Butcher Boy

Wine & Dine - - RESTAURANTS - 31 Keong Saik Road. Tel: 6221 6833; butcher­boy.com.sg

A new Asian-in­spired bar and grill de­scends on Keong Saik Street, started by An­drew Walsh of Cure. The Ir­ish chef-owner has some renown in this town. Hav­ing worked with chef Ja­son Ather­ton at Lon­don’s Pollen Street So­cial, he fol­lowed Ather­ton to Sin­ga­pore to launch Un­listed Col­lec­tion’s Esquina and The Study. He left two years ago to start Cure, his own mod­ern Euro­pean fine din­ing bistro. Butcher Boy, set up just a few doors down, could be called the cheeky lit­tle brother to Cure, a ca­sual con­cept that pays homage to the flavours Walsh ex­pe­ri­enced trav­el­ling around Asia.

The fun starts with Butcher Boy’s name.

It is a nod to one of Walsh’s favourite nov­els and movies—The Butcher Boy—about a trou­bled boy who es­capes into a vi­o­lent fan­tasy world. Not quite such heavy stuff, but the dark in­te­ri­ors, warm am­ber lights and light box art­works of na­ture pho­to­graphs in the restau­rant speak of a sto­ry­book hide­away or a refuge. The Ja­panese katakana char­ac­ters be­low the name is a lit­eral trans­la­tion of Butcher Boy, an apt ref­er­ence to the Asian­fo­cused cui­sine here.

In that depart­ment, Walsh and open­ing chef Ni­cole Phillip­son from Mex­ico have or­gan­ised the menu ac­cord­ing to Snacks; Small Plates; Bao, Bun, Banh Minh; Butcher Boy; Sides; and Sun­daes and Sweets. A mor­eish snack to start with is fried chicken, yuzu kew­pie, bao ($18), a lovely morsel of crisp, moist chicken with a hint of cit­rus. For mains, there’s a wide range of grilled meats to choose from. Think beef short rib ($33 for 180kg) fin­ished in the Josper oven, and crispy skin pork belly ($32 for 200g) served with hard-hit­ting home­made sauces like sam­bal, Viet­namese sauce and XO sauce. For dessert, try the co­conut, Thai rice pud­ding, mango ($12), a sin­ful spin on the pop­u­lar Thai mango sticky rice dessert.

Mean­while, bar man­ager Knut Rand­hem, for­merly of Cé la Vi and Dic­ta­dor serves up Asian-in­spired cock­tails like Street Side Milk Punch ($18), a blend of cachaça, Thai milk tea and salted caramel syrup, and a range of wines, sake and Ja­panese beer. This is cer­tainly a good place to ad­journ to for a night­cap, es­pe­cially when a DJ is in the house bi-weekly. And on Sun­days, try their Sun­day roast fea­tur­ing roast beef ($36), and roast pork ($30) served with York­shire pud­ding.

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