28 October, 2008

Garibaldi Italian Restaurant & Bar - Too Pretentious for HFB

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Small talk: HFB's version 2.0 comes with Google Maps for the lost souls on the road. Hope it helps all those who needs direction to all the places HFB had reviewed before! :) Let me know what you think.
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Garibaldi
, located along Purvis Street, is part of The Garibaldi Group of Restaurants helmed by award-winning Chef de Cuisine Roberto Galetti and his team. An Italian dinning place that provides a fine exemplar of contemporary, stylish and elegant dining experience all rolled into one, it came no surprise that the tantalising menu emphasises authentic Italian gastronomy primed with the best ingredients imported directly from Italy.

Stepped past the seemingly discreet sliding door and one will be ushered to an elegant bar that offers a great selection of wines by the glass and excellent cocktails – HFB can imagined this to be a perfect after-work to-be-seen setting for chic finance executives and lawyers to mingle at and network.

Make a left turn, and one will find the sombre interior of the small dining area coerce on you – call me unsophisticated but HFB certainly didn’t take to the air-of-pretentious atmosphere of the restaurant.

Also, having a row of smartly dress yet clueless service staff standing at the side of the passageway greeting and staring at HFB while he is seated with his peers add on to his already discomfort. Kudos to the Complimentary Bread & Balsamic Vinaigrette, which was one of the better renditions that HFB had tried – certainly no one will complain if one goes for a second serving.

For the Antipasti e Insalate, HFB plumped for the Capesante Al Taleggio, or Grilled US Scallops with Porcini Mushroom and Truffled Taleggio Fondue ($25.00). Being a big fan of porcini mushroom, the sautéed nutty flavoured shrooms along with the intense creamy truffled Taleggio cheese was divine. However, HFB felt let down by the textured scallops that were slightly dry for his liking – he thought Sage, The Restaurant did a better job with their Seared Hokkaido Scallops with Normandy Sauce.

What’s an Italian dinner without pasta – the Linguine Al Granchio, or Linguine with Crab Meat and Vodka Sauce ($30.00) was commendable – nice aromatic vodka-infused tomato-cream sauce integrated with the flavours of the sea from the crab meat was simply blissful.

However, the serving portion was definitely pathetic and HFB could easily wolfed down another plate with ease.

Dessert was Fondente Al Cioccolato, or simply Molten Lava Chocolate Cake with Hazelnut Gelato and Raspberry Coulis ($18.00) – it didn’t wow me but definitely not the worse I have eaten.

However, accolades must be given to the hazelnut gelato that everyone around the table seemed to enjoy it.

Overall, 4 of us choked a total of $428.00 including a bottle of wine and taxes. HFB felt that the pricey wine was a total rip-off and service although professional, lacked cordiality.

Rating

Food: 3.5/5 (Mixed reviews, serving portion could be bigger)
Service: 3/5 (Professional, but lacked personal touch)
Ambience: 3/5 (Sophisticated decor but pretentious)
Price: 2/5 ($107.00 per pax is very expensive for the fare served)
Total: 11.5/20
36 Purvis Street,
#01-02, Talib Centre
Singapore 188613

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13 comments:

MissyGlutton said...

hehe you should have gone a few doors down to Gunther's.

Even my young sister who don't really enjoy fine dining, dislike this place.

HisFoodBlog said...

But Gunther's is by the same group, isn't it?

I think I am ok with fine dining, but its their impersonal, almost snobbish service that turns me off.

I truly believe one can provide professional service without being snobbish - afterall, aren't we all paying customers?

MissyGlutton said...

different chefs? the food ain't great here...

Maybe we were all ladies ... so they were nicer... though I had to admit they are slightly snobbish.

HisFoodBlog said...

Probably so since they are two different establishments.

Yah - unfortunately. Perhaps should give Gunther's a try and see whether the service is the same.

Steve said...

As we've said before on this blog, don't piss HFB off! I take it that it wasn't that there was an aloof or snobby attitude towards customers, but rather that there was plenty of show of service (i.e., numbers of staff) but no commensurate level of service..? If so, then that is just bad management - and for the price you paid for that meal, cannot be excused.

The Grilled US Scallops with Porcini Mushroom and Truffled Taleggio Fondue did, however, sound a treat.

The Bimbo said...

But it LOOKS delicious! *sad*

HisFoodBlog said...

Steve: Hello! How have you been? Nice to hear from you again.

With regards to their service, I just felt that there wasn't a connection. They weren't exactly friendly to begin with - no hint of smile that night. Maybe they were just too caught up with executing professional service.

Bobo: Ya, the pasta was quite good. :(

P. Chong said...

But Gunter's is even more expensive. We were "pushed" the degustation menu - small servings. The waiter pushed the menu quite hard...and our mistake was we didn't ask how much the menu was...thinking it would be similar to the menu du jour...which was only $28...we knew it was going to be more, but not much more...it ended up costing about $200 per head without alcohol for lunch. Our hostess (um, the person who invited us there, and paid lunch) was surprised, as were we.

Granted the food was quite good as well, but a bit pricey for the quality.

HisFoodBlog said...

Yes from what I heard, but $200 per head for lunch is ridiculous. I can't imagine the total bill when you include wine in it.

I agree. Garibaldi's food was good all right but for such pricing and service, once is enough.

sweetpea said...

Have you tried "Le Pont de Vie" at 26 Kandahar Street. Their food is also excellent but less pricy and certainly not pretentious.

HisFoodBlog said...

Hi sweetpea,

Nope I have not, would love to though :)

kaioucat said...

May I have ur permission to link my blog post on the same topic to urs?

His Food Blog said...

Hi kaioucat,

Sure, go ahead.

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