Decided to give Prego another chance after a less than desirable lunch a couple of months back. It also helped that there was a 50% reduction in the bill courtesy of the FAR card. The interior hasn't changed much, with the decor revolving around the use of wood. Whilst I like the abundant sunlight peering in from the floor to ceiling windows and the space the place affords, I can't help but compare it to a buffet/mass market restaurant - hardly befitting an Italian outfit in my humble opinion. But I digress. Complimentary Bread -This was probably one of the worst complimentary bread I've ever had in an Italian restaurant. 4 trips to Prego in 6 months and I'm still unable to consume more than a mouthful. Capesante in Crosta - This sounded really good on paper - Scallops coated with cheese and baked till golden brown and served with a mildly sweet pumpkin puree. Unfortunately the combination didn't quite work out. The scallops were smallish and the fishiness didn't quite jell with the cheesiness of the Parmesan nor the sweetness from the pumpkin. Nauseating to say the least, especially if you consume more than 1 piece. Well, at least the earthy taste from the truffle oil was noticeable. Strozzapreti - The Strozzapreti was akin to a rounder version of the Chinese board noodles (板面); all clumped together with a rather soft texture. Served in a very rich tomato sauce with mushrooms and minced Italian pork sausages. Palatable but probably not something I would order again. Risotto Frutti Di Mare - The hands down, best dish of the afternoon - the seafood risotto. Al dente with a nice creamy consistency. Only issue I had was with the seafood, which was quite generous but lacked taste (probably frozen). Prawns were crunchy though. After a 50% discount, lunch for the both of us came up to about $58, which isn't exactly value for money, considering how pedestrian the food was. Food quality seems to have dipped over the years and unless it picks up, this will be my 10th (though I only blogged about 5) and last visit. See all my pictures here.
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Kudos to the kind folks of Prego & Hungrygowhere for organizing & inviting me to the table
Prego is a semi-formal Italian setup at the foot of Fairmont. The kitchen boasts of a motley crew of international culinary champions helmed by Chef Antonio. Chef Long who hails from ‘the land of smiles’ is the pizza chef who prides himself in brining smiles to guests, with his own freestyle dough spinning flair (don’t miss it!)
The cute wooden crate of goodness is complemented with some in-house made spreads featuring; caramelized onions on cream cheese, basil leaves in tomato puree, truffle sprinkled cream cheese.
Insalata Mista - mixed green salad, radicchio, fennel, red onion and lemon dressing. I’m a meatarian, but the greens worked well for me.
Stracciatella di Bufala - Buffalo stracciatella, marinated king prawn, tomato, oregano and spring onions. Sweet & succulent prawn with a light spring on each bite, and the meat doesn’t flake. The buffalo stracciatella may not be too friendly for the waistline, but waistline watching doesn’t go quite well with food indulgence anyway.
Cotechino - Italian cooked pork sausage, roasted organic sweet pepper sauce. This dish is traditionally consumed in the colder seasons, and a glass of Valpolicella Masi, Valpolicella, Italy goes pretty well.
Paccheri - Maine lobster, roasted heirloom tomatoes & basil. A glass of Pinot Grigio Niedermayr, Alto Adige, Italy goes well together.
Merluzzo - baked cod fish, artichoke, pomodorini, kalamata olives, mashed potatoes. Evidently, the cod remained true to the taste, no traces of overbearing seasoning, hence, the natural buttery emulsion flavor. The crunch in the baked artichoke provided contrast to the dish. The mousse like texture potatoes was also very pleasant. The glass of Pinot Grigio Niedermayr, Alto Adige, Italy went well together.
Stinco d'Agnello - braised lamb, roasted fennel, potatoes. The doneness of the lamb (shank, if I’m not mistaken) is beautifully done; the meat comes off the bone clean, juicy tender to the bite, and the flavors from the 7hr slow fire cooking unveils as the meat melts in the mouth.
Surprise of the day - Portobello Mushroom Risotto, the name is self explanatory. The rice grains used are actually aged rice. Hence the texture is full & has a light beaded bounce of cooked barley. Nice~!
I was honored to have shook hands & spoken with Chef Antonio & Chef Long in person, and their personal introduction to the dishes & processes have helped me deepen my understanding & appreciation for culinary passion & pride.
Prego presents Chef Antonio’s personal Top 40 buffet lunch on Sundays 1230 to 1500hrs. You won’t need your passport & air tickets to savor different regions of Italy.
dinner was initiated by the esteemed bro JWNY... dunno what was the special occasion but he was in a good mood to invite for dinner. it was an impromptu decision, we walked in without reservation, and was ushered to our seats. all that with service with lots of smile from the friendly pinay staff...yes, i'm going to have to say that foreign employees tend to smile a lot more.
men being men, didnt take us too long to decide on the set dinner, in the following sequence:
appetiser: soup of the day - mushroom soup
pasta: pappardelle primavera, tomato sauce & assorted vegetables (jwny-fusilli, i- angel hair)
main course: jwny- roasted chicken w/ potatoes & broccolini, i- cod fish w/ roasted cherry tomatoes & lemon caper sauce
dessert: tiramisu (house signature)
* complimentary bread & spread free flow on the side
and i shall make special mention for the following:
mushroom soup was unlike the typical canned soup. the taste & texture was full to the taste like it was ground mushroom through & through.
pasta is inevitably the best i've ever tried so far. the noodles were scalded just right, and the chewy sensation remains consistant. the sauce was fresh made puree, and nicely balanced taste. there was no need for salt & pepper sprinkles for taste.
tiramisu was like an icing on the cake. once it went down, i completely felt no urge to find other stuff to munch.
Complimentary bread was awesome.
Carbonara was good - had a really good smoky flavour. Not too creamy. Big portions.
Panna Cotta - not fantastic, too big, unrefined, lacked flavour, too little berries & sauce.
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Prego is one of Singapore’s favourite Italian restaurants that offer diners an authentic Italian family style dining experience. Chef de Cuisine Antonio Facchinetti presents 40 of his all-time favourite dishes (Unlimited Ala Carte Order ) in addition to an impressive and wide buffet spread of the freshest seafood, authentic Italian antipasti and desserts.
Some things for the chef to take note: We tried all their 3 types of fish dishes in their Top 40 menu. Nothing wrong with the food, just that the meat of the fish were a tad not tender enough we felt; and a little bland for our tastes.. Their Tiramisu was very good during the first round with appropriate espresso "punch", generous cocoa powder, soft and creamy texture. But when they replenished it with the second Tiramisu, it was not as good as the first one and the cocoa powder was much lesser... a little lacking in consistency here...
Overall Impression: It depends on which staff serving you, some were infectiously cheery while a few were without any smile. We were initially served by a male staff who looked lethargic but luckily we were served by a very efficient young female staff throughout the remainder of our meal there.
We were really overwhelmed by the huge place and the huge food selection here, with many antipasti, tasty salad, ala-carte pasta and so many other main dishes to choose from.
The live music performance + homely ambience and the food really made a very enjoyable Sunday Lunch for our dining experience here. Do give it a try if you're craving for some authentic Italian cuisine, soothing live band, in a lively setting!
One of the worst Italian meals I can recall. Incompetent service and a half-cooked pizza on a synthetic base. Avoid