Superdeal Maybank 1 for 1 Set Lunch @ Bistro du vin Zion Road on 20Dec2013

grilled lamb ribs with lentils

grilled lamb ribs with lentils

maybank repeated the 1 for 1 set super lunch deal with les amis group’s bistro du vin. 4 of us had lunch at the zion road branch on 20.12.2013. it was an excellent 3-course lunch plus coffee normally priced at S$26pax. with maybank 1 for 1 we paid S$61 for 4pax lunch including 2 reds (1 glass of wine for 2pax). 🙂 this was even better than the great lunch we had at bistro du vin shaw branch on 18.11.2013.

bistro du vin zion road was located at the previous coffee shop next to nasi padang river valley & split the space with their sister restaurant peperoni pizzeria. it was small & cosy with added al fresco sitting, quite a wine bistro ambience i guess.

we met another friend who was there for lunch also on a 4pax table. soon afterwards, another friend arrived with her family also a 4pax table. 🙂

leek & potato soup with breaded oysters

leek & potato soup with breaded oysters

endives salad in french dressing

endives salad in french dressing

red wine escargot, fried egg & crispy bacon

red wine escargot, fried egg & crispy bacon

there were wide choices for appetisers, mains & dessert. i had the rabbit terrine (good too) last time at shaw branch, so picked the leek & potato soup with breaded oysters. i always like cream of leek & potato. this was certainly competent, and the breaded oysters (kaki furai) were excellent, very tasty & good batter. my friend liked the endives salad with some blue cheese. another friend picked the escargot in red wine with crispy bacon. it was good too. 🙂

duck leg confit

duck leg confit

seafood boullabaise

seafood boullabaise

beer beef short ribs with mash

beer beef short ribs with mash

i ordered grilled lamb ribs on a bed of lentils (top photo) for main. it was excellent. lamb was flavourful & fork tender. another friend ordered beer beef short ribs with mash. i had that at shaw branch, it was competent but not my favourite. 2 other friends ordered the duck leg confit & seafood bouillabaisse, both were popular diners’  choices. 🙂 i would probably try the bouillabaisse next time.

apple crumble, roasted apple ice cream

apple crumble, roasted apple ice cream

pear tart pastry with slated caramel ice cream

pear tart pastry with slated caramel ice cream

chocolate with magdaleine

chocolate with madaleine

2 friends had the apple crumble (i had that at shaw branch & it was good!). i had the pear tart on puff pastry with salted caramel. i liked it, though i would probably go back to apple crumble next time. the madaleine this time was good, unlike that at shaw branch which was dense & not fresh.

a friend on the another table who had tried the lamb ribs at shaw felt that the food at zion road was better than shaw, & another friend had said previously that the service was a lot better. i agreed with both. i thought the ambience was more cosy & the service was significantly better. every server was responsive & communicated well to our queries on menu, & even agreed to let us extend the maybank discounts to another 2 friends (there was a limit of 3 redemptions each time) at the next table who came w/o knowing about the promotion though in the end that was not needed as they also had the maybank card themselves (& were allowed to use it) only that they did not know about the promotion.

so my 2 thumbs up for the really excellent service. 🙂

c.h.e.f andy

Forgettable Meal @ Kilo at Pact on 21Nov2013

belly pork rice bowl

belly pork rice bowl

a quick post. 3 of us had dinner after movie at kilo at pact on 21.11.2013. 🙂

nothing much to be said about this place. its a place i would not go & would not go back. that’s just me & my choices. nothing wrong with the place. guess it is kind of hip. kilo is co-located with a boutique fashion? retail shop & a salon. no idea what is “pact” in the name? food i guess is jap-western?

