I seem to be having a lot of pastas and pizzas of late, with a few new Italian restaurants opening up in Singapore.
Luka feels different. It calls itself “contemporary Italian, Pizza and Wagyu Bar” in Singapore, with Japanese influences.
The name “Luka” is inspired by Head Chef Takashi Okuno’s son Luke – who majorly loves pizzas.
Located at 16 Tanjong Pagar Road, it is along the stretch of Korean restaurants, in the direction diagonally opposite Maxwell Food Centre.
The vibes are strong on this one. It was packed on a weekday night, with after-work CBD workers and Japanese ladies piling up on wine, all sharing wood-fired pizzas and laugher.
You would notice a ‘power’ Stefano Ferrara Neapolitan handmade brick oven in the open-concept kitchen.
These ovens are built brick by brick, without using any prefabricated concrete slabs, and can keep uniform the right temperature of 400°C-500°C for baking Neapolitan pizza.
LuKa’s signature dishes include appetizer Luka Housemade Wagyu Bresaola ($12), side dish 62-Degree Egg with Wagyu & Uni ($10), Plin Agnolotti ravioli ($18), and Prosciutto e Rucola Burrata pizza ($23), complete with stylish pizza boxes for takeaway.
Compared to other restaurants where there will be a couple of signature dishes, yes, they have only highlighted these few.
Japanese Chef Takashi Okuno is no stranger to Italian food. His parents operate an Italian eatery in Tokyo, and he was previously from L’Operetta, Drinks & Co and brought Truffle Gourmet to Singapore.
I was delighted at the appetisers. The Smoked Egg, Wagyu, Uni ($10), while not quite what you would expect at an Italian restaurant, was as good as it sounded.
Smoky runny egg, aburi-ed wagyu, and creamy sea urchin came together for a burst of flavours. Take it in one mouthful, and let it work the magic within.
The deep fried Baby Corn ($12) just let its simplicity surface through – fresh, crunchy, not overly cooked corn. Lovely.
Therefore, I was expecting MUCH from the pizza. After having the Margherita Bufala, the entire table thought ”It was okay”.
Thin, slightly crispy texture with a touch of chewiness, but we all thought the toppings tasted “plain” and could have been more robust.
The same happened with for the Bolognese Pasta ($18). Loved the texture of the broad, flat pappardelle, but the ingredients and sauce as a whole felt subtle and flat.
Service’s great, vibe’s great, the food’s potentially very delicious – I think also got to do with what we ordered.
Before I forget, make your reservations via phone calls, they don’t seem to reply emails.
16 Tanjong Pagar Road Singapore 088439 (Tanjong Pagar)
Tel: +65 6221 3988
Opening Hours: 12:00pm – 11:30pm (Mon – Sat), Closed Sun