My friends working in the Shenton Way area have been raving about this new restaurant which they also frequent for drinks. The restaurant shares the same name with a movie that came out in 2010.
Those that know me know that I am a big fan of Ember, helmed by Chef Sebastian Ng. When I heard he was consulting for a new restaurant, The Black Swan (TBS), I was eager to try it. It didn’t take long for me to get wind that the place had opened since it was a new hang out joint for my fine food and alcohol loving banker friends. I was planning to bring my family to The Black Swan for our weekly Sunday family dinner but alas it is closed on Sundays. Finally I found the opportunity (and motivation) to check it out in early October before my army reservist.
As you walk in, you will find yourself transported back to the 1930s.The frosted spherical lights, striking art deco fittings and stunning u-shape bar all contribute to the pitch perfect period feel. The menu features a fresh take on American and European bistro classics. As I was deciding what to eat, a familiar face, Sherri, came to take my order. About 16 years ago, I worked at Planet Hollywood and Sherri was the lead waitress then. Smartly dressed in a suit, she is the Assistant Manager at TBS and needless to say the service that night was impeccable.
|Katama Bay Oysters|
|Char-grilled beef tartare|
|The baked bone marrow served on an open bone|
We started with half a dozen Katama Bay Oysters. The oysters had a briny flavor with a salty, creamy roundness and was served with champagne mignonette. The char-grilled beef tartare featured hand chopped US beef tenderloin, nashi pear and toasted sesame and served with grilled bread. I thought the quick searing of the meat made this tartare unique and tasty. The baked bone marrow served on an open bone was also unique as the pieces were chopped up into pieces that resembled one of my favourite dishes, Chai Tow Kway. The marrow mixed with chilli and kombu (Japanese kelp) tasted good however I did not quite like the texture done this way. I couldn’t spread it on the bread it came with and it felt like I was eating pieces of fat. Yes I know it is just bad but since I was going to be exercising the next two weeks, who cares?!
|Truffled egg and bacon confit|
My favourite appetizer has got to be the truffled egg and bacon confit. Served on an open face eggshell with a foamy top, the combination of truffle, runny egg and bits of bacon with some toasted bread was absolutely divine.
|36 hour braised duck leg confit|
|400 day grain-fed Australian Wagyu ribeye steak|
For the mains, we went with the 36 hour braised duck leg confit. The crispy skin duck leg was relatively moist inside and my only complain was that it was rather small. It was served atop sliced baked potatoes with bacon bits and mustard sauce which was made with the braising liquid of the duck. We saved the monster for last; a 16-18 oz 400 day grain-fed Australian Wagyu ribeye steak. It came with béarnaise sauce but you really don’t need the sauce. The well seasoned meat was tender, sweet and cooked perfectly to medium. The accompanying potato wedges were nicely crisp on the outside. There was a bulb of roasted garlic on the plate and seeing that I was ending my day, I took the opportunity to gobble a few pieces with the meat.
At the end of the meal, Sherri took us to see the private room downstairs which used to be the bank vault. The thick vault door is left intact which makes the room look extra private and safe. Overall we really enjoyed our meal at The Black Swan. Next time I have to go for the cocktails and The Black Swan burger which is inspired by the Malaysian Ramly burger.
The Black Swan: 16 Cecil Street Singapore 049704
~ Andre HuberExecutive Director