PocoLoco has always been known for serving authentic-tasting Italian pasta at pocket-friendly prices.

Another interesting trait: Its restaurants have usually opened at more obscure spots as well, from under a flat at Ang Mo Kio Ave 10, and Snow City in Jurong.

The Novena outlet may not be visible from street level, at Level 2 of Royal Square. The mall is conveniently situated next to Novena Square, a short walk from the train station.

As for Yishun folks, the eatery is found at Wisteria Mall Level 1.

While the restaurant could be a blink-and-miss, this is where you should go to if you are looking for inexpensive, enjoyable pasta.

Several of the products and ingredients used are imported directly from Italy to cook up better quality pasta; and stock bases and dressings prepared from scratch rather than pre-packs.

As to how PocoLoco keep their prices lower, they chose to open at more heartland places thus saving on rental, and adopt a more casual concept rather than European style full table service.

The menu at Novena Royal Square outlet is a combination of signature favourites, chef’s specials from the other branches – with a focus on Hokkaido sea urchin. It is also more pasta-focused.

Here are some of the recommendations at PocoLoco Novena Royal Square:

Tagliolini ($20.00)
There are a couple of new Uni dishes in the menu, the key featured pasta being the Tagliolini with fresh Hokkaido sea urchin cooked pepperoncino style.

When you mix the sea urchin into the pasta, you get that rich, buttery and ‘sea-taste’ in the mix.

Perhaps that is why there is “pepperoncino” within, the dish itself is not very spicy for diners to better savour the original flavours of the sea urchin.

The pasta used is the Tagliolini, a form of egg pasta that is thin, long and cylindrical shape, and may remind many of the Asian style nodles.

Mentaiko Pasta ($13.50)
Probably the most Asian-tasting pasta of the lot.

The Tagliolini is cooked with spicy cod roe which imparts that orange-pink colour, giving it slight spiciness which complements the buttery, creamy sauce.

Granchio ($13.50)
This has been considered an ‘old’ favourite, and also my personal recommended pasta dish from PocoLoco.

The type of pasta used is Tagliatelle, a kind of ribbon-cut egg pasta that is very popular in Italy.

The Crabmeat Pasta came al dente, with generous portion of sweet crab meat, cooked in a creamy sauce added with tomatoes which gives those slight tangy flavours.

I loved the creamy sauce that happened to be not too rich, yet still had that satisfying mouthfeel.

Manzo ($13.50)
Pasta with beef in truffle cream sauce. The beef slices here were sautéed in white wine and flavoured with parsley and truffle essence.

Cold Carbonara ($18.00)
There are a couple of appetizer dishes including Gamberi ($8.90) – sautéed prawn with butter garlic and lemon; Melone ($8.90) rock melons with parma ham; Clams in white wine sauce ($10.90). Cheese Platter ($10.90); Carpaccio of thinly sliced beef tenderloin with truffle essence ($13.50); and Burrata Cheese with rocket salad, tomato and parma ham ($16.90).

The dish that caught my attention was the Cold Carbonara with Hokkaido Sea Urchin.

Having pasta cold may need some getting used to, even if it comes with a foamy, milky base. But when mixed with the Uni which imparts the briny ocean taste and creamy texture, this will certainly grow on you.

Cold Cappelini ($20.00)
Another cold pasta dish of Angel Hair with Hokkaido scallop, sea urchin and kombu, drizzled over with truffle dish.

You may have experienced a similar dish at other higher end restaurants, but PocoLoco is offering this at a fraction of the price.

Porcini ($14.90)
For risotto lovers, the offering include the Nero ($14.90) squid ink risotto; Zafferano ($14.90) seafood with saffron sauce; and the popular Porcini ($14.90) with porcini mushroom.

The medium-grained Carnaroli rice is cooked by boiling the grains with broth in a low flame – such that it would become slightly creamy with the right bite.

Always end off an Italian meal with some pleasing dishes, such as Panna Cotta ($5.90), Tiramisu ($7.90) and Vanilla Cheese Cake ($8.90).

The Tiramisu served in a cup, garnished with thin layer of cacao powder, with soft and smooth texture, is a safe choice.

For something more delicate and not overly sweet, head for the Panna Cotta which gives a light, delicate finish.

PocoLoco – Novena
Royal Square @ Novena, 103 Irrrawaddy Road #02-08 Singapore 329566
Tel: +65 8699 6664
Opening Hours: 12:00pm – 3:00pm Last Order 2:30pm, 6:00pm – 10:00pm Last Order 9:30pm Daily
Reservation Online

PocoLoco – Ang Mo Kio
408 Ang Mo Kio Ave 10 #01-779 Singapore 560408
Tel: +65 8436 3363
Opening Hours: 12:00pm – 3:00pm Last Order 2:30pm, 6:00pm – 10:00pm Last Order 9:30pm Daily

PocoLoco Microbrewery – Jurong
Snow City Level 2, 21 Jurong Town Hall Road Singapore 609433

(Alight at Jurong East Station on the East West Line and walk 10-15 min or transfer to Bus No. 335 or 66.)
Tel: +65 8438 3833
Opening Hours: 12:00pm – 3:00pm Last Order 2:30pm, 6:00pm – 10:00pm Last Order 9:30pm Daily

* This entry is brought to you in partnership with Poco Loco.


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