Its not that easy to find a chillout place that goes beyond pub grubs. Yes we have countless places that can whip up a good meal, and venues that are great for unwinding on Friday evenings (Think Switch by Timbre and Gravity Bar @ Carlton), yet finding both under one roof can be a little challenging. And that's where Skyve Wine Bistro comes into the picture.
Located within the old Monk's Hill Secondary School campus at Newton, Sky Wine Bistro looked very different from what I remembered the place as when it was occupied by District 10. The beer-garden-like area seems like the perfect place for friends to gather and, in Cantonese term, "blow water" (ie brag and talk nonsense) with a beer in hand, or to hold a small outdoor party with appropriate setups.
The indoors are divided into two areas; a cosy bar with comfy armchairs and benches, and a casual dining hall that had a tinge of retro-ness with it metal chairs and wall partition. With the restaurant owner Celine's brother, Chef Jachin, now helming the kitchen, we tried some of his creations from the new menu that emphasised on freshness and natural flavours.
We started the dinner with a trio of oysters with toppings that went beyond the usual au natural or cheese-baked. The Japanese-inspired Mentaiyaki had a dope of mentaiko and ebiko which gave an extra savoury and slightly spicy taste, while the Chilean was refreshing with the addition of red wine vinegar and cilantro.
My favourite, however, got to be the British-influenced Kilpatrick that was topped with bacon bits and Worchestershire Sauce. Bacon and oyster has never come together as good as this!
As a light carbo starter, the somen was drizzled with sesame yuzu dressing and well paired with thin slices of sweet mango. Interestingly, it also reminded me of Halia @ Raffles's Oriental Pulled Duck, with the difference of being paired with a nicely seared slab of petuna instead.
The other one was my kind of play-with-your-food fun as we had to DIY in mixing the truffled egg yolk with the tartare, the reward being a well-blended creation of creamy, semi-raw beef that had the distinctive aroma of truffles. A small scoop of it onto the flat bread and taken in one mouthful made it all the more enjoyable.
Mains coming right up! With a meaty portabello mushroom sandwiched between two thick slices of crispy polenta cakes, this will definitely be in one of my meals if I have to be Vegetarian for a day. While chicken can never be too exciting, cooking in sous vide style did made it better with a moist, tender texture. The candied pecan was also a bonus by providing a dimension of sweetness in between mouthfuls.
And this, had me gushing nothing but praises for it. While beef short ribs are already pretty tender by nature, sous vide technique has brought it up to a whole new level with chunks of meat coming off from the bone easily and required little effort of the knife.
With a Korean-themed sweet and (not really detectable) spicy glaze, I finished my portion with much joy and shamelessly had the remaining pieces which the rest were already too full to touch by now. Furthermore, the sides of yam and sweet potato ribbons were also thumbs-up alternative for chips.
Ending with sweets, the first one was interesting (in a good way) as the creamy, sweet frozen mousse was paired with refreshing slurpee-like lime foam. As for the other one, I was never a fan of deconstructed desserts so I will go for the traditional version.
While we didn't get to try their bar bites, a flip of their menu revealed attractive choices of pizza slabs and a certain pork cheek bun. 1-for-1 happy hours also made the place a tempting watering hole. Now if enjoying a good meal with pre/post meal alcoholic indulgence is your kind of night, then Skyve Wine Bistro should definitely be on your list. As for myself, a return for the beef ribs is in the planning!
Special thanks to Michelle of FoodNews for the invite!
Skyve Wine Bistro
10 Winstedt Road
Block E, #01-17
Tel: 6225 6690
Check out Skyve's website for menu and ongoing promos
Taken with Nikon D70