Nestled comfortably among the row of shops along Keong Saik Road, Taratata Bistrot serves classic French cooking. The folks behind Taratata pride their food on four guiding principles – quality, freshness, tradition and authenticity.
With a stunning interior and impressive menu, the bistro is often mistaken for a fine dining restaurant. Take a step in however and you’ll realise that it is anything but intimidating. The space is warm and cosy, resembling a cross between a Parisian Bistrot and Brasserie.
Pictures of French landmarks don the walls and with the street lamps, bottles of wine, and French music in the background, you’ll have a hard time convincing yourself that you’re not in France.
The kitchen at Taratata Bistrot is helmed by the Executive Chef and Owner, Mr Bertrand Raguin, a Frenchman who has worked as a Chef de Cuisine in many fine dining restaurants across South East Asia.
He rose to the ranks of Executive Sous Chef at the 5-star Meritus Mandarin Hotel Singapore, and Executive Chef at the 5-star Rebar Crown Plaza Hotel Taipei before finally settling down on this sunny island. Chef Bertrand wishes to bring traditional French cooking to Singapore to delight locals with the joys of such delicacies, and give his fellow countrymen a taste of home.
He puts care and effort into every dish that leaves the kitchen, and strives to make diners fall in love with France through his cooking. From the plating to the taste, you’ll definitely be able to feel Chef Bertrand’s passion for food.
Taratata Bistrot is perfect for any occasion, be it for a nice dinner with your family or to bond with friends over superb food. Alternatively, bring your significant other here for a romantic meal, in a setting inspired by the ‘Most Romantic Country’ in the world.
Each table is given slices of fresh French baguette, accompanied by wholesome French butter.
Apart from the a la carte menu, Taratata Bistrot offers value-for-money set menus like the Business Set Lunch ($28 for 2 courses, $38 for 3 courses), Weekday Set Dinner ($55 for 3 courses) and Weekend Set ($70 for 5 courses, minimum 2 pax).
A traditional French dining experience in Singapore tends to come with a hefty price tag (and small portions), so this is a welcome change.
The Burrata & Cherry Tomatoes Salad with Creamy Burrata Émulsion, Tomato & Old Rum (Weekday Set Dinner Appetiser) is a simple dish taken up a notch by Chef Bertrand. This classic combination of basil, sweet cherry tomatoes and Burrata in a balsamic vinegar dressing, is elevated with the addition of homemade pesto and aged rum.
The flavour of the Burrata is subtle, reinforced by the pesto and basil leaves and complemented by the oaky flavour of the rum. Mix-and-match the components with every bite and be surprised by the different flavour profiles.
Another cold appetiser, the Crab Salad with Cocktail Sauce ($19 a la carte, Weekday Set Dinner Appetiser) is a dish that rivals the first in terms of presentation. This isn’t your typical seafood cocktail dish – the sauce is much creamier in texture, with a lot more flavour.
The grapefruit segments are a perfect addition to cut through the creaminess of the crab salad, while the olive tapenade provides a slight saltiness to the dish. Although it might seem rich, it actually made for a refreshing appetiser that we finished in minutes.
When the Seared Tuna with Sarawak Pepper, Pesto, Tapenade & Poached Egg ($18 a la carte, Business Set Lunch Appetiser) was served, we were drawn to the beautiful slices of perfectly seared tuna. The bright pink centre and peppered crust made us want to dig in immediately, and we loved that the fish didn’t have any fishy aftertaste.
Dredge each piece of tuna in the perfectly runny yolk to add some richness to every bite. The dish is served with both tapenade and pesto, allowing diners to choose how they want to compose each bite.
The Pan-Fried Smoked Duck Foie Gras with Apple & Raisin Sauce (Business Set Lunch Appetiser, Weekday Set Dinner Appetiser, Weekend Set Entree) came with an especially big piece of foie gras, 50 grams to be exact. The foie gras was buttery and rich, everything that it should be.
The sauce and the fruits created a sweetness and acidity, cutting through the richness of the foie gras. We were extremely impressed with the balance of flavours in the dish and with the portion size!
We were told that Chef Bertrand particularly enjoys cooking and creating the fish dishes, putting a lot of love into the sauces. The first fish dish we were served was the Cod with Mussels in Mild Spicy Lobster, Cognac, Tomato Sauce & Steamed Potatoes ($38 a la carte, Weekday Set Dinner Main Course).
The cod was melt-in-your-mouth with wonderfully crisp skin, while the plump mussels were perfectly cleaned and cooked. And don’t even get us started on the accompanying tomato sauce – it’s going to be hard stopping yourself from mopping up every last bit with baguette.
The second of the fish dishes served, the Fresh Atlantic Salmon with Sautéed Baby Squid & Piquillo Peppers in Lobster Broth Reduction ($34 a la carte, Business Set Lunch Main Course) had a strong fragrance which reminded us of a lobster bisque.
The sauce has been slowly reduced to concentrate the lobster flavour within it, allowing for a depth of flavour not found in many restaurants.
The salmon flaked apart easily and was pink in the middle, the juiciest way that salmon should be cooked and eaten. However, if you don’t fancy having it that pink, just let the staff know and they’ll be more than happy to cook it to your liking.
The homemade herb butter tied the dish together with its richness and freshness. This dish was truly a celebration of the sea, with the flavours of the salmon, squid and lobster coming together to form a cohesive dish. If you’re a fan of seafood, this dish is one for you.
Next, we had the Duck Confit with Sautéed Potatoes, Bacon & Onions ($32 a la carte, Business Set Lunch Main Course, Weekday Set Dinner Main Course). The duck was nicely browned, crispy atop a stack of potatoes.
The meat was tender and fell off the bone with ease, while the sauce added a full-bodied flavour to the dish. The potatoes were some of the best we’ve ever eaten – mixed with onions and lardon, we would’ve happily ordered another portion.
A rustic dish, the Coq Au Vin ($36 a la carte) came with a whole chicken leg and stewed vegetables. The red wine used perfumed the dish and intensified the flavour of the tender chicken.
The stew itself was robust, with a hearty portion of vegetables that made for a tasty and filling dish.
Taratata Bistrot offers a wide variety of French wines, so do ask for a recommendation with your meal. We had the Château Pegau Maclura (2013) which was full-bodied, deep and earthy in flavour – perfect for some of the hearty dishes that we had.
We ended the meal with the Baked Thin Pear Tart with Pistachio Almond Ice Cream ($15 a la carte). Stuffed as we were, the mere sight of the tart forced us to make room in our tummies.
The warm tart with sweet pear slices was a match made in heaven with the ice cream. The flavour of the pistachio was particularly prominent, with bits of almond running through.
Choose to end your meal with a selection of French Cheeses ($21 for 3 kinds, $32 for 5 kinds, $42 for 7 kinds a la carte, Weekday Set Dinner Dessert Cheese Platter). These cheeses were specially selected by Chef Bertrand himself and with such a variety, there’s something for every palate.
The types of cheese range from mild to strong, soft to hard. If you’re unsure of what to get, do ask the staff for recommendations and simply savour what France has to offer.
Chef Bertrand and his team are more than eager to provide you with a traditional and authentic French dining experience. With fresh, quality ingredients, and cooking of such calibre, escape to France for a night when you dine at Taratata Bistrot.
Expected damage: $28 – $80 per person
*This post was brought to you in partnership with Taratata Bistrot