Worth tarrying awhile at this bacaro
AT A place designed for after-work drinks and a quick bite, one does not expect too much of the food.
But &SONS Bacaro shatters that belief.
A bacaro is a Venetian tavern serving food to be shared among thirsty travellers.
You can get drunk just reading the alcohol list but do venture into the food that is served here.
It is a small menu with dishes meant to be shared. It is a very relaxed restaurant with dim lights and a soundtrack of songs you can hum along to.
The food comes quickly and the servers give you your space.
My one challenge when it came to the service had to do with accents. Some of the European servers have thick accents, so with the music and the buzz, it may be difficult to understand what they are saying.
But they will happily repeat themselves when requested.
It is a great place for a first date or to gossip, especially if you need alcohol to fuel the conversation.
SPICY FIRST ENCOUNTER
I had my nduja virginity broken at &SONS. Nduja is a spicy, spreadable pork sausage from Italy. This dish - Calamari, Nduja ($12) - is sensational. The two times I tried it, I nearly finished it all by myself. The nudja adds a much appreciated heat, while the squid has a lovely chew.
RICH & SWEET
The Hokkaido Scallop Bake ($16) has two tastes - sweetness of the scallops and savouriness of the sauce - and the base of leek puree bridged the two. The second time I ate this - when I returned unannounced - the dish was lukewarm and the scallops slightly overcooked.
One of the must-try dishes is the veal ossobuco, orzotto ($19). The veal is tender and flavourful and it complemented the red-wine sauce, while the orzotto provided some texture.
Be sure to get the bone marrow too. For me, that is the best part.
PORK IN A LOG
The Paccheri, Iberico Pork & Truffle ($15) is essentially pork stuffed into a log made out of pasta. At the hosted tasting, it worked well. But when we returned, it was dense and too creamy. A lighter touch would have been better.
The Salted Caramel Strawberry Jubilee ($12, available only during lunch and dinner) combines sweet, salty and creamy - a dream combination for any dessert. But be mindful if you are watching the calories. It is very addictive and if you are not careful, you will be ordering another in no time.
#01-19 China Square Central
Opens weekdays 11.30am to midnight,
5.30pm to 1am on Saturdays