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Tucked in a corner of Marina Square Shopping Centre’s The Dining Edition, NUVO is a little difficult (but worth the effort) to find. Executive Chef Mark Richard (formerly from Keystone), helms the kitchen and marries Italian and Japanese cuisine to create unexpectedly exciting and creative hybrid fare.
The restaurant itself is spacious, decorated in muted tones and furnished with warm woods. It also has a lounge with an extensive wine list, specially crafted cocktails, spirits, rums and liquors, plus bar snacks for those who like to graze.
Our dinner started with warm herb bread basked with seaweed butter.
Oh, the velvety Vanilla Mushroom Soup was so lovely! The first thing that hit us was the aroma of the White Truffle essence, drizzled onto a flowy Onsen Egg.
The Salmon Crudo was dressed with Furikake Tobiko, Yuzu Pon and adorn with green apple. I was lukewarm towards this entree, but M enjoyed it.
The classic North Italian Eggplant Parmigiana with mozzarella and tomato fondue is given a Japanese twist with the addition of sweet miso. Nothing too fancy, just simple and genuine.
Made from roasted bone marrow, the Agnus Osso Buco Stew had an unusual partnership with Tsukii Oyster Fritter. The starter was spruced up with shimeiji mushrooms and pickled cucumber for bursts of acidity. I personally felt the combination too heavy, and would have preferred something lighter to highlight the rich flavors of the stew.
One of NUVO’s signature dishes, each strand of the al dente Angel Hair Wakame is coated with Lobster essence and Rayu oil (chilli oil), providing just the right amount of mellow flavour and heat. The simple but delicious pasta was adorned with Tamago Furikake, which added another dimension to it.
M’s Pepperoni and Ricotta Niku Dango was wholesome and gratifying. Tossed in spiced tomato sauce and sweet peas, each ribbon of pasta had a nice, firm bite and was not too thick, thus inheriting the flavors from the sauce beautifully. More Italian influence is observed in the tender Japanese meatballs, which had Ricotta Cheese embedded within.
Sweets included in the set meal were really dainty, but the Fuji Apple and Parmigiano Reggiano Torta dessert was so captivating I wished it was full-sized. The elegant pastry had a mild savory flavour imparted from the cheese, harmoniously complemented with Fig and Honey Ice Cream.
Less stellar was the Japanese Kinako Delight, with espresso and honeycomb giving the western touch. While the mochi’s texture was beautifully soft and chewy, the combination of flavors didn’t make quite make an impression.
Despite some misses, we felt NUVO offerings are appealing enough to warrant a repeat visit. On weekdays, the restaurant serves 3-course set lunches for $15++ and 4-course set dinners for $35++. On weekends, diners can look forward to Nuvo’s Bottomless Prosecco Brunch a la carte Buffet ($40++)
I went to Nuvo last week because I was enticed by their ad on Facebook for the "Bottomless Pizza and Champagne Cocktails" deal on selected nights for $25, and I had one of the worst dining experiences ever. There were no redeeming qualities of my experience, so I'll just list the bad ones below.
1. The moment my partner and I were seated, we were told by one of their staff that they were running out of orange juice, so after the first round of Mimosas (2 glasses for my table) there might not be any more orange juice for any more Mimosas, and they will only be serving Prosecco.
a) What happened to the Champagne?
b) Run out of Orange Juice the moment I sat down and not planning to replenish when there were 2 more hours till the deal ends?
2. According to the waiter, assortment of pizzas meant that we had only 2 options to choose from, beef or mushrooms. When I ordered, I was told that there was no choice, and we had to eat whatever pizza was served to us.
3. After the 1st round of Mimosas (2 glasses), I ordered another 2 glasses, and was told that they had ran out of Orange Juice, so we could only get Prosecco. What choice did we have? I accepted.
BUT, 15 mins later, the table of 6 foreigners behind us were served a round of Mimosas. I called the manager and asked for an explanation. He said that the part timers do not know where items are placed and did not know that there was ONE more packet of Orange Juice, which was used up for the table behind us. Convenient no?
3. The 2nd and last pizza that we ordered arrived 45 minutes after asking for it, AND surprise surprise, it was exactly the same as the 1st pizza, which was neither beef nor mushrooms.
In summary, we were extremely unhappy with the food and service provided by this establishment. The advertisement for the deal that they supposedly had was a clear misrepresentation and a dishonest attempt to fill their seats on a typical quiet evening.
