The hint to the origins of Pluck’s curious name may be found in its website address: www.ohpluck.com. Given that shortly after dining here I lost my iphone with all the photos of the meal we had just eaten, this was an expletive I echoed soon afterwards. I guess the phone was a bonus for the owner of the spacious colourfully lit disco taxi all seven of us bundled into later, or one of its later occupants.
We had just visited this relatively new eatery in the Club Street area of Singapore, home to many bars and restaurants that come to life after dusk. The staff tried their best with the gluten issue, bringing me an alternative amuse bouche and directing me to the items I could eat from the range we had chosen to share. It has to be said that the quality of the food was very good indeed. I particularly enjoyed the tasting portions of their Pan Seared Scallops with roasted granny smith apples, hazelnut crumble and bacon chips and the Swordfish Tartar with goma dressing and watercress salad from their starters menu.
A slight groan of disappointment went around my end of the table at the absence of duck breast advertised on the mains menu. This was however swiftly dissipated by the substitution of a wagyu beef dish which really was outstanding. Along with that, I tried a couple of cubes of amazingly tender 24 hour braised short ribs accompanied with pickled guava, compressed winter melon and potato foam.
The solicitous staff were concerned that the dessert menu left no choices for me and suggested I tried their ice cream instead which they thought was g-f. Whether one or more of the flavourings used in the ice-cream was the culprit, or possibly the hazelnuts that accompanied the scallops, I wish I knew for certain, but sadly, along with the loss of the phone, I suffered a reaction to the food.
Despite that, and the physical limitations of the restaurant that I will mention in a moment, I would be prepared to go back to Pluck. The food served here is imaginative, it has the hallmarks of being cooked entirely from scratch and their efforts deserve to be supported. The serving staff were at great pains to ensure I was able to eat well and I feel sure would not have lightly caused difficulties. Maybe part of the problem here lies in understanding the surprisingly wide range of foods that really shouldn’t contain gluten but do: the ones, like nuts, that are absolutely fine in their natural state but which which manage to pick up the minute traces that are enough to cause difficulties for a coeliac as they are processed.
As to the physical constraints I mentioned, the restaurant itself suffers a bit from being long and thin, with much of the seating being at the counter overlooking the efforts of the kitchen, great if you want to watch your meal being cooked but more tricky if you want to converse with more than one person. The main part of the restaurant might be able to seat 10 at a squeeze. This is where the grey industrial walls at this end of the restaurant might make it feel even smaller and more enclosed than it is, perhaps not helped by the relatively low ceiling. I couldn’t help wondering whether an oversized mirror, distressed to such an extent that it wasn’t completely reflective, might work well on the back wall to bounce a bit more light around and make it feel a little less enclosed.
Aside from the difficulties the configuration of the restaurant poses, we hope this restaurant does well. Once my phone has been replaced, we will be back. Photographs will follow as and when we make it.
90 Club Street
Tel: 6225 8286