Celebrity Chef John Sawarto will be running an Indonesian Gastronomic Experience at the Sheraton Towers Singapore's The Dining Room from 15-21 August 2016. With the support from the Ministry of Tourism of the Republic of Indonesia and the Embassy of the Republic of Indonesia in Singapore, Chef John will be introducing a repertoire of contemporary Indian flavours to diners in Singapore - there will also be cultural performances during dinner, traditional Indonesian souvenirs as well as attractive lucky draw prizes such as a trip to Indonesia!
Before dinner was served, baskets full of kepopoks (crackers) were brought out - if you have not tried this before, try dipping the crackers into the spicy sambal chilli!
Chef John does a clever play with a touch of luxury on the traditional gado-gado with a tropical fruit salsa (containing jackfruit, apples and mangoes), a kaffir and kencur-infused peanut dressing and a kalamansi vinaigrette. The Grilled Lobster Gado-gado was definitely one of the best dishes that I have sampled that night.
A contemporary (and definitely luxurious) take on the regular rojak sees the introduction of a beautifully-seared foie gras atop a bed of apple and starfruit slaw. Even though I am generally not a huge fan of the foie gras, I thought that the flavours are really balanced in this dish and the natural sweetness of the fruits did help to cut and contrast with the rich and buttery taste of the liver.
The Wagyu Beef Cheek Redang has to be my personal favourite dish that evening. In fact, the beef cheek was so tender that most of us had suspicious of whether or not it was cooked sous vide - the short answer is no. Served in traditional rendang spices and coconut cream, the Wagyu Beef Cheek was an addition that made perfect sense in contemporary cooking. That saffron and lemongrass-infused jasmine rice was also a delight to eat with the delicious rendang gravy.
The Crispy Spiced Duck Confit is reminiscent of the famous Bebek Tepi Sawah from Bali (now in Singapore too!) - the humongous pan-seared Balinese spiced duck leg is served with a natural reduction and puree of sambal terasi (a form of shrimp paste used primarily in Indonesian-cooking). While I did enjoy the dish, I would glady trade some of my duck for more beef rendang instead.
For dessert, the Homemade Chendol Panna Cotta was served with a torch ginger sorbet alongside traditionally-made mung bean strands (otherwise known as Chendol) and Okinawa brown sugar. The Banana Tempura (which resembles a goreng pisang) is a lot lighter on the outside as it utilises a much airier and lighter batter - the sri kaya sauce on the side is delicious though!
Appetisers from S$16++
Mains from S$28++
Desserts from S$10++
S$48++ | S$58++
per Adult for Lunch (3-course | 4-course)
S$68++ | S$88++
per Adult for Dinner (4-course | 6-course degustation)