Opened daily from 1130AM until late, the UsQuBa - Scottish Restaurant & Bar is the latest addition to the list of dining establishments at One Fullerton. UsQuBa is derived from Gaelic Usquebaugh which represents the Water of Life. Led by Executive Chef Guven Uyanik, this brand new restaurant will feature New Scottish cuisine with a spectacular view of the famous Marina Bay. Having worked under famous chefs like Gordon Ramsay and Thomas Keller, Uyanik comes to UsQuBa with a wealth of experience under his belt.
The restaurant is tucked away quietly on the second level of One Fullerton and for those who are visiting for the very first time, just follow the arrows (even if it directs you to a narrow passage) and you will eventually find your way to this beautiful 4,000-square feet space which features unparalleled view of the Marina Bay area. In fact, the layout of the restaurant offers a floor-to-ceiling view of the surrounding area from almost every seat.
The best seats however, are located towards the back of the restaurant where diners will be able to enjoy an unobstructed view of the iconic Marina Bay Sands and the surrounding area - this will be the perfect spot for the nightly laser show and I would imagine this place to be fully booked come National Day this year - so book now if possible. I like that there are various seating configurations within the restaurant that caters to different party sizes. The booth seating is also quite unique as there are not many upscale restaurants in Singapore that offer such an intimate seating area - perfect for small groups!
Some bread was served before our mains arrived and we were asked whether or not we would like some shaved black truffle - the answer was obviously a resounding yes.
Even though I was there during lunch, I did not pass up the opportunity to give the Negroni (S$30++) a try as the restaurant stocks up a variety of craft gin, fine whiskey and other Scottish products. If fact, if you are a drinker (and you should be), UsQuBa features a 40-seater bar and den that serves up a specially-curated list of whisky which includes 30 reworked classics. In fact, my Negroni was made with NB Gin (from North Berwick, East Lothian) which is handcrafted from pure grain spirit - check out that amazing clarity in the ice too!
The first dish I sampled was probably my favourite dish amongst everything that I have tried that afternoon - the Orkney Islands Scallop Ceviche (S$25++) is served with sea urchin, compressed cucumber and apple as well as horseradish snow - the snow is definitely is most interesting component since the mixture is frozen and pacotized. The scallop and sea urchin were amazing when paired together!
For the foie gras lovers, don't forget to give the Seared Foie Gras (S$21++) a try. Even though I generally do not enjoy foie gras, I finished my share of the piece completely. It is also interesting that it is served with spiced persimmons, pickled apples and a waffle. For a wine recommendation, try the Tokaji 2006.
Here's another starter I truly enjoyed - the Lobster Ravioli Soup. Firstly, the lobster bisque on its own is delicious - I would definitely order it on its own if it was actually on the menu. In fact, the bisque reminded me of the delicious lobster omelette that I have had at The St. Regis Bali Resort last year. It is worth noting that this Lobster Ravioli Soup is only available during lunch which starts from an affordable S$38++ for a two-course meal and S$48++ for a three-course.
Here's an interesting take of the classic Fish and Chips - even though I did not quite understand how the different construct of the UsQuBa Fish and Chips (S$32++) come together (particularly the pommes maxim), the fish was cooked beautifully - the sous vide cod was amazingly succulent but yet firm enough to pick up with the fork. That pea and mint sauce on the side also pairs really well with the lightness of the fish.
Meat-lovers will definitely have to try the Duet of Aberdeen Angus Beef (S$56++) here at UsQuBa. The braised short rib is fork tender and beautifully braised but my personal favourite has to be that grilled tenderloin that is deliciously succulent. If you love a good mash potato, you will definitely fall in love with how smooth and consistent it is here.
The Baked Pigeon (S$32++ for Half | S$46++ for Whole) was served with calamari, squid ink sauce and some peas. While the pigeon itself was really nicely cooked (it's easy to overcook but UsQuBa does it great!), I did not really understand the other components - sure it looks pretty though!
If I had to pick the most popular dish during lunch, it will probably be the Butter Poached Lobster (S$58++). Firstly, Singaporeans love their lobsters so when a dish as beautifully-presented as this got brought to the table, you can imagine the excitement. Secondly, this dish contains that lobster bisque that I was raving about.
Finally, for desserts, we sampled both the Chocolate Delice (S$15++) as well as the Tastings of Strawberry (S$15++) . I really love the latter one where a pistachip cream is sandwiched between two soft and crumbly pistachio biscuits before a strawberry sorbet is served on top.
This was an invited media-tasting session, though all views expressed are my own.