If there is one restaurant that you must not miss out on this year, it would be The Black Swan. Established by the Lo & Behold Group behind White Rabbit (don’t they just love animals?), The Black Swan is located right in the heart of CBD. The restaurant-bar oozes a chic-swanky vibe, with a touch of vintage and I would go so far to say that the ambience and decor seemed to be a scene from The Great Gatsby movie, brought to live!
Classy and elegant setting at the dining area. Before I move on to talk about the food, I must mention how fabulous service was here! The service staff were all very eager to introduce the menu to you and they spare no efforts in making you feel hospitable. Empty dishes were cleared swiftly and glasses constantly refilled. I was highly impressed.
Happy Hour: Flute of Champagne & 2 Complimentary Oysters ($18) – What a deal! No wonder the bar was crowded when I reached at 7pm. Before I start raving how good these oysters were, it’ll be good for you to know that I don’t take oysters at all. Not even at hotel buffets where they are freshly-shucked as I still find them fishy and slimy. Hence, it is a huge deal for me to crave for more after my first. First at Black Swan that is. The complimentary oysters were huge, creamy and satisfying. The champagne mignonette (sauce) was a winner too. Subsequently, when I tried ordering the same oysters, I was informed that these were not sold ala-carte from the Oyster Bar… as they were the least premium (yep, my inner voice went “wow” too).
Black Pearl Oysters from France [Plump & silky textured, with a mild brine flavour & nutty hint] ($48/half dozen) – The Black Pearl Oysters were recommended by the staff after understanding that we prefer light and sweet flavours. These were smaller in size than the complimentary ones, yet equally amazing. I won’t deny that I couldn’t differentiate how more and less premium the different types of oysters tasted, but surely these were the best ones I’ve had yet. Or, you could let me know your recommendations! The in-house Oyster Bar serves 4 types of oysters in total, ranging from $38 to $54 per half dozen.
Truffle Cut Fries ($9) – Very reasonably priced, a waft of truffle was evident upon hitting the table. The fries were short and chunky – perfect dimensions to soak up the truffle essence.
Baked Bone Marrow, Chilli, Kombu Crostini ($18) – A must-try dish on the web and by word-of-mouth, I couldn’t see the beauty in bone marrows, sadly.
Pan-seared Foie Gras w Yuzu Marmalade, Valrhona 70% Bitter Chocolate, Toasted Brioche ($28) – The foie gras was seared to perfection, without leaving it too dry in the centre. The chocolate was freshly shaven at the table and even though the taste of chocolate didn’t stand out in such a heavy dish, it was still detectable. However, I am not inclined to order this dish again unless the price is marked down.
Chilean Seabass [Quinoa, bacon jam, roasted beetroot, bacon veloute] ($36) – The seabass was very well done as it was melt-in-your-mouth, despite being pan-fried. All the ingredients came together wonderfully to create a sauce that was light on the palette. A Big Plate that I would highly recommend!
Duck Leg Confit [36 hour sous-vide, bacon potatoes, fresh thyme, mustard sauce] ($36) – Another favourite from the list of Big Plates, the duck leg confit would be worth every dollar. I’m guessing that the sous-vide method did a part in producing such seasoned and fork-tender meat, which would then be pan-fried to achieve its crispy exterior. Yummy!
The Black Swan Burger [Seasoned chuck, mature cheddar, sunny side up egg, streaky bacon, bibb lettuce, toasted bun, fries] ($26) – A happy sight to behold, though less so in terms of taste. The patty was too thick and lacked seasoning. You can save your calories on this one.
Date & Toffee Pudding [Caramelised banana, medjool dates, rum, vanilla ice cream] ($14) – This was good but surely not the best. Actually, I was more interested with the vanilla ice cream that was spiked with a dash of rum. Bravo combination!
Coconut Creme Caramel [Gula melaka, candied citrus & ginger] ($14) – The real pudding on the other hand was outstanding! Not the most conventional usage of ingredients in Western desserts, they pulled off well. The pudding had the right firmness, beautifully complemented by the sweet gula melaka sauce. The taste of ginger in the crunchy toppings was very subtle – good for me!
The Black Swan had left much of an impression in me and I can’t wait to bring more people here! Ambience, check. Service, check. Food, check. Alcohol, check.
“Here’s to the rose coloured glasses of life.” – The Black Swan Restaurant
The Black Swan
19 Cecil Street
Phone: 8181 3305
*Closed on Sunday