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Despite what the name suggests, Oenotheque by Wine Universe has not just wine, but very, very good food. ..... A shining example of this is the Salmon and Crab in Omelette Skin </strong>($22). Refreshing with a very good balance of flavours - saltiness from the caviar (exploding balls of taste), cream from the avocado and creme fraiche, and soft, fresh cold crab and mayonnaise in the middle. Very nice… And as we are at Wine Universe, pair it up with some Chardonnay. Also well worth ordering is the Maine Lobster Salad ($32) and the delicious <strong>Foie Gras Terrine ($24) served with brioche and some carpaccio sliced figs. Moving on to the mains, I have found the fish dishes to be pleasant but a little unexciting. Much more however can be said about the meat, particurarly the Veal Tenderloin ($45) and the Fondue sets ($32). My two favourites however were the... Beef tartar ($40)- Hand chopped beef with pickles, mustard, spring onion and some tabasco giving it a little kick then topped with a bit of truffle oil giving ......
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My girlfriend and I happen to chance upon Wine Universe yesterday as we were leaving Millenia Walk for Suntec. It sits at the corner facing Conrad hotel and was slightly hidden unless like us, you chance upon it.
We already had dinner so we decided to go for something light with our wines. We tried the sauteed prawns in pan. The prawns were juicy and served with garlic bread. I'm a huge fan of prawns so this dish really made my day.
I also had the German sausages which were cut nicely into bite sizes. I didn't really like the sauerkraut but the mash was really different from the ones you get from Western food places. The waiter told me it was made with milk which explains the creaminess.
The best part is the ambience. It wasn't noisy and they have cosy couches where you can just lay back and relax. The place isn't dark or too brightly-lit so it's comfortable for the eyes as well. It’s a nice place to go for chill out dates or just hang out with friends.
Hidden at the corner of Millenia Walk, it is quite easy to miss Oenotheque by the Wine Universe. The space had been fully made used and the idea of retail-cellar, restaurant and bar (3-in-1) was a contemporary concept. The restaurant featured Modern French Cuisine, helmed by Head Chef- Paul Longworth. If you wished to observe the chefs at work, request for the bar seats.
Set lunch menu
The restaurant offers a 2 or 3 course set lunch priced at $32++ and $38++ respectively ( some dishes might require additional supplement. It was a challenge to decide for the choice of starters as they all seemed to suit my personal preference.
Tiger prawn tartare, cucumber, quail egg and caviar
It was quite common to see Tuna tartare on the menu but Chef Longworth used Fresh tiger prawns instead and it proved to work very well. The tiger prawns were sweet and without any fishy smell or flavour. The thin-like thread used for garnishing was white radish which I thought was vermicelli!
Fillet of barramundi, salsify braised in red wine and coconut sauce
This dish looks like a piece of art .
The thick ‘‘egg-white” was actually coconut cream which I mistook it for egg white . The barramundi fish was lightly seared , served with thick coconut cream, purple salsify and top with asparagus spears.The barramundi fillet was simply and light-tasting but I thought there was too much coconut cream and tend to overpower the natural flavour of the fish ( coconut cream is thick and rich).
It was my first time trying purple salsify and I even mistook it for asparagus! The texture indeed reminds me of asparagus but salsify has an ”oyster’‘ flavour and hence it is also known as ‘‘oyster plant”
It was a little peculiar to serve roasted potatoes as a side dish ( as I did not place an order for that) but anyway, I enjoyed the roasted potatoes.
The skin was incredibly crispy and bursting with flavors in each bite. It was certainly addictive and even a person like me who dislikes starch made an attempt to finish all of them.
Verdict: Thumbs up for the food presentation, simple, light-tasting food.
Quail egg + caviar = Divine!
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A newcomer to the vibrant Restaurant Week scene, Oenotheque by Wine Universe awes with its stunning repertoire of dishes and impeccable wine pairings in its recent Media trail. Located on the ground floor of Millenia Walk, Oenotheque is a large restaurant, elegant and sleek in tones of black and white, with large floor-to-ceiling glass windows separating their indoor and alfresco tables. Despite being of Swiss origins, the restaurant serves up dishes Modern French cuisine, with Italian, and slight Asian influences.
The Twice-cooked Baby Octopus, Avocado, and Toasted Sesame Salad that followed bore very distinct Asian flavours, that I thought was a pleasant – albeit confusing – surprise. Marinated with what must surely be something of a mix of garlic, ginger, and perhaps soy sauce, the baby octopus was aromatic and delightfully chewy. The occasional chunks of avocado were, of course, very much welcome amidst crisp salad leaves and a little dab of sweet balsamic glaze on the side.
We know something about you. We know that, on a recent Saturday night, around 9pm you weren’t eating at one of the best new restaurants in town—Oenotheque, a joint venture between Magdalene Tang of Mag’s Wine Kitchen, and Swiss wine distributor Wine Universe.
We know this about you because we were there and you weren’t. We’re really not sure why no one was there, but maybe the magician in the kitchen waved his spatula and made the other diners vanish. Sound outlandish? Not if you saw the way he turned a tomato consommé into a jellied cone in which tiny, crunchy capsicums were suspended—or the way the whole affair was surrounded by tiny beads made from green olives ($12).
Then there was the sashimi of ocean trout—a work of wonder itself without considering the arugula “milk” and super-thin beetroot-flourless-pasta-like-strips that adorned the outer edge of the bowl ($16). So the kitchen wizard (who’s named Paul Longworth by the way, and has previously been a sous chef at the 1-Michelin star Club Gascon in London) knows how to invent, prepare and present his conjurings with art and flair. But what about the taste? Abracadabra. The two starters just described were texture-rich and filled with clean oceanic and vegetal flavors. For mains, the seared Hokkaido scallops served atop salty, swoon-inducing pork belly and adorned with cauliflower puree and shallot jus ($38) were perfectly tender. The flavors in this dish each took their turn at center stage and then receded into an ensemble deserving of the applause coming from our taste buds. The two lamb chops ($45) were fresh, tender and perfectly enlivened by their surroundings of leeks, mustard sauce and red onions.
With warm, professional service; an airy, modern indoor/outdoor setting; and an actual wine library (that’s what Oenotheque means) from where you can take a discounted bottle home after dinner; the magic act is truly complete. See you there next Saturday?