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Sunday, 18 December 2016

[Media Invite] Dinner at Times Square Restaurant @ Katong

86 East Coast Road #01-05 / 06 / 07 Katong Square, Singapore 428788
Tel: 8606 1285
Website and Facebook: None yet
Reservations: https://goo.gl/ntPaMs

Situated in the East, just a stone's throw away from Holiday Inn Express and about 2 streets away from Roxy Square, is Katong Square - a new and exciting lifestyle enclave, sitting right at the old site of Joo Chiat Police Station.  Why am I telling you this, is because there is something exciting within Katong Square you need to check out, and that's Times Square, New York itself coming alive in the Eastern part of Singapore.

Walk right through the entrance of Katong Square and you will be hit by the dazzling LED screens, neon displays of pop-art, posters of movie stars and bright yellow "taxi" chairs of Times Square Restaurant. They also have their own "Times Square" labelled saucers, cups and plates.

Merely a 4-weeks' old restaurant, this American restaurant is already heralding exciting plans ahead, but for now, let's see what's already happening right here.

We started with a Salted Salmon Salad (SGD$15.00), made up of smoked salmon rolls, poached egg, haricot beans, sprigs of vegetables, sundried tomatoes, roasted potatoes and terragon bearnaise. A tasty salad  it was, especially after the poached egg was pierced and oozed its sweet yolk to join the medley of flavours.

Next, Tomato Confit (SGD$15.00) - an interesting dish with roasted cherry tomatoes oven-baked for 6 hours, flakey pastry flanking the base, Provolone cheese and mesclun. Flavours were light (despite the orange mustard and champagne butter dressing) and refreshing, as though preparing the palate for the heavier dishes coming our way.

One of our favorites, California Crab Cakes (SGD$18.00) - comprised fresh, saccharine crab meat, trio peppers and fresh herbs. Each morsel was delightedly flavourful, and each mound was lapped up eagerly.

Following that, the Prawn and Crabmeat Slaw (SGD$18.00) was a strikingly beautiful dish, composed of fresh, sweet crab and prawns placed among purple cabbage slivers, tapenade, anchovies, and caper atop a sweet slab of carrot.

The Roast Spicy Lamb Pizza (SGD$22.00) had a thin crust topped with spicy lamb cubes, chorizo sausages, tomatoes, bell peppers, onions, olives and Feta cheese. I enjoyed the crispiness of the crust as well as delicious, succulent pieces of lamb tremendously; every bite was flavorful.

Next, another favorite using a local delight - Seafood Otah Pizza (SGD$18.00), unabashedly spicy mackerel otah, prawns, mussels and scallops, flamed up deliciously with sambal belachan chilli. Lovers of spicy food will fall in love with this creative pizza with its generous ingredients.

Moving on, we had Curry Pilaf au Gratin (SGD$25.00 with seafood / SGD$20.00 for vegetarian) - palatable, curried Hainanese style so there was a light kick but not too spicy, and coated with thick layer of cheese. The plate-load of seafood (mussels, scallops, prawns) added a saccharine tinge to the dish as well as springy texture, paired beautifully with the grainy pilaf rice. This was a dish we could not get enough of.

The Times Square Lobster Capellini Pasta (SGD$34.00) was my personal favorite here. Chilled, springy strands of fine pasta pooled in an earthly truffle butter sauce, topped with fresh, bouncy, luscious de-shelled Boston lobster as well as crunchy asparagus sticks. It was decadent and fulfilling, definitely a dish worth ordering.

We also tried Singapore Chilli Crab Pasta (SGD$25.00), another dish loaded with springy fresh seafood (crabmeat, prawns, mussels, scallops) as well as capsicum, and an poached egg - all bathed scrumptiously in a robust, sweet-spicy sauce. Flavor scored points, but we felt that it might have been better for the poached egg to have been beaten into the spicy sauce together, like how a typical chilli-crab dish has its gravy done; and the sauce could've been more spicier.

Following that, there was Lamb Chop (SGD$28.00) - startlingly tender and slides easily off the bone; tasty with aromatic tarragon herb sauce. Sides comprise a colorful salad (baby potatoes, daikon radish, carrot strips, sundried tomatoes, zucchini and seasonal purple cauliflower) and bacon-wrapped lamb medallions with panko, encrusted with a coat of macademia to give it crunch. The efforts put into this dish made it worth every bite.

The Times Square Bagel Beef Burger (SGD$25.00) - made up of their homemade bagel sandwiching juicy, succulent beef patty, double cheese, sweet onion marmalade and sherry mushroom sauce. The special bagel has been formulated to be softer than the usual American version, so that Singaporeans could enjoy it without breaking a tooth or denture.

Moving on to desserts, we started with Chocolate Sensation (SGD$18.00) - flourless sponge cube filled with molten white chocolate sauce; sitting side by side with a crunchy chocolate praline wafer biscuit, topped with raspberry sorbet. Love the sweetness laced beautifully with tart.

Next, Sphere (SGD$15.00), well-rounded and made up of a sticky warm date pudding, encircled in its own space by sea salt butterscotch sauce. The scoop of Maple Walnut Ice-cream all but accentuated the dessert dish suitably.

Lastly, Deconstructed Cheese Cake (SGD$18.00), served in a parfait glass. The caramelized thousand layers pastry was saccharine but not remarkable; topped with fresh strawberries and strawberry ice-cream. I felt that this was more of a "kids' dessert" but then again I am not a fan of any deconstructed desserts.

For drinks, one must not miss out on Milkshakes when at an American restaurant. Chocolate Milkshake (SGD$12.00) had a rather rich, creamy flavor to it but it was the Strawberry Milkshake (SGD$12.00) that stole our hearts with distinctive strawberry fragrance within the smooth blend.

Some Draft Beers (SGD$9 for half pint / SGD$13.00 for full pint) as well as Bottled Beers are available as well.

The Ginger Beer is housemade and unfortunately, not available on the menu because it takes 5 days to make. The fermenting ginger had a slightly sourish smell (think Chinese chicken rice ground ginger dip) but the finished product (the Ginger Beer itself) was refreshing and tasty.

They have an assortment of sweet Cocktails to quench one's thirst and let you unwind. Papa Doble (SGD$16.00) - Abuelo Anejo Rum, Maraschino foam, Lime juice, Grapefruit juice and EarlGrey syrup. Broadway Lemonade (SGD$16.00) - Skyy Vodka, Lemon juice, red currants, Grenadine, Chamomile syrup and soda water. New York New York (SGD$18.00) comprises Makers Mark Bourbon, Red Wine, Lemon juice, Thyme syrup and egg white. Times Square Cooler (SGD$18.00) is concocted of Monkey Shoulder, Parfait Amour, Peychaud bitters, Lemon juice, Cayenne & Hibiscus infuse, and homemade ginger beer. Cosmopolitan (SGD$16.00) composed of Boyd & Blair Vodka, Cointreau, Blood orange, Cranberry juice and fresh juice.

All in all, the dining experience at Times Square Restaurant was wonderful - quality, wholesome ingredients that underwent painstaking preparation, ensuring that flavours and quality are intact. We are already speaking of coming back here to eat with more friends!

Thank you Times Square Restaurant for the palatable tasting session; and thank you Hungrygowhere for the invite.

1 comment:

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