Chef Jarad Gallagher of Michellin-starred Chez TJ fame is in Singapore till this Sunday for an exclusive weekend at The Cliff restaurant. On Saturday, be treated to a special six course menu that showcases his exquisite culinary skills. On Sunday, relish in a Champagne Brunch at The Terrace and further indulge in 5 additional dishes crafted by Chef Jarad just for the moment.
The Cliff is located at the Singapore Resort and Spa on Sentosa island. The resort is at an exclusive locality that exudes serenity and a thorough escape from the hustle of mainland Singapore. It was a gorgeous moment that simply constructed the expectations for the night. Chef Jarad Gallagher of Chez TJ in California is a Seattle native and second-generation chef who began cooking at the age of five alongside his father and became an Executive Chef at the young age of 21. With his strong passion for French cooking and years of experience, Chef Gallagher has helped Chez TJ maintain their Michelin Star for eight consecutive years. His menu at The Cliff will highlight some of his signature dishes inspired by the sea, with a good mix of traditional French hearty meats.
Dinner began with a glass of champagne on arrival. Sparkling and crisp, with a light balance of sweetness and acidity, it was perfect for Singapore’s balmy weather.
A serving of Caviar and Beginet Canapés was served as a starter. Light and creamy, with the occasional burst of sweet saltiness from the fish roe, this was a delicate dish that was simple and a treat.
With the restaurant’s somewhat dim lighting, I initially thought that the Sashimi of Yellowtail, Seaweed, Lemon, Radish was a serving of scallops. However, the subtle flavours of yellowtail, tinged with accents of sea sweetness and a coat of salinity changed the thought. Beautifully fresh, the dressing of yuzu lightened the overall flavour further.
I was amazed by the Sweet Corn ‘Pot of Earth’, Shrimp, Mozzarella, Chilli. Strikingly unique, with a combination of ingredients that you might never think of! The creamed Brentwood corn is absolutely fabulous with intense notes of sweetness. It complements the savoury ‘soil’ that is a creation from butter, dough and squid ink. Take the first bite with perhaps a shred of chilli and wonder at the blend of sweet savouries highlighted by a thin layer of spice. When you get to the prawns by the side, relish in its rounded sweetness.
The Spanish Octopus, Forbidden Rice, Candied Fennel, Cilantro is one of Chef Jarad’s signatures. I was intrigued with the name Forbidden rice as it made the dish just that much more alluring. The rice, found in the himalayas is similar to a wild rice with its husk on. It is used mostly for dyes but who knew it would be so tasty. Crispy sweet with a texture that is rough and well blended with the alkaline rich squid ink and tangy infusion. The fennel salad at the top sweetened the dish up a notch. A clear favourite around the table.
The Puffed Beef Tendon, Asparagus Duet, Pickled Quail Egg, Charred Onion was a peculiar dish. Pour the tenderly sweet creamed asparagus duet into the onion and egg mix before serve and enjoy very clean flavours that will remind you of freshly cut grass in spring. That is all before you hit a portion of the pickled quail egg that simply surprises you with a tangy, acidic aftertaste. The puffed beef tendon is recommended to be enjoyed as it is. Similar tasting to a very mild prawn cracker (keropok), this was certainly the first for me. On a whole, a very clean and light tasting dish that would appeal to some.
The Rack of Lamb, Chicory Crust, Carrot, Kale was decently hearty with good flavours though the sauce can be a touch oily yet delicious. The lamb is tender and sweet, with the crust giving off a flavourful saltiness that brought out the most in the lamb’s meaty flavours. Still I found the topping of spring onions to be a little too raw for my liking, and would perhaps enjoy it without.
As a palate cleanser, enjoy the Homemade Yogurt, Mint, Honey, Brittle. Refreshing, crisp and tangy, this was a wonderful concoction that well serves its role and yet able to stand on its own as a dessert.
For me, the Passion Fruit Soufflé, Milk Chocolate, Basil, Soil just blew me away. The coconut cream by the side was indulgent and fabulous as it was drizzled over the warm and fluffy souffle. A touch of sweetness with the charming taste of tangy passion fruit, the souffle was probably the best I’ve ever had yet. I highly recommend that you visit just for this.
The open concept kitchen where you can witness the dishes come alive!
Chef Jarad and me!
The dinner prepared by Chef Jarad was excellent. Having it at the Singapore Resort and Spa Sentosa was simply a sheer transportation from the hustle of daily living, and it is great knowing that you have a well executed meal ready for night. The ambience was calm and serene, although the balmy weather in the night with a barely visible seafront was more distant than surreal. The restaurant was also a touch dim, that while beautiful in certain settings, emphasizes conversation at the table and letting the dishes take a slight backseat. Some dishes were clear favourites, while a few of them were perhaps crafted for a more select crowd. I enjoyed the Pot of Earth and the Forbidden Rice, with the Passion Fruit Souffle acting as icing on the cake. Those looking for a treat this weekend might want to check out Jarad’s cuisine on Saturday (7th June) and brunch on Sunday (8th June). Make it your escape retreat for the weekend, I think you’ll enjoy it. I certainly know I will as I’m going back for brunch this Sunday!
Furthermore, from 9th to 13th July, The Cliff will be hosting Chef Saul Bolton of Saul, New York City. Saul is one of the top restaurants in New York City, and this will be one of the rare occasions where the man himself will be in Singapore to craft his creations just for you. For more details, please visit www.singaporeresortsentosa.com.
Thank you The Singapore Resort & Spa Sentosa, and Accor Asia Pacific for the invitation
|The Singapore Resort & Spa Sentosa
2 Bukit Manis Road
Daily : 6.30pm – Midnight
Sunday Brunch : 12pm – 3pm
Chef Jarad Gallagher’s 6 Course Dinner
$188++ per person – served with a glass of champagne
Add $55++ per person for unlimited servings of wine
Sunday Brunch with dishes from Chef Jarad Gallagher
$109++ per person
Add $20++ per person for unlimited servings of French wine
Add $40++ per person for unlimited servings of French wine and champagne