10 February, 2012

Fat Cow @ Camden Medical Centre, A MooOOrgasm Experience

What do you get when you crossed a Japanese sushi restaurant with a Steakhouse? You get Fat Cow, a “Japanese-inspired meat atelier” located at Camden Medical Centre, conceived by The Big Idea Group, which was formed by the merger of the people behind Kinki Restaurant and Bar and The Marmalade Pantry – who understand a thing or two about creating food establishments with a little swank and seduction.

Fat Cow

One gets to sit around the open kitchen, or “workshop”, behind a U-shaped counter akin to a sushi bar, and subjected to all the teasing and seduction by the chefs who would prepare, cook and serve your artisan meat right before your eyes.

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And if all that food porn isn’t enough to pique your curiosity, Executive Chef Wing Lam had conjured up a special Valentine’s Day Set Menu priced at $388++ per person to tempt you to succumb (available only on 14 Feb).

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Upon arrival, guests would be greeted with Champagne & Canapé along with Foie Gras with Sweet Potato Brioche and Alaskan King Crab Tempura, which unfortunately wasn’t available for tasting when HFB was there. But as a goodwill gesture, their signature cocktail of Kurai Tenshi ($28.00), meaning Dark Angel, was suggested and HFB went along with it. Subtly flavoured with ginger wine, a whiskey lover would appreciate that Suntory Yamazaki 12 Years was used to create this concoction. Deceivingly flavourful and crisp with a sweet finishing from the Kyoto Maple Syrup, this drink pack a real punch and HFB was careful to sip moderately throughout the dinner. Dark Angel indeed!!!

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First Course consisted of Sashimi of Chutoro and Hirame along with Sushi of Uni Yuba, Truffle Tai Sushi with Beluga Caviar, Negi Otoro and Wagyu Aburi.

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Beautifully arranged like a bouquet, HFB could only say Fat Cow took pride in their sashimi. The fish were really fresh and soy sauce that came without wasabi was almost redundant.

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While it was his first foray of eating Yuba, or soy skin on a sushi, he didn’t quite appreciate that it almost fully overwhelmed his beloved Uni, or sea urchin, as they both shared the same creamy and milky properties, thus unable for the subtle salty nature of the uni to shine through. A real pity as the uni looked really delectable!

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Although the Tai and the Truffle was a hit, it was the Beluga caviar that ultimately excelled from first to last. The salty and buttery aftertaste that lingered within the mouth was simply divine! In view of the fact that that wasn’t the first time HFB ate Negi Otoro, he wasn’t too blown over by it, but that being said, it was really clean and refreshing on the palate. As for the Wagyu Aburi, the only word he that came to his mind when he consumed it was “Mmmmmm”. Enough said.

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HFB was served Fat Cow’s signature Heart of Palm Salad as the Second Course. Along with the heart of palm that is usually harvested from the inner core and growing bud of a certain palm tree, the salad came with Mizuna, Yuzu Jelly and Sesame Dressing. A great appetiser that really opened HFB’s palate, the salad was invigorating and ingredients were really crisp, even though he felt the sesame dressing was a little too heavy for this salad.

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The Third Course of Kegani Soup or clear broth of Horsehair Crab was probably the dish that let HFB down the most – crabmeat was made into balls and stuffed with Edamame – so much so that it only seeks to heighten the anticipation of the Main Course. The clear soup was clean and light, but HFB would have been more appreciative if whole crab meat or crab leg were used rather as he found it lacked the natural texture of the crustacean.

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The highlight of the dinner finally arrived when HFB was served not one, not two, but three, yes, THREE, sampling portion of different types of beef. From top left clockwise, Australia Blackmore Wagyu Ribeye MS8+, US Snake River Farms Wagyu Ribeye, and the Japanese Saga A3 Wagyu Ribeye from Kagoshima Prefecture.

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While the Australian premium pure-blood wagyu had an evenly homogeneous marbling, it was the US Wagyu that had a more pronounced meat flavour profiling, signature of American beef, amid its tender texture. But both had to make way for the intense marbling and subtle sweetness of the Japanese Saga beef. This is beef at its best and even though HFB was served two kinds of dipping sauce of garlic soy and ginger soy, it was without a doubt never needed. And if there was one word HFB could coin to describe this dining experience, it would be MooOOrgasm!!

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Once the meat was outta the way, we were promptly served the dessert – White Chocolate Cheese Cake topped with a Candied Organic Rosebud. If you have a sweet tooth, this cheese cake is definitely for you. It was truly well-executed – really dense and light; but a little too sweet for HFB. Aesthetically aside, it also didn’t help that the rosebud was also sugary.

