Most of the restaurants I go to leave a big impression on me. Each restaurant generally has one or two dishes that leave a huge impression on me. And then there’s a dish that changes the way you think about something forever. Those come by only every few restaurants, and one of them is the Firedoor steak.
It was the thought of that steak that made me book Firedoor again, even though this time I would be dining alone and wouldn’t actually be able to order the steak. But I also think this place made headlines after I visited because they had a goldfish to accompany solo diners at one point? I could be wrong on that. Either way, I was eager to come back.
Yes! Chaco Bar! I’d only been once before for ramen, but this time I really wanted to check our their yakitori for dinner. When I ate here, Chaco Bar and Chaco Ramen were still the same place and ramen was a lunch time only thing, but since then they’ve been super successful and split into two different venues!
Quay was the second fine dining restaurant I visited back in 2011. I really enjoyed the first experience, from the view, to the decor, to the food, especially the pork jowl dish! And everything else. To this day, some of the dishes I had then are are still prominent in my memory and a lot of other restaurants trigger the memories of that visit, notably the marron with grapefruit, the congee, and the pork jowl.
Recently they renovated, and started featuring crumpets on their menu instead of the usual bread options. There’d been a crumpet craze, and I joined in that craze when Saint Peter did uni on crumpets (which are SOOOO good!). So, I decided, now’s the time to revisit!
Ah Inua. A super duper expensive place, that I really wanted to go to when I heard it opened, but after seeing how much it cost compared to actual Japanese restaurants, I didn’t want to go. But Thomas Frebel runs it, so…. Oh the agony!
Originally I wasn’t going to write about Momofuku Ko since I only went the bar as a last minute decision, but considering how big a name the actual Ko restaurant is, I figured, hey, I may as well post about it!
Per Se, the definition of traditional fine dining. Well, The French Laundry would be the ultimate goal, but any Thomas Keller restaurant is going to be of that calibre, that standard, that makes other chefs who they are.
Oh you gorgeous place. I remember seeing Eleven Madison Park come in 4th in San Pellegrino’s World’s 50 Best. It sounded like a nice place so I wrote it on my list. Little did I know that a year later, it’d come first! All of a sudden, my “little” restaurant was the most sought after in the world. Then it closed for renovations, and when it re-opened, was no longer the “best” restaurant in the world. Phew! That meant it would be *slightly* easier for me to get a booking. As a fully prepaid restaurant, the stakes were high, but all my bookings have been successful, where an online booking is available, so it was on!
Sometimes, I distinctly remember how I hear about a restaurant, and what possesses me to visit. Other times, I just forget! Wildair is one of those restaurants where I don’t remember exactly how I came to know the name. However, I do know why this place got my interest. It was contemporary, experimental, fun looking, and more importantly, walk-in friendly. I like keeping a list of interesting restaurants that don’t take reservations, or at a minimum, have the possibility of accommodating for walk ins, because I don’t like having strict plans when travelling, so I want to keep my food options open. The downside is that I have to decide within 30 minutes to an hour of the restaurants’ opening time, whether or not I’m going to go there.
Wildair is actually the baby sister of Contra, which is owned by the same people and is a more formal, degustation, bookings essential restaurant. I have a strong preference to restaurants that have the same calibre food in a more casual setting, so Wildair was my must go to non-reservation place.