How is it that it’s April and my resolution to eat healthy has not kicked in yet? It’s getting worse and worse, I must say! Still, occasionally, I do stumble across a good find, serving up fare encompassing all that is healthy in this world.
I’m referring to this hole in a luxe Hilton hall – Verde Kitchen. As it is, hanging out at Hilton Singapore, surrounded by designer brands, isn’t quite my thing so how did I chance upon Verde Kitchen, you might ask?
Well, it was an invite – and as I have said before, while most of my dining experiences are my own, once in a while, I head out to some obscure tasting and discover something quite special indeed.
(Case in point – Tablescape at Grand Park City Hall)
Back to Verde Kitchen. It’s tucked away, inconspicuously away from the main hotel and I had to ask the gallery’s reception for directions, instead.
Now, Verde Kitchen is all about local, organic and sustainable. And 98% of their dishes are made in-house, allowing them to really control the quality of what they are serving.
Once seated, we started off with a few new-age hipster sounding appetizers like the Super Food Grilled Halloumi ($25) and the Low-fat Creamy Broccoli & Kale Soup ($16).
I’m just taking the piss, secretly I feel quite enlightened eating such “conscious cuisine”. On the rare occasions that I do.
Haloumi, in all its squeaky, salty glory matched up so well with the bulgur wheat, chickpea and rocket salad, and the kicker? Those roasted walnuts! I normally hate walnuts, but these, I was popping them like chocolate balls!
Broccoli and Kale soup – thank goodness not a green sludge, but rather, enough creaminess to make you feel human, and light enough to make you feel like a healthy human. Well, it came with a poached egg, emmental and parmesan toast, so, a little bit of indulgence with your greens.
Another salad, which at its size and it price, should really be viewed as a main, is the Salmon Sashimi & Pomelo Salad ($27). It was a yusheng wannabe, so all you fans of zingy, light, strips of vegetables and fish, you will love this. The yuzu soy dressing and wakame added loads of flavour and texture to the dish.
My highlight dish at Verde Kitchen is the Organic Basil-crusted Glacier 51 Tooth Fish ($38). This fish is prized for being smooth, milky and meaty all at once and I can still taste the intensity of the fish. The meaty locally-farmed mushrooms and the thyme jus made it all the better too.
The people around me seemed to enjoy the Free-range Pulled Pork Burger ($28), but I can’t quite comment on it. Primarily because I don’t like BBQ sauce, which this was doused in, so one bite was enough for me. As far as I could tell and taste, the meat was fork-tender and there was oodles of flavour.
The next dish, the Malay-style Organic Lacto Chicken ($32) – it was tasty, the chef went a little gentle on the heat, but I say, go ahead! Add in the chillis please, and if you plan to try this dish, tell the chef that. It’s a good, rich curry, for sure, but I certainly wouldn’t be paying that price for a curry like this that I can find elsewhere.
And then came dessert. Yes, every hipster’s favourite chia seed makes a strong appearance at Verde Kitchen via the Chia Seed & Caramelized Hazelnut Pudding ($14). The home-made Gula Melaka Ice Cream ($14), too, came in a pot with all the requisite ingredients for a wannabe chendol. Again, tasty.
But I am just too much of a chocoholic to sing praises for any other dessert and so, I shall reserve my raving for the Flourless Chocolate Cake ($14).
This one, another winner! So good, you won’t be missing the gluten. A perfect “fake” indulgence with which to end my meal.
So, would I return? I will, just for that awesome fish and cake. And sure, if I happen to be around during lunch, any of the starters would be a great option. So, the next time you’re around Orchard, in that rather forgotten place called the Hilton, check Verde Kitchen out!
Address: Level 2 Hilton Singapore, 581 Orchard Road
Contact: Call 6730-3397 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
10.30am to 5.30pm (Mondays to Saturdays)