Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Le Figue, Camden Medical Centre

Perhaps it was the sheer incongruousness of having a French fine-dining restaurant located in a medical centre which piqued my curiosity. So it was, that Le Figue was the restaurant of choice for this month's lunch escapade with Y.

The three course set lunch was a good deal at $28.

Le Figue salad

My salad of red cabbage, frisee lettuce, confit cherry tomato and lightly battered and fried whitebait came beautifully plated, a sight for the eyes indeed. The cherry tomatoes were wondrously sweet and intense but I didn't care much for the rather tasteless whitebait. However, the curious lack of any dressing as the unifying touch to pull all the ingredients together meant that this salad felt like a mish-mash of disparate elements and tastes.
Y went for the french onion soup with gruyere cheese and a herb crouton. I thought that it was rather too salty for my tastes but she assured me that it was delicious (and so did two dainty Japanese tai-tais at the table next to us, judging from their evident enjoyment of the soup).

Le Figue chicken

My main of chicken ballotine stuffed with creamed spinach and wrapped with parma ham, served over a bed of chickpeas cooked in duck fat was a wonderful marriage of tastes and textures. The parma ham wrapping had been grilled to a savoury thin crisp which melted on the tongue while the chicken meat was beautifully moist and succulent.

Le Figue fish

Y also fared well with her sous-vide sole fillet served with celeriac mousseline and a medley of vegetables. The meltingly smooth and tasty fish didn't require any sauce to go along with it, which was just as well seeing that both of us didn't like the creamy unctousness of the mousseline (in Singlish, it would be described as too "jelak").

Le Figue Dessert

Lunch ended on a sweet note with the dessert of pear tart with vanilla ice cream, which had the most unbelievably buttery and crumbly crust.

To sum up, there were certainly many high points and the dishes were well executed, but stopped short of the wow factor, perhaps not surprisingly given that set lunches are usually not the best gauge of a chef's creativity and sense of adventure in food. As you can tell, I am getting a little bored here.....

Le Figue: 1 Orchard Boulevard, Camden Medical Centre, #01-01/02

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