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HFB then head over to the bar where the Digestive of Setsuai, a cocktail of Plymouth Gin, Lemon Juice, Japanese Belle Rose, Aphrodite’s Bitters & Sparking, was served. A really sexy and smoothing drink; it did its job of cleansing the palate, and almost urging HFB for a second round of food, or otherwise something naughty after a very seductive meal.

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Disclaimer: No ratings would be given, as this is an invited media tasting. HFB would also like to take this opportunity to thank Fat Cow and FoodNews for their hospitality.

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07 February, 2012

Our Korner @ The Scarlet, PLUS Valentine's Day Package Giveaway

With a revamp of Desire at The Scarlet comes a completely new restaurant and bar all-day dining concept, Our Korner, which features international and Asian casual comfort favourites in their menu.

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And the overhaul also meant The Scarlet did away with the posh intimate furnishing of Desire and transform it to a more welcoming and cosy environment of Our Korner.

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HFB got going with Thyme To Roll ($16.00), Our Korner’s signature cocktail concoction of Bourbon, Brown Sugar, Lemon Juice, Orange Curacao, Thyme and Blueberries. A cocktail that came packed with punch – it had robust flavours and sets the tone for the evening’s dinner.

Our Korner

By marrying the cornerstone of Asian favourites with Western influence, one would thus be expected to kick-start a meal with their signature Laksa Clam Chowder Soup ($14.00) that came served in a focaccia bread bowl and a drizzled of truffle oil. A harmony of our local delight with a popular western soup, HFB thought it was a good match – creamy and nicely spiced, yet didn’t came across as too heavy for the palate. That being said, he didn’t quite tasted the “truffled” finishing, even if he felt the soup was superior enough on its own.

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HFB was also introduced to their Oriental Wings ($16.00) that was said to be marinated with 14 different herbs and spices – thus offering the nice complex flavours bursting forth with every bite. Although HFB felt that the wings could do with a little more salt, it was not something a dip of the homemade spicy sauce couldn’t lend a hand to.

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HFB was pleasurably satisfied with Our Korner’s Chilli Crab Sliders ($22.00). Essentially mini burgers that contained patties made with crab meat and diced water chestnuts; it came accompanied with their signature chilli crab sauce on the side. HFB thought the patties were really well executed – well breaded crust with choke full of crab meat with added crunch, the chilli crab sauce enclosed a nice medley of spicy, sweet and savoury all at one go. This is chilli crab made simple, yet divine!

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Using chuck cuts from US short rib cooked with red wine veal jus, the Beef Ragout ($35.00) was full-bodied and a perfect combination for the garlic rice. If he had to pick on it, it was the portion was petite as a main, at least for HFB.

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Seated on an Almond Tart and came with Dark Chocolate Cream and Nutella, the decadent Nutella Chocolate Tart ($14.00) was sinfully rich, but not too sweet. Definitely worth saving your stomach for it after a meal!

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And to wash it all down, the Orchid Vanilla Tea ($7.00 per pot) would be an excellent choice. Sourced from Tea Forte, it came with a nice designed tea bag; and the tea had a nice pleasant vanilla scent amid the floral finishing. Comforting!

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And if you are a morning person, Our Korner also offers Breakfast Buffet with Ala Carte option for $30.00++ per pax. Indulge in Western breakfast classics like Croque Madame, or Eggs Benedict and Asian delights like Laksa and Prawn Noodle along with a comprehensive buffet spread that includes unlimited serving of Soy Beancurd that rivals that from popular hawker stalls!

To top it off, The Scarlet is generously giving away a “Tease me all night…” Valentine’s Day package worth $360++ to ONE lucky reader! YES YOU READ THAT RIGHT!!

[UPDATE] Congratulations to Fiona of S852XXX5H. You have won yourself The Scarlet's Valentine's Day Package. The management will contact you shortly with the details.

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Package consist of:
- One night accommodation in Deluxe Room
- A bottle of Laurent Perrier champagne accompanied with praline macaroons
- Naughty lovers’ amenities
- 20% off Valentine’s dinner set menu at Our Korner or Breeze during stayhttp://www.blogger.com/img/blank.gif
- Complimentary breakfast for two

Terms and conditions:
- Bookings are subject to change and availability
- Package is not valid with other promotions
- Prizes are not exchangeable for cash
- All decisions made by the management are final

All you have to do is to use 5 words to describe The Scarlet (HINT: Answer can be found on www.thescarlethotel.com), and email your answers with your Name, NRIC and Contact Number to cory@grace-int.com by 9 February 2012 (Thu) 2359 hours.

Disclaimer: No ratings would be given, as this is an invited media tasting. HFB would also like to take this opportunity to thank Our Korner and The Scarlet for their hospitality.

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