$40-$60

Pepenero, Stanley St: Bought Over By Chef-Owner Gabriele Piegaia of Burlamacco Ristorante

pepenero stanley st reviewThe four year-old Italian restaurant, Pepenero, is bought over by chef-owner Gabriele Piegaia of Burlamacco Ristorante, and is given a new lease of life. The menu is refreshed, and the service whipped into shape. New air-con sets will be installed; the spotlights will be replaced by hanging lamps; and the impressionist paintings swapped for chic, modern ones. Piegala is a man on a mission with a vision.

Burlamacco serves fine-dining, modern Tuscany food whereas Pepenero is more casual, focusing on South Italian traditional cuisine. There will also be a bar at the front of the restaurant.

pepenero singapore menuMost of the food we had are well-conceptualized and delicious. The starter, octopus on potato, is topped with taggiasca olives, that grow on a seaside slope, where the sea breeze sweeps up the hill and whistles through the olive trees. The olive has the taste of the sea, with a tinge of bitterness, building up the complexity of tastes.

pepenero italian restaurant raffles placeThe chef-d’oeuvre, pork meat ball ($24), is spicy with chilli padi, robust and exciting. This gets a must-order.

pepenero singapore review
Homemade black squid ink spaghetti with spicy crab meat sauce ($28)

pepenero singapore reviewBut the mains need some tweaking. The homemade squid ink spaghetti can be less salty although it has a wonderful bite. And the crispy prawn, and calamari, and vegetables ($40) are greasy and are more bar grub than main. Each ingredient is more suitable to be marketed on its own as finger food.

pepenero singapore

The meal ended beautifully with a semifreddo ($14), so rich and buttery, and homemade limoncello. On the whole, the new Pepenero is tasteful.

Pepenero
14 Stanley St. Singapore 068733
T: +65 6222 5808
12pm-2.30pm, 6.30pm-11pm, closed Sun
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Value: 5.5/10
Food: 6.75/10
Decor: 7/10
Service: NA (tasting)
Rating: 3.208/5

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This is an invited tasting.

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