Tasty Tastings

Tasty Tastings

All the tasty treats devoured during Tastemaker tastings go here.
Russell Leong
Russell Leong

And now, we finally get to the main meat of the matter at @cubalibre.sg: the main courses. The tapas selection definitely dwarfs the entrée section, but the two most promising choices were the Crispy Roast Pork ($23++), also known as ‘Lonjas de Cerdo Asado’ on the menu, and the Mojito Chicken ($22++).

As you might’ve guessed, the redolent roast pork is the full sized variant of the roast pork bites we had earlier. Oddly enough, these thick slices of pork were considerably tougher than their more diminutive brethren. Perhaps cutting them down to a smaller size tenderised them slightly, or perhaps it was a bout of inconsistency. We’ll probably never know.

One universal problem that both dishes shared were the vegetables. I was actually rather pumped to find that @cubalibre.cq had put in a decent bit of effort & arrayed a marvellous medley of veg on the plate. There’s broccoli, carrots, bell peppers, asparagus, squash, cauliflowers & cucumbers coexisting on both plates, and that’s quite the rainbow of vegetables. Unfortunately, the effort ended up half baked, as the vegetables weren’t dressed at all. Heck, they weren’t even seasoned, unfortunately.

Still, despite unseasoned, undressed vegetables, Cuba Libre’s mains aren’t too shabby for the price of admission. Besides, Cuba Libre’s on #burpplebeyond, and two of these for the price of one? Consider me convinced!

Thanks for having us, @cubalibre.cq & @burpple!

@cubalibre.sg has been in operation since 2006, but they’ve only recently launched a two hour long alcohol free flow fiesta for $35++ on Mondays to Thursdays. Said alcohol includes cava, Prosecco, wines, beers & housepour spirits. Pretty good value for a boozy bonanza that lasts 120 minutes.⠀

But of course, where there is alcohol at a Hispanic bar, there must also be tapas. Head Chef Alex Moreno slings Colombian empanadas ($14++) as well as the fusion-y Beef Rendang Croquetas ($15++) for a beefy accompaniment to your drinks, and they’re decently delicious.⠀

The croquetas, were simply stellar. The redolence of the rendang paste is unmistakable, and the scent of lemongrass was also very insistent. The potato layer is pretty thin, which makes it all the more astonishing that it can contain the sapid, sumptuous, bounteous abundance of beef within. These luscious Latin lovelies are perfect for gorging yourself on as you get wasted on free flow booze for two whole hours, I tell you what. Viva la Cuba!⠀

Thanks for having us, @cubalibre.cq & @burpple!

@cubalibre.sg has been in operation since 2006, but they’ve only recently launched a two hour long alcohol free flow fiesta for $35++ on Mondays to Thursdays. Said alcohol includes cava, Prosecco, wines, beers & housepour spirits. Pretty good value for a boozy bonanza that lasts 120 minutes.⠀

But of course, where there is alcohol at a Hispanic bar, there must also be tapas. Head Chef Alex Moreno slings Colombian empanadas ($14++) as well as the fusion-y Beef Rendang Croquetas ($15++) for a beefy accompaniment to your drinks, and they’re decently delicious.⠀

Empanada pastry is made out of corn, but it very closely resembles our locally loved curry puff albeit less oily. I did feel that the empanadas, which have been stuffed full of shredded slow cooked beef, were a little bland. However, I appear to have been eating it wrong, as I didn’t slather on some of that spicy orange sauce smeared on the plate. Oh well, maybe next time.⠀

Thanks for having us, @cubalibre.cq & @burpple!

2 Likes

I don’t know why the Japanese are obsessed with tentacles (if you get the joke, good, and if you don’t, stay innocent my sweet summer child), but @hattendo_singapore Salt Grilled Tako (Octopus) will reel you in with its charm. While it does say salt grilled on the menu, I found it to be severely underseasoned, but there’s a dollop of salt flakes on the side to remedy that fault.⠀

What got me all wrapped up in the clutches of its tentacles is its stunning freshness, and the zesty yuzu dip on the side. A flake of salt, a dab of yuzu sauce, and this tentacle will never let you out of its clutches. The other appetiser was a bowl of truffle fries. Sure, truffle shavings on fries along with a truffle aioli dip is always nice, but Hattendo missed a massive chance to do something considerably more creative with their deep fried spuds.⠀

Since it’s a Japanese eatery, they could’ve gone with the common mentaiko fries, or perhaps a little more off the beaten path with stuff like wasabi fries. Heck, they could even go all out & do okonomiyaki fries. But then again, I’m only a guy who writes about food, what do I know?⠀

Thanks for the warm hospitality, @hattendo_singapore & @burpple!

