Gordon Ramsay needs little introduction. 14 Michelin stars (used to be 16), straight-talking judge on Hell’s Kitchen, MasterChef, MasterChef Junior, and one of television’s most recognisable celebrity chef with a specific reputation.
Bread Street Kitchen by Gordon Ramsay at The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands, opened to much anticipation and continues to be quite popular with both foreign and local diners.
The Singapore BSK is helmed by Executive Chef Sabrina Stillhart, who previously worked with him at London’s BSK and the one Michelin starred Savoy Grill.
Before the meal proper, I could imagine two contrasting reviews that would surface, from the critics and the fans, somewhere along the lines of…
The critics: Gordon Ramsay’s food was no good. I had better.
The fans: Gordon Ramsay’s food was soooooooo good. The best thing I have ever eaten in my life.
BSK Singapore is modeled after the London version, industrial design, British European menu using seasonal produce.
There are two levels – so check with your friends where to go if you are arriving late. The main dining area is upstairs.
Ambience was chic ‘clubbish’, with music a notch above what we would have preferred for a proper conversion.
If this is a dating venue, you may go, “Huh?” more frequently than you would have imagined.
Our table of four were seated facing the partition. Not the most conducive arrangement, though service was professional and prompt.
The menu boosts a selection of cold starters, hot starters, salads, mains, grills and desserts.
Starters we had was a mixed bag. I specifically ordered, and turned out liking the Warm Bang Bang Chicken Salad ($18), an oriental inspired watercrest salad topped with Sichuan style shredded chicken sans the spiciness.
Note: That salad is no longer available. Though there are 5 salads available such as Crispy Chicken Caesar Salad ($16 / $28) and Crispy Duck Salad with Watercress ($16 / $28). There is the option to add grilled king prawns for $18.
The Tamarind Spiced Chicken Wings ($18) were decent, glazed with a sweet-savoury (not ironically not too spicy) sauce, which my friends remarked were “good, but the Korean Fried Chicken restaurants can offer better.”
Both in terms of seasoning and juiciness.
Seared Scallops ($24) with cauliflower puree were unfortunately drier than expected, and possibly even rubbery on some parts.
Everyone on the table is a fan of Ramsay to varying degree, and came with certain expectations. Mains while satisfactory were mostly lackluster.
The BSK Beef Burger ($29) needed a tastier patty (though it was still rather juicy); the Slow Cooked Veal Shin ($46) while covered in a savoury grain mustard sauce lacked that robustness; and the Shepherd’s Pie with Braised Lamb ($38) was… just like another shepherd’s pie.
No major surprises for that.
Now, how about Gordon Ramsay’s famed Beef Wellington, for those who are fans of Hell’s Kitchen?
The Beef Wellington ($80) is only available during special weeks and occasions, such as Father’s Day week or Valentine’s Day – so look out their Facebook for updates.
For those who do not take beef, there are the Chicken Wellington ($50), and Salmon Wellington ($60) versions.
(I borrowed this paragraph…) The Beef Wellington consist of a seared filet mignon smothered in a whole-grain mustard and wrapped in layers of salty prosciutto, an herbed crepe, duxelles (mushrooms that have been pulverized into a paste), and puff pastry. The whole package is then baked until the crust crisps up and the meat reaches medium-rare perfection.
I also watched the preparation on MasterChef Junior.The preparation certainly didn’t look easy to execute perfectly. The beef could been under or overdone, and the puff pastry needed to be crisp.
Nobody knows the results until the Wellington is cut part down in the centre.
When the dish arrived accompanied by red wine jus and a side of mashed potatoes, I imagined the portion to be a lot bigger? Somehow. Perhaps I got my mind on the typical roast beef.
To me, it was really about the contrast of the outer buttery, fluffy layer with the inner meaty part. I wondered more of how it was prepared more than the taste.
The accompanying mash was forgettable (perhaps I was too into JR’s version), but the salad of glazed carrots and seasonal greens was spot-on.
As it turned out, my friends almost wanted to leave without desserts, but I insisted on having some to complete the meal. And they all turned out to be redeeming.
Borrowing a quote from Gordon Ramsay, “…In cooking it’s not how you start, it’s how you finish.”
The Parfait with Poached Blackberries ($18) achieved an almost perfect balance of creamy white chocolate and mid-strong coffee; and the Monkey Shoulder Cranachan Cheesecake ($18) had a wonderful pudding-like texture enhanced with a touch of premium Scotch Whisky.
“I don’t like looking back. I’m always constantly looking forward…”
Using Gordon Ramsay’s quote in another context, if there are disappointments, there are always desserts to look forward to.
Bread Street Kitchen
Marina Bay Sands Bay Level L1-81, 2 Bayfront Avenue, The Shoppes, Singapore S018972
Tel: +65 6688 5665
Opening Hours: 11:30am – 5:30pm (Lunch), 5:30pm – 10pm (Sun-Wed), 5:30pm – 12am (Dinner),
11:30am – 1am (Sun), 11:30am – 2am (Fri-Sat)