Best Italian Restaurants In Singapore

Best Italian Restaurants In Singapore

Mandy Lynn of gourmetadventures.net goes in search of the Best Italian Restaurants with handmade pastas in Singapore.
Mandy Lynn
Mandy Lynn

Along the bustling streets of Club Street is a hidden gem in the form of Italian restaurant Cugini. Believing in good homemade food, this five-year-old trattoria takes pride in using quality ingredients imported from all over the world. For the best squid ink pasta in town, look no further. Expect a burst of flavors in your mouth with the squid ink fettuccine ($27.90) with seafood, green pea puree and mullet roe. Made with extra yolk, the fettuccine pasta is richer, with a touch of homemade bottarga sauce (a Mediterranean delicacy made of mullet roe) that gels everything together.

Housed in a beautifully restored colonial building along Scotts Road, contemporary fine dining restaurant Buona Terra is a luxuriously furnished enclave that exudes a promise to wine and dine your companion to seventh heaven. Warm lighting dances along the restaurant; setting the mood (it’s all very romantic, indeed). Adorned with porcini mushrooms and exquisite seasonal black truffle, the homemade casoncelli ($36) is filled with cheese that dissolves into buttery richness in the mouth. Just one of the many delicate dishes you’d be hankering after.

If the sounds, energy and spectacle of dining out give you a thrill like it does us, few places get it right the way Osteria Mozza does. Shining on the menu is the corzetti stampati ($25) with eggplant, olives and bufala ricotta. Each piece of pasta is folded with slightly drier ricotto (for a subtle taste) enhanced by herbs and olives; hand stamped with a wooden carved seal. The unique texture of this stamped noodle gives a different intensity and bite each time you sink your teeth into the pasta. We reckon you won’t have tasted any handmade pasta quite like this.

Aptly named, inITALY offers a little piece of Italy in the heart of Singapore’s famed Chinatown district with the #2 Pasta World Championship 2013, Chef Mario Caramella, helming the kitchen. A version of the dish that bagged him the #2 spot in the Pasta World Championship 2013 is a cold spaghettini ($38) salad with Mediterranean red prawn tartar and a sprinkle of chives and extra virgin olive oil. A generous helping of tobiko graces the dish; enhancing the sweetness of the prawns.

‘OTTO’ is Italian for ‘eight’, and dining here will give you reason to believe this was meant to be the eighth wonder of the world. The food speaks for itself, and its no surprise with acclaimed Italian Chef Michele Pavanello (formerly of Il Lido) heading the culinary team. A special off-the-menu dish we also enjoyed was the Wagyu beef and pan-seared foie gras tagliatelle ($44). Grain-fed for 180 days, the Australian Wagyu is incredibly tender; the pan-seared foie gras so creamy and smooth that it melts in your mouth like butter. A very hearty dish, but delicious nonetheless.

Heading the kitchen at OSO is Chef Diego Chiarini, formerly of world leading Italian restaurant Bice, Four Seasons Hotel Tokyo. A self-proclaimed perfectionist, Chef Diego believes that guests should only experience a dish with the correct ingredients. The handmade fettuccine with de-shelled baby lobster ($34) is such a creation. Al dente with just the right amount of turgidity to add bite, the handmade pasta is accompanied by sweet and succulent baby lobster meat with a full-bodied tomato sauce made of San Marzano tomatoes (the best Italian plum tomatoes) with a light sprinkle of basil.

One of the most romantic spots in the city, The Lighthouse boasts an epic view from the apex of The Fullerton Hotel, with a striking menu to match. Our personal pick, Gragano’s paccheri ($32) is a Naples-styled homemade dish of thick homemade alla matriciana (traditional Italian pasta sauce made of cured pork cheek, pecorino and tomato) with beef ragout braised for six hours that’s just meltingly tender, rounded up by ricotta cheese flakes. We loved how the tenacity of the pasta added bite to the dish.

Showcasing traditional wood-fired oven pizza (no gas chambers, here) made with an inherited secret recipe of pizza dough from one of the oldest pizzarias back in Italy, you know they’re serious about its food. A classic pizza consisting of three ingredients: tomato sauce, buffalo mozzarella and fresh basil, the margherita pizza ($19.90) uses fresh buffalo mozzarella flown in three times a week from the volcanic region of Campania—where the cheese in the best Neopolitan pizzas are from. One bite is all it takes to know we’ve found the pizzeria in town.

Located along the river at Robertson Quay is sister restaurant of well-loved pizzeria Bella Pizza, Bella Pasta. Importing majority of its ingredients from Italy, owner Antonio Manetto believes in serving authentic Italian fare without localizing recipes. A classic Italian dish, the homemade tagliatelle Bolognese ($24) was a hearty beef ragu—its sauce made from a 10-hour reduction; beef taking five to six hours to marinate. If this were the only dish we had, it would’ve been well worth it.

It’s not everyday you get to dine in a mansion on a hilltop. Surrounded by lush greenery atop Telok Blangah Hill, Alkaff Mansion exudes a European-styled ambiance that will have you feeling like royalty—with service standards to match. Our personal favorite is the housemade pappardelle with black pork ragout ($28). Handmade fresh daily, the pappardelle pasta is chewy and firm, with a smooth texture that lets the creamy sauce slide on easily. Marinated for seven days, the pork is soft and tender, sweetened with piquant flavors of red wine.

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