1 Like

I say, old chap, shuck Mondays, shuck being poor, and shuck my life. When it comes to @hattendo_singapore Hiroshima oysters, though, you’ll only catch me sayin’ shuck yeah. Done four different ways, the naked mollusk starts at a base price of five bucks which is pretty expensive. However, the oysters are yuge, and they are fresh af due to them being airflown direct from the Land of the Rising Sun. Moderately briny & charmingly creamy, these mild flavoured oysters will please most.

The most recognisable of the four oyster varieties is definitely the ikura one (orange balls), which damages your wallet to the tune of $6 apiece. The salty salmon roe adds explosive saltiness to the base oyster, which does seem a little extra but hey more of a good thing is always welcome.

The third of the quartet is the Australian Lime Caviar (red pearl one), priced at $7 a pop. I didn’t try this one, so I can’t comment on the flavour. However, my educated guess would have the lime caviar cutting through the salinity of the oyster quite efficiently, as lime caviar (known to some as finger lime) is a little less acidic than regular lime.

The one I did try was the baller of the bunch, the Okinawa sea grape, quail egg yolk & dashi shoyu enhanced oyster. That one slaps for a hefty $8 per piece, but it might just be worth it. The quail egg yolk is a bit of overkill, as the oyster is already plenty rich & luscious as is. I’m not quite sure what the sea grape (a kind of algae/seaweed) adds to the mollusks, but the dash of dashi shoyu was inspired. The roasty saltiness of the soy sauce concoction accentuated the mild brininess of the oyster & lubricated the richness of it, enabling the shellfish to slither down your gullet like top quality silk.

While these big boy oysters will cause your wallet to take a shellacking, there’s no shucking way I’d say no to ‘em.

Thanks for having us @hattendo_singapore, and thanks for the invite @burpple!

The unexpected MVP of the night at @paddyfolks was most definitely the vegetarian friendly Truffle Shimeji Furikake Pasta ($14.90). We all know that mushrooms & pasta are a classic combo, but deep fried shimeji mushrooms & pasta? Yes, I can confirm that it works.⠀

Tempura shimeji mushrooms are already pretty delectable on their own, but when Paddyfolks skilfully seasons it with an ample amount of truffle oil, the aroma is exquisitely heady, and the light, crispy tempura is an excellent counterplay to the soft chewiness of the mushrooms.⠀

The al dente pasta below is utterly buried by the blanket of tempura shimeji, and it has also received the blessed rain of truffle oil, resulting in fragrant, sensationally slick strands of spaghetti. I must say, Paddyfolks showed remarkable restraint when drizzling on the truffle oil. It never got obnoxiously overwhelming as truffle oil tends to get when a touch too much is applied, but it was more than enough to lubricate & perfume the entire pasta bowl. It’s a simple spell, but quite unbeatable.⠀

Thank you for having us over, @paddyfolks & @burpple!

#meatlessmonday instead of #meatymonday?! No no, nobody kidnapped me and replaced me with a btec clone, I’m just here for them joocy, joocy sponsored burgers.⠀

Word (no, bird ain’t the word this time) about @thegoodburgersg and their Impossible patties has been steadily spreading, and your resident meat-a-holic is here to pass judgement on ‘em. Yes, I know that an impossible patty has enough estrogen to turn a guy into a girl after about six of ‘em, but that’s a topic for another day.⠀

The Classic ($16, additional $6 for another ‘patty’) is pretty friggin’ close to a real burger. The patty is almost close enough to fool you into thinking you’re actually having meat. Well, close, but no cigar. The texture is a lot looser, less dense, and it just doesn’t have that pushback & resistance that real beef has. Think of a beef patty that has a lot of veggie filler within, and that’s what the Impossible patty is.⠀

They sold me on the taste, though. It’s just a classic all American greasy spoon burger, complete with melted cheese, pickles, and @thegoodburgersg secret sauce, which I’m sure is just ketchup & American mustard. Apparently there were onions in the burger, but I never found it. What really amazes me is that fact that the patties have the ability to acquire a compellingly charming caramelised crust. Yep, just like the real thing, damn! It’s downright delicious, and it’s...dare I say it, enjoyable.⠀

You’ll definitely want to double up on the patties as one is not enough. However, due to the high cost of Impossible patties, the cost of $22 is pretty steep, especially compared to the real deal. But if you’re dead insistent on not eating Connie the Cow, then it’s hard to do better than @thegoodburgersg.

