Art at Curate: Just Like A German Christmas Market
I feel like we’ve moved so far along into December to not talk about Christmas. And if you’re on the prowl for an alternative experience, Art at Curate located in the gorgeous Christmas lit compound of Resort Worlds Sentosa strikes back with a German-themed menu. From the outside, this fancy joint looks as though it only attracts the well-heeled, hoity-toity high rollers from the casino nearby looking to feed their winsome appetites, but take an hour or so, a sip (or two) of your mulled wine and you’ll understand exactly what the fuss is all about. We give you, Art at Curate, just one of the best immersive dining experiences I’ve had this year, no biggie (read: major biggie).
If you’re anything like me and try to avoid all difficult choices like the plague, opt for the festive dinner menu. There’s a twist to this gem too. Don’t get too comfy in your seats just yet. Within minutes of being seated, you’ll be whisked away to the “Petite Chalet”—aka the wine chiller to enjoy mulled wine over a drawer of petit finger foods presented by Head Chef Benjamin Halat. It’s a nod to a domestic dinner party—drinks and nibbles before the main affair—and we love it. Purposed at emulating a chateau experience, the immediate chill is resolved with warm tipples of homemade mulled wine. A trio of finger foods is called to your attention, each a minuscule work of art representing the Alpine countries: Switzerland, Germany and Austria. You take a minute or two to revel in the experience, snap a photo and proceed to gobble these down with gusto. At this point, your senses are heightened and teased. And if this foreplay has got you all sorts of excited, brace yourselves for the food-front.
After this frigid but no less lukewarm experience, you’re ushered back to your seat whereupon an “Edible Forest” is presented. Crispy lacy “leaves” purposed out of beetroot, onion and celeriac are perched upon a solid block of fashionable log. You giggle as your friend naively picks at the acorn garnishes. The arrangement is immaculate and attention to detail with regard to stemware and flatware are unbeatably well-conceived. This is further demonstrated in the “Mini Oktorberfest” reception: tiny mugs of Erdinger beer accompanied by shards of magical chicken skins. In the face of modernity, Art by Curate does surprisingly well in cajoling laughter around its white linen, regimental settings. Let’s talk about the dining room, marble outlays with rose gold accents, champagne flutes employed as light installations and genuinely elegant couch seating. It is, in one word, chic, till you notice the blown up pixels on the ‘marbled’ wallpaper. What were they thinking?
The bread basket is a thing of beauty. Crusty sourdough and kaiser roll are served with 3 kinds of butter. The smoked bacon butter over promises, it’s innate saltiness undermining the bread’s potential. We get into the Poached Foie Gras with Gluhwein and Walnut Brioche. It’s good and not as rich as expected. You soldier on to the next course with ease, a riff on a typical German feast in October. This is gastromolecular and beyond a shadow of a doubt, one of the most whimsical dishes I’ve put to my lips all year. Sauerkraut consommé is soft set as a jelly and contrasted with a richer dark beer reduction that has a sharp tang reminiscent of bovril. Then come the pig trotter croquettes to the party—hold me steady please—the combination of jarringly pickled flavours with velvety unctuous porcine fats is a proper showstopper.
But we’re yet to reach the apex. Top-ups of bubbly ranging from the Blanc Foussy from the Loire Valley to the Taittinger Brut Reserve, and finally to celebrity endorsed Angel Champagne scoring brownie points where indulgent experiences are concerned. If you’re considering going out in style on Friday nights, the restaurant has recently curated an Avant Garde Ladies Night Experience with a free flow of hors d’oeuvres and a choice of three bubbly packages ranging from $98++ to the over-the-top lavish $388++. We have our qualms, but should you take the leap of faith, you know Mariah Carey and Rihanna have got your back. The pinnacle comes in the form of a Barbary Duck with Brioche Dumpling and Braised Red Cabbage. The very spirit of harmony is embodied in this dish. The bird, aged for 4 weeks bared intense flavours, while the minimal water content resulted in an enviable browned, crisped skin. The brioche dumpling chaperoning the duck will beg you to call back the chef and ask: What sorcery is this?
Dessert is a moment to mourn your expanding waistline. The Kaiserschmarren, a shredded pancake of Austrian descent sees new form as an icy dessert doctored with tons of cinnamon. It’s a blissful gift made even better with the alcoholic kick from the accompanying glass of housemade Rumtopf, a fruit-infused rum that promises to warm the belly. Hold still for the petit fours, these are not to be missed: Christmas cookies, Beesting cake and Ferrero Rocher. I unapologetically loosened my obi belt in an attempt to fit in all that goodness. Speaking of which, I’ll be getting acquainted with the gym tomorrow and I don’t regret every bit of it.
8 Sentosa Gateway, RWS, 6577 8888