db Bistro & Oyster Bar
The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands
2 Bayfront Avenue
Tel. 65 6688 8525
Food type: French-American Bistro
Website: db Bistro & Oyster Bar
The first thing we did when we got in to Singapore was of course to search for some food! Having checked into our hotel room and after a quick refreshing shower, we hopped into a cab and headed towards the shops (or more accurately shoppes) at Marina Bay Sands to look for some grub. Ironically we could see Marina Bay Sands from our hotel room and it was only a 15 minute walk but we both passed at walking in the sweltering and humid 38°C heat in order to save £2.
There are plenty of dining options at Marina Bay Sands which has attracted plenty of celebrity chefs. At the high end you have Waku Ghin (Tetsuya Wakuda), Sky on 57 (Justin Quek), Osteria Mozza (Mario Batali) and Spago/ Cut (Wolfgang Puck). On the more casual front there is Bread Street Kitchen (Gordon Ramsay) and Long Chim (David Thompson) to name but a few. We were however after burgers and there was no better place than Daniel Boulud’s Singapore outpost – db Bistro & Oyster Bar.
This would be my third time dining here having dined here previously in 2011 and 2012. The restaurant has had a rename (previously db Bistro Moderne) and has received a minor facelift. The central bar area has now been replaced with an oyster and seafood counter. Otherwise, the rest of the dining room remains the same.
The menu is presented on a large oversized card. There is a set lunch menu on offer including Boulud’s signature db Burger (with a SGD$15 supplement). A quick look at the wine list showed some interesting bottles and a very good selection but unfortunately, as with most of Singapore, were very heavily marked up. It is telling the level of mark-ups that they are able to run an offer on Mondays where all bottles above SGD$150 are half priced.
Given that we were in Singapore, we decided to opt for a cocktail in the form of a ‘Champagne Sling’. Not bad indeed!
To start, I opted for a classic beef tartare served with cornichons and toasted country bread. The beef was nicely chopped but still maintained good texture and was well seasoned, with a pleasant acidity coming from the cornichons and capers. For me, it could have done with a bit more of a spicy kick from some additional tabasco sauce, but that is a preference and not the fault of the kitchen.
I also tried my fiancee’s classic French onion soup served piping hot with plenty of gratinated gruyere croutons. This was a textbook example of how a good French onion soup should be made, with plenty of love going into caramelising the onions to bring out its inherent sweetness.
For mains, I opted for a small bowl of saffron taglioni with spanner crab which satisfied my carb cravings. The dish was finished off with an unannounced pangritata which gave an additional texture to the dish. There was certainly plenty of juicy spanner crab but the advertised chilli was kept to an almost undetectable minimum.
The better half opted for the Yankee burger – essentially a cheeseburger with fries… except that you have to pay an extra SGD$5 for cheese! That has to be the most expensive slice of burger cheese I have had to pay for. Oh and before I forget, it is another SGD$5 if you want bacon with your burger. I’m surprised they didn’t charge a supplement for the burger bun. I mean some geezer has to pay for that brand new, sparkly lobster bar, innit? Nickel and diming aside, this certainly lived up to our expectations (and memories from our last visit here) with the burger delivered a perfect medium rare and the french fries very more-ish.
We passed on desserts this time around given that it was already 3pm and we had a big dinner to look forward to later that evening. Overall, a quick and enjoyable meal although one which was rather pricey for what was delivered.