Wednesday, June 09, 2010
Singha-ing in Saint Pierre
The recent blistering weather has reminded me of the Singha experience at Saint Pierre (3 Magazine Road #01-01, Tel: 6438 0887, Closed on Sundays). Cool comfort with a crisp, refreshing taste.
Oh yes, it was fine dining and beer! White starched table cloth, utensils with enough weight to give the impression of culinary substance and water served in glasses fit for wines. Not quite the image I had of Singha or any other beer for that matter. But that was set to be challenged.
The man tasked with this challenge was Chef Emmanuel Stroobant (aka The Chef in Black aka the Muscles from Brussels). Chef explained that like wines, the acidity in beers also goes very well with food (and even fine dining).
Was Singha beer up to it? Here's the battle of the bottle vs the fork.
A really jiam (sharp) jiam tao loti (that is French loaf in Hokkien- one of Singapore's official unofficial languages) with French butter and olive oil kept hunger at bay for a bit. The sprinkling of salt over the butter was a nice touch. Like with wines, salt can enhance the taste of beers and made the flavour of this Singha more rounded.
North sea grey shrimp salad with thousand island ice cream, momotaro tomato and organic avocado mousse. A very pretty dish. I loved the salty and smokey flavours of the smoked salmon against the creamy avocado and sweet, acidic momotaro tomatoes. The thousand island ice cream was really interesting- cold, tangy and sweet. The Singha's good acidic structure complemented this dish nicely.
Saffron infused mussel consomme with low temperature braised patte jaune chicken and spring vegetable julienne. This consomme literally tasted like the sea! The saltiness was unfortunately too intense for me...even the beer struggled with this.
Singha jelly with lemongrass infused scallop mousse and wild herb salad was THE Singha Signature dish. Plump, juicy scallops were well-seared on the outside and nicely raw inside. I found the oblong potato pieces a delight with soft innards and crisp top and bottom sides. The soft scallop mousse was delicate-tasting and wrapped with a sliver of Singha beer jelly. All very intricately balanced.
Guess where Singha originated from? (Answer: dnaliahT). So it naturally paired well with the delicate lemon grass-infused mousse and the sweet seafood flavour of the scallops.
This selected cheese platter was a surprise addition from Chef. From front to back: Brie, Comte, Munster and goat cheese. With Singha's slight bitter edge from the hops contrasting the cheeses' creamy and milky proteins, I very much enjoyed this pairing! This cow loves beef and cheese- proudly cow products. ;)
Caramelized banana crusted flourless Belgian chocolate cake and coconut sorbet. The chocolate cake was delicious! The flavour of good, bitter-sweet chocolate had depth and went nicely with the caramelized banana (think creme brulee's burnt sugar crust). But as a pairing with Singha, this dessert item was far too heavy though the beer did the job of cleansing the palate.
Petit Fours and a cup of hot tea rounded off this meal.
On our way out of the restaurant, we spotted this. This would be my favourite way to end a meal- a whole trolley of cheeses and port!
It was my first visit to Saint Pierre and what a pleasant one it was. The Singha beer and fine dining experience was unique and certainly showed that Singha can hold its own against the notion that beer is just good for hot sunny days and with pub grub. Thanks to Singha and the folks from The Right Spin for the invitation and for hosting this hungry cow.
Available at major supermarkets, restaurants and pubs.
Chew On This: Singha beer is the first beer brewed by a Thai!