Nestled at the centre of Frasers Tower, Oishii Ristorante serves a fusion of modern Japanese and Italian cuisines. To celebrate their first anniversary from 1st June to 31st July, the restaurant is offering omakase courses that feature dishes that are not in their regular menu. You can choose a 6-course omakase lunch ($48/pax), 6-course omakase dinner ($53/pax) or a 9-course omakase ($88/pax). We had the 9-course dinner omakase for the tasting.
To warm up the taste buds, the Hamachi Tartare is the first of the nine dishes to be served. The mound of seasoned hamachi (yellowtail amberjack) comes with five types of seaweed and soy milk skin. The yellowtail is sweet and lightly coated with a citrus dressing. This appetiser is both a visual delight and a pleasant beginning of the meal.
The Hyogo Oyster with Tosazu Jelly and Ikura is just as pretty as its predecessor. Served in a bed of sandy-coloured salt, it looks as if the oyster is freshly harvested out from the ocean. Hyogo oysters are known to be creamy and smooth, often called the “milk of the sea”. The briny milkiness of the oyster is further enhanced with tosazu jelly, a sweetened soy sauce vinegar that is infused with bonito flakes. Sweet and fresh, it is a perfect side dish with a glass of highball.
The Mentaiko Panko Tiger Prawn is so huge, it is sliced into halves. The prawn is succulent but the panko crust is a little too hard to bite. The dish is too salty.
The Onion and Cheese Pastry is served with chilli and sesame oil. The flaky pastry is chargrilled for a smoky flavour that is accentuated by the chilli and sesame oil. Very aromatic and delectable but I wish the oil is served in a separate dish. The pastry soaks up so much of the oil in the centre that it becomes overloaded.
After two oleaginous dishes, the Arugula with Wasabi Dressing, Jamon and Black Cherry Mascarpone is a respite to cut the grease. The salad is delicious, with strips of jamon, toasted walnuts, dried apricot and rice crisps. For a small bowl of salad, there are three generous dollops of black cherry mascarpone.
Glazed Eel and Corn Chawanmushi is flavourful and umami. The egg custard is silky smooth and soft, and the sweet corn kernels break up the monotony of the dish.
The staple dish in the line-up is Capellini with Iberico Secreto, Baby Scallops and Mussels in Dashi Cream. Apart from the tender prized cut bacon, the creamy pasta dish is filled with scrumptious juicy baby scallops and mussels. It feels like a wedding dinner to this point, when you are too full to eat but the carb-laden dish is too good to give it a miss.
The penultimate dish is Pumpkin Miso with Mentaiko Fishcake. It is a welcomed twist to add sweet and starchy pumpkin extract to the good old miso soup. The mentaiko fishcake is ordinary and I am unsure of its purpose in the dish.
For dessert, the restaurant serves Honeycomb Gelato and Maple Crumble. The gelato is creamy and soft, a testament to one of the quintessential Italian sweet treats. It is a great ending to the meal.
Overall, most of the dishes from the 9-course omakase are great but the sequence for their presentation can be reconsidered for a better dining experience. For example, to serve the oily onion and cheese pastry right after the deep-fried mentaiko panko tiger prawn is a bit overwhelming.
These dishes are around for a limited time only (until end of July). It is worth to give this affordable omakase a try.
You may be interested in…
–Caffe B, Club Street: New Location, New Chef, Itameshi Better Than Before
–Trattoria La Vita, Clarke Quay: Itameshi (Italian-Japanese Cuisine), I Love It But My Friend Says It’s Average
–Dopo Teatro, Esplanade: Itameshi Cuisine (Italian Classics with Japanese Ingredients) and Pizzas Made from 36-hour Fermented Dough
–Monte Risaia, Duxton: New Itameshi (Japanese-Italian) Omakase by Marusaya group
This is an invited tasting. 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.