A taste of Austria even from miles away.
A contemporary dining destination at the refurbished Capitol Theatre, bringing recipes from the celebrated Habsburg Empire to Singapore, yes right here. For the first time ever, diners here in Singapore can indulge themselves in rich multi-cultural heritage and flavours of a dozen nations which framed the empire.
The Kaiserhaus menu is a celebration of the cosmopolitan Habsburg rule, which in the year 1900 extended over places like Austria, Hungary, Northern Italy, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Romania and the Ukraine.
As you step into Capitol Theatre, look up to the second level and you’ll see the very prominent Kaiserhaus headed by Executive Chef Hans and Executive Pastry Chef Patrick. Well, I heard they have a bar too on the third floor.
Stepping in into the warm light ambience, find yourself seated away in this comfortable setting. Every detail of Kaiserhaus is a reflection of the Habsburg Empire. Furnitures, utensils, cutleries and even the grand staircase (which I will talk about later in the review), are from Austria. This is indeed the closest to Austria as you can get in Singapore!
Weather’s really hot. So we started our lunch at Kaiserhaus with two of their favourite drinks. The Rauch Fruit Juice – Strawberry ($5) was surprisingly sweet, and not sour. Naturally sweet, definitely warmed up my appetite for the good food that was coming my way.
The Omi’s Apfelstrudel Saft ($5) is an apple strudel juice made from apple juice from cinnamon. This tasted light and refreshing.
Alright let’s get down to the food. Firstly served was their Caprese Tonnato, or Adriatic Starter ($19). Vine-ripened tomatoes with mozzarella, pesto. Thinly sliced pork roast with tuna sauce, capers, rocket leaves. A Balkan red pepper relish known as Ajvar are used too.
The dish was so perfect in the sense that the seasoning complimented it really well. Slight hint of vinegar for that sour feel, but it brought out the taste of the meat and the freshness of the vegetables. Grind pepper is sprinkled on the spot upon serving the dish to you.
The starter is served with a selection of Austrian breads as well.
The mains were served up next. A note to take, as this is a media review, the mains served to us were of tasting portions. When you actually order, it will be of normal serving, which is needless to say, more than what are pictured here.
Tafelspitz, or Gourmet Beef ($38) made from grain-fed beef rump and oyster blade from Australia. It is served in a pot with plenty of beef bouillon and mixed root vegetables, bone marrow, toasted rye bread, crispy rösti potatoes, creamed spinach and spicy horseradish sauce. This single dish serves 2-3 pax, so you might want to order and share this. (Don’t be greedy)
This beef has great marbling as you can see. Broth is immensely flavoured, and strong. It’s like as if you can feel every ingredient that was added into the making, with multiple dimensions; well, it was simmered/slow-cooked for over 4 hours. The meat itself was well tender, and easy to chew on due to the long hours cooking process.
Let’s see briefly on the side dishes served together.
The liver dumpling served by itself in an empty bowl. What was recommended to us was that we put a ladleful of beef broth over, and enjoy.
The creamed spinach tasted a little sweet, which I felt that the cream brought out the flavour. It was damp enough for it to not stick to your mouth as you chew on it, which makes it easier of course. I’m not a big fan of spinach, but this is one that get’s my approval.
Oh, glorious potato ~
I’m not sure about you but I like mine roasted. And that is why this portion of potato rösti got my attention. Chef Hans decided that he will do a loose version compared to the ones you get elsewhere, which turned out really good as it was not too filling. Fragrantly roasted with premium butter, this just made me loved rösti even more.
The other mains served was their Veprova Pecene, or Bohemian Pork Roast ($24). Roasted pork with crispy crackling always sounds good right? But at Kaiserhaus it sounds even better as it comes alongside roasted root vegetables and natural jus.
I felt that the crackling pork were proportionately right in terms of the meat and fat ratio. A little burnt taste brought the dish another level up as it is a fine line between a slight hint of burnt and over burnt. Meat was chunky and not too oily, sourced from Australia, it takes 2 to 3 hours for the perfect crisp.
The gravy poured over the pork contains red wine, which provided the meat with a hint of sourness and bitterness. Don’t worry, you won’t get drunk.
They have a pastry counter that’s available for any customers to do their take-away too.
Definitely not doing my meals without desserts. First up was their Kaiserschmarrn, or Emperor’s Pancakes ($15). A caramelised shredded pancakes with rum soaked raisins and plum compote.
Pancakes were a tad too dry, but the jam that comes along with it covers up as it not only brings another flavour to it but also make’s it damper and easier to chew and swallow on. Slight sourness but overall taste really fruity due to it’s raisins.
The other dessert we had was the Mozartknödel, or Mozart Dumplings ($13). Like something cold and must have ice cream, this is it. Pistachio Ice cream, scooped over marinated raspberries and sweet crumbs. The other part to this dessert is the dumplings filled with marzipan and nougat pralines. Chewy by nature, take every mouth with a scoop of the ice cream and you wouldn’t ask for anything more.
Every Sunday afternoons, there will be a pianist from Vienna playing here. Kaiserhaus aims to be a casual dining experience, wants patrons to feel at home and comfortable, without having to be dressed to the nines.
The bar I mentioned about, is due to open between anytime on the first 2 weeks of September 2015. This area are for diners who want to get themselves some drinks at the bar, or even to have your normal dinner.
This experience is definitely the closest as you can get to Austria. Don’t miss out on this wonderful opportunity of having to try Kaiserhaus’ food. I would recommend this restaurant because their service was really attentive, and staff constantly checks with you if you are satisfied.
Expected damage: $40-$60 per pax