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Coucou - 1st Dec 2019

  Located on the first floor of a three-storey shophouse in Craig Road, Coucou restaurant is named after the iconic sound of the cuckoo clocks. There is a wall of cuckoo clocks that greet you visually as you walk in against a backdrop of stonewashed walls. You may think this could be a German or Austrian restaurant but any thought of that is erased by pictures of the Matterhorn, Switzerland’s highest mountain. With the heavy use of stone and wood. the restaurant is reminiscent of a Swiss chalet. Further pieces highlighting the Swiss identity are the cow hide-covered bar stools and a Swiss flag on the business card holder. 

This restaurant is operated by the people behind the former Senso restaurant located on Club Street. Running the front of house is Yves Schmid, who is accompanied by a fellow Swiss, Chef Sebastian in the kitchen.


The appetiser of Malakoff is a literally a ball of goodness. It is a dish brought back to Switzerland by the Swiss soldiers who first tasted it during the siege of Sebastopol early in the 19th century. Aged Gruyere, garlic, white wine and kirsch are mixed and scooped into bread rounds then fried to perfection – golden and crisp outside, gooey inside. I will definitely look out for this next time I am in Switzerland!

I really enjoyed the cabbage salad which came in a large wooden bowl, served with homemade "Grand Père" Dressing. It gave us the room to pour into the bowl the amount of dressing we wanted and mix it thoroughly without spilling the salad. The crunchy cabbage was bursting with freshness and the dressing, a secret recipe of Yves’s mother, is a blend of sweet, sour and heat. Yes, the tangy dressing had a good amount of heat. I’m guessing it's from horseradish added into it.


There are a number of dishes that feature the popular Swiss rösti. Since I am carb-loading for the Singapore marathon, I decided to order my favourite Swiss dish of Veal Zurich-style Ragout served with Rösti. Why is it my favourite? Well I like cream-based sauces especially one that has been mixed with beef or veal stock and cooked with a good amount of onions, mushroom and tender meat. The version here is less creamy and more brown, giving it a more meaty taste rather than sweetness from the cream. The rösti is close to perfection, thin shredded potatoes are brown perfectly and ready to soak up the accompanying sauce.

The other dish was Rösti Burger, a concoction by the chef that is a potato rösti served with beef patty wrapped in melted Swiss raclette cheese. As you can see from the photo, the rösti here is more brown and crispier and yet not dry, which makes it tasty as it has to stand on its own without any sauce. The absence of sauce would also serve well for people who prefer their food with less condiments and to taste the natural flavours of their ingredients.

Coucou does a great job of showcasing Swiss cuisine which in my opinion is lacking in Singapore. Hopefully they do well enough to stand the test of this competitive Singapore market.

  ~ Andre Huber

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