3 of us were watching Thor The Dark World (2013) 4.30pm show at orchard cineleisure taking advantage of the S$4 ticket for “senior citizens”. well, i for one much preferred watching the late evening show using maybank 1 for 1. as i told my friend, it cost S$9.70 (S$2.40+S$1.40+S$1.40+S$4.50) to park at cineleisure & S$1 to get into cbd at 4pm+. completely made no sense to me but i figured my friend is thrilled by the thought of paying S$4 as senior citizen, not the $ (whether tickets or parking but just the thought) – i am shaking my head – & so be it! 🙂

kilo at pact

kilo at pact

belly pork over rice (like japanese don)

belly pork over rice (like japanese don)

kilo at pact

kilo at pact

the belly pork don was pretty good & tasty actually. it was very small portion – 1 friend said “jiak boy pa” (not filling) – & cost S$17++=S$20nett. 🙂

the belly pork was soft, just slightly sinewy (not the texture i like) unlike the smooth texture of dongporou or kongbakpao. the braising sauce which was also drizzled over the rice was slightly sweet (japanese style) & made it quite tasty. so it was good actually but a “nothing” kind of meal for me, like a foodcourt dish but good tasting & cost S$20. not something i would try myself & certainly not go back. however the place maybe hip or cool & people may like it. cannot tell. 🙂

c.h.e.f. andy

Great Lunch with Old Friend @ Reddot Brewhouse Dempsey on 19Nov2013

halibut fish fillet

halibut fish fillet

a very old friend was in town. we first met in 1994 so it was almost 20 years but felt like yesterday. he is dutch & 10 years older but he was in singapore 20 years & asia longer. he left singapore & returned to holland towards end 2012 and is working on the routine of retirement. anyway his son & many friends are here. i tried to get au jardin (super lunch deal!) but it was fully booked, so we went to reddot brewery @ dempsey instead on 19.11.2013. 🙂

reddot salad lots of parmesan

reddot salad lots of parmesan

prawn citrus salad

prawn citrus salad

chocolate melt cake with ice cream

chocolate melt cake with ice cream

chocolate melt cake

chocolate melt cake

i had been to reddot dempsey several times. they served a 2-course S$22pax & 3-course S$28pax lunch which i thought was already very good value. but it’s S$18pax & S$22pax now for 2-course & 3-course menu! if we exclude maybank’s 1 for 1 promotion at les amis restaurants, this would be a really super deal! 🙂

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the place was more of a drinking joint with a micro brewery. it was probably quite busy in the evenings but i had no interest in that. parking was free & the ambience was excellent, with airy high roof ceiling & water feature. we had a great lunch & catching up. 🙂

i had the prawn citrus salad & my friend had the reddot salad. they were good, refreshing & good portion. both of us had the halibut, which was very good, and even came with very sweet vine tomatoes! this dish alone was S$28++ on ala carte previously, and that was not expensive c/w many restaurants. there was also sirloin steak for mains choice, which i had before & it was pretty good too, if ordinary. these days i don’t order beef much when i dine out. 🙂

my dutch friend had the ice cream, and i had the chocolate melt cake, & this lava cake was good! we had coffee but you could choose beer etc as your free drink also. 🙂

nice airy ambience no customers

nice airy ambience no customers

we didn’t go dutch (pun intended!)..haha! it was a very satisfying & cheap meal anyway for the food & ambience & we had a jolly good time. there were only 2 other tables occupied, and we had the huge place mostly for ourselves. i not sure whether it made economic sense to keep it open for lunch & reduce the price but i am not complaining. 🙂

c.h.e.f. andy

Very Cheap French Fare @ Bistro Du Vin on 18Nov2013

grilled ribeye

200g 200-day australian grain-fed char-grilled ribeye

3-course set lunch menu include coffee

3-course set lunch menu include coffee

update = wow, had even better deal at bistro du vin zion road on 20.12.2013!

