Published on Wednesday, 16 November 2016 00:00
Written by Cheryl Teo Kai Lin
Just like how the three kings were guided by the Star of Bethlehem to Jesus' birthplace in the manger, the Pinacothèque De Paris within Fort Canning Park is your shining beacon of light, illuminating the way to a magical night of beatific cuisine and stellar bespoke cocktails at FORT by Maison Ikkoku.
If we didn't know any better, we would have thought that FORT's sole mission is to spoil its diners silly with some of the best omakase prices in town coupled with premium ingredients and arguably the world's best cocktails. The man behind FORT, Ethan Leslie Leong, is a huge advocate for the finer things with the belief that life's simplest pleasure – eating – should be enjoyed among the masses and shouldn't come at a hefty price tag.
FORT realizes that in order to respectfully celebrate the day that the Messiah was born, a very exclusive and palatial menu should be concocted to honor the King of kings and Lord of lords. The 12-course Christmas omakase is priced at $88++ per pax, just a slight increase from the usual omakase of $68++ per pax as this season's omakase consists of a lot more extravagant and sumptuous dishes that will take your breath away.
Clean and light, the 12 courses in your Christmas omakase focus on the naturally delicious and delectable flavors of the superb ingredients. Each edible masterpiece is created from the perfect pairing of two or more elements. The components in every dish have been meticulously appraised, tried and tested to guarantee that they perfectly complement each other, delivering an utterly sublime au natural flavor explosion in your mouth. Even the choosiest palette will be gratified.
The 12-course omakase would differ from day to day, depending on the freshness and availability of the produce. Chef Ethan only selects the cream of the crop, so you can rest assure that the quality of your dishes are of utmost superiority. Just sit back, relax, sip at your bespoke cocktail and let FORT take you on a magical gastronomical adventure full of delightful flavor sensations.
Live Irish Oyster
The Irish Giga oysters are the most cultivated species in the world due to high demand. To form its deeply cupped shells, farmers have to turn and shake the oyster bags at least once a month. The movement conditions the oyster in producing a deep shell that is sturdy enough to endure even the longest transcontinental flights.
The oyster is imported in live from Ireland and shucked in FORT itself for ultimate freshness. A drop of sake, a pinch of caviar lime and a a sprig of wasabi cress purifies the Irish oyster and adds a refreshing zing and a touch of sharpness. The very essence of the ocean inundated our tastebuds with the first slurp. The oyster meat was plump, juicy and buttery, skirted with a crunchy mantle. A fresh and clean cucumber-like flavor washed over our tongues the more we chewed. The initial brininess that hit our palettes slowly evolved into a sweet and mellow finish packed with juices.
Seared Tuna Carpaccio
Lightly seared around its exterior and sprinkled with sesame seeds, this tuna carpaccio has an Asian twist with a hint of spice in soy sauce that adds more depth and dimension to the rich and delicately meaty tuna. The velvety fish melts with a buttery consistency in our mouths, releasing an aromatic and savory aroma from the integral Asian elements.
As our teeth sank down into the maki, it is first met with the refreshing crunch of the micro greens, followed by the starchy sweetness of the sushi rice, and in the core was a little taste of heaven itself – tender tuna chunks that disintegrate in your mouth, setting off a delicious explosion of rich, velvety, viscous succulency with a huge hit of chili, slightly neutralized by the crisp cucumber.
Otoro Nigiri Sushi
Otoro is an extremely precious type of sashimi that comes from the lower belly of the Blue Fin Tuna towards the head, and it is by itself separated into grades which happen to be recognized according to the marbling through out the steak. The higher the quality of the otoro, the lighter the color of the meat due to the intricate labyrinth of fats dispersed throughout the meat that gives it its light pink color.
FORT makes sure to only bring in the most extensively marbled otoro for maximum pleasure. The distinctive taste of the otoro immediately charmed us. The sirloin texture of the raw tuna fused together with the abundant fatty tissue to form a rich and creamy mouthfeel that slowly dissolved on our tongues.
Kushiyaki is a Japanese technique of grilling skewered meats and vegetables. The secret to its phenomenal taste lies in the quality of the meat and the chef's grilling skills. Wagyu beef with an impressive marbling score of 6 or 7 (depending on the availability) is used in FORT's Gyu Kushiyaki. There is something incredibly satisfying about pulling out chunks of meat off the wooden sticks. Perhaps it triggers our primal instincts of ripping meat off with our teeth. But there is nothing primal about this evolutionary dish that can only come about from selective breeding and refined cooking techniques.
The tender wagyu beef chunks are grilled rare to retain its delicious webbing of fat within and yielded a woody and smoky aroma. Biting into it revealed an outburst of beefy juices that completely overwhelmed our tastebuds in the most sensual way. The exterior of the beef was coated in a subtly sweet sauce while the interior was extremely juicy, succulent and savory with an exquisite melt-in-the-mouth texture.
Uni Ikura Donburi
We raised a toast to the stunning beauty of the Uni Donburi and promptly gobbled it up. The salty salmon roe that popped its lovely oily juices in our mouths perfectly complemented the sweet, creamy and umami sea urchin gonads. It is finished off with a sprinkling of micro greens and edible petals that effused a fresh, green and soft floral fragrance to the heavenly dish.
As for the rest of the courses, we will leave it to you to discover all the other delicious secrets that FORT keeps hidden within its doors. You will marvel at the sheer ingenuity of its sensational dishes and cocktails that have been specially created to please every tastebud on your tongue.
Pamper your loved ones with a feast fit for a king perhaps on the twelfth day of Christmas with FORT's luxurious 12-course omakase specially curated for this enchanting festive season! If there is a place that feels like Christmas all year round, it is FORT by Maison Ikkoku.
Address: 5 Cox Terrace, Singapore Pinacotheque De Paris, #01- 02/03, Singapore 179620
Opening Hours: Daily 4PM till Late
Tel: +65 6336 0507