25 August, 2009

7atenine @ Esplanade

Described by one as his best meal in 2009, 7atenine (pronounced as “seven, eight, nine”) certainly came with much accolades among the foodies in the blogosphere.

Thus it was with high expectations that HFB decided to host a farewell lunch at this seemingly chic and elegant venue for a sublime dining experience.

Greeted by a curious looking object d’art when he walked in, HFB soon realised that it was inspired by an abstract-figured facade.

And if one was there for lunch, chances were they were in for 7atenine’s “Lunch Unlimited” offering @ $37++ per pax – where there’s no menu in sight, and diners are subjected to unlimited elements of surprises and heighten anticipation by the chef. First up, we had the Tomato and Thyme on Parmesan Biscuit – this was one of the two dishes that we did not complete. Uninspiring.

Another dish that looked better than it tasted, the pairing of Thai Asparagus Rolls with Wasabi just didn’t make the grade for HFB in this instance. The veggie was slightly tough too.

Sadly, the Homemade Ravioli with Parmesan Cheese and Ebi Bisque was flavoursome in a bad way - the cheese totally overwhelmed this dish i.e. the prawn flavoured broth waned in comparison.

To be honest, HFB certainly didn’t expect to spot the Maguro Sushi with Roe at his table. It wasn’t bad, but it certainly didn’t impressed. Perhaps the whole Japanese dish served in a western restaurant concept didn’t resonated well with him.

However, if there was any reason why HFB would be back at this establishment, the Beef Roll with Parmesan and Wild Herbs alone would sufficed as the answer. Served atop a piece of hot rock, one gets to enjoy the very bottom of the beef cooked, the middle portion medium rare, and the top raw. The play on the texture was amazing, the meat was succulent and the parmesan complemented the dish. We certainly did request for repeated servings of this dish.

The Crispy Pork Belly with Apple Puree was another brilliant dish. Nicely crisp on the exterior, the sweet and savoury combination also flourished. Marvellous!

The Jerusalem Artichoke Puree with Foam was flavourful despite its lacklustre appearance. HFB enjoyed this!

However, none can be said about the Cucumber Gazpacho with Crouton. It didn’t work well for HFB - acting as a palate cleanser, he found it too “green” for his liking.

The Caesar Salad was another one of the "ordinary" dishes that day - nothing quite wrong, yet nothing striking.

Another reorder we had was the Seared Scallops with Avocado Mousse and Red Grapefruit. The scallops were really sweet, luscious and nicely seared. HFB though craved the scallops to be bigger.

The Crab Salad Wrapped with Onion was the other dish that was left unfinished. Although in its defence, HFB had to say he enjoyed this dish pretty much. His guess was one probably need to enjoy onions to appreciate this dish. He surely did.

The Tuna Tartare with Miso Jelly was a dish of hits and misses. While he truly enjoyed the tuna, HFB felt that the miso jelly didn’t quite make the grade – its texture was chewy and the assortments of veggies within just didn’t quite gel.

Simply called the 7atenine Burger, the beef patties were really yummy and goes really well with the salsa coupled within. Only irk was that the bread was a tad oily.

One of their signatured dishes, the Udon Carbonara with Miso Scented Cream Reduction and Serrano Ham was in replacement of the beef roll, when we wanted for a third serving. Luckily for us, the Lolita of Spicc, Katharina, was gracious enough, as it was unavailable for the day’s lunch unlimited offering, to offer us a chance to savour her favourite dish. It was really a pleasant twist and in truth palatable, although HFB thought the noodles were slightly overcooked – al dente would have been much better welcomed.

Once we were done with the carbs, we signalled for the desserts to be served. The Cranberry Pastille with Chocolate Praline looked unimpressive yet it tasted oh so good. Simple yet packed a punch!

The Vanilla Mousse with Mango Ice-cream was really fruity and HFB thought it was a nice way to end the meal, along with Assorted Biscuits which went really well with our cup of coffee.

Overall, it was an out of the ordinary dining experience and although there were some misses with the dishes, there were others that makes a revisit a possibility.

Food: 3.5/5 (Several impressive dishes amid a few disappointing ones)
Service: 3.5/5 (Adequate but lack personal touch)
Ambience: 4/5 (Modern and stylish)
Price: 4/5 (Affordable for the standard of food served)
Total: 15/20
8, Raffles Ave
#01-10/12, Esplanade Mall
Singapore 039802

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Steve said...

Oooo aah. I got all tingly reading this. Amazing experience HFB. Totally bloody amazing.

tigerfish said...

Most of the food looks good but still I need to taste it to know.

Dora said...

Elegant pieces of food art!

His Food Blog said...

@Steve: Tingly reminds me of the twitching puffer fish I had in Japan. Ooops sorry that I started it.

@Tigerfish: Hmmm... but that's the reason for food blogs ain't it? We, the food bloggers do the tasting for you and tell you what we think. But then again, taste is subjective. Heh!

@Dora: Thank you!

kaka-pa said...

wow , just want to know how many people share the food as above .

His Food Blog said...

Hey kaka-pa,

There were 3 of us that day. Which explains why every dish comes in 3 portions for every serving. :)

kaka-pa said...


Thanks alot for your Info.
is Kid alos welcome there ?
btw ,for the crab : in face of the vister I think there is a bit hard to try crab in the Mellben,cos it take so long time for me..,and also cos for your comment B4. I will try to make a booking on both . realy nice blog .thanks

His Food Blog said...

Hi kaka-pa,

I would believe kids would be welcome there - but you can always check with the restaurant directly. :)

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