To reach Privé, you have to drive onto a tiny, tiny island, through a suspended bridge, passing bird of paradise plants and coconut trees decorated with bluish-white lights. A beautiful drive. At Keppel Bay where all the rich people park their yachts, Privé the Bakery is by the dock and yachts but we walked past the Bakery into Privé the Restaurant, tucked at a corner. My sister liked the relaxed atmosphere of the Bakery but no, not I. I am all for exclusivity and class. (Isaac would say at this point of time, “I didn’t know people who read can be so superficial.”) The Restaurant is very exclusive, with seats that can accommodate only about 60 people. It is so exclusive that the heavy curtains are shut tight, refusing to let the public peep in. The table has, not one, not two but three layers of table cloth: the top, white satin, the bottom, white cotton, and in between, a gold but rough flax lace. The service was prompt and the servers were polite without being sycophantic. However, because the restaurant is so small, we could hear the loud gay white guy at the other end. I could get used to this sort of life.
Picture 1: Walnut with raisin bun; focaccia and (not featured) taro bun. We–my sister, Sho and I but not the blase morbidity80–were so awed by the gratis bread. You break the piping hot bun and see steam spiraling. You put a slab of butter and it melts. Coming from a person who doesn’t like bread, this counts a lot: All the bread tasted so heavenly and sweet with their distinctive taste of walnut or herbs or taro. My sister especially loves the butter, creamy without being oily or heavy and a refreshing aftertaste lingered in the mouth.
Chef’s amuse-bouche, cherry tomato with goat’s cheese: you pop in the mouth and it’s gone. The juice bursts but that’s what tomatoes do. A pleasing, refreshing appetizer, not extremely unique.
Citrus-cured Tasmanian Ocean Trout with Soy Dressing, Marinated Cucumber and Roe: Very fresh, tender yet firm. And it’s from the ocean, not fish farms.
Watermelon salad with tomatoes, strawberries and Sangria granite: morbidity said this is his favorite dish but I don’t know. Vegetables taste alike to me but maybe alcoholic veg tastes different.
Hokkaido scallop with roe, custard, asparagus and beurre blanc (white butter) and foi gras with figs, puff pastry and spinach: We argued over which the Dish of the Day was. I have always hated plain tofu but the crispy, not oily, tofu wrapped in asparagus strip (hiding behind the scallop) had taste! The custard complemented the scallop perfectly, robbed the brine away from the scallop; there can never be such a tag team. The crisp of the tofu contrasted with the bounce of the scallop, layering different textures to the perfect dish.
But the foi gras- WOAH. I’ve never eaten foi gras like this before. Foi gras without the hint of the bloody liver. The outside was pan-seared to a crisp but inside it was molten. MOLTEN, a fourth state of existence between solid and liquid. The foi gras was more perfect than perfect. Unfortunately, the puff pastry beneath the foi gras ruined the dish.; it was pastry without taste.
Turkey Breast with brown butter, pickled vegetables and glazed cranberries; Fresh Young Pigeon with baby carrots, porcini mushrooms and Taylor’s port sauce; Barramundi with caramelized eschalot, shimeji mushroom, broccolini, and sauce bordelaise: Shovan ordered the Turkey. I liked it when I ate a morsel–it was chewy but not tough–but I cannot remember the taste now.
Ray and I ordered the Pigeon. Morbidity said, “It’s a young and fresh pigeon from France! What are you waiting for?” That’s why he’s my BFF. He knows I like young meat. I love baby carrots but the menu should have said “carrot” not “carrots.” Not knowing that the leg was tough, I gave it to Sho and my sister and devoured the fat-laden breast, so tender and juicy that while I was eating, I was salivating thinking of eating the next piece. It tasted like a very soft venison. The porcini mushrooms were to die for.
My sister ordered the fish, which had the biggest portion. The fish had soaked up the sauce bordelaise but there was still a fishy aftertaste.
Calvados Gelee with Granny Smith Foam and White Chocolate log cake with griottine cherries and cranberry compote: I love desserts, it’s my favorite part of the meal. No matter how stuffed I am, dessert belongs to a separate stomach. The desserts were good, especially the surprise alcohol cherries in the middle of the log cake. Good but not heavenly.
We had tea with petit fours and chocolate-coated biscuits. In the car, I told my sister my tea was pretty good but I don’t know if it was because of the brown sugar (usually I don’t add sugar). She said, “Chey! Teas are all the same…but my coffee was good too. Not too scalding, just the right temperature for coffee.”
We spent about $140 each.
2 Keppel Bay Vista
T: 6776 0777
Rating: 4.875/5 stars