Renowned pastry chef Janice Wong is back with another collaboration and this time, she has partnered with Singaporean chef Tryson Quek of 2am:dessertbar and award-winning bartender Bannie Kang of Sidedoor to bring to us a unique six hands dinner menu served alongside four curated cocktail pairings at 50Fifty, a pocket bar located within Intercontinental Hotel.
AVENUE ONE had the chance to try the menu out and boy were we surprised! We’ve heard of wine pairings and even sake pairings, but we rarely hear much about cocktail pairings, so this was definitely a treat.
Read on to find out how we felt about the entire experience!
Six hands dinner menu at 50Fifty
We were pleasantly surprised when we were ushered to the bar counter instead of the usual dining seats. It was then that we realised that the concept of this collaboration was for the chefs to have an intimate dining session with their guests.
With just 12 seats available, the chefs would be able to explain each dish and also make conversation with the guests. You can also watch the chefs in action as they prepare each course right in front of you, which makes for a good opportunity for you to take photos and videos for the ‘gram.
The dinner starts off with Kang’s Clean Water cocktail made with The Macallan Sherry Oak 12Y, guava, osmanthus, sencha, and verbena. The result is a refreshing and smooth beverage that goes down really easily. Pair this with Quek’s dish of No. 3 Iris oysters topped with cucumber and kombu frost. The brininess of the oysters coupled with the refreshing cocktail offers a burst of flavours that all go well together.
Next, we were served Quek’s Ugly Duckling, which is a confit duck rillette and duck liver sandwiched between two crisp maple crackers. We were surprised to get hints of coffee in the Ugly Duckling, only to be told that there was no coffee in the dish at all. The coffee notes were a result of the mix of spices that created this unique flavour.
This dish is paired with Kang’s White Meat, and the cocktail is Kang’s rendition of a piña colada. It is made with Especial rum, pineapple, coconut, and clarified cream.
Have them together and you’ll find that the rich and buttery flavours of the duck liver are enhanced by the creaminess of the cocktail.
The Cow on Field was next, and this was a steak tartare served with kale, leafy dust, yuzu sorbet, and a side of sourdough bread spread with butter and mustard. The yuzu sorbet served as a refreshing change to the usual lime that is added to steak tartare dishes, and definitely elevated the dish tenfold.
The crowd-favourite that night was definitely the next dish, Chicken Broth served with zucchini.
The soup is made from one part of chicken stock and one part of butter, and the end product was a creamy and savoury chicken soup that warmed our tummies on the cold and rainy day.
We had the zucchini at the end, as recommended by Quek, to clear our palate before the next dish.
The last dish we had was Wong’s Drunken Island, a dessert that is a feast for both the eyes and tummy. It features a sponge cake topped with sea salt caramel, chocolate, bergamot, ginger, toasted marshmallows, biscuits, and a dollop of salty vanilla ice cream on the side.
The dessert is then drowned in a Whisky Crème Anglaise that uplifts the flavours. Despite the taste of the whisky being rather strong, it was balanced out nicely by the sponge cake and the ice cream.
This was paired with Double Red made with The Macallan Double Cask 12Y, strawberries, campari, amaro, amontillado sherry, and bitters. This gave the meal a strong ending as the taste of the alcohol was definitely way stronger and bitter than the previous three cocktails.
We really enjoyed the entire experience and absolutely loved that it was an intimate session where you could not only watch the chefs prepare your food, but also have the chance to get to know them better on a personal level.
The portions are quite small though, so it may not be enough for those who arrive hungry, but the experience is definitely worth a try.
Since there are only 12 seats per session, slots are filling fast, so you might want to book early to avoid disappointment.
Don’t worry if you miss this menu though, because Wong hinted at another six-hand collaboration that will begin very soon in March. Stay tuned for more details!
The six hands dinner menu is available for S$138++ per person in limited sessions throughout February at 1 Nanson Road, #02-07B, InterContinental Singapore, Robertson Quay, Singapore 238909 from 5pm to late on Wednesdays through Sundays. You can make a reservation on the Sidedoor x 50Fifty website.