March 22, 2015

Pizza Fabbrica @ Bussorah Street ~ Italian With A Difference!

From the name "Pizza Fabbrica", it sounds pretty straightforward that the restaurant takes a focus on pizza, but there's nothing cookie-cutter about it even though "fabbrica" means "factory" in Italian.

Instead, the kitchen team approaches the well-loved Italian cuisine with an artisanal and creative flair, cooking up an array of dishes that marry tradition and innovation. The man leading them all is executive chef Matteo Boifava who has honed his culinary skills in kitchens around the world, including Heston Blumenthal's 3-Michelin-starred The Fat Duck in London.

It can be quite hard to suspect that Pizza Fabbrica is foremost an Italian restaurant if I just mindlessly walk pass its shophouse facade along Bussorah Street at the edge of Kampong Glam enclave.

The sleek industrial chic decor suggested that it might be a bar, which is not too far from the truth too as Pizza Fabbrica does offer an impressive line-up of Italian craft beers such as Fabbrica della Birra Perugia and even Hitachino Nest on tap.

However, upon stepping in, one thing that certainly caught our attention is the copper wood-fired oven from behind the glass walls of the open kitchen, declaring to us that this is predominately a dining establishment and they take their pizzas seriously. The dough is made from quality Caputo flour from Italy and proofed for 48 hours to achieve a desirous light and airy structure.

From the list of over 15 pizza choices, we selected the signature Pizza Fabbrica ($28). It was nothing like we had before, and I meant it in a good way.

Instead of the typical tomato base, the thin and slightly soft dough was lined with sweet pumpkin cream. The savoriness and tanginess from the fresh mozzarella, broccolini and sundried tomato provided balance to the overall flavors. This was such a delightful vegetarian creation!

It would have been delightful too if the traditional pairing of Parma ham with rockmelon is retained, though the Parma Ham and Fresh Mango Salad ($18) was refreshing as an antipasti. I missed the sweet crunchiness which the rockmelon would have provided.

While there are classic pasta offerings such as Linguine ai Frutti di Mare ($24) with seafood and white wine sauce, it was the Garganelli con Ragù di Agnello ($24) that caught our attention. Pasta with chocolate lamb ragout? Chocolate??

Fortunately, the taste wasn't as funky as I imagined. It was mostly savory tasting, with just a subtle hint of chocolate and lifted with smoked ricotta. The texture of the tubular-shaped garganelli pasta was wonderfully al dente! Fantastic!

My favourite dish of the evening was the Risotto al Tartufo ($32). What made it outstanding was the Acquerello, dubbed the "Rolls Royce of rice" which is considered to be the best rice in the world and the preferred choice among chefs and discerning gourmands. The grains were aged for 1.5 years to 7 years, a process which is said to allow the grains to absorb more liquid and flavors during the cooking process.

I can believe this is true, for my plate of risotto was utterly orgasmic in each mouthful! The consistency was perfect, its luscious taste was enhanced with the delicate scent of freshly shaved truffles. Love it!

Compared to the pizza and pastas, main courses such as Tagliata di Manzo con Rucoia e Grana ($32) of grilled beef ribeye did not leave that much of an impression on me.

My dining companion said the Branzino in Crosta di Zucchine ($28) gave him a feeling of bliss. Not that the baked seabass fillet wasn't good. It was nicely tender and moist, but I felt that the coat of zucchini was overly excessive and distracting.

Strange that I will say this, but I can ditch the meat and load myself happier on the carbs. Pizzas! Pastas! bring it on!

We saved space for desserts, both of which we ordered was worth the sugary calories. Saffron Panna Cotta ($12) served with Sambuca red berries came wobbling to our table, getting us all excited even before we send each velvety smooth spoonful to our mouth. The Chocolate Cake ($12) with strong notes of orange was rather enjoyable too.

Overall, the food at Pizza Fabbrica is of good standards and reasonably priced. I would recommend this place for casual dates and social gatherings.

Pizza Fabbrica
Address: 70 Bussorah Street, Singapore 199483
Contact: +65 6291 0434
Opening Hours: Tue-Thu 11.30am-11pm / Fri & Sat 11.30am-12am / Sun 11.30am-11pm / Closed on Mon