THE 'WOW' FACTOR
By: Hariz Hashim
It always feels good to satisfy that much needed craving for an affordable romantic meal in Singapore. On the internet, there are plenty of food guides out there that will bring you to exquisite restaurants that will cost an arm and a leg for your meal.
There are a few other places you can try out for a more affordable dining option, yet still classy enough for a romantic date. In this article, we will list down three places where you can go and have a try. Now, go out there and impress that special someone with your vast knowledge and selection of intimate dining spots!
· 2 Handy Road, Singapore 229233
· 6735 1141
· Hours: 12:00 pm – 9:30 pm
Two boys, Dylan Ong and Joshua Khoo first started as a small French stall in a coffeeshop. Since then, they had expanded their business to various upgraded restaurant locations around Singapore. Concetto is now the new lineup to their forever growing business, which is located at Cathay Building (replacing Billy Bomber). This unique industrial-hip restaurant has a spacious two levels setting capable of handling about 90 people at a time. With service that is prompt and personable, you are to get the best dining experience there.
Concetto’s menu is divided into four main sections: Earth (appetizers), Land (vegetables and meat), Seas (fish and shellfish) and Light (desserts). Their dishes are said to be skillfully prepared using cooking techniques that are found only in higher end restaurants. This is so as the chef had previous experiences in high end cooking in Guy Savor, Fifty Three, Jaan and Tetsuya’s in Sydney.
Their food is certainly of very high quality in its taste and aesthetic presentation. Their pork and beef are so soft and tender - it will just melt in your mouth.
Some of their more popular dishes include Fruitti De Mare ($16.90), which is fettucine with arrabbiata sauce served with mussels, prawns, squids and crabmeats. It is most popularly known for its heavenly balance between meat and cream.
Their food is already enjoyable and reasonably priced as it is. But if you are looking for more of a value, you can get the lunch set available from 12.00 pm to 5.00 pm everyday, except PH and eves of PH. You can get to pick from various savory dishes such as pan-seared salmon, served with pearl cous cous oysters and shallots. In addition to that, their all time popular Concetto Style deconstructed Tiramisu ($10.90) is one of the best dessert choices. With several layered sensations of mascarpone cream and chocolate mousse accompanied by homemade sponge, that is already a good enough reason to get it.
· Block 119 Bukit Merah Lane #01-40 Singapore 151119
· Hours: 11 am to 10 pm (Closed on Monday)
Salut! Enchanté de vous rencontrer (“Hi! Nice to meet you” in French). Salute is a Kopitiam located alongside the housing estates right opposite Anchorpoint and Queensway Shopping Centre. It is more than just your ordinary Kopitiam. They do not serve the same traditional hawker food that you see everywhere else, but they serve affordable gourmet foods instead.
Also, unlike normal coffee shops where they bring the cooked food to your table or you have to wait by the stall, Salute uses buzzers. These buzzers allow you to roam the place and check out what else you can order freely.
Salute used to house seven unique different stalls but there are only five that still remain now; Immanuel, Seasalt, In The Brickyard, Two wings and Stew Kuche
Immanuel French Kitchen
Chef Immanuel Tee, the ex-Head Chef of Keystone Restaurant, and his assistant Nate Yip operate this French stall.
Most Popular Dish: Their Kakuni style perfectly braised Pork Belly ($15.40). It consists of pork belly with onsen egg and potato foam, together with sautéed mushrooms. The texture of braised pork belly had the right amount of fats that are soft enough to melt in the mouth.
Seasalt is a seafood place first opened on 8th December 2013, to serve fresh and simple seafood with a touch of salty love.
Most Recommended Dish: Garlic cream sauce mussels ($15.00). It is basically an entire pot of mussels. The strong aroma and fresh taste will keep you wanting more and more of it.
Jeremy Loh and his partner Samantha Lim operate the stall, and a family recipe was passed down from Jeremy’s granduncle to him. This is the same recipe used by the famous Carona Chicken.
Most Value for Money: Couple Set ($17.90). The set consists of two sides along with six chicken wings. The chicken wings are moist, tender, and do not leave that oily feeling stuck in your mouth like most Kopitiam chicken does.
Stew Küche, the Kopitiam owner that serves both German and Italian Cuisine. Those closest to local hawker fare are the old Corona chicken wing rice inspired fried wings.
Must Try: Craft beers and German lagers. But if you are not in the mood, you can try out their various different ciders with flavours such as toffee and lemon.
· 5 Purvis Street#01-04 Singapore 188584
· 6333 3121
· Hours: 12:00 pm – 2:15 pm (Lunch), 6:00 pm – 9:30 pm (Dinner)
From a stall in a coffee shop to a full-fledged restaurant at Purvis Street, Saveur Restaurant is Concetto’s more posh big brother. The place has done a good job in serving inexpensive French food to the hungry diners that flock to their restaurant during lunch and dinner rush. The long line of hungry patrons during meal times is a clear indication to its popularity. But it isn’t just a hype. The food is truly worth the wait.
Do note when planning to dine at this place, they are only open within two designated time slots, Lunch (12:00 pm – 2:15 pm) and Dinner (6:00 pm – 9:30 pm). There are no reservations for the place. Be sure to arrive early or be prepared to wait in line behind the many hungry patrons there as well.
The entire shop is a simple yet elegant black and white walled design with simple light ornaments and hand painted images. This place is perfect for bringing that special someone for a first date.
People love Saveur because it offers cheap and decent French food. The main courses are averagely priced at $10, with a few special items at $24.90. Who doesn’t appreciate the fact that they offer decent French food at pocket-friendly prices? Despite the high prices of the food, it has a very high quality in its taste and aesthetic presentation as compared to its little brother, Concetto.
This is only one of the few places in Singapore where you can get an amazing Duck Confit ($13). It is such a bargain! It is served with sauté shiitake mushrooms with parsley, garlic and infused with orange. After a meal, who can’t resist a little dessert to satisfy their sweet tooth? Saveur’s Salted Caramel Lava Cake ($12.90) is one of the most recommended desserts by the chef himself. The oozy lava cake is accompanied by vanilla ice cream. It is known for its very rich taste and quality chocolate made of Valrhona Dulcey chocolate.
If you are planning on spending less or trying to make the best of your dollars, go for their lunch set which is available during their lunch period (11.30 pm to 3.00 pm) on Monday to Friday. You can get to try out the oh-so-popular Duck Confit, an entrée and dessert, for only $22.90 before tax!