Wednesday, 8 August 2012

DISH OF THE MONTH AUGUST 2012 - Guy Savoy's "Caviar and Potato Stones, Smoked Egg Sabayon"

As the last month’s been pretty busy fine dining-wise (not that I’m complaining!), it was a hard call naming a single “Dish of the Month” for August 2012.  But a creation from Guy Savoy is the winner by a whisker, followed very closely by Hong Kong's Cépage and Catalunya Singapore.

Executive Chef Eric Bost of Guy Savoy, Marina Bay Sands
Eric Bost’s “Potato Stones” is a compelling composition, playing on themes of birth and regeneration.  Unsurprisingly, eggs and earth feature heavily in his presentation, so baked potatoes are dressed up in edible clay.  An eggshell of smoked sabayon is cracked at the table and released onto your plate as a warm, frothy sauce.  A nugget of vanilla sponge adds some sweet bass notes while bobbles of oscietra caviar add their salty tang.  If you want more “earthiness”, the sabayon eggs rest in a nest of potato “tagliatelle”, deliciously crisp, light ribbons of spud.  Complicated as it may be in execution, it is rather simple in concept, think baked potato, chips, custard, vanilla sponge.  The flavours are fresh, clear and restrained. 

The “Potato Stones” are normally available only on Guy Savoy’s dinnertime Menu Prestige, which will set you back S$450 (around US$360).  However, Bost will happily prepare them with a little advance notice regardless of which menu you are enjoying, and I highly recommend that you give them a try.

10 Bayfront Avenue
#02-01, Casino Level 2
Marina Bay Sands
Tel: +65 6688 8513

Honourable Mentions: 

(1)  Sebastien Lepinoy’s terrine of foie gras and anago (Japanese ocean eel), which I enjoyed at Au Jardin but is a regular feature of his menu at Cépage in Hong Kong.

I have had similar versions playing with the same ingredients, notably at Sage in Kuala Lumpur when it was under Takashi Kimura, but Lepinoy's layering of flavours and textures was simply stunning.

23 Wing Fung Street
Hong Kong
Tel: +852 2861 3130

(2)  I haven’t had the chance to write up my visit to Catalunya at the Fullerton Pavilion, Singapore.  You know, the one with the former chef and manager from El Bulli?  Well, I hate to disappoint the molecular groupies, but it's not a new El Bulli for Asia and it's not trying to be.  It is therefore appropriate that two of my favourites here are homely preparations elevated by little touches of genius.  Alain Devahive's suckling pig with “lemon purée” (an emulsion of the white lemon pith marinated in sugar) is very good, with lemon fragrance and the bitterness of the pith slicing through the fatty pork.  The “torrija”, in essence a deep-fried Catalan rendition of bread and butter pudding, blends crunch and the fragrance of spices with the complexity of smoked milk ice-cream.

The View from the Catalunya Dining Room
With such stupendous views, I think the best views from any restaurant in Singapore bar none, Catalunya probably does not need to serve such good food, but I hope it continues doing so.  I have a dinner appointment there in a couple of weeks and will report back in more detail.

The Fullerton Pavilion
82 Collyer Quay
Singapore 049327
Tel: +65 6534 0188

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