Posted by: tonkatsudelights | December 11, 2007

The Culinary Delights at Iggy’s

Iggy's Kitchen Table

For foodies out there, Iggy’s is not a new name around the block.

And when I said ‘out there’, I didn’t mean only Singapore. It’s all around the world. Yes, Iggy’s is the 60th Best Restaurant in the World for 2007 by Restaurant magazine. And its chef is the San Pellegrino Chef of the Year in the 2007 World Gourmet Summit. For the rest of its history and accolades, you can refer to its website, www.iggys.com.sg.

Iggy’s is a small eatery. It used to be only 28 seaters, but I’m not sure how many seats it has right now. In March 2007 they expanded the restaurant and added 20 more seats. At one glance it’s not easy to size the place as the rooms are separated from each other. Still small, I guess, but I suppose it’s easier to snatch a place now that they have expanded. For all I know, it used to be a challenge to get a booking there.

For those of you who don’t know, Iggy’s does not serve food a la carte. They serve a fixed set menu. An 8-course meal for dinner, and a shorter 3- or 4-course for lunch. Which obviously also corresponds to the price. One dinner set menu costs $195++, while lunch costs $48-60++ (with Wagyu beef striploin this will change to $75-85++). They also cater for vegetarian. One vegetarian dinner set menu will cost $175++.

This means that for both of us, without wine or any other drinks, the bill will come to around $460 nett.

Why only set menu, you may wonder? Well, if you have tasted one, you will realize that their food is not meant to be eaten in random. One menu leads to another and it creates a different feel in your mouth, throat, and stomach.

 

The starterOur dinner was opened with a refreshing start. A cheese puff with tomato salsa and … what I love best is the chilled roasted tomato soup with basil foam on top. Light and refreshing indeed!

This starter is not even listed in the menu, but I think it makes the integral part of the 8-course meals.

The second one coming was the canapes. We had two small bites — tomato roulade with micro greens, and maguro with white anchovy and mizuna. Egg royale with ikura in the middle. The tomato roulade proved to be the favorite item in the menu today. The tomato taste mixed with the parsley sprout and followed by the peppery after taste was just amazing. Loved it, loved it, and loved it. The egg royale and the tuna were also nice, but I wouldn’t call them my favorite.

The canapesOn the contrary with the light starter, the canapes offered a more complex taste, but refreshing. The first 3 items on the menu were served cold, btw.

The next on the menu is the cauliflower mousse with uni and shiso jelly. Uni or sea urchin is one of the Japanese delicacy that I have grown to love so much, if not for the pricey tag. And again, we were treated to a mix of complex taste, but very refreshing. The cauliflower mousse mixed with uni taste and the glassy mint herb taste of the shiso jelly on top. I don’t even know how to even begin to describe it.

Uni in a cocktail glass Cauliflower mousse with uni and shiso jelly

The next one coming is a warmer item. The charcoal-grilled watermelon, warm and watery, with tomato concasse on top and aged balsamic dressing below. It came coupled with a high quality Iberian ham, or as they call it, Jabugo ham. It’s a cured ham, which explains the saltiness, but eaten together with the sweet and watery watermelon it gave a very nice combination.

The watermelon and the Jabugo ham The Venus clam

Another warm item coming is the steamed Venus clam with marinated fennels and bonito foam. Appearance-wise, the Venus clam looks just like a white foamy stuff on a shell. You don’t know what’s inside. I wondered what is the technique that the chefs used to create foam like this, but I can clearly taste the bonito there. And that proves to be the only thing I like about this item. I didn’t particularly like the marinated fennels and the clams were too bland to my liking.

The Alba white truffle on top of the linguineBut then again, each taste in Iggy’s is meant for something. I won’t think of skipping any item on the menu.

The next two items on the menu are the heaviest. The pasta and the meat. Linguine with poultry jus, fried egg, and 2grams of Alba white truffle mushrooms which are in season now. They are very particular about the amount of white truffle they put on the item. Every 1 gram additional will cost you $15++. Pricey mushroom, indeed. If you read the news, you will know that this season, the Italian white truffle is becoming more difficult to find due to poor harvest. The culprit? The hot summer and fall in Italy! Anyway, I am just glad I can still taste one of this delicacy of the season.

Wagyu striploin and wagyu cheekThe lightly smoked wagyu beef striploin is heavenly indeed. Tender and melting in your mouth, that is how I would describe it. Ms. PF, is the type that shy away from fats, but she enjoyed every bits of the striploin.

The braised wagyu cheek with chocolate and the Yorkshire pudding with onion confit, on the other hand, I did not particularly enjoy in the first place. But soon I realized my mistake. I was cutting it in too big a piece! Once I started cutting and biting it in smaller pieces, it totally rocked!

The panna cottaAt this point, both of us were already full and were not so sure we could even finish the remaining two items on the menu. But what came afterwards was surely a nice surprise. Once we finished eating the vanilla panna cotta with candied tomatoes and basil ice cream, which was the pre-dessert, suddenly we didn’t feel full anymore! Well, … honestly the volume of the food that we ate that night was not so big, but the various complex taste that we had, probably had made us feel very full. And what the panna cotta did was to clear up our throat and make us ready for the dessert. I say, this is a well-thought of menu, indeed.

Finally, came the dessert. It’s the chocolate cylinder, French toast with maple ice cream, and iced mocca. And I probably ran out of words on how to describe them. Nice and perfect, maybe? Because every bite of the chocolate and the toast and the ice cream and the mocca just gave me that happy and satisfied feeling. They are no less than what I have expected, but also, not too much.

The dessert

That was the end of the 8-course meal. With some chocolates to enjoy after that. Quality is really top here in the establishment as they even paid attention to simple treats like this. Particularly love the white chocolate with yuzu, but the dark chocolate is nice as well.

Our verdict? According to my dining companion, this is the best meal that I’ve ever treated her to. Number one in our history. Nothing better than this. At least, not yet.

And that surely puts a smile on my face.

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