our dining quartet decided to take advantage of maybank 1 for 1 set lunch promotion & dined at bistro du vin on 18.11.2013. the usual price for a 3-course set lunch including coffee was S$30pax.  the menu had quite wide choices. there were couple items like pan-seared foie gras & 200day grain fed ribeye that required supplement – quite reasonable unlike some places where 1 in 2 items required supplement, however the supplement were separately billed & not entitled to the 50% discount. 🙂

baked camembert with apples, bacon, sourdough

baked camembert with apples, bacon, sourdough

foie gras ravioli

foie gras ravioli

leek & potato soup with deep fried oysters

leek & potato soup with deep fried oysters

rabbit terrine

rabbit terrine

seafood bouillabaise

seafood bouillabaise

duck confit & lamb sausage

duck confit & lamb sausage

beef short ribs stewed in beer

beef short ribs stewed in beer

i love leek & potato soup (& especially this one came with 2 kaki furai – japanese breaded oysters). however i was distracted by the rabbit terrine & ordered that. it was good, tasty, competent. i was happy with it. 🙂

1 friend ordered the leek & potato soup which came with 2 deep-fried oysters & was good as expected.

1 friend ordered the foie gras ravioli (the pink sauce didn’t look great or very appetizing to me like the beautiful pumpkin ravioli at al borgo did, but i think it tasted fine). the other ordered the baked camembert with sour dough. it looked ok but my friend said it was not as good as the other bistro du vin outlet at great world city.

for the main course, i ordered the beef ribs stewed in beer. again it was competent & the mash too, though in comparison my own spanish beef ribs was better because i had a very sweet & tasty vegetable ratatouille to match/balance the fork tender beef ribs whereas this one was very beefy & robust.

1 friend had the duck confit. he thought the black sheep cafe’s was better. 1 had the seafood bouillabaise with fish, clams, mussels, prawns. she said the fish was not great. anyway, bouillabaise & duck confit not my favourite. the smartest among us ordered the 200g 200-day australian grain-fed char-grilled ribeye – a S$10 supplement with no discount.it was ok really for the quality meat. i could smell the steak when it was served, & i had a small piece & it was excellent. 🙂

petit pot chocolate with magdaleine

petit pot chocolate with magdaleine

creme brulee

creme brulee

caramelised apple crumble, roasted apple ice cream

caramelised apple crumble, roasted apple ice cream

for dessert, i & another friend had the caramelised apple & raisin crumble with roasted apple ice cream. it was good, though it would please the eye better served on a dessert plate or long dessert dish. 1 friend had creme brulee which was recommended by the waiter & which she obviously enjoyed. the other had chocolate madaleine. the madaleine texture looked dense. i was about to say the ones at esso station looked better but my friend beat me to it. so this dessert was not good. 🙂 i had cuppaccino & my other friends had coffee.

overall, at normal S$30pax for 3-course set lunch including coffee, the food was competent enough & i didn’t consider it expensive. with maybank 1 for 1 discounts, the lunch was S$15pax (excluding the supplement) with 2 free wine for 4pax, well you could not get that at a hawker centre or coffee shop. so it was very cheap & great value.

c/w au jardin which served a S$45pax 3-course set lunch include coffee (there was also a S$65pax menu), which was also having the maybank 1 for 1 promotion including wine, i would return to au jardin (which i was to happy to pay full price at other time) rather than bistro du vin. the latter was competent & average whereas au jardin was fine dining in both food & presentation (& of course quite different ambience). eg my lamb saddle was exquisite, even better than many good lamb racks i had before.

on the service, bistro du vin was ok. the young male server was quite knowledgeable & responsive & answered my several questions on menu items & selection. 1 of my dining companion had poor opinion of the service though because he did not offer the wine to us automatically but only when asked & he replied that most people did not take wine during lunch. the attitude i think was ok, but maybe the training on managing customers was lacking here. but overall, the service again was competent & in my opinion rather better than many similar places.

au jardin’s service was of course much better. the staff were much better trained & professional, but then it was a different class restaurant so not apt comparison. 1 younger au jardin male staff though appeared to be not so great in his service attitude.

c.h.e.f andy