Monday, October 5, 2009

W52: Pasta Potential

It’s amazing how quiet the LKF-ish area is on a Sunday early afternoon. I quite like it. If only Wyndham Street could be this un-traffic-jammed during the work week when I’m trying to get back home at night. If only…

I made the cross-harbor journey today to brunch out with a fellow foodie and restaurant-hunter at the newly-opened W52 restaurant. Being a five-minute cab ride from the office, I wanted to give this place a trial run to see if this could be a potential new lunch spot. The simple, minimalist décor (think light woods and a lot of natural light seeping in) was promising already but I was totally sold when they showed me up to the first floor dining room in the awesome James Bond-esque glass elevator which runs alongside the restaurant’s wine collection display.

(Selections from the antipasti buffet)

We took a look at both the set lunch and the à la carte menus and decided we were more enticed by the latter. The super-nice staff let us order two à la carte pastas as if it were part of the set lunch deal, which included dibs at the antipasti AND dessert buffet and, of course, coffee/tea at the end. The antipasti selection is fairly standard – caprese, grilled veggies (eggplant!), and various Italian meats. Good for chatting along to.

(Simple, fresh, beautiful: buckwheat tagliatelle)

Thank God we only ordered half portions of each of the two pasta dishes because the portions were already pretty hefty. We couldn’t even finish the homemade buckwheat tagliatelle and duck ragout. The tagliatelle was a little too soft but the sauce was spot on. Light, fresh, with a little twinge of sweet tomato tartness. But this dish was totally overshadowed by the casoncelli and pears served with butter sauce. Also homemade, the casoncelli was perfectly al dente – just the right amount of bite without being doughy at all. I also L-O-V-Ed the concentrated savoriness of the filling, just as much as I loved the crispy thin wafer of bacon sitting atop the pasta dumplings. Soooo good. The pasta paired really well with the butter sauce which, impressively enough, didn’t taste or feel overly greasy or fattening. Our waitresses grated just a tad too much of cheese over the pasta but hey, more cheese can’t hurt right? Right.

(The High: casoncelli in butter sauce...and all that cheese)

The dessert buffet was slightly disappointing (especially after that pasta-high) but I’m not going to hold that against them. After all, it’s a batch of pre-made sweets that’s been sitting out…and drying out (well, at least the crepe was). The mango mousse cake was alright but, next time, I’m definitely going to be ordering from the very promising sounding dessert menu. Chocolate mousse with yogurt sauce? Zabaglione? Nice.

(Order off the menu next time: dessert buffet selection)

I managed to get a good glimpse of W52’s potential today. I wasn’t expecting the restaurant to have their A game on (after all, it’s Sunday brunch) but if their casoncelli is anything to go by, this is definitely a spot I’ll be dropping by again real soon. And, as an added incentive, the staff are really great – friendly and thoughtful (they brought us two plates for sharing our pastas without us even asking them). And I totally adore the simplicity of the whole restaurant concept – everything from the no-fuss yet sophisticated food, to the simple, clean, white serve-ware. So chic! I had a nice time…and the best bit? I know it can only get better from here :)

FOOD: 3.75/5

W52 ($$$/$$$$)
52 Wyndham Street

1 comment:

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