July 31, 2015
When you take a peek at Table at 7’s menu, you will be slightly confused at first – this is because there are two separate menus: one which offers Indonesian cuisine (Chef Eugenia) and another which features Modern European cuisine (Chef Karl).
However, rest assured that you will be assisted by the friendly waiters who are more than happy in guiding you with menu choices. If you are a big fan of Indonesian and or Modern European cuisine, be prepared for a treat at Table at 7. Despite having 2 contrasting styles in one restaurant, each chef has maintained their own individuality and do not attempt to cross-contaminate the other, culminating in 2 very separate menus to each Chef’s name.
Having been in the F&B industry for over 30 years, Chef Eugenia has had experience in running her family-owned Jawa Timur Indonesian restaurant , private catering and even Pasar Satay – Singapore’s first satay restaurant – before collaborating with Chef Karl on setting up Table at 7. Chef Karl, on the other hand, has had 26 years of culinary experience under his belt – in Salzburg, Switzerland and then Sydney – before he came on to the sunny shores of Singapore to start the Salut group of restaurants.
Stepping into Table at 7, my first impression of the place was that it was extremely grand and luxurious, yet still retaining the element of coziness. Classy European art adorn the walls of the restaurant and sleek white table-cloths are laid over the table-tops. For those who would like to gain an insight into how their food is prepared, the restaurant has fitted a wide glass panel which provides a clear view of the open kitchen.
Amuse Bouche (French, literally means mouth-amuser: complimentary). The smoked Salmon was a tad too salty for my liking although that proves to be quite an appetite opener.
Char Grilled Seafood with Special Shrimp Sambal, Mesclun Salad and Kaffir Lime ($22). This dish reminded me of the grilled seafood I would get from the streets of Indonesia, just with a kick-ass savoury and sweet sauce and the employment of much fresher seafood. Instead of being over-cooked and rubbery, the sotong and prawns were springy and had a charming bite to them reflecting the well-timed doneness.
For those seeking a fiery taste to their food, the seafood platter also comes with a whole chilli: feel free to break off a little of it to pair with whatever you are putting into your mouth.
Pan-seared 5 Spice Quail with Aromatic Spice Reduction and Kaffir Lime, Rocket and Pine Nuts ($22). The expertly-charred exterior of the meat gives way to a tender interior which still sports a tinge of pretty pink – when you bite into the slices of quail meat, you’ll first hear a crunch, then before you know it, you’re chewing on a full mouthful of succulent quail goodness.
Smokey yet with a delicate flavour, I still think about this dish when I am hungry in the middle of the night sometimes.
Satay (Chef’s recommendation, off-menu). These were some of the best satays I have ever eaten in my life. Succulent and juicy because of the ideal fat to lean meat ratio, each mouthful I took into my mouth released spurts of delectable satay juices. It’s a pity these are constantly featured on Table at 7’s menu – maybe you could request for this when you spot Chef Eugenia in the restaurant? I’m sure she will be glad to serve up this dish.
Crispy Roasted Suckling Pig with Smoked Bacon Sauerkraut, Rosemary Potatoes and Star Anise Jus ($36). This was unanimously enjoyed by all of us at the table: when you scrape your cutting knife ever so gently against the skin of the suckling pig, you’ll hear a satisfying “kkkrrr” sound – the one of skin so crispy you could imagine its texture in your mouth even before you sink your teeth in it.
Even with its crunchy exterior, the meat is tender and has retained its juices; slicing into the meat will release spurts of goodness onto the plate. Mmm, delicious through and through with a adequate amount of porkiness.
Tender Slow Braised Wagyu Oxtail Rendang served with Fragrant Shallot-Scented Jasmine Steam Rice and Acar Vegetable ($40). I’ve had my fair share of Rendang but I’ve never had one which was cooked with such quality ingredients – Wagyu Oxtail, seriously?
But ultimately, the end product of the dish is what you put into it and I’m not exaggerating when I say that this was the best Rendang I’ve ever eaten.
Crispy Pan-Seared Foie Gras on Warm Salad of Baby Spinach, Caramelised Walnuts and Apple Cider Dressing ($30). As an avid fan of foie gras, this was the only dish which I had adamantly insisted on ordering from the menu. Just looking at the picture of it now is making me salivate. It was rather difficult to slice through – it was soft and mushy but refused to separate when pulled away from the main body with a bit of connective sinew, which was unlike many of the foie gras which I have had the honour of eating.
Despite the initial set back of attempting to get to the prized liver morsel, I found that all that hassle and effort was worth it. Fatty, rich and veering on the side of sinful, the foie gras was excellent. To prevent the dish from becoming too heavy on the palate, the chef has also paired it with spinach and berries compote.
Pepes Style Black Cod, Char – Grilled in Banana Leaf served with Tossed Coconut Salad & Roasted Garlic Rice ($32). A traditional Indonesian cooking method, the Black Cod was thoroughly infused with the fragrant flavour of the banana leaf. Upon chewing, the meat literally felt like it was dissolving in my mouth – a testament to just how tender the cod was. The Roasted Garlic Rice was also good enough to eat on its own.
Sticky Date Pudding with Brandy Butterscotch ($12). The Sticky Date Pudding was a little too sweet for my liking but sweet-toothed diners will definitely enjoy this saccharine treat.
Apple Tart with Vanilla Ice Cream ($12). With a butter-based crumbly pastry as base, I found that the entire dish didn’t hold up together very nicely. The mashed apple was too mushy. However, I enjoyed the vanilla ice cream: it had just the right amount of sweetness and it somewhat neutralised the cloying taste of the apple tart.
Chocolate Souffle with Chocolate Ice Cream ($12). This was highly recommended to us by our waiter – it is apparently his favourite dessert from Table at 7. And upon our first bite into it, we could tell why. Airy and light, this was the perfect epitome of what an ideal chocolate souffle should be.
Overall, the food at Table at 7 has greatly impressed me. Even though the prices are rather steep, I would say that for the quality of ingredients used in each dish, your money would all be well-spent. You also don’t see many restaurants who have incorporated both Indonesian cuisine and Modern European cuisine into their menus: it was definitely an unique experience for all of us.
Expected Damage: $40 – $100 per pax