Mon - Fri: 12:00 - 13:30
Mon - Sat: 19:00 - 21:30
Iggy's at Hilton Hotel is commonly regarded as one of the best restaurants in the world. This internationally renowned restaurant offers an eight course gastronomic lunch and dinner menu that undergoes periodic changes.
See other reviews at http://thehungrybunnie.blogspot.com
Despite being renowned and celebrated internationally, I found Iggy's underwhelming. The ambience was stuffy and prissy, much like dining with the Queen. That was far from enjoyable. To compound its stodgy, chi-chi vibe, the food was inventive but contrived, delicious but soulless.
We had the extravagant but substantive $275 11-course dinner:
1) Stone and Pate - comprised a couple of baby potatoes, skins-on and charred into a stone-like appearance, sided by a truffle mayonnaise dip. Served amongst a bunch of actual smoothened stones, it's quite the inspired plating.
2) Octopus Carpaccio showered with edible flowers and snow: delicate and evoked memories of a crisp winter's morning, just after the first snowfall.
3) Mushroom Consomme dotted with shimeiji caps, and floating above a smooth egg custard: comforting and lovely
4) Burnt Scallop -encrusted in an inky casing, revealed a plump succulent scallop: well-balanced against a curried tomato sauce.
5) Toro Sashimi, with beetroot, arugula, baby carrot, mascarpone powder: a wonderful medley of the sweet, peppery, creamy and bitter.
6) Anago with green pea, fava bean, and urui: uneven, the nutty undertones of the greens did little to compensate for the overwhelmingly fishy eel.
7) Spaghetti, with shirako, kujo-neghi, sansho, and yuzu: the fish overwhelmed its delicate counterparts, and copious lashings of yuzu zest and fresh leek failed to save the day.
8) Wagyu: absolutely sublime, complemented by a capered jus laced with alba black truffles. This was accompanied by grilled fat stalks of white asparagus, new potatoes and sh!take.
9) Kurobuta Pork: glorious as well, with nary a whiff of that "porky smell", lush and fork-tender.
Iggy’s is a 10 to 15 minutes walk from Orchard MRT station. And within Hilton Hotel, one can easily reach Iggy’s by taking the escalator or elevator. My friend and I went on a Thursday night. However, there was an ongoing Dinner & Dance on the same night of our dinner which made arriving at level 3 via escalator a little intimidating as I entered directly into the busy reception area of the Dinner & Dance. They were all dressed in costumes! My, my.
Iggy’s, which is directly opposite of Hilton’s ballroom, was distinctively identifiable as the entire wall / facade was matt black.
To enter, one would press on the ‘button’ for the automatic sliding door to open. We were led through a long, entirely black-washed corridor (as with its external facade) that’s brightened up by the ceiling full of chandelier lighting before we reached the main dining area. And in that sense, I did feel as though I was entering a cave.
And from the menu (pages 1, 2, 3), we ordered:-
1) Gastronomic menu, $275 comprising of:-
(A) Stone – I do think the staff enjoys seeing the surprised look on diner’s face when this is presented. My friend and I were taken aback to see a plate of stones. Like, “huh?” The staff then went on to explain that only 2 are edible. And indeed, when we took a closer look, we could see which are the edible items; Small potato with crisp skin that’s to be enjoyed along with truffle mayonnaise sauce. Interesting!
(B) Egg & foie gras – When our orders were taken, the staff asked if we had any diet restriction to which I informed that I don’t take beef. And with that, my ‘egg & foie gras’ was served with chicken consommé while my friend’s was beef consommé. And as we were having this, I couldn’t help but comment to my friend that it smelled very Japanese. Now, that’s a compliment! It’s very fragrant and somewhat reminded me of chawanmushi
(C) Snacks – Pate, sakura ebi, hokki. Comprising of (from right to left) i) Japanese baby shrimps with curry sauce, ii) Sea urchin, bell pepper and hokki clam served on a cracker made of tomato, and iii) Pate of chicken, foie gras and mushroom served with grape jelly.
Due to the (silly) 3000 characters limit, continue to read my review on other dishes here: PART2
Will I recommend Iggy’s? Yes. And it’s not just because Iggy’s is on San Pellegrino Asia’s 50 Restaurants list. They are at number 18 for 2015, by the way. I was impressed with the overall dining experience. Every dish showcased chef’s various techniques. And in all honesty, Iggy’s fared better during my repeated visit as compared to my first which left me with no impression at all. For real.
Dining was an intimate affair with us diners seated within a confined space. Staff was attentive and professional, although I preferred if they could do the introduction to the dishes slower. My friend and I have goldfish memory, so we couldn’t quite catch / remember what they were saying. The problem lies with us lah. Ha.
OK, so went there for the Degustation menu tonight 275++ with a separate wine each. Expecting a big hype but I suspect it went downhill after the new chef took over, not sure what it was like before. I feel like this menu was designed by a business owner not the chef. The menu had an inconsistent theme (don't use fusion as an argument) but there was lots of "expensive" ingredients plotted throughout the 9-10 courses (caviar, foie gras, wagyu, crab, truffles, along with other exotic ingredients). It seemed like a menu crafted to justify the cost, rather than a chef crafting a multi-course menu for the customer's palate. I feel the restaurant was also managed this way with the waiters likely underpaid for a fine-dining restaurant (they were nice). So all in all, it was an okay experience, but for what I paid for, I wouldn't recommend it.