More and more, we see the concepts of tapas and fusion food colliding and East 8 is the epitome of it. When you step into the restaurant, you’ll hear a playlist of Korean songs and gorgeous covers of chart-toppers (the playlist was so awesome that we had to enquire about it after dinner)! It’s interesting that half the number of tables here are actually al-fresco, on patches of artificial grass.
A mix of monochromes and industrial, I won’t say East 8 is fascinating in terms of its decor (don’t you think our local cafés are starting to set the bar a little too high?). However, the dim lighting from the filament bulbs by night do make the ambience really suitable for date nights.
A.L.T. [Avocado & lemon on yellowfin tuna chunks] ($16) – A must-order when you’re here! The tuna chunks were fresh and firm. Evenly coated with a sauce that tasted a little tangy, with some components of sesame oil, the tuna was refreshing and helped to whet our appetites further. I especially loved the guacamole – mushy and littered with cubes of fresh avocado – a perfect marriage to the tuna chunks.
Portobello Fries [Crispy truffle portobello mushroom fries w roasted garlic aioli] ($16) – The whiff of truffle scent was upon us when the dish was brought to the table. Cut into long strips, the portobello mushrooms were coated with breadcrumbs before being thrown into the oil. The exterior was crunchy while the interior was soft and spongey. The nature of the mushroom created a contrasting texture that is far more superior than the usual potato fries. The aioli was chilled and creamy, a nice complement to the new generation of ‘truffled fries’.
Sake Mussels [Sweet Norwegian mussels cooked in sake broth] ($19) – This dish was decent but I have an inkling that the mussels were frozen mussels (feel free to correct if I’m wrong). Though the usual white wine was replaced with sake, I didn’t find much difference in them. I’ll say, try out the other dishes on the menu as they sound way more unique than this.
Cream Drunken Chicken [Poached half chicken roulade dressed in chinese wine cream sauce, king oyster mushroom] ($18) – Unlike the mussels which were decent (but just not special enough), I was disappointed in this one. The chinese wine was obviously masked by the strong taste of cream and the chicken was less than tender. I understand that chicken breast meat is usually used in roulade (and I’m a drumstick person), but probably a different method of cooking it may result in more succulence. The oyster mushrooms were lovely though!
K-Town [Watermelon Soju – Freshly-blended watermelon juice w soju & lemon zest in watermelon bowl] ($68) – Guess what? Dine at East 8 on a Thursday and you can get 50% off their Watermelon Soju, which makes this cocktail $34 only! It’s been a dream to have watermelon soju (from a watermelon) and I was glad to have fulfilled this dream here. However, I must say that the proportion of soju could have been improved but I guess it’s the experience that counts!
East 8 has some really unique lava cake desserts that I didn’t get to try ‘cos I was simply too full from the dishes above! Moreover, the watermelon soju was definitely a tummy-filler between just 2 people. I’d say that so long as you choose the right dishes from their wide range of tapas, it’ll be easy to want to come back here over and over again.