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Atas Good Times

Atas Good Times

When you just splurge it all ...
Xing Wei Chua
Xing Wei Chua

Another one off the checklist finally — finally tried Bistro November's chef's menu for dinner and it is really an experience of its own; from tasting things such as Frog Liver Parfait (fun fact: never had a frog in my entire life before, let alone frog innards) to Lamb Tartare and fun dishes such as the Corn Corn Corn, it's definitely a place where one needs to keep an open mind while visiting, especially with the concept of zero wastage where uncommon ingredients that otherwise usually scrapped are being used — very creative yet adventurous at the same time.

Keeping things simple here, my favourite dishes here would have to be the Lamb Tartare; a dish that I would have thought could have been a lot more gamier, the Lamb Tartare was interestingly way more manageable in terms of flavour, almost identical to a beef tartare but even lighter — the texture was also pretty similar and almost melts in the mouth without any nasty, unchewable parts that might be too tough. The use of chamomile was also interesting here, with a noticeable hint of floral flavours with every mouthful to keep things pretty uplifting to go on and on. The main course was one that was a little bit safer than most of the other items, though I pretty much enjoyed the safeness here with the tender pork belly served with burnt leek that is served with the fermented barley risotto that carried quite a good bite — the umami flavours are aptly cut by the tangy snake beans and sour cream that comes laced with a bit of cheese that made the transition of flavours pretty smooth. My absolute favourite had to be the Corn Corn Corn — a smart use of corn in different preparation techniques; smooth mousse that replicates the flavours of corn using parts of corn that is rather uncommonly found in dishes. The dessert was also a stunner with liquorice ice-cream with fermented plums; a sweet ending with a little contrast.

A meal at Bistro November may not be one that's for everyone, considering some might not be able to get past the mental barrier behind some of the ingredients used — go there with an open mind and leave it to the chef; trust the team preparing the food and it might possibly be one of the most memorable meals one might have had for a while.


Part of the set lunch menu where 2 courses are served at $25++ and the 3 course set lunch menu costs $35++. Usually one who is not particularly wow-ed by popcorn desserts but this really worked very well — definitely enjoyed this one a lot! Served with raspberry sauce, meringue and nibs of raspberry on the side, the reason why this seemed to have carried the popcorn flavour so prominently and well was probably due to the popcorn crumbs beneath the ice-cream with the pop rocks — it's almost akin to having the real deal. The ice-cream wasn't overpowering, and that the pop rocks created an interesting popping sensation to the dish. Despite the general tartness of raspberry, the combination here worked well with a balance of sweet and berry sourness that was pretty much in harmony. This dessert also works particularly well with the Flat White — coffee/tea/soft drinks come complimentary with the set lunch menu here.


Part of the set lunch menu where 2 courses are served at $25++ and the 3 course set lunch menu costs $35++. Opted for the barramundi as the main course and it comes with baby octopus, broth, herbs and clams. A dish that I felt was very ocean-centric — different elements of seafood here even in the broth (the staff mentioned crabs and prawns about the broth). Loved how the barramundi is delightfully flaky, but it went especially well with the umami broth which enhanced the flavour of the otherwise, usually simple flavour of the barramundi. The clams were pretty fresh, while I love the charred baby octopus which was easy to chew. Something that would work if one is into the flavours of the sea.


Making use of the opportunity to try Salted & Hung (like finally!) since they are running a promotion only for today where the set lunch for two-courses is priced at $20++ (up: $25++) and three-courses at $28++ (up: $35++).

A starter with cod, potato and chorizo, this comes served in espuma form — cod comes together with cream and potato into the mousse atop; the result is just a whiff of cod within the creamy espuma and with the crusty cubes of potatoes and savory chorizo bits to bite on — quite the savoury dish that makes your tastebuds feel ready for what's going to come.


Back after last year's pretty impressive set lunch that we had, and this time we decided to hit Wild Rocket for their Omakase Set Lunch; essentially an 8-course menu where we are in for surprise after surprise — no menu that states dish names and descriptions, everything only known at the point when it comes out of the kitchen. Depending on the produce that they have and what is being served, the meal would cost in between $80++ to $120++.

Being there once before, certain dishes such as the Thai Duck Salad with Red Curry Ice-Cream and the Otah on Flounder with Brussels Sprouts were reminiscent of dishes that we had during our previous visit — different flavours done in a style that distinctively carries the Wild Rocket branding in terms of execution. Other dishes showcases Chef Willin Low's signature way of mod-Sin cuisine such as the Singapore Noodles with King Prawn — a "national"dish that doesn't exist in Singapore which he had created a flavour profile for with elements such as lobster oil and prawn fat. Other dishes such as the Beef Hor Fun (Hor Fun pan-seared with 48 hours sous vide beef short ribs within served with Black Bean Sauce), Chicken Rice with Truffle and their interpretation of Bak Chor Mee (think glass vermicelli, seared tuna belly with pork lard) are simply fun and inventive creations of local fare that employs modern cooking techniques and contemporary presentation that injects a new life to something locals find familiar. Both the desserts such as the Pineapple Sorbet (which includes ingredient such as mint sugar, soya sauce salt and chili flakes) and Chendol (that Gula Melaka was phenomenal here!) all drew the perfect closing for the meal, cleansing the palate and made an impactful end with their finesse (I have relatively bad luck with desserts in fine-dining spots).

