Address: CHIJMES, 30 Victoria Street, #01-29, Singapore 187996 (if you are lost, start from the central open space. It is on the ground level and next to Carnivore)
Tel: +65 6338 4898
Opening Hours: Lunch: 11.30am – 2.30pm; Dinner: 6.30pm – 10.30pm. Closed on Sundays.
Budget: $25++ for Restaurant Week, $28++ for Set Lunches
Restaurant Week 2012 (7 – 14 October)
London Gal and I visited Chéf d’ Table for Restaurant Week 2013, and I thought that this would be the legitimate occasion for me to share with you why I chose to visit Chéf d’ Table for the second time and to introduce the dishes I tried for Restaurant Week 2012. To sum up, my first visit there was above average and worthy of praise. However, it was the second visit this year which blew me away.
Chéf d’ Table literally means “Chef’s Table” and is helmed by Chef Jason Lee, who has been in the F & B industry for more than 20 years. Chef Jason has also worked alongside Michelin-starred chefs such as William Drabble (Head Chef of Seven Park Place in London), and Lea Linster, the first female chef to win a Gold Medal award at the prestigious “Bocuse d’Or” in 1989, the highest honour for chefs.
SG Boy first heard of Chéf d’ Table when his University OG-mates wanted to go for an OG (Orientation Group) pig-out at the Restaurant Week last year, where set meals are charged at heavy discounts. Indeed, we all went with high expectations and were glad that we did not leave the restaurant disappointed.
Before the appetiser was served, fresh focaccia bread paired with olive pesto arrived. This was my first time trying pesto dip and I must say that it was very appetising. It was so delicious that my friends and I finished the olive dip and asked for an additional serving. (check out pictures of the focaccia bread at Part II.)
Cold Salmon Roulade
Previously, SG Boy read that the Cold Salmon Roulade with Assorted Olive Salsa and Raisin Wine Raisin Compote was the award-winning dish which Chef Jason presented at the Californian Raisin World Culinary Challenge, held in Las Vegas in 2004. Therefore, SG Boy was looking forward to try this much-raved dish. However, I was not too sure how the salmon was rolled in any way, because roulade actually originated from the French word “rouler”, which means “to roll” – like our typical Swiss roll. Nevertheless, the Cold Salmon Roulade was delicately plated and served with raisin compote and tomato salsa. However, looks can be deceiving. SG Boy felt that the cold cooked salmon was a tad too dry and perhaps overrated. When it was paired with the companion sauces, it tasted better and was perhaps above average at best. (is this an oxymoron?)
Roasted Orange Duck Leg with Sauteed Wild Mushroom and Asparagus
The Roasted Duck Leg tasted very much like the duck confit SG Boy had at Saveur – nicely done and resembles Hong Kong style roasted duck. Given that Chef Jason is a Cantonese, his dishes typically contain traits of Asian influences, combined with a unique twist of European fusion.The skin was crispy and the duck meat was warm and tender. On a personal basis, I love sauteed vegetables but unfortunately it would have been better if the mushrooms were served warm.
Grilled Beef Loin Fillet with White Bean Puree and Parma Ham Chip
Grilled Beef is the specialty of Chéf d’ Tableand highly recommended by many bloggers. As SG Boy does not consume beef due to religious beliefs, I can obly say that my friends thought that it was nicely done and the White Bean puree tasted like superb mashed potato.
Homemade Baked Cheesecake with Raspberry Coulis
I must say that the desserts at Chéf d’ Table do not disappoint. The Homemade Baked Cheesecake was served chilled and tasted really smooth. However, I would have wished that the cheese could be softer so that it would melt in the mouth readily. The raspberry coulis drizzled on top not only made the dish aesthetically appealing, but also added a fruity zest.
Passion Fruit Panna Cotta
The Passion Fruit panna cotta was thick and creamy, packed with rich flavours of passion fruit. Panna cotta is one of the signature dishes at Chéf d’ Table; Chef Jason usually comes up with new variants of panna cotta to surprise diners. Other variants include the lychee panna cotta and soy bean panna cotta, served at Restaurant Week 2013 (see Part II).
On the whole, the food was impeccable but not mind-blowing. However, the servers were very attentive and always ready to respond to our needs. Spending $25++ for 3 courses is definitely value-for-money and I would recommend coming here again – which I did.
Rating: 3.76 / 5 Panna Cotta
You may also wish to visit Guiltygoodness, who has been to Chéf d’ Table both at its best and worst. Many bloggers also recommend their Degustation Menu. Their Lobster Bisque is also recommended and a regular for Restaurant Week, available for a $6++ top-up. Last but not least, Chéf d’ Table is also the official caterer for weddings held at Chijmes. My parents have commented that my cousin’s wedding dinner held at Chijmes “did not come cheap”, but the dishes were indeed very delicious.