To read my full write up and pictures see here: http://www.citynomads.com/blog/items/739/scrumptious-food-in-the-heart-of-the-city-at-the-exchange
When I was recently invited to a tasting by the folks at The Exchange, I was intrigued to see how it would fare because I'm not usually a fan of restaurants smack bang in the heart of a financial centre. BUT I'm delighted to say that on this occasion, The Exchange was a firm exception because it really does serve up some rather good food.
Opened back in November and located in the atrium of Asia Square Tower 1 which big guns like Citibank like to call home, this is far from a stuffy CBD restaurant. More a large, light, open hangout with a buzzy vibe, bar and not to mention a rather large open kitchen.
What I like about this place is though contrary to its location, it really feels like the kind of place that you could enjoy a good meal whether you're work lunching, weekend lunching, relaxing over dinner, or having a post-work drink or few. It can sometimes be tricky when a restaurant tries to be everything to everyone, but somehow this time The Exchange has lucked in.
Helmed by Group Exec Chef Kacey Whaitiri-Roberts, a Kiwi who perfected his trade under amongst others Gordon Ramsey at Claridges in London, this place is all about the Australasian.
Now before we get on to the food - let's talk drinks. The Exchange not only offers 80 labels of wine (predominantly new world to accompany the fare) but also 30 whisky labels and a healthy selection of cocktails. Being lunchtime and still feeling the effects of a heavy weekend, I only managed a Mojito. It was not too sweet or wimpy as sometimes they can be, with just the right amount of punch.
And on the wines, yes these guys are serious about wines because they have one of the largest wine fridges in Singapore!
Now on to the main event - the food. We started out with the Duck Liver Pâté ($27) which was served up on sweet toasted homemade brioche and beetroot marmalade. Now I have to warn you this is very moreish and that's thanks to the rich smooth velvety texture of the pâté, which was complemented perfectly with itsdelicious port glaze, and the sweet earthy, slightly spicy tones of the beetroot marmalade. Mmmm looks good doesn't it? Yes, that's because it is!
Following that came the Prawn and Scallop Ravioli ($20). Served with lemongrass emulsion, the ravioli was perfectly soft and plump like little pillows and the combination of East meets West flavours made for a wonderfully unique slant on ravioli that I have never tasted before.
The starters had set the standard high and so I was looking forward to seeing what the mains would bring.
To read the rest of my write up see here.
I've experienced here the worst service in Singapore...but their store manager was the worst - no wonder all the staff here is badly educated. It's $30＋ lunch which is totally not worth the taste. I will never ever come back.
At 5,000 sqft this is probably the CBD’s largest brasserie and bar. With its leather seats and marble tabletop, the place certainly feels grand and swanky, but you’ll feel comfortable at this the multi-concept restaurant, lounge and bar partaking in hearty breakfasts, coffee catch-ups, power lunches, languorous dinners and a good ol’ round of after work drinks. Alongside their impressive wine list is an extensive menu of vodka, gin, rum, tequila and champagne cocktails (from $16). They’ve also got a large range of single malt whiskies (from $16) and liqueurs ($13). Oh, and ladies? Pop by on Wednesday evenings and you’ll get to enjoy free martinis and cosmos at the main bar from 6pm to 9pm. For more drinking guides, click here!
Food review: Had the X'mas menu
Soup - smelt good but my lunch companion remarked that it tasted bland
Main course - i had the open ravioli and needed tobasco sauce to bring out some flavor. alright if you like your ravioli lightly-flavoured, though.
Dessert - my lunch companion asked for the Xmas pudding sans alchohol content. The server took 3 minutes to check if their rum and raising ice cream had alcohol-content (!...) and came back to tell us that they couldnt serve the dessert because the ice-cream had alcohol in it. When asked if we could replace the ice-cream with another flavour, they said they couldnt because it came together with the pudding (...). Did the pudding contain alcohol? They said no, it was only the ice-cream.
We gave up and decided to order a scoop of ice-cream for her instead, to which they said they only have 1 other flavour available, which was vanilla. She said OK. I ordered the pudding for myself.
When it came to dessert, my lunch companion was served a bowl of raspberry ice-cream. (...)
My Xmas pudding came with the pudding and a scoop of rum and raisin ice cream on top of the pudding. 1) The ice cream tasted like plain vanilla ice cream - no raisin found, no rum tasted. 2) And if the pudding had no alcohol content why couldn't they just serve the pudding with the vanilla ice cream?
FYI the floor manager? lead waiter? (male, slim, spiked hair) told me cheerfully that he would find out why my lunch companion was served raspberry ice-cream instead of vanilla but avoided all eye contact with me after that. He had 45 mins to come back to me but he never did.
It'll take a lot for me to return.
I love the ambience of the place. But there was a lack in service wise. Had Valentine's day set menu and asked the waitress for more about the menu but she seem to know nothing at all. She was not able to tell us what the dessert is and even gave us the wrong information on how the set menu is like. The set was very affordable at only $88++ per couple. For more review and pictures please visit http://wheretoburp.blogspot.sg/
Read the full review at http://thehungrybunnie.blogspot.sg/2012/11/the-exchange.html
Maybe it's because I'd heard a couple of unimpressive reviews of this place, or maybe it's because the sprawling restaurant always seems barely filled whenever I walk past it, but I admittedly had low expectations for lunch. Nonetheless, I thought the food was way better than expected. Not memorably great, but pretty alright, with above average food, and a very value-for-money set lunch menu. Service was a little choppy and unorganized though, which was disappointing, seeing as the restaurant was only half-filled when we dined for lunch.
1) Risotto ($27) was pretty good. Al dente grains, starchy without being too heavy, seasoned by a nicely rounded mushroom base with the heady essence of truffle
2) Asparagus Salad ($18) comprised enough sinful ingredients to make this a dieter's nightmare. Garlicky ciabatta crisps, plentiful streaky bacon strips, and a poached egg that helped bind the crisp crunchy greens together with its oozy eggy goodness
3) Haddock Fish and Chips ($25) was a little lacking in salt, but nothing a little squeeze of the lemon and some tartar sauce couldn't cure. The fleshy fillets were moist and flaky, while the batter was thick, flavourful and crisp
4) Truffle Fries ($12): delightful and a real crowd pleaser, piping hot, crisp and evenly salted with truffle, these were snapped up in a flash