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Cloudstreet - 1st Sep 2019

The sky clouded over but we were on cloud nine… looking forward to a gastronomic experience at Cloudstreet – a new restaurant by Chef Rishi Naleendra.

Chef Rishi –known for the one-Michelin-starred Cheek by Jowl he previously helmed– is the first Sri Lanka-born chef to earn a Michelin star.

At this new quarter, he now pays tribute to his Sri Lankan roots without reservations, feeding our tummies food and our eyes beautiful decor in modern European style filtered through Sri Lanka.

First served to us was a petite Coffin Bay oyster wrapped in a betel leaf, served in its shell and snug in fresh coconut oil hand-pressed by one of the staff who served us.

It was a remarkably refreshing dish. The freshness of the oyster was complemented by the freshness of the betel leaf. The betel leaf was also tossed in betel leaf oil just enough to make it moist but not over-oily. The taste was further heightened with pops of finger lime pulp which injected a jolt of acidity.

Next up was a plate of art.

Pickled mussels stuffed into a fake mussel “shell” made of squid ink and algae, with that doppelganger cleverly disguised among a plate of actual stones.

What an ingenious touch! Who would have thought? It was even more fun when the server jokingly reminded us not to eat the stones too.

Thumbs up to their team's creativity.

The ensuing dish is Andre's favourite.

"This is one of the best breads I have eaten and so addictive! I would pay good money just to have this again," Andre exclaimed.

It was one addictive rye bread, spiked with dark Singapore stout and glazed with sticky molasses. The texture of the bread was dense yet fluffy, and it had a pleasant taste of dates with sweetness coming from the molasses and went well balanced with the light French butter, just slightly salted.

How could they make it so tasty? I had to put my dieting aside for it, and that is so unfair, haha.

Beetroot with smoked goat's cheese was next in line.

It was a happy partnership, accompanied by a nice crunch from the puffed quinoa.

The starter was served right after. There was a pleasant umami sourness from the Japanese cherry tomatoes and the sauce made of it with ponzu added, and the sticky burrata provided some sweetness and bound the dish together.

And those were just the preludes. There were four options for the mains – "Roasted Quail, Mushroom, Chestnut", "Zucchini Flower, Sri Lankan Yellow Curry, Mung Bean", "Barbecued Turbot, Fermented Bell Pepper, Horse Ears", and "Grilled Mottainai Lamb, Young Jackfruit, Mint".

My favourite was the roasted quail. It had a nice subtle roast smell, and the meat was in the right pink.

Andre and my colleague preferred the second option. The Sri Lankan yellow curry was something special, and it really shows Chef Rishi's Sri Lankan heritage. Andre found it well-balanced and that it went perfectly with the zucchini flower stuffed with Mung Bean.

"It was a vegetarian dish that even a meat lover like me could eat all day." – Andre Huber 

The Mottainai lamb was good too. 

It was fork-tender with a pleasant sweetness and mild gaminess – better for those who prefer it less gamey.

The turbot was pleasant as well, albeit less impressive than the preceding dishes as the cream had a more subtle taste.

Then, there's the desserts. It started off with a funky tri-colour palate cleanser made of fermented watermelon juice, goat's milk sorbet and basil.

While the look reminded me of the Eye of Horus, the taste reminded me of spring and summer. In terms of flavours, the sweetness of the syrupy juice did well in contrasting against the goaty taste of the sorbet. On its own, they might have been too sweet or goatey, but when combined together, the result was a refreshing lift like a true palate cleanser it was designed to be.

The next dish was a delicate parfait perfumed with honeydew and white grapes in the form of granita. It marries well with the mascarpone beneath and served as a great dessert to end my three-course meal on.

Overall, it was an enjoyable meal. One could tell that the team put their hearts into making every single dish, and the food was impressive with the creative touches. Ambience was nice and the service was great too.

"I'm definitely coming back here again with my friends," so says Andre.

    ~ Cheyenne Teo
Marketing Manager


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