Wolfgang Puck is one of the many celebrity chefs who have opened restaurant at the new IRs in Singapore...Puck's iconic steakhouse at Beverly Hills now open, and packed nightly at MBS. I have eaten at Bar and Grill at MGM Grand Hotel at Las Vegas, and was quite taken by the cuisine - honest, unpretentiously good food, cooked well.
So when Vacheron Constantin hosted a dinner at Cut Singapore, I was excited! It is always exciting to dine with VC, partly because this would be a meeting of good old friends, and partly because David Heng - the VC supremo for the region is quite a foodie, and when he entertains, it is always with style and good cuisine.
VC had brought their collection from SIHH2011 to Singapore, and amongst the many magnificent pieces, they also showed the stupendiously beautiful enamel painting by Anita Porcet - the Metiers d'Art Marc Chagall. See here for more on this piece of art.
The restaurant was busy when we arrived for dinner. We were escorted into a fairly large private room at the back...seats probably 40 packed. But that evening, we were about 30 I think. The decor is elegant...dark with lighting accents. And walls upon walls of fine wine.
But we were here for the food. So on with it!
On the table as we arrived, were the amuse bouche. On the table is a manner of speaking, as actually the attentive wait-staff came around with the servings:
Hot gourgeres, gruyere cheese:
Traditionally this is a savoury choux pastry made of milk, cheese, flour and eggs, and eaten with Gruyere - a typical French/Swiss cheese. The pastry was light, and almost airy, with a hint of milk. And the Gruyere is gorgeous.
Also making its rounds were mini kobe burgers - Puck calls them "sliders"
Like many gourmet burgers, this was slightly ridiculous in construction. The burger is between a small bun...no more than 2 inches diameter, but stacked perhaps 6 inches in height...ok, I exaggarate...3.5 inches...but there is no graceful way to eat this burger.
All this structural misgivings is disappeared when you take a bite...the wagyu beef used is absolutely divine - and this is the clever way to use wagyu which I find too rich for a large steak. But cut, and made into a small patty, done medium rare...divine. The brioche buns were nice and fluffy. And the sweet pickes within provided some support to the richness of the beef.
The salad was next. And the serving was rather large.
Butter lettice, forme d'ambert - a French cheese reputed to be the oldest from France, avocado, and champagne herb vinaigrette as a dressing to lift the concoction.
So the steak, which should be the piece de resistance of the evening (um, other than the Metiers D'Art piece)
If looks can be deceiving, this was the prime example. I selected the Australian Angus 300+ days grain fed, dry aged 45 days, petit cut New York fillet 225g. The cut is the standard sirloin. The Australian Angus would typically be grass fed. So the meat would usually be more flavourful, more robust. But as the calfs were grain fed the last year of their lives, this would also mean good marbling, and if done right, can be fantastic. Plus dry aged for 45 days would mean the flavours would be intensified.
I ordered Chicago Medium rare, as usual, and the steak arrived slightly charred on the outside.
Inside it was gorgeous:
The meat was very flavourful. Slightly chewy due to being grass fed initially, but with slivers of beautiful marbling within the muscles due to the grain feeding. Excellent cut of steak, and definitely the best I have eaten in Singapore. Some of my friends had the US prime Illinois corn fed rib eye, and I had a slice (large slice...ahem...) to taste. It was super tender, not as flavourful, but had an intense buttery fragrance, and a melt in your mouth texture. For a whole steak weighting 395g, I think it would be a bit heavy and too rich. But a mix and match with the more sinewy sirloin, it is quite wonderful.
Sides were offered as well, but I did not take photographs. I had the fingerling ptoatoes with smoked bacon and peral onions, soft polenta with parmesan, wild field mushrooms and caramelized carrots, clelery root and rosemary. Did I say David feeds his guests well?...:-) All were excellent.
Then dessert descended on us...individual servings of the calamansi lime baked alaska:
The crust was nice and crisp pastry, very nice flavour and fragrance. Breaking the curst, the creamy lime oozes out. The lime was a good contrast as it was taut and sour provided good counterpoint tthe blackberry at the sides.
And not to be upstaged, the restuarant's signature dessert was served:
A light fluffy, chocolate soufle, with molten chocholate poured into an opening made by the waiter, a scoop of decadent pistacio ice cream, and more molten chocholate.
If one can truly die a scrumptious death by chocholate, this is it. The richness, deep, dark chocholate overwhelms the palate, and one resigns to waves of pleasure....oops...need to regain composure...loved this dessert, though overall, probably a tad too heavy.
The service was truly excellent. The waiters were well informed, and brisk. The steak, as I mentioned is the best in Singapore I have eaten. So I would highly recommend Cut as a dinner venue if you want to impress your dining companions.
Cut by Wolfgang Puck
Marina Bay Sands Hotel Singapore
10 Bayfront Avenue
6 p.m. - 10 p.m., Sunday - Thursday
6 p.m. - 11 p.m., Friday & Saturday