Always an adventure dining here; I love how the ingredients sound so familiar and are all fresh, and one could actually relate to the concept of the dish given how Wild Rocket is all about mod-Sin — updated local cuisine that we grew up with. Definitely enjoyed learning about different elements that I had never have before (aged soya sauce for 1.5 years anybody?), and always a great joy to be dining here.


Desserts from the set lunch menu; Trio of Flowers is made of Osmantnus & Chrysanthemum Granita with Elderflower Jelly; a pretty refreshing palate cleanser that was not in any bit boring especially with the floral scent hitting right on the spot and the elderflower jelly providing a tasteful touch of sourness that helps to give the dessert a contrast. Strawberry Cheesecake is the signature of Wild Rocket that is absolutely luxurious; cream cheese and digestive biscuits, macerated strawberries and a really seductive Maple Walnut ice-cream — classic Strawberry cheesecake elements thrown together in a martini glass for a deconstructed form which is pretty hard to explain how good it is for they had tweaked a few of the ingredients, which makes their signature item a real signature apart from the rest.


Everything was good here, but this was simply phenomenal for me. Not part of the set lunch menu, but part of the ala-carte menu. Cleverly serving the coconut dressing in a form of a sorbet/ice-cream, it injects a contrast in the temperature of how the dish is being served. The vegetables and prawns are fresh, but the difference was really made when you crush that dressing to spread it evenly across the bowl; it adds creamy, tangy Tom Yum-like flavour to the salad which comes full with a pretty good kick of spiciness that goes well with even the zesty pomelo chunks. If the meal was already gastronomical by itself alone, I shld probably go as far to say that this is simply a level or two above. Credits to Chef Willin whom served this complimentary to us.


Leaning towards lighter flavours, the Baked Halibut with Curry Hollandaise is as outstanding as the more flavour-intensive dishes as well. Halibut was done just right; flaky without losing all the moisture within and baked twice; once by itself and another time after the Curry Hollandaise is applied so it actually sticks to the fish rather than being a wet drizzle. Curry flavours were evident, and it can be even said that this dish could have been inspired by Fish Curry given the root vegetables that come on the side. Despite the lack of seasoning done to the vegetables (which I felt was done intentionally), the vegetables managed to pull off their natural flavours that seemed to place emphasis on the freshness and flavour from the root vegetables themselves. Definitely a dish for those who prefer lighter flavours.


Yet another dish that scored a goal. The instructions to enjoy this was simple; peel off the rice paper atop, squeeze the calamansi over and just dig in. Absolutely in love with the Iberico Pork; simply one of the most tender ones I have ever had for now that doesn't need a knife to cut through for the tender meat is all bouncy, juicy and all streaky coated in a layer of smoky sweetness that is pretty alluring. Quinoa was decent, but do portion it out with the Shanghai Kaocai which adds a umami factor to the Quinoa. Even the mushroom at the side deserves a little mention for the subtle sweetness that sets it apart from the usual dried mushrooms we are used to getting out there. It is said that the rice paper was added as a carb for the dish, for this was a dish inspired by the "Tau Yu Bak" and the rice paper intentionally replaces the bread, though typically the staff would advise patrons to leave it out for the texture of a half-steamed rice paper may not appeal to all (but it's been noted that some patrons do eat it anyway).


A marriage between the Carpacio and the Chinese Yu Sheng. Fresh slices of fish that comes with a drizzle of the orange shallot oil, not only does it comes with the tangy flavours of orange, but the shallots were also crisp and roasty the same way you would expect the shallots to be on a warm bowl of porridge.


I am not a big fan of Chinese soup, but this is pretty much something I would drink and I eventually finished the entire bowl clean. This is their twist to the classic Salted Vegetable Soup, but I like it how the consommé was immensely flavorful but light on the palate. There are bits of tomatoes, some salted vegetable cubes and daikon around that helps enhance the flavours, but that smokiness and savoury flavours of that duck is just "woah"! Also pretty impressed with how clear the consommé, so there was never a time it felt artery-clogging nor too oily which is perfect as a starter for the mains to come.


Baked in-house, the Brioche might seem to be less moist than the usual ones but it's pretty different from how it just simply disintegrates without much effort to chew; fluffy and delightful with a pretty quality olive oil accompanied to dip into.

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