Saturday, July 18, 2015

Bottura @ Suntec City

Bottura is a casual Italian dining place located at Suntec City Tower One Level 2. Majority of its ingredients are imported from Italy but yet, manages to keep the prices of its menu reasonable. What can diners in Singapore expect from Bottura? Hearty, homely Bologna dishes that follow closely to the Bottura family recipe. These were the foods that Luca Bottura grew up eating and now, we can have a taste of that too.

The restaurant is pretty big with its 140 seaters or so, and pretty much an open space concept.

balcony seats

First thing one would notice at its shopfront, is its gelato counter. Hard to miss, especially that blue smurf coloured gelato that is said to be of bubblegum flavour. Tried some of its flavours but liked the milk one best.

one can try the flavours before ordering
For those whom would like to buy Italian produce such as wines, dried porcini, olive oil or balsamic, just head on towards the retail area within the shop. This is a section near the coffee machine. Some are exclusive to the shop and in limited quantity.

retail shop
Red wine: Prezioso - Vini di Toscana
sparling sweet red wine
balsamic vinegar

Let's have a glass of pre-dinner wine. If you like bubbly, then have a glass of Prosecco Superiore Millesimato, or if you're into reds, then how about a Chianti. A glass of Italian wine for less than $10? Yes, please.

Am not into tannic wines, so the Chianti here with its seductive deep red hues that tasted of currants and berries, was just what I needed. For appetiser, we had the Tagliere di affettati e formaggi misti con tigelle e marmellate. Quite a mouthful, so that is basically the cold cuts and cheese platter with tigelle bread and marmalade. Wine food, yay! The cheeses that we had included a sampler of the fresh stracchino cheese (the soft white one in a small dish), and for hard cheeses there were the parmesan and cheddars. For the meats, liking the mortadella and parma ham. Crusty bread, spread some fresh cheese, a bit of sweetness from marmalade jam and a slice of salty parma ham all in one bite. With a sip of wine. Am contented.

Chianti Ravazzi @$8.50++
cold cuts and cheese platter @$22++

If you like wraps, then there is something similar to that in the menu and its called a Piadina. Had the Prosciutto di Parma, handmade fresh stracchino, and rucola version. Suitable for a light lunch.

Piadina - parma ham, stracchino cheese with ruccola @$12++
hello parma ham~
Since we are still on the appetisers, let's try the Arancini al Ragù which are basically risotto shaped into round balls, coated with breadcrumbs, deep fried and served with tomato based meat sauce.

Arancini with ragù and tomato sauce @$8++
crunchy risotto balls

For pasta, I had made a request. Must have gnocchi. Am always on the look-out for good gnocchi. Not sure why, but seems like this is one elusive pasta. The rest, am leaving it to the Chef's recommendation.

Lasagna, one could get rather easily. But what about polenta lasagna? Polenta is made from boiled cornmeal and then solidified, and commonly eaten baked, fried or grilled. It is said that polenta is Italian's comfort food. The Foglie di polenta con ragù e besciamella (polenta lasagna) tasted mild and light. Almost fluffy. Am not a fan of polenta though, but it was interesting to find something new in the menu.

Polenta lasagne with traditional ragù and béchamel sauce (tasting portion)

Next up, was my long awaited gnocchi but made without butter. *gasp* No butter? The nugget of information shared was that this doesn't mean that families in Northern Italy doesn't use butter. They still do, but prefers olive oil. Olive oil is considered as a more high-end ingredient.

Ok, so how does the four cheese gnocchi here fared? First impression? It looked rather smallish in size. But taste wise, it was good. Something that I had not tasted before. Unsophisticated, mild and light flavours yet evoked a sense of warmth. Homely indeed. Enjoyable.

Four cheese gnocchi with rocket pesto (tasting portion)

Moving on to stronger flavours, have the Ravioli panna prosciutto e funghi. The earthy flavours of mushrooms, combined with ham and cream, it just works. Yums.

Ravioli with cream, ham and mushrooms (tasting portion)
Prosecco @$8++

Next up, was the spaghetti carbonara. A dish originating from Rome, and made out of egg, bacon/pancetta and Parmesan. Saw a programme once on how to cook this dish. The still hot pasta is combined with a mixture of raw eggs, cheese and olive oil. Seemed like a delicate task as the eggs must not curdle but should become creamy as it coats each strands of the noodle. Lucky for us, we have experienced chef to cook for us. Verdict? Tasted as good as it looked. Moreover, spaghetti carbonara is part of its lunch special so for just $14.50++, you'll get a pasta/pizza, dessert of the day and a soft drink.

spaghetti carbonara (tasting portion)
sooo creamy and pretty!

Next up, was one pasta dish that might just be the favourite of local diners. According to sources, this pasta ranked amongst the top 3 bestsellers thus far. Meet the Tagliolini Zebrati con Gamberetti e zucchini. Simple simple ingredients yet so tasty! Liking it lots.

Egg and squid ink tagliolini with shrimp and zucchini @$16++

toss well and enjoy~

Interestingly, if you'd like to try 6 different types of fresh pasta at one go, just opt for the La Degustazione (after 5pm, on weekends) for just $18++ and a glass of italian red or white wine. However, one can't choose the pasta but I understand that it will usually include gnocchi and carbonara as part of the six. Sometimes, the chef may throw in a surprise pasta that is not in the menu.

Sampled two types of 12-inch thin crust pizza and both are equally as interesting. Arrabiata was quite photogenic too. A most interesting taste that I thought was tabasco, but it was not. This spicy pizza has a sourish saltish piquant tang to it from the capers and pomodoro sauce and a fiery jolt in the form of chilies (chili padi?). If you like sweet salty ones, then the pizza with Melone, prosciutto di Parma, mozzarella would suit those taste buds.

Arrabiata (tomato, capers, garlic, chilli, mozzarella fior di latte and rocket) @$18++
rockmelon, Parma ham and mozzarella @ $18++
Last course, the desserts. As you may have guessed, tiramisu was one of it. Simple, classic Italian dessert and suitable for families as it is non-alcoholic.

Tiramisù @$8++

For alcoholic dessert, can try the interesting Pasticceria mignon fresca, small balls of wine marsala cream puff.  It is bite-sized so just pop the whole thing into the mouth. The cream made from sweet marsala wine would appeal to those that likes port/sherry.

Pasticceria mignon fresca @$2.50++ each

A scoop of gelato costs $5++, hence for more bang on the buck, I'd go for the “Spaghetti” gelato. Yummy and so nice to have it in our hot humid weather.

"spaghetti" gelato
gelato by the scoop (choose your flavour)

Thanks to Luca, whom not only brought his family's recipe to Singapore, but has made Bottura accessible to most of us.


Special thanks to Andrea and Mahdhir, you guys and Luca made us feel right at home. And of course, thank you Hence (@chubbybotakkoala), for asking me along to this session.

Note: The prices are correct at press time. Kindly refer to the restaurant's website/facebook for updates



Location: #02-472/473/474, 3 Temasek Boulevard, Suntec City Mall, Singapore 038983. North Wing between Tower 1 & 2
Contact: +65 6238 7527


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