Monte Risaia, Duxton: New Itameshi (Japanese-Italian) Omakase by Marusaya group

Monte Risaia at Duxton is a newly opened Japanese-Italian omakase restaurant managed by Marusaya Co. Ltd, which is is a katsuobushi (dried bonito) wholesaler founded in 1962. Marusaya has several restaurants under its belt which includes TEN sushi, Dashi Master Marusaya, and MAI by Dashi Master Marusaya.

Monte Risaia is helmed by Chef Taizo Yamada who started his career as a kitchen helper in an Italian restaurant in Tokyo and has more than 15 years of experience.

The 3-course set is priced at $68++, and the 4- course at at $98++. Side dishes are also available including cheese platter (S$18++), cold cut platter (S$20++), and burrata cheese (S$24++ for 125g).

Uni pudding

For starters, the Monte Risaia’s signature uni pudding is a velvety concoction of fresh uni, cream, egg, and milk. A few seemingly simple and fresh ingredients can turn into something so wonderful under the capable hands of the chef. The bright orangey bafun uni adds a luxe touch to the eggy pudding with its firm texture and a hint of sweetness: this reminds me very much of the sea.

Antipasto misto: oyster, scallop tartare, tiger prawn, tai fish, prosciutto

The antipasto misto (5 items) starts with the clean and sweet-tasting Sakoshi Bay oyster. The addition of pink peppercorn gives a nice citrus kick to the plump and juicy oyster.

The scallop tartare, mixed with homemade mayo, has a firm texture and is topped with briny ikura.

After being aburi-ed or blowtorched, the tiger prawn takes on a smoky flavour and the accompanying spicy arrabbiata sauce accentuates it.

Not really a fan of the Japanese tai fish (or sea bream) because of its slightly slimy texture but love the sweet-as-cotton-candy (in a good way, of course) slow-cooked Shimonita leek, which is considered the ‘King of the Leeks” for its fat white ends.

The fifth and last of the antipasto misto, San Daniele prosciutto is paired with a sweet and juicy fig.

Pasta with shiso and omaru dashi lobster broth

For carbs, the signature pasta with shiso and omaru dashi lobster broth is a tomato-based pasta dish with al dente linguine topped with a generous amount of roughly chopped shiso leaves. Shiso on its own can be an acquired taste but when paired with the pasta, it helps to add another dimension to the dish and becomes very satisfying with the addition of the umami lobster broth.

Mains, meat: duck, lamb chop, wagyu beef

Moving on to the mains, a lovely assortment of well-executed meats which include: maple leaf duck (USA), lamb chop (Australia), wagyu beef (Japan, additional supplement $20++). The lamb chop is probably the best because it is cooked with the bone and that gives the meat so much more flavour.

Interpretation of tiramisu

Monte Risaia’s interpretation of the famous Italian dessert, tiramisu, comes in the form of caramel coffee ice cream with tiramisu cream and chestnut mousse garnished with dragon fruit (additional supplement $12++). The combination of the coffee ice cream goes very well with the sweet and boozy tiramisu cream (almond liquor is used here) and the addition of chestnut mousse brings to mind a favourite dessert of mine – Mont blanc.

Monte Risaia
59 Duxton Road Singapore 089523
Tel: +65 6970 0067
M – Sat 6pm – 12am

Food: 7/10
Decor/ambience: 6.25/10
Price/value: 6/10

You may be interested in…
Caffe B, Club Street: New Location, New Chef, Itameshi Better Than Before
Caffe Cicheti, South Beach Tower: Straight Up Italian Cuisine for Seafood Lovers
Terra, Tras Street: Serving Itameshi (Italo-Japanese) Cuisine, Or As the Chef Brands it As “Tokyo-Italian”
Akira Back, South Beach: Excellent Japanese-Inspired Food Made Better by Amazing Service

Written by Vanessa Khong. Vanessa is someone who enjoys checking out the local food scene. She believes the way to her heart is through her stomach.

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