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Three to try: Tablescape, Moosehead, Merci Marcel

Three to try: Tablescape, Moosehead, Merci Marcel

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Text: Esther Soh , Janice Sim

A shortlist of top eats and treats in town

Tablescape 

Nestled within the refurbished Grand Park City Hall lies Tablescape, a contemporary European establishment embellished with quaint Peranakan décor that harks back to the shophouses of the '90s. While some might be hesitant by the idea of fine dining as sub-par food tied to an upscale price tag, executive chef Robert Chan dissolves the misconception by executing a masterful blend of classic flavours and traditional cooking techniques. They say start your meal on the light foot but we knew that was impossible when fragrant French loaves were rolled in on a side-table trolley. Soon as our plates were cleared, in came a 24-hour house-cured salmon gravlax — topped with a dollop of cream cheese ice cream, lemon myrtle oil and a hint of dill. If peas aren't exactly your thing, their veal sweetbread in two-minute pea soup might change how you feel about these greens — its sweet yet subtle emulsion won us over. Whether it was their steak tartare and crispy battered poached egg dish, or milk-fed veal stuffed with foie gras, the sophisticated restaurant impressed us with their intricate selection of authentic European cuisine. To cap off our meal, we had another trolley (yes, another) of exquisitely handcrafted desserts. Get a mouthful, or more, of their signature spicy mago mousse, served with a touch of Tabasco sauce, to end off your meal on a sweet note — try not to break a sweat while you're at it. —ES

Three to try Tablescape Singapore

Level 3, Grand Park City Hall, 10 Coleman Street, Tel: 6432 5618
Opening hours: 12pm-2.30pm, 6pm-10.30pm

Moosehead

There's a certain palpable energy when you're dining at Moosehead. Whether it's the energising rush from the busy Telok Ayer precinct, its grungy background tunes, or even the cosy perimeters of the space, Moosehead exudes an edgy, alternative vibe that syncs perfectly with the dishes they put on the table. Their new dinner menu takes the same stance — Mediterranean cuisine served with a delicate touch of Asian influence. As with most of the offerings here, there's an inventive twist weaved into the dishes we would usually deem as predictable. For instance, their burrata — a light and refreshing Italian appetizer that most of us are well acquainted with, sparks a different flavour with the help of house-pickled zucchini, Thai basil pesto and curry leaves. The same goes for their octopus — deftly seasoned and plated with bite-sized crisp potatoes, a tangy red pepper puree and paprika powder. For bigger plates, order their grilled Australian lamb chops, rubbed down with Korean chilli flakes and other spices, served with sugar snap peas and a bed of plain Greek yogurt. Lastly, don't leave without trying their banana ice cream, a piquant blend of Inka-roasted bananas and housemade egg-based ice cream topped with salted caramel foam and an indulgent cookie crumble. These calories are definitely worth your while. — JS 

Three to try Moosehead

110 Telok Ayer St, Tel: 6636 8055
Opening hours: (Mon-Fri) 12pm-2.30pm, 6pm-10.30pm, (Sat) 6pm-10.30pm

Merci Marcel

We've all heard of the latest Parisian addition to the chain of hip cafes in the Tiong Bahru neighbourhood, but Merci Marcel isn't just another Instagrammable café that's limtied to typical brunch items. Opened by the French couple behind Ô Comptoir and Ô Batignolles, Merci Marcel is a three-in-one chic bistro, lifestyle concept store and wine cellar, boasting a highly curated selection of reds and whites — air-flown from the finest European winemakers weekly. But what's wine without the perfect pairing of cheese?  Whether your glass is light, tannic, sweet or dry, Merci Marcel has mapped out exquisite dairy curd partners, each befitting enough to square off the fine liquor. Our choice of the evening was a glass of light Muscadet and a slice creamy herb-infused goat cheese handpicked by owner Antoine Rouland himself. For wine aficionados who swear by a daily glass of burgundy, opt for Condrieu AOC 2011 Domaine Gilles Flacher or Sancerre Red 2013 Domaine François le Saint. While you're at it, bring home a wheel of gourmet cheese for the perfect evening at home. We'd say go for the Camembert to pair with reds and Lingot Cendre for whites. — ES

Three to try Merci Marcel

56 Eng Hoon Street, #01-68, Tel: 6224 0113
Opening Hours: 8am-11.30pm (Tuesday-Saturday); 8am-10pm (Sunday)

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