a bit of a hit or miss, but this pitch black eatery has really nailed it. In one fell swoop, they’ve managed to tick the boxes for gourmet food, wonderful sips and great ambiance, all without showing you a single inch of what’s inside. 

The modern European fare retains as much mystery as the restaurant interiors, but what you can be sure of is the quality. Each of the prix fixe menus is crafted from the finest ingredients and spans an impressive twelve courses. Among others, you can expect to enjoy a light and refreshing amuse bouche to whet your appetite for what’s to come, a culinary symphony of a main dish and a dessert that makes for a seriously sweet conclusion. 

The total darkness means your sense of taste is significantly enhanced, resulting in a cacophony of flavour that will have you marvelling at every bite. Your sense of smell will also feel more astute, which comes in handy when savouring the aromas of the wine pairing that you can opt to have accompany each course. The bottles are specially selected to complement the dishes and are spot on every time.

Oh, and when they say it’s dark inside, they really mean it, which is why most diners spend the meal speculating what they think is on each plate and in each glass. It makes for great entertainment, and it’s interesting to see the accuracy of your predictions when you emerge into the light and are presented with a menu showing what you’ve just devoured. 

Address: 269 Beach Road, Singapore, 199546

Opening hours:
Monday-Saturday: 6pm-12am
Sunday: 6pm-11pm

An exciting and intriguing dining experience awaits at Nox.

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