By Mildred Jones
Osteria Art is located at One Raffles, south of the mouth of the Singapore River. Raffles Place was developed from 1823 to 1824 into a prominent commercial area. Established around what was known as the commercial square used to be two storey buildings (sometimes four storeys in height) that housed merchants, banks and trading companies.
Osteria Art, itself, has a unique interior with a semi-circle bar as you enter, where an astounding showcase of wines are displayed. Waiters and staff orchestrate their daily duties to ensure their patrons are well served. The classic black and white marble floor is a beautiful contrast to the dark ornate wood surroundings. You almost expect to see swimming dolphin motifs as the restaurant has kept true to its Osteria charm. The restaurant owner is none other than Beppe De Vito, under the iLido Group. This restaurant can set you back a gran. But if you are there for the ‘Power Lunch’, then you are reading me. The menu is capped at $35. Step up to the ‘temple’ of food where masculine leather chairs and soft warm lights emit from the low lamps, invitingly.
The starter presents beautiful bread, crispy and browned on the outside with a soft white fluffy inside. Accompanying with it, are the extra virgin olive oils. To tease you with the appetiser is the, Foie Gras with pumpkin cream and almonds. A thick and fattened slice stands amidst the sweetened sauce. The alternative is, the cauliflower soup.
The introduction of the main is a magnificent piece of grilled sea bass with a smoky top layer and moist white flesh within. It is accompanied with Ruccola salad and sweet Pachino tomatoes from the Southeast Coast of Siciliy, specifically, the Ciliegino variety. Here again, you could have the choice of the rack of lamb, braised with rosso di vino or the linguine de lobster, as the other. The freshness of the meat is guaranteed with its rich bisque lobster sauce on pasta perfection.
Desert was a surprising Mango cake with a smooth velvety exterior. It is glazed with the fruitiness of plum mangoes, sitting on soft sponge cake, delectable.
To finish off, you could relax and have a sober coffee with candied almonds in gold thin foil, a real treat.
A warm needed sensation, when the looking glass reflects the pouring monsoon season. If you are lucky and the weather abates, the alfresco dining place could be for your choosing. The square ‘forum’ is a welcoming place on a sunny day or on cool evenings, when you could very well step out and enjoy the food fare.
Photo Acknowledgement: Osteria Art, Singapore