Atout certainly has all the trappings of a “pretty” night out. Just its location at the former grounds of Au Petit Salut is one huge hint about how charming the place is going to be. You’re surrounded by greenery, the vibe inside is bistro style and it just has a certain “je ne sais quoi” about it.
You will see a good mix of people, from the uber-casual (think tees and shorts!) to those out for a night of sipping bubbly and fine wine (that was my party of four, and asides from the Billecart-Salmon champagne, we also imbibed in this lovely Burgundy😊).
On that note, the wine list is relatively decently priced as well. Extensive range of labels to choose from.
Atout’s chef is Patrick Heuberger who interestingly used to be at Au Petit Salut. He was also co-founder of one of my favourite rillete+charcuterie restaurants, Le Bistrot du Sommelier.
So, it figures that Atout shouts on its wide and well-priced selection of charcuterie. I pretty much selected Atout for dinner based on my craving for some good rillette.
And it didn’t disappoint. Not that you might care, but just in case we end up being some sort of saucisson soulmates, my preference in the world of charcuterie, in order of most savoured is – Rillette, Pate, Cured Meats, then Terrine.
So naturally I had to try the Rabbit Rillette ($10 for 100g) and the Chicken Liver and Foie Gras Pate ($12 for 80g). My friends ordered the Duck and Pistachio Terrine ($18 for 150g) as well as the Italian Tomato Salad ($9.80).
Nothing but good things to say. And you can see for yourself that the prices are very reasonable.
Our mains were a mixed bag though. Maybe luck wasn’t on the side of my hubby and I, but we had food envy when we saw our friends’ orders.
The Oxtail and Bacon stew ($36) looked heartily appetizing. Braised in red wine, it was robust and the meat, tender.
The other friend had ordered the other French classic – the Crispy Duck Leg Confit ($28). And that looked really good too! The bits of lardon added an interesting flavour to the dish as well.
Now, when I see quail on the menu, I pretty much have to order it. It’s not something I get to eat on a regular basis, but what little meat is on that little bird, is just so tasty.
I couldn’t wait to try the decadent sounding French Quail stuffed with Mushrooms and Foie Gras ($38) – I mean, not just my favourite bird but stuffed with foie gras at that?
What arrived was a parcel of quail on a king-size bed of potato puree. King-size? I’m only saying that because in relation to the little meat, there sure seemed to be a lot of potato. It really seemed to overpower the little bird. I think I would have preferred to see the quail in its entirety, allowing me to delicately eat around the bone versus how I just kept getting a fork-full of mash each time.
We ordered a couple of sides with our meal as well. As you might guess, I barely touched the Potato Gratin, but it sure looked good!
The biggest disappointment at Atout had to be the Angus Beef Oyster Blade ($35) though. Recommended (and accepted by us) as medium rare, I was expecting chargrilled, tender and tasty – like what I had the last time I had tried this unique cut of meat at Stellar.
Instead, we get a sloppy mess with jus liberally poured onto a tough piece of meat. Now, the oyster blade (part of the shoulder blade) is really a versatile piece of meat – you can grill, fry and even stew it. So, it was disappointing to have been presented with a dish like this at Atout.
Luckily though, the desserts were stellar. The Chocolate Pot ($8.80), the Crème Brulee ($16) and the dessert special that I had – a lovely chocolate, caramel and coconut inspired dish – were all scrumptious.
So, we did end off on a good note. And frankly, I would happily return – the ambience is great and most of the food was good. Next time though, I will order my own duck confit and more of the wonderful rillette and desserts!
Address: 40c Harding road, Singapore 249548
Contact: +65 6679 1800
Monday – Friday: 11:30am-10:00pm (last order)
Saturday / Sunday / Public Holiday: 11:00am-10:00pm (last order)