October 10, 2016
Whitegrass Restaurant @ Chijmes ~ Lovely Modern Australian Cuisine In A Most Beautiful Setting
One of the most beautiful restaurants I've dined at this year is..... Whitegrass.
Situated within the historic grounds of Chijmes, the Australian fine dining restaurant is prettily dressed in feminine shades of turquoise and pastel pink, with gorgeous mural of whimsical motifs of flowers, birds and fishes hand-painted across a side of the wall.
As for the food, it was just as lovely in both presentation and taste. What a heavenly match.
Ambience is refined yet relaxed, with an elegance that doesn't intimidate but is embracing with a sense of comfort and ease. It felt welcoming, like an invitation to dine a friend's house. Okay, a very rich friend's house lol.
If I'm looking for a venue for celebratory occasions like birthdays and anniversaries or intimate gatherings, this would be it.
There is also a 30-seater private dining room with its own private entrance that suits corporate events and business entertaining as well.
The kitchen is led by Australian chef-owner Sam Aisbett, who has spent time in the kitchens of acclaimed Quay and Tetsuya's in Sydney, before stepping into his first restaurant venture.
Whitegrass showcases his distinctive and personal interpretation of modern Australian cuisine, and his flavor-driven approach to international ingredients with a distinctly Asian touch.
Everything from pickling to fermentation is done in-house, reflecting his back-to-basics culinary approach and down-to-earth nature.
Diners have the options of Lunch Set Menu: 2-course ($48++), 3-course ($64++) or 5-course ($135++), and Dinner Set Menu: 3-course ($108++), 5-course ($170++) or 8-course ($255++).
Vegetarian Set Dinner is available at 3-course ($99++) and 5-course ($140).
The 3 of us were there for lunch, and since there are 3 choices each for starter, main and desserts for the 3-course set, we did the most natural thing: Order everything on the menu to share haha.
I guess the sharing part might be frowned upon in most fine-dining establishments, but really, it's not a blatant disregard of etiquette or what's socially acceptable but rather a genuine want of all that the menu has to offer.
Some of the items that we had: Sashimi of Yellowtail Amberjack, Salad of Vine Ripened Cherry Tomatoes, Shaved Hokkaido Scallops, Grass-fed Angus Beef, Roasted New Zealand Snapper, and Toasted Buckwheat enriched with Truffle Butter.
The seemingly simplest items turned out to be the most memorable.
Take for instance, the Salad of Vine Ripened Cherry Tomatoes. Though I like cherry tomatoes in general and eat it often as a snack, there was still an element of unexpected excitement when I bite into those spheres of bursting sweetness perfectly accompanied with goat's feta, seaweed oil, toasted nuts and seeds. Salads has taken on a whole new meaning.
The Sashimi of Yellowtail Amberjack rolled with lime crème fraiche with a subtle hint of wasabi was light, bright and utterly refreshing.
We love the earthly umaminess of the Toasted Buckwheat as well, a risotto-like dish enriched with truffle butter and "white hen of the wood" mushroom.
Desserts were no less enjoyable. The Valrhona Chocolate Mousse is interestingly paired with ice cream made with lucuma, a fruit native to Peru which bears an uniquely sour plum-like taste.
Vanilla Bean Parfait with pink guava and bergamot lemon was equally refreshing, and we do appreciate the touch of tropical in the Young Coconut Mousse combined with jackfruit ice cream, longan, ginger cake and caramelized almond.
Whitegrass has certainly charmed its way into our hearts with its honest, well-executed food. Plating is delicate and I like the little edible flowers which dotted some of the dishes with a gentle exquisiteness.
This is a restaurant which I would not hesitate to recommend.
Address: 30 Victoria Street, #01-26/27 Chijmes, Singapore 187996
Contact: +65 6837 0402
Opening Hours: Lunch Wed-Sat 12pm-2pm / Dinner Tue-Sat 6pm-9.30pm / Closed on Mondays & Sundays
Prices are (1) Stated in Singapore dollars (2) Subject to 10% service charge & 7% GST (3) Correct at point of published date.