Review of Singkong: Asia On A Plate
When we were informed that Dish Hospitality (of which Aurus and Sanchos were established) has opened up a new pan Asian restaurant in Bandra, we were ready with our chopsticks to attack the mighty sushi at Singkong! A spiralling stairway leads you to a tiny bar (which is still being set up) and a doorway that opens up to a spacious, hustling restaurant in dark hues of black and grey, dimly lightened by high ceiling bulbs. You will notice a little counter on one side, where the masters are busy working up the sushi rolls and a long open kitchen, where chefs with woks, pans and fascinating cutlery will put on a show for you.
We placed ourselves at a table for two in a secluded corner and got down to ordering. While we browsed through the extensive food menu, the waiter arrived with our cocktails: the Singkong Martini – a heavenly blend of espresso, vodka, and rum with a hint of cream and an aromatic sprinkle of cinnamon powder. Not only did it amplify our tasting sensations, the heady combination of alcohol, coffee and cinnamon got us addicted to this drink instantly. The Tropical Sangria that we thought would look like a pretty picture of green boats (kiwi pieces) sailing in a sun-setting ocean, failed miserably to impress us. The not-so-tropical fruits lay at the bottom. This ship had sunk, so we replaced it with a refreshingly strong martini made out of Galangal and lemongrass.
We started our meal with a warm steamed bun stuffed with Roasted Black Pepper Chicken. The pickled cucumber lent a zesty flavour to this dish. The Grilled Lemon Basa too was deliciously seasoned and the sprouts salad on the side added the freshness the dish needed. The Oriental Shrimp Nest that came in a shot glass with sweet chilli sauce is well textured and a must-try if you’re a seafood lover. In dim sums, the Spicy Aromatic Chicken Dumpling that is wrapped in burgundy beetroot bags, blasts in your mouth with spiced up flavours, with just a sweet lingering of the beet. Unique, indeed! The disappointments however, were the Rockcorn Tempura that was too dry and a poor attempt at imitating what Wasabi does so successfully, and the veg dim sums that were just plain bland and boring.
We concluded that the dishes, albeit authentically presented, have been designed to suit the Indian palate, with bursts of flavours and spices in every bite.
Sushi arrived; chopsticks flew in the air, while ninjas jumped out of nowhere simultaneously. Only if it were a kung fu fighting movie! The Kappa, veg sushi with cucumber and cream cheese was fresh and light, and the Crispy Philadelphia Uramaki comprising smoked salmon, cream cheese, avocado and cucumber had different textured layers that we loved: crunchy, smooth, flaky, all in one!
The mains that included Singapore noodles, Fish in Black Bean Basil and a chicken gravy, left no room for complain either.
Whether it was telepathy that the chef thought it would be nice to serve us Mini Honey Cones with vanilla ice cream and caramelised sesame, we’ll never know. We felt like kindergarten children, who just won a star on their poetry recital. Then came a pretty picture of Chocolate Mocha Fudge with ice cream and a slice of fresh strawberry and cream. The dense, strong coffee-flavoured cake was balanced with the cold sweet ice cream. What a win!
All we can say is, Bandra needed this!
A meal for two would cost approximately Rs. 2,700 with a drink each.
Address: Pinnacle House, Level 1, P. D. Hinduja Marg, off Linking Road, Bandra (W), Mumbai