Thursday, 2 January 2014

Bistecca

Unique paintings on the wall

If I had to choose one restaurant recommendation that is long overdue, this would be it. Located along the row of shophouses at Mohamad Sultan Road is Italian Tuscan steakhouse, Bistecca. Bistecca which means beef steak in Italian has been open for nearly two years and has garnered a strong and loyal following of meat lovers. Like most steakhouses, Bistecca is dimly lit and uses a good amount of wood in its d├ęcor but what sets it apart is the unique paintings on the wall. Each painting features an elegant lady posing with a particular breed of animal. Something about the painting appeals to me, maybe because I am a meat loving male?


Cold cuts platter made in-house in Bistecca’s air drying fridge

We were greeted at the entrance and shown to our table which overlooks the kitchen. It was good to see the chefs preparing various dishes and using the charcoal grill to prepare steaks to perfection. For starters, we had the cold cuts platter which is made in-house in Bistecca’s air drying fridge. The air-dried beef (bresaola) was good and reminded me of beef jerky. The coppa was nicely salted with a hint of porkiness which I like however I thought the air-dried pork belly was a little bland in taste. For this I much prefer the Swiss Farmer Raw bacon that we sell although the difference is the smoking process which the Italians normally do not practice. 


Tthe burrata cheese at Bistecca is milky and creamy
Calarmari grilled and served with beetroot, goat cheese,
grilled peppers, garlic and parsley dressing
 Roast swordfish belly coated with lemon breadcrumbs with fried capers

Next we had the burrata cheese and the one here is really milky and creamy. The burrata does not come with cherry tomatoes so do take note to order it as the version here is served in basil and olive oil that accompanies the burrata very well. The calamari here is grilled and served with beetroot, goat cheese, grilled peppers, garlic and parsley dressing. I enjoy having squid which is grilled on the outside and creamy inside. The last starter we had was the Pesce spade which is roast swordfish belly. This was coated with lemon breadcrumbs with fried capers. The swordfish has a texture similar to chicken or pork. I can imagine this is the type of fish I would really enjoy eating if I did not eat meat. I found the crispy capers interesting as it was the first time I ate it fried.

 The chef carefully uses the charcoal grill with the right amount of flame
to create a thin layer of black crust on each steak

For the mains, we decided to go for the Wagyu – Holstein Costata and the grass-fed dry aged Costata. We were tempted to go for the Bistecca alla Fiorentina however we wanted to compare the difference between the Wagyu grain fed and dry aged Angus grass-fed so we decided to order the same cut to compare the two. Our verdict? They are both darn good! As I witnessed looking through the glass window, the chef carefully uses the charcoal grill with the right amount of flame to create a thin layer of black crust on each steak. He then uses a meat thermometer to ensure the proper doneness on every piece of steak and just before serving, he cuts it into slices, revealing the gorgeous red centre. He finishes off with some coarse sea salt which you will feel as you eat your steak. All right, so back to the difference between the two steaks. Needless to say, both had a nice crust and juicy centre. The Wagyu was certainly juicier due to the higher amount of marbling, it also had a slightly thicker mouth feel and was sweeter due to the grain feeding. The grass-fed Angus though was to me just as tender with a more robust taste. This was only achievable because of the dry ageing process. Really though to pick a winner here so all I can say is that I enjoyed both and would be happy to order either again. We accompanied the steaks with side orders of cream spinach, mixed fennel mushrooms and pecorino gratin which were all excellent. I forgot to mention that we had the pumpkin ravioli in a sage and brown butter sauce that was simply divine. I really liked the sweet nutty taste of the dish.

You can see/read from the amount we ate that the Hubers worked really hard during Christmas. With that said, it definitely makes it a lot easier to eat more when the quality of the food is outstanding like it is at Bistecca. Enjoy!

Bistecca: 25 Mohamed Sultan Rd, Singapore 238969
For reservations: 6735 6739

                                                                                                                                                                                   ~ Andre Huber
                                                                                                                                                                                            Executive Director

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