Daily: 07:00 - 23:00
Enjoy a refreshing Mediterranean dining experience at The Knolls. Choose from an authentic Mediterranean lunch and dinner menus or have a leisurely afternoon tea on the terrace overlooking the reflecting pools and the South China Sea.
For more reviews and photos, visit hungrybaker.co
The Knolls at Capella has a Sunday brunch buffet (from $128++), with options for alcohol such as champagne, beer and cocktails, but we’re not drinkers (unless you count copious amounts of bubble tea). We opted for the non-alcohol option, which comes with a free flow of mocktails, soft drinks and fresh juices.
The restaurant is brightly lit with full-glass windows, and cozy, with a partition ever few tables. It’s more long than wide. The selection, while not large, is high-quality. There are cooking stations at the entrance, with dishes such as grilled meats, beef, fish, super-delicious vegetables, and an ice cream station.
Step in and you’ll see an almost-empty seafood bar offering a variety of freshly shucked oysters and cold prawns. Almost empty, as they shuck it on the spot. The oysters are large, juicy and so fresh that there’s none of that icky taste you get at most restaurants. I’m not a fan of oysters in Singapore as it’s hard to find good ones here, but these were excellent and I had four.
There is also sushi, sashimi, little bites including foie gras, caviar and smoked salmon, and a selection of cured meats and salads.
After that it’s dessert galore. The desserts on offer are on a par with the savoury dishes. There are many beautiful cakes and pastries set around a central table, cookies on another table, yet another laden with fruit, and another with a tower of macarons and more desserts.
One bad thing, though, is that the desserts are full-sized, which means it’s impossible to try all of them unless you go with a large group of dessert lovers. We were unable to finish the few that we took and it would be perfect if they came as petit fours or slightly smaller.
There is a cheese trolley which is rolled around the restaurant only near the end of the buffet, so if you leave early you may miss it. If by then you are too full to have the whole range, you could still choose to have only either the hard or soft cheeses, which the server would proceed to cut small slices of, along with crackers, dried fruit and nuts. Unfortunately, I was unable to try the ice cream, being stuffed to the gills.
For refreshments we both went for coconut juice, which came in the form of the fruit, cut open, instead of bottled. It was a nice surprise.
The most special part of the experience though, is a live band that goes from table to table serenading guests. They accept song requests too. As the restaurant is so small, the wonderful music envelops you and is the perfect way to round off the meal.
We had dinner at The Knolls before and it was such an excellent dining experience. We decided to try their Sunday brunch and to our disappointment, it didnt measure up at all. The selection of food was limited and wasn't worth for a brunch (each $150 nett w/o alcohol beverages). I believe it is only value for those who enjoy the wine or champange brunch.
The live band was wonderful and the service staff was polite; that's was the only saving grace for us. We wont be going back for brunch.
Had the restaurant week dinner on 18/03/13. Ambience wise was nothing to shout about having seated indoors. Lukewarm assorted breads were served together with its first of three course dinner, peach gazpacho. Cold and slightly sour soup which I thought could have prepared way advanced. The main dish was a slow cooked chicken breast with asparagus risotto. While the risotto was undercooked, the flavor was somehow detached. In my opinion, a simple dish that could be done much better by most restaurants. Last of the dish, mediocre and very common dessert, Raspberry Tart with Red Fruit Sorbet. Off the shelf raspberry sorbet , and you guessed it, fresh raspberry. The pastry was so hard that I gave up trying after one attempt in breaking it down. Service wise was good if only you want a very quiet dinner, as our water was only refilled once after several attempts in finding the staff. The bill? At $48++ plus $20++ (is it me or is it only this restaurant that charges more than the usual $35++ plus $20++ for restaurant week). Totally not worthy for 3 below average dishes. Now I can also understand why is it so empty. I had not wanted to go through the hassle of creating an account and just be only reading and finding good places to eat. But after tonight's encounter, I felt deeply that I have the responsibility to at least inform and let the rest of the hgw community know what to expect.
Point to note about The Knolls: you can have almost any kind of cuisine imaginable, from Balinese to Italian – but only if there are two of you. The entire menu comprises of set dinners for couples or groups, so if you’re flying solo, or just not the sharing type, your’e relegated to the far more limited a la carte menu. That observation aside, with the restaurants stunning sea view location at boutique hotel Capella’s poolside, we were happy to watch dusk settle into evening as the resident peacocks returned to roost.
We went for the baby romaine salad served with grilled asparagus ($22), and served alongside a toe-curlingly expensive Sauvignon Blanc ($20). The musky tang of the anchovies complemented the rich lemon aioli dressing perfectly, and the asparagus stalks were huge and juicy, but not in the least bit stringy. The main course was an oven-baked salmon papilotte ($32), which was a foil-baked dish that came with fresh scallops and prawns, and served with ribbons of Tuscan vegetables. It was wonderfully fragrant and bursting with flavor, the foil having retained all the moisture and taste of the ingredients.
Too full and satiated to try one of their signature desserts, we opted for a scoop of ice-cream to round the meal off. We were delighted with the scoop of mud pie ice-cream ($4) served on top of crushed cookies and flanked by blueberries on one side, and raspberries on the other. The Knolls is a spectacular locale for a romantic early evening meal. Just make sure you go with someone to get the most out of it.