Palette Restaurant & Bar – Food Court with Restaurant Service in Capital Piazza
Opened in June 2015, Palette Restaurant & Bar runs a food court with a very different concept. Firstly, unlike other food courts where tables are found on a first-come-first-serve basis and you have to go to all the trouble just to “chope” a table, there are ushers at Palette who will lead you to your seats conveniently and comfortably.
Secondly, instead of queuing up to order your food from the specific vendors in food courts, Palette makes use of a cable service concept whereby orders are placed using a tablet before food is served to your table by waiters and waitresses. Thirdly, customers are able to make reservations beforehand at Palette so during the festive periods, you will be able to safely secure a table without having to go through too much hassle or worry about not being able to get any tables.
These unique hawker vendors here are not available elsewhere in Singapore, with the exceptions of Balestier Bak Kut Teh and Little Nanyang. There are ten specially curated vendors from Southeast Asia here to cater to what everyone wants to eat, from satisfying the young to the old.
We started our feast with an authentic Malaysian flavour of handmade ikan parang (wolf herring) fried fishcake from Ah Koong Restaurant. This is a noodle joint established in Johor Bahru since 1987. It is renowned for its specialty dishes ranging from Chinese-style seafood dishes, dim sum to roast meats. Its operations at Palette, is its sixth in Singapore.
Moving on to the mains, we had baked rice with abalone from Ah Yat. Many would already have known that Ah Yat is a well-recognized Hong Kong brand boasting restaurants in seven different countries; including three in Singapore. It serves diners with a wide choice of mouthwatering Hong Kong style dishes that includes its signature succulent abalone. Here at Palette, every abalone is masterfully-handled by the chefs, where each morsel releases its natural juices as it is chewed. The dish is also prepared with Ah Yat’s proprietary abalone sauce, a top-secret recipe that was created over 40 years ago. We like the fragrant and savory baked egg fried rice as well.
Hok Kee specializes in stewed beef and tripe, shrimp wontons and salted chicken congee. Serving their signature braised beef brisket noodles for over 60 years, Hok Kee has been touted as one of the “Ten Best Delicacies in Hong Kong” since 2000. Their stall at Palette is their first venture outside Hong Kong.
The signature braised beef brisket noodles’ thick gravy is brewed from a complex mixture of 10 spices, including cinnamon, cloves, pepper and star anise, and can be served with the popular Hong Kong style wonton in bite-sized parcels of fresh shrimp, lean pork, pork fat and a secret ingredient – flatfish. Although it was a tad on the saltier side, we still enjoyed this piping hot bowl of noodle soup, especially comforting on a rainy day.
Besides the above famous Hong Kong dishes, Palette has Delhi 6, which stays true to the rustic flavours and cooking methods of Northwest Indian cuisine. Two electric tandoors (Indian clay oven) take centrestage here, as most of the dishes are cooked in them. The options are endless and cater to every palate and served in variations of wraps, rolls, flatbreads and Indian briyani rice. We had their Lahori Boti Kebab – a meat-lovers’ delight! Pieces of meat and brown onions are grilled so skillfully in the tandoor, such that the spice-marinated meat is imbued with a tantalizing smokiness and remains impeccably juicy.
Nasi Tumpeng Mini was born in 2007 under IndoChili’s Java Kitchen group, an Indo-Peranakan family business, with recipes from Padang, Bali and Java. The group boasts its own spice blends with raw ingredients sourced from Indonesia. No artificial or ready-made flavourings are used in its food.
Tumpeng Mini fits the bill as a one-dish meal, with turmeric rice, shaped in a mountain, surrounded by bergedil, keropok, achar tempe (fermented soybeans) and a leg of ayam bumbu rujak (Indonesian spicy chicken). We like the crispy beancurd that was minced and cooked with peanuts. Hawkers outside would usually serve an entire big piece of beancurd but here, the beancurd is bite-size crispy and oh-so-heavenly!
Our lunch ended off with kopi-infused bread and butter pudding dessert from 90 Gastro Bar. This bar is Palette’s very own in-house bar. Presenting a collection of Capitol cocktail tributes and sweet nosh that fuse familiar Asian flavours with classic Western desserts, these are designed to trigger a wave of nostalgia among Singaporeans. The dessert we tried would make a delightful Christmas treat with a local twist. Infused with traditional kopi and served with chocolate ice-cream, this dessert is bound to be a hot favourite.
Speaking of Christmas, the Vice President of Palette has personally concocted three cocktails and one mocktail for this festive season! Winter Wonderland makes use of Southern Comfort and Peach Schnapps as its key ingredients. We find this artful combination of blueberries and grapes, paired with Southern Comfort and Peach Schnapps very fruity and refreshing. Do enjoy a berry-licious Christmas!
Herald Angels, on the other hand, is a botanical gin-based cocktail drink with strong notes of lemongrass and delightful undertones of Kwai Feh Lychee liquor. The third cocktail is Rudolph’s Sleigh – a fresh citrus concoction of pineapple, orange and lemon juice paired with cherry liqueur and garnished with a sprig of rosemary. This Christmas selection will end on 31st December 2015.
Palette’s prices are on the high side but well, you get the convenience and comfort of just sitting down and waiting for someone will be coming to serve you. There are still other vendors that we have not yet tried so perhaps, we would visit Palette again to try their highly recommended Tauhu Goreng from IndoGoreng, as well as, Balestier Bak Kut Teh.
13 Stamford Road
#B1-20/27 Capital Piazza
11am to 10.30pm daily
Tel: (65) 6384 3359
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