At Claudine, an old colonial chapel is refitted into a French brassiere and posh space that serves up comforting French classics and delectable brunch (only on Sundays).
The brasserie in Dempsey Hill is a concept by Julien Royer, the chef-owner of the 3 Michelin star restaurant Odette.
Foodies should not be too unfamiliar with the 3 Michelin-starred Odette even though if reservations are hard to get and only tasting menus are available (from $298).
Some may wonder if Claudine offers the same quality at a much more accessible price, even though their style and menu (one’s tasting, the other fully ala carte) are entirely different.
By the way, Odette is named after Chef Julien’s grandmother, and Claudine after his mother.
Claudine is located at Harding Road Dempsey where White Rabbit used to be.
Even though the chapel retains its iconic stained glass windows, the interior took on a varied look and vibe.
A 15-metre light installation runs through the ceiling overheard; there are bold colours of maroon and deep-green used, while pink banquette chairs add that cosy touch.
From the open kitchen, classics are created and served. I wanted to experience something different and chose to head over for its Sunday brunch instead.
Also because I went on a Sunday, the vibes felt both energetic and relaxed at the same time, with patrons dressed up to have a jolly good time.
There is a small section of “brunch classics” – Avocado Toast ($18), Sourdough & Saint-Nectaire Crispy Sandwich ($38), Egg Mimosa Trio ($18), Slow Poached Organic Egg ($22), and Crispy Egg & Caviar ($78).
A brunch-favourite choice (but of course) is the Avocado Toast ($18) made with horseradish, shallot and pomegranate for a burst of freshness.
Elsewhere, the Egg Mimosa Trio ($18) comprises classic, crab, and spicy versions of the time-tested dish. Eggs are halved and filled with a egg-yolk mixture with other ingredients and sauces, served cold.
Consider getting the Sourdough & Saint-Nectaire Crispy Sandwich ($38) too. Jambon de Paris, a Parisian ham, is paired with black truffle and a French cheese between toasted sourdough, delivering an intensely savoury taste in every bite.
I was recommended the Mozambique Langoustine ($58), which the server told me was a “must-have”.
Beneath the pan-roasted sweet langoustine was a pool of robust crustacean bisque with umami that went well with the dumpling. There was extra bisque provided, so worry not if you feel like you want more – which you would.
My friend and I went for the Moules Marinières, Pommes Frites ($58), a classic Belgium-style dish of Morrisseau mussels cooked in a broth of wine.
While I am not a fan of mussels 100% of the time, these were particular tender and fresh, and we found ourselves rolling up our sleeves, getting our hands dirty to scoop out more of tasty sauce.
If you bring a few friends with you, and you can get roasted meats such as the Whole Roasted Chicken ($148) to share. Served with fries and salad, the chicken is cooked to a right temperature to retains its juiciness.
End off the luxurious brunch with traditional French sweets from the indulgent dessert menu.
Almost every other table I saw had the ‘Crepe Sou-Zette’ ($20/$38), a French crepe made with Grand Marnier orange liquor, organic oranges, and Suzette sauce.
Understandably so, because they had a more showy presentation and would be good for the IG Story. The thin crepes looked soaked thoroughly with the citrus notes, an excellent way to end off the meal.
While the Pistachio Souffle ($22) I ordered looked different from the conventional, it was still decadent with the Sicilian pistachio ice cream adding a rich finish to the light and fluffy souffle.
The dining experience at Claudine is thoroughly pleasant, its food elevated further by the grand ambience of its setting. But again, don’t come expecting ‘Odette’.
39C Harding Road, Singapore 249541
Opening Hours: 11:45am – 2pm, 6pm – 9:30pm (Tues – Sat), 11:30am – 3:30pm (Sun), Closed Mon
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