Italians do such classic things with seafood out of their immense respect for it – right up there with the Japanese. I have thoroughly fond memories of my meals at southern Italy’s many seaside towns, and am glad for a very decent substitute here in Singapore, at Chef Lino Sauro’s Gattopardo Ristorante di Mare, until my next trip back.
A brought me out for a lovely celebration to mark my passing of the bar! We started with 6 creamy, briny, and clean tasting French oysters, accented with lemon juice and a little tabasco, followed by a sardine appetizer which we chose out of adventure – and were most pleasantly surprised. Japanese sardines filleted and marinated, stuffed with a parsley creme and rolled into cute little bundles perched atop crisp croutons made for a very umami combination, the firm flesh of the salty sardines well balanced by sharp parsley. And as always, that delightfully unique taste of silver-skinned fish.
We shared our mains – a grilled pork loin with balsamic vinegar reduction and pine nuts, and sea urchin (aka uni aka ricci di mare) tagliolini topped with parmesan (I think). The pork was delicious, if on the fatty side, well-marinated with a lovely smokey aftertaste, set off by the creamy, earthy nuts. The uni tagliolini transported me right back to Polignano A Mare, although Gattopardo’s version was significantly brinier and less sweet, with a heavier mouth feel overall.
I loved every dish, the attentive service and generous helpings of bread – as well as their piquant Sicilian olive oil. It’s a huge bonus that this place is part of The Entertainer’s options, and one of those that make 2016’s set worthwhile, actually. Would definitely go again with or without.
Gattopardo Ristorante di Mare
34/36 Tras Street
Tel: +65 6338 5498 / +65 9325 8843
Mon-Fri: 1200h-1430h, 1830h-2230h, Sat: 1830h-2230h, Closed Sun