Went Nuvo last night for their 30-licious promotion. I think it is safe to say I've never ever felt so ripped off in my life before. I had to scrape the plate for my pumpkin soup. It felt like I was having pumpkin sauce instead of soup. The pizza was also shocking. I think I shall just let the pictures do the talking. If Nuvo isn't happy with the promotion, they should just not participate in it. Don't waste our time and money. I wouldn't even pay $30++ for this. They just halved the price and then halved the portion. Not even a promotion.
This is a nice restaurant tucked in a hidden corner of Marina Square’s new dining edition. The restaurant has a casual easy going ambience to me, good for small groups in an informal setting, with a well-priced menu. I was therefore pleasantly surprised to discover that the food served was of a much higher standard (in terms of presentation, quality and taste) than what you would normally expect from a restaurant with such a casual easy going ambience and well-priced menu, closer to what would find in more expensive restaurants.
Serving Japanese inspired Spanish/Italian food, I was informed that the kitchen is run by two Japanese chefs, both with considerable experience working in top restaurants in Spain and Italy.
I was at the restaurant at lunch, with a small group of colleagues. As we had a sufficient numbers and a large appetite, we ordered a bit of everything to try. Between us, we had the following:
Creamy pumpkin soup, onsen egg, with crispy parma ham:-
The soup was cleverly presented in the form of an “inverse egg”, the with the bright yellow of the cream of pumpkin forming the “white” of the egg, and the whitish poached onsen egg in the middle forming the “yolk”. The crispy parma ham was an interesting touch and complemented the sweetness of the soup very well. I loved this very much!
Selection of handmade pork sausages: -
The sausages were made using two types of pork filling, finely minced pork and coarsely chopped pork from the collar. The combination results in sausages with a very nice, interesting texture and mouth feel. Unlike other sausages, the ones here are not so heavily salted. I was initially not used to lighter flavour, but grew to appreciate the natural flavours after having my second and third piece .
Thin crust pizza: -
The pizzas here are fired in Nuvo's custom built pizza oven and had all the elements I expect from my pizzas - a nice light chewy crust that is not gummy, lightly charred on the edges and bottom, with a light sourdough flavor. I recommend trying the smoked cheese and salmon pizza.
Roast beef with japanese sweet potato puree, roasted radish and purple cabbage infused with vinaigrette:-
The roast beef was tender and moist, I had initially thought that it was cooked sous vide, but learnt that this was roasted using the traditional method. I need to highlight the purple cabbage which was infused with a vinaigrette, the cabbage still retain its cripiness and original shape, so the sharpness as a vinaigrette came as a pleasant surprise. I learnt from the chef that this was made by quickly dipping pieces of purple cabbage into hot vinaigrette.
Earl Grey Crème Brulee: -
This featured my favourite combination for custard desserts. Earl grey flavoring... Strongly recommended!
A new Italian-Japanese restaurant has opened in Marina Square and I came here for lunch with my colleagues.
It was a hidden spot, at a corner of the newly-opened ‘Dining Edition’ of Marina Square.
The highlights of my lunch were:
1) Creamy pumpkin soup served with siphoned Parmesan cheese, onsen tamago and crispy Parma ham (The soft boiled egg went well with the pumpkin soup, and the parma ham gave saltiness to the dish. A unique dish!)
2) Homemade pork sausages - fennel and paprika flavored homemade sausages with 3 sauces: yoghurt, wasabi mayo and tomato salsa (Sausages were not salty and tasty. the sauces went well with the sausages)
3) Tuna Tataki with gazpacho sauce blended with Japanese cucumber, fennel, raspberry and tomato
4) Half-Half thin crust pizza:
- Smoked scamorza cheese and salmon on a bed of salad veg
- Porcini mushroom with black truffle paste and truffle oil
(I loved this, cos f the truffle and porcini mushrooms. The salmon tasted like smoked salmon, but the manager said its because of the smoked cheese. Lovely!)
5) Roast beef, top round cut, served with Japanese sweet potato purée, roasted radish, purple cabbage infused with raspberry vinegrette. (The beef was nicely done, medium rare, tender and tasty. My favourite dish of the meal!)
6) Lamb saddle- sous vide romesco sauce - yellow and red capsicum, garlic, onion, herbs blended into a sauce (The lamb was not gamey and was slow cooked - not by sous vide. The managere said the chef controls the heat over a stove and ensure its slow cooked gto perfection.)
- Earl Grey Creme Brûlée (Excellent dessert. Apparently , many ladies order this and they all love it)
- Tiramisu - chocolate Sponge cakes with almonds layered with mascarpone cheese mixture and flavored with Espresso and coffee liquer
A hidden find indeed! A surprise that no many people come to patronise them. But I will be back soon enough!