Pince and Pints Restaurant and Bar – Is It Worth the Wait?
I have finally tried Pince & Pints. These guys make lobster rolls famous in Singapore and their queues were so long since the first day of operation. It did scare me off the moment I heard it. But this time round, because I was judging for Restaurant Association Epicurean Awards 2014, and Pince & Pints got in for “Best New Restaurants” category, I got no choice but to queue for it.
I waited for close to 1.5hours on a weekday evening. I nearly want to give up but thankfully, the servers were very thoughtful, offered us drinks while waiting. Inspired by the tradition of enjoying lobsters made famous by the New England-style “Lobster Roll” -, Pince & Pints Restaurant and Bar emerges full-formed: a casual, unpretenious atmosphere, reminiscent of a traditional lobster shack in Maine, and an unmistakable take on New York’s sophistication of compact quarters, white brick walls, red leather furnishings and stainless steel bar countertop, complete with music of the big band genre.
Owner Frederick Yap has bravely hauled such delicious decadences back from the other side of the world – North America. The lobsters are: wild caught, air flown, and deftly handled, and stored in state-of-the-art deep sea tanks even the lobsters may be tricked into thinking that they might be back in the waters of Boston, Maine or Canada, where they are imported from.
The lobster roll or some named it “the lazy man’s lobster” — traditionally consists of a toasted hot dog bun topped by pieces of fresh lobster meat and a little bit of mayo. This is the superstar on the menu.
Freshly caught lobsters are flown in direct from Boston, Maine and Canada, twice weekly, to Pince & Pints’ own holding facility with specifically tuned-in conditions; engineered by state-of-the-art mechanisms. The temperature of the water must be kept at a constant of 5 to 7°C. Like a short getaway, no lobster is allowed to over-stay in the restaurant after 7 days. Close to 5,000 lobsters are imported to the restaurant every month. Strict conditional handling is of paramount importance. So, the lobsters served at Pince & Pints Restaurant and Bar are always of top quality – meaty, fresh and juicy.
The 600-650g live lobsters were first steamed before painstakingly removing its meat (about 160g), then tossed with mayonnaise, salt and pepper. The hot dog buns are custom-made by a traditional bakery in Chinatown and soaked in butter, then pan-fried till golden yellow, which makes the roll light and crispy with an aromatic richness.
Stuffed with hearty chunks of the natural sweetness of the lobster meat (using a whole lobster and the claw) and coated with chopped chives with a side serving of shoestring fries and salad with the restaurant’s own house dressing of sour cherry balasmic vinaigrette.
I have tried a few restaurants that serve lobster rolls, and I must say, Pince & Pint’s lobster roll is one of the best I had! I can taste the freshness of the lobster meat. Together with the bun, it gives an indulgent, aromatic and satisfying bite. Now that explains the long wait.
Next comes the inimitable lobster dish: Live Whole Lobster. Choose from either a grilled or steamed version, these are the best ways to fully appreciate and experience the natural sweetness and freshness of lobsters.
The grilled version is served on parchment paper, and it comes with mesclun salad with sour cherry and balsamic vinaigrette, herbed butter and shoestring fries. And, for the steamed dish, the lobster is steamed with salted water and olive oil for the natural taste of the sea.
Another dish that gives immense satisfaction, Singapore style: Chili Lobster with Mantou. With slighty more tart and sweetness than the chili sauce used for the crabs, roma tomatoes, ginger, lemon grass, garlic, egg are added to the chili sauce (a special house blend) and ketchup. It doesn’t have the punch which we were expecting, and slightly more on the sweet side. But taste great with mantou.
Each dish is priced at $48++. Honestly, it is the priciest among all other restaurants selling lobster rolls, but the freshness and succulence of the meat totally blew us away. Plus, their service is very good! Throughout my meal, the servers will constantly come up to me to ask how am I, how are the dishes and each and everyone of them has good product knowledge. I love their energy and eagerness! Congratulations to Pince & Pints for receiving the “Best New F&B Establishment” award!
An excellent way to start or finish such decadent dishes is to head to the bar. At Pince & Pints Restaurant and Bar, the menu leans more towards a classic trajectory of cocktails made with homemade syrups. There are 14 cocktails to choose from. The other tipple-staples include: beers (Corona, Hoegaarden, etc) and 4 craft beers, 7 white wines, 7 red wines that are a great mix of both Old World and New World wines, 7 different blends of tea from local brand, Allerines, and 4 mocktails.
Will I come back? Of course! Great service and great food, what’s not to love? Now they are opened for lunch, so I hope I don’t have to queue that long the next time round!
Updated Read “Pince and Pints Launched New Truffle Lobster Roll“.
Pince and Pints Restaurant and Bar
Address: 32/33 Duxton Road S089496
Tel: 6225 7558
Opening Hours: Mon – Fri : 5pm – 11pm (Dinner Only) Saturdays : 12pm – 11pm (All Day) Open on Public Holidays (No reservations)
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