Sunday, September 27, 2015

The Halia at Singapore Botanic Gardens - An Exemplary Dining Affair

Beautiful surroundings will accompany you when you dine at The Halia at the Singapore Botanic Gardens. And the open air, alfresco area is surprisingly cooling and comfortable.

Greenery makes for such an amazing dining experience, and in and among the flowers and leaves, the Halia manages to serve up an intoxicating gastronomic time for all who come here.

Halia means ginger, and you will expect there will be a mixture of modern fare mixed with some local touches.

The cool thing is the Halia does not overdo it on the fusion factor and hence, the food that comes out from the diligent kitchen has just a subtle tone of Asia influences. This restrained use of local flavours works in its favour, and in more ways than one.

Goat's Cheese and Honey Mousse

This is just the perfect starter. Beautifully crafted mousse of goat's cheese and honey that is rich, creamy and sweet. The tomato salsa on the side to counter all these luxurious flavours is more than just handy, it is just as well executed.

Colourful and delicious, this is one of those dishes that you will keep coming back for more. The mousse is just so fabulous.

Lime and Ginger Tuna and Yellowfin Kinilaw

A Filipino inspired salad like dish of fresh tuna and yellowfin fish, it is like an Asian inspired ceviche. The extra addition of crispy wanton skins gives it a playful texture and crunch. The avocado is just as inspired to give it some gravitas and anchors the whole plate of flavours nicely.

Wild Alaskan Black Cod

Instead of infusing this prized fish with a miso dressing like most places, the Halia has gone lighter and with a more refreshingly subdued sauce of pickled ginger jus that brings out the natural oils of the cod wonderfully.

A side of ginger sambal gives it a nice kick to the palate and the long beans rounds up a perfectly satisfactory dish.

Spice Islands Marinated Lamb Loin

The lamb loin dish is even better. Perfectly cooked lamb with a beautiful pink center and the requisite moistness and tenderness.

What is surprising is the curried wild rice that adds so much crunch to the dish that is akin to eating a savoury pulot hitom with meat. More pickled ginger and coconut is added to balance the flavours of this dish.

Die Die Must Have Chocolate

This year, I have been fortunate to savour some of the best chocolate desserts ever. Add this to the list. Despite the cliche name, this chocolate dish has the classic and proven profile of chocolate and raspberry.

Each element has been executed flawlessly, the sorbet in particular stands out. Even the chocolate marshmallow manages to go down well with this anti-marshmallow guy.

Ginger and Spice, All Things Nice

The ginger frozen nougat parfait is the star of the night. Perfectly made, and making use of the restaurant's signature ingredient to the fullest, it is one of those desserts that will linger on for a long time.

The spiced up pineapple sauce adds the necessary citrusy element that keeps making the dessert flavours pop in my mouth, and dancing on my gastronomic memory for a few nights afterwards too.

I came here with high expectations. They were all surpassed by some way. The Halia with its gorgeous surroundings and well considered cuisine makes the ideal date restaurant.

The Halia
1 Cluny Road
Singapore Botanic Gardens

No comments:

Post a Comment