Red Dot Building #01-02
28 Maxwell Road
+65 6227 6819
So intriguing is Otto’s menu that Roy and I find ourselves discussing a return trip even before we’ve ordered. We know Chef Michelle Pavanello from Il Lido, and from Pontini’s before that – but here, supported by the amiable Paulo and his staff, in beautifully warm and friendly surroundings, he has truly come into his own.
It’s white truffle season (until the end of November), and at the table next to ours an elegant octet of local yuppies quaff Veuve and gloat as Paulo grates the carefully weighed portion onto their food. We’re impressed that Otto offers wine by the half bottle, perfect for when you want to start with white and go on to red.
Roy’s starter of ripe Italian tomato and Parma ham ($26) comes with creamy Buratina mozzarella – flown in fresh from the chef’s own region of Italy – and my Wagyu beef carpaccio with arugula ($26) is enriched with black truffle. Spaghetti with sea urchin and grey mullet bottarga, or salted and cured fish roe ($26), explodes with pungent flavour; the tagliatelle chockfull of truffle-scented lamb ragout ($28) has me yearning to lick the bowl clean.
My seabream sautéed with clams in saffron and cream ($38) is a briny triumph; perhaps better than Roy’s crispy suckling pig lacquered with black locust tree honey and aged balsamic vinegar ($48).
Enough is enough. No more, no dessert, I say, until Chef brings along “something special from the new November menu”: truffle crème brûlée, decadence made manifest.
Before we leave, Roy books a table for the $38 business lunch this coming Wednesday. Sadly, I’m not invited.
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