Saturday, November 14, 2015

Tin Hill Social - Expertly Classy Food in Laidback Settings

Somewhere just on the outskirts of Turf City, Tin Hill Social is almost inconspicuous. Nestled next to a pony riding school, it is almost a jewel hidden in plain sight.

Step in and you will see it resembles a laid back Australian cafe. High attic ceilings, and a simple decor betrays some very fine cooking in the kitchen.

Chef Michael Lewis hails from some quality establishments in Sydney, and has just taken over the reigns a few months back.

He has already reworked the dinner menu from its previous incarnation. And while the previous food was alright, it was hardly memorable either. Judging from the Instagram feed of the past, it was cafe bistro fare.

With Michael onboard, he has added much class and pizzaz to the proceedings. There are still some hay inspired items, but his plates come out looking very restaurant worthy and certainly taste that way too.

Sous Vide Octopus Leg

Most of his new additions are only available for dinner now. This octopus leg dish is a stunner by all accounts. The buttery tender texture will leave one swooning, and a garnish of parsley pistu and romesco dressing makes the ideal sidekick to the octopus star. Colourful and nicely dressed.

XO Scallops

The scallops with XO sauce works well too, though not quite with the same ecstasy as the octopus. Lightly scented with oriental hints, the XO sauce and crunch gives a nice counter to the ocean sweetness of the protein. Another colourful and well plated dish with lovely bursts of flavours and textures.

Smoked Brisket Burger

The star of the day belongs to this marvellous brisket burger. The buns are par for the course but due consideration is given with the light toasting of the sesame bread. A purple cabbage mash and sweetened caramelised onions form the requisite base.

But it is the smoked brisket that takes this to an incredible level of deliciousness. Hickory and hay smoked for twelve hours, the resulting flavours explode with nirvana beef fat and smoky aromas that will just leave you astounded for hours.

The confit garlic gives a bright and sweet temperance to the juicy and lardy Waygu beef lubrication, and helps to cut through the fat somewhat. But seriously, with meat this well smoked and flavoured, you should just lap up the fats on its own. The smoked Waygu is so good, it deserves a second configuration minus the burger.

Sous Vide Short Ribs

Another beef highlight is the 72 hours sous vide short ribs. Grain fed, and finished off with a nice colour at the end for the compulsory caramelisation, it is beef goodness at its best.

Medium rare tenderness with the moistness still expertly retained, the side of wasabi beef crisps proves to be a revelation. Working as a chips accompaniment, the kick in the nostril hit of wasabi helps to alleviate the richness while the miso puree sends this classic European plate into the rising sun domain for a brief respite.

Chef Michael is still refining his dishes and menus, but judging from the list of plates listed above, Tin Hill Social is already a good reason to travel to this far out place in the Merlion city.

Wasabi Fries

I like how he takes care with his individual components on his plates, not just choosing them based on looks. But each of his elements makes sense in the final construct of his food, and his cooking certainly boasts of a highly skilled background and knowledge.

The food is unquestionably refined and in spite of the more casual atmosphere, his elegant plates do compliment the easy going vibes really well.

Which is more than what I will say for a lot of other establishments. Indeed, Tin Hill's gastronomy is expertly classy and undeniably delicious.

Tin Hill Social
100 Turf Club Road

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