PODI at Raffles City Shopping Centre is the newest addition to the myriad of food choices already available in the city. Conceptualised by The Bakery Depot, the same team that brings you Cedele, PODI aims to be Pure, Offbeat, Delicious with touches of Infusions. The all day Breakfast & Grill is proud to present a range of innovative treats that while unique and apart from the norm, is tantalizing and hearty from bite to bite. Items like the Stuffed French Toast and the Mexican Spiced Hats might just be the very dishes that will make you go Mmmm.
Waffle with Duck Berry?
Dinner started off with some sides of Shoestring Fries with Seaweed Nori, and Truffle Oil. Fries are quite ordinary with the little kick of flavour arising from the touches of dried seaweed and earthy truffle oil. The truffle is however faint in both aromatics and flavour, and made me wonder if truffle salt would be the better choice instead.
A very unique dish from the menu is the Freshly Baked Waffles with Duck Berry (tasting portion depicted). The concept for this dish is definitely innovative as it attempts to bridge the flavours of sweet and savoury albeit in a slightly mistmatched manner. The duck confit and waffle were both quite a challenge to cut through and pierce with a fork, to enjoy the dish requires a bit of each ingredient in a sitting. The gentle and sweet blueberry compote while delicious on its own, should not be had with the maple vinaigrette which is a little overpowering. That said, the dish is a beauty when photographed and would make you crave to at least try it the first time. Who know? It might just be to your liking.
One dish that is for me excellent and a must order the next time I visit PODI is the Stuffed French Toast (tasting portion depicted). This is where probably where the bakery genius that runs in The Bakery Depot starts to shine. Slices of spinach brioche is stuffed with eggs, smoked ham, brie cheese and served with a side of salad and maple syrup. The sandwich is a beauty on its own, with the melted brie working its flavour very well with the touches of ham and savoury spinach brioche. Twist the flavours up a notch with a dip in the maple syrup, and what you get is a harmony of sweet and savoury that really defines the restaurant.
The Baked Egg Pots with Pork Sausage, Goat Cheese in tomato sauce (tasting portion depicted) is summatively a warm, and hearty serve that just screams comfort food. Umami tomato and salty sausages are a beautiful hearty combination that blends very well with the puddles of egg yolk. When served with the spinach brioche, this would become a dish well worth remembering.
To drink is to be a drinker (a joke)
For a side that is good to share, there is the Beetroot Carpaccio (tasting portion depicted) to order. Thinly sliced purple red beetroot is complemented with shavings of cheese, cherry tomato and glazed with a balsamic basil oil. The result? Fruity, crisp and sweet beetroot slices that is given a tang with the tomatoes and then jazzed up with a slightly musky cheesy dimension. The balsamic basil oil lightens the overall serving and brings the ingredients closely together, forming a thread of similarity in flavour that makes the entire dish well worth in every bite.
The Prawn and Crab Spinach Salad (tasting portion depicted) is a heartwarming combination of baby spinach, grilled prawns, crab meat, lemon zest, and drizzled with a peppermint and lemon vinaigrette. The choice of baby spinach lends a slight bitter flavour which acts as a gorgeous base to the savoury and crisp prawns. The crab meat is more of a misplaced ingredient here that doesn’t contribute to the dish but acts as a premium add on if more than anything else. That said, it is one dish that I will order for myself if I’m thinking of having something a little light.
The Chicken Pot is first and foremost prepared by placing the pieces of chicken thigh with a couple root vegetables in a pot, sealing it up with pastry and then having it baked tilled delicious. It sounds delectable, but would instead carry a subtle savoury flavour that is largely homely, ordinary and not the most surprising. I actually enjoyed the dish, though it might well be my own preference of just enjoying the natural flavours of chicken thigh served up in its own juices. Some would then also say that more jus is needed. That said, I didn’t get to try the entire dish served up with sides of rustic country bread that looks even more delicious together.
The Argentina Sirloin Steak (tasting portion depicted) was quite a letdown for the night. Tough, hard, tough, it was almost too tough to cut and bite through it. Now, if they had that side of grilled fat lovely portioned into the dish, I think it would make the entire serving much better.
The Spicy Prawn Konbu Pasta (tasting portion depicted) is an interesting take on the veritable linguine that is now tossed and infused with spicy prawns, konbu and PODI’s signature prawn oil. I enjoyed the savoury flavours and sweet aromatics of prawn in this dish, and would love it especially if the linguine was prepared fresh.
The King Prawns with Herb Butter is lovely for its garlic and buttery creaminess, with the prawn meat adding on to that creamy texture. Served with summer vegetables that I never got to try, I would say the dish is lovely when served up in its whole.
For dessert, the Whoppie Pie had an earl grey cream pressed within two slices of cake. It was largely dry yet still a touch moist in texture, and the cream within evened out the sweet flavours with a herbal twist. This reminds me of those cakes you will want to sit and enjoy in a languid hot afternoon with a cup of iced tea by the side.
The Mexican Spiced Hat is definitely the more exciting dessert. Served as two slices of Nigella-spiced meringue that has two scoops of ice cream sandwiched between, this is pure sweet and chilly bliss. The meringue slices are light and crisp, and complements the choice of Raspberry and Mango Sorbet ice cream very nicely. The ice cream, is also decadent and full bodied in flavour, and worth enjoying on its own.
PODI is exciting as its range of items on the menu is innovative and largely fresh. However, novelty aside, the dishes were generally decent although some items still required a lot more work to impress or even place on the table. From my experience, I would say that their Breakfast items are the ones to go for and then ending the meal with some veritable Mexican Spiced Hat. With it situated next to the central fountain in Raffles City Shopping Centre, the restaurant also promises an ambience that also adds one more plus point to the dining experience. A worthy place to try, and best with friends or family that will be game to give a shot to some unique and courageous culinary flavours while having a selection that is still casual and ordinary.
Thank you PODI for the invitation
Raffles City Shopping Centre
Weekdays 10am – 10pm
Weekends/PH 9am – 10pm
Retail 8am – 10pm