Story and photos by Dr. Michael Lim The Travelling Gourmet TM
All rights reserved
All photos are of real food with no photoshop
The charismatic and debonair Travelling Gourmet TM goes to the “Bond Street” of Singapore that is Orchard Road to…
MARVELLOUS KUVO…one of Singapore’s newest multi-concept restaurants just next to 313. The dynamic and capable Manager, Steven Ho, welcomed me warmly and showed me around. At the top of the escalator just inside the entrance is a delicatessen which sells fine teas and coffee and other goodies. On the right is a spacious semi-fine dining restaurant with round and recetangular dark wood tables. Make your way to the left to discover a lively wine bar called the Vine Lounge. The whole establishment is pretty big at 9,000 sq. ft.! Incidentally, the name Kuvo was inspired by the French word “cuvee”, which means blend when it comes to wines. For example, a Non Vintage Champagne in the house style is a blend of many cuvees.
Let the Feast begin!
The cuisine here is pretty eclectic with many European and French inspired dishes like the Declination of Duck Foie Gras Terrine and Pan Fried Lobe of Foie Gras on a bed of caramelized sweet-sour Apple! Yummie in my tummie! So very good with bubbly, citrusy and crystalline Franciacorta made in the “metodo classico” that is also used to make Champagne!
Delectable Declination of Foie Gras!
Another memorable hors d’oeuvre was Fresh Figs wrapped in Proscuitto di Parma with gratinated Blue Cheese and lots of peppery Arugula (rocket leaves). I love figs and when the sweetness of the figs meeets the delicious savoury flavours of the Parma Ham it is a match made in heaven!
Surf and Turf!
Do you love beef? Well, then go for the Wagyu Beef braised in red wine with whole garlic cloves in a rich and sexy sauce that will blow your mind. Casanova the great Lothario used to eat 144 oysters before embarking on his romantic escapades…but I settled for half a dozen Canadian Oysters au Naturel on the half shell dressed with a Champagne Vinaigrette. I am sure Casanova would have approved!
I admit it, I am a carnivore! I adored the Ueber-Crispy Iberico Pork Crackling on the Confit of Pork Belly paired with a slightly spicy yet tangy Balsamic & Mango Chutney. Iberico Pork from the Pata Negra (black hooved pig) fed on acorns comes all the way from Spain. Beloved of gourmets, it is known as the “Treasure of Espana”.
Everyone likes Chicken Wings like in your Nasi Lemak…but have you ever tired Spicy-Hot Kuvo Coffee Wings! They are very tasty I assure you. as a foil to the spiciness, you get healthy super crunchy fresh batons of Carrot Crudites to dip into pleasing Blue Cheese Dip with that slightly bitter aftertaste.
Piece de Resistance…
To me the “”piece de resistance here is.. Classique Confit de Canard or Duck Confit. It brought back happy memories when I of learned the Culinary Arts in Le Notre Salon de Culinaire, the famous cooking school for Chefs in Paris. This was one of the dishes were were expected to master and serve with Honey Glazed Carrots Tournee.
Technically speaking, the Confit of Duck was very well done. This is not an easy dish to cook and involves many stages. One of which is to poach the duck leg in thick duck fat, I kid you not. Then you roast it in in the oven to get that “superbe” crispy skin that crunches like a potato crisp when you bit into it! A portion of Prune Jam spiked with Amaretto di Saronno almond liquer was perfect with the succulent meat, as well as oven roasted Soft Cheese Potato Cake and Aspaargus Spears. This… is to HAHO (High Altitude High Opening) Freefall parachute behind enemy lines in Syria for! I matched the duck with a ravishing fleshy and robust Rioja from Spain. Well balanced with layers of red berries and hints of chocolate. Ostatu Crianza 2010 is an intriguing blend of Tempranillo, Graciano, Marzuelo and Garnacha. It brought back happy memories of Barcelona and Fuengirola…
Good news for those whose palates are more comfortable with local dishes…they have 3 local dishes with a heavy Penang influence on the Menu. Many Asians for example, only want to eat rice dishes and Chinese food…and when they are in Europe, they go hunting desperately high and low for rice dishes and horrible Chinese restaurants that cater to the Ang Mohs! Tsk, tsk, tja, tja…C’est la vie n’est pa mes amis!
I tried and liked very much the Penang Style Slipper Lobster Assam Laksa Lemak. Spiked with Shallots, Julienne of crunchy Cucumber, zesty Pineapple and Coconut Cream, the thick broth with vermicelli had the lovely sour savoury flavour of Tamarind (assam)…Steven told me with a smile, “One of our Chefs is from Penang so he can cook the Penang specialities very well!”.
Slipper Lobster laksa and Hokkien King Prawn Mee!
The other dish you simply must try is the Hokkien Noodle Soup with BIG King Prawns, tender slices of lean pork, fish cakes and thick yellow noodles. Yum! Yum!
Das Leben ohne Sussigkeit ist langweilig! This translates from the German as “Life without sweetness is boring!
With this in mind…go for the “Specialite de la maison” that is seductive Croissant Bread Pudding in Filo pastry with Cranberries, laced with fragrant salted Caramel Sauce, and paired with creamy Vanilla Gelato (ice cream Italian style). Yummie in my tum tum!!!
Or how about a Hazelnut Chocolate Strudel in a crisp flaky pastry with Morello Cherries that I love and Vanilla Gelato! I like real Strudels EXCEPT for “fake” so-called Ritz Apple Strudel that is full of fattening cream and is not a Strudel per se at all! German and Austrian Apple Strudels are my favourite. Beware of imposters! Same with the Sacher-Torte…ONLY the authentic, genuine and inimitable Sacher-Torte made by my good friend, Chef Konditor Alfred Buxbaum, of the world famous Hotel Sacher in Vienna is good enough. A lovely dessert wine I savoured with dessert was 2014 Michele Chiarlo Nivole Moscato di Asti from Italy. Ahhhh…caramelized orange peel plus a nice floral perfume on the nose…Lychee, caramel, fresh acids and a super refreshing taste of fresh cut Kalamansi on the end palatea. Michele Chiarlo, the winemaker, is a gentleman and a good friend. In fact, I was the FIRST gourmet in the world to match his wine with Mooncakes at the Marriott in Singapore in 2003!
Another delicious dessert appeared. It would have been sacriligious not to have eaten it! Coconut Malibu Gelato was fabulous! So too was the Blood Orange Sorbet. In Italy I love to drink the zangy (zesty and tangy) Anrancia Rosso (Blood Orange) juice for Prima colazione (breakfast). I also adored the Champagne Martini Sorbet!
Life is too short to torture yourself with bad wines and awful food…
Steven Ho, the Manager of Kuvo and The Travelling Gourmet TM
I am easy to satisfy. Just give me the best! Wahahaha! ENJOY! 🙂
*****KUVO IS AWARDED THE TRAVELLING GOURMET’S BEST NEW DINING EXPERIENCE IN SINGAPORE FOR 2015!!!!!
KUVO Ambrosia & Elixirs
321, Orchard Road
#02-01, Orchard Shopping Centre
Tel: +65 6733 8272
Hours: 12 noon to 1 am daily