Thanks for feeding us @thegoodburgersg, and mucho gracias to @burpple for the invite!

2 Likes

@shinminorisg sushi rolls, such as the Temptation Maki (tempura prawn, avocado & cream cheese) and California Maki were passable, but ultimately very forgettable. Shin Minori’s sashimi is definitely much better, thanks to the fabulously fresh fish on offer, so I’d definitely stick with that if forced to choose.

But wait! With #burpplebeyond, you ain’t gotta choose! @burpple Beyond has got 1-for-1 on @shinminorisg lunch & dinner buffets, so you can savagely stuff yourself with superb sushi & sterling sashimi, plus a whole lot of other food options as well!

Thank you for having me @shinminorisg, and thanks @burpple for letting me tag along!

2 Likes

Anyway, like I was sayin', shrimp is the fruit of the sea. You can barbecue it, boil it, broil it, bake it, saute it. Dey's uh, shrimp-kabobs, shrimp creole, shrimp gumbo. Pan fried, deep fried, stir-fried. There's pineapple shrimp, lemon shrimp, coconut shrimp, pepper shrimp, bacon wrapped shrimp, shrimp soup, shrimp stew, shrimp salad, shrimp and potatoes, shrimp burger, shrimp sandwich. That- that's about it.

Of course, shrimp is better when wrapped in bacon and charcoal grilled, and even better when enjoyed as part of #burpplebeyond 1-for-1 buffet at @shinminorisg! Thank you for the hospitality Shin Minori, and thanks for the invite Burpple!

1 Like

Oddly enough, despite Le Coq being an unabashed & proud purveyor of meaty cocks, the skewer that impressed us the most was their wagyu beef one ($6.80++ a stick).

Despite being seasoned with nothing but sea salt, pepper and basted with butter, these beef sticks were absolutely ambrosial. The meat was fantastically fatty, juicy and tremendously tender. The smokiness from the charcoal was pleasantly perfumed each bite, and scintillatingly savoury. Every single bite was a brilliantly beefy bite, and it’s all over far, far too soon.

I’m, for one, am eternally glad that Le Coq seriously beefed up their menu with these stellar skewers of wagyu beef.

2 Likes

As everyone knows, Le Coq is a cock specialist, so it wasn’t all that surprising to find out that their off-menu chicken satay was a surefire stunner. Marinated in a truly sapid spice mix before being charcoal grilled to juicy, meaty succulence, it was a downright delicious cock. The smokiness accented the savoury spice mix superbly, and the chicken was quite possibly the P H A T T E S T chicken satay ever.

The peanut sauce on the side is subtly sweet, subtly spicy and satisfyingly salty while being lusciously thick. In other words, it’s perfect as lube for the cock. Shoot, it could easily smack a good few satay hawkers out of business, that’s how good it is.

The surprise were definitely the sweet pork skewers ($2.80++ a pop), which actually managed to outshine the stellar satay. Marinated in Thai spices & honey, these tender, fatty chunks of porcine were positively palate pleasing. A little saltiness, a little stickiness, a little sweetness, a little spice & everything nice, and these porkers went down a treat.

Le Coq aren’t just one dimensional cock purveyors, their porkers are absolute mint too.

3 Likes

@lecoqsg specialises in meaty cocks, but they’ve got other stuff on their menu that isn’t, well, cock. Their Crispy Pork Knuckle ($35++) is one of those items, and it’s a hefty fist.

Unfortunately, it was kinda underwhelming as the rind wasn’t crispy as advertised (you are #fakenews), but the meat underneath was superbly seasoned and while dry in some spots, was decently moist in most.

The real show stopper, however, was that lil red pot of mashed potatoes. Those spuds were fortified with cheese that made the mash tremendously thick and ridiculously ravishing, and we couldn’t get enough of those pounded spuds.

If you’re tired of cocks, Le Coq’s knuckle might be able to satisfy you. But only if they Make Knuckles Crispy Again.

Big shoutout to @burpple for organising this Eatup, and @lecoqsg for the hospitality!

4 Likes

Alcohol may not be good for my body, but my body is good for alcohol.

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