Life is all about work-play balance so while food gastronomy more or less depicts the play-side element of my life, I believe in a strong work-side element comprising of academics and understanding the workings of the financial industry(more specifically equities) so bringing both of my passions together, I shall initiate a coverage call on Au Petit Salut.
First step in analyzing a company would be to identify it’s core business segments. For Au Petit Salut, it is a semi fine-dining French Restaurant located in the heart of Dempsey, with its humbler sister restaurant Bistro Petit Salut located at Chip Bee Gardens.
To address consumer demands, there is the choice to dine indoors (with air-conditioned) or al fresco. And if any of you are thinking about the risk of excessive humidity and heat while dining al fresco, fret not as these risks have been mitigated by the installation of many cooling fans.
I’m not sure if the 2 for 1 promotion for their smoothies($9++ for 2) is only available on weekday lunches, but unlike a conventional 2-for-1 stock split, there wasn’t any dilution in smoothie value which makes this deal ever the more sweeter. I found my Peach Smoothie really refreshing but if you are more into sour than sweet smoothies, the Passionfruit Smoothie would be one to consider.
To capture a larger market share and target a wider consumer base, apart from the “normal” 3-Course Set Lunch($30++), there is also an “executive” 3-Course Set Lunch($48++), catering to the rising opulence of the premium diner. C and myself shared 1 set of each.
From what I have read on fellow food blogger HungryEpicurean’s review on Au Petit Salut, apparently the complimentary bread served there comes from Delifrance. Could this be a case of divesting or outsourcing non-core businesses to low cost providers? Still, I appreciated that at least the bread arrived warm and crusty.
For the “normal” Set Lunch($30++), we had the Half Dozen Baked Burgundy Snails with Tomato & Garlic Butter. If you like the texture of clams, you would definitely like this. I prefer well-executed escargots over clams because I find it less chewy and tender, probably because snails move around quite a lot compared to its water-dwelling cousins, albeit at a snail’s pace(pun intended) and this possibly makes its meat more tender. And seriously, what can ever go wrong with garlic butter?
For Main, we had the Red Wine Braised Beef Cheeks, Carrots, Mushrooms & Parsley Potatoes. To me, beef cheeks are an affordable alternative to the ostentatiously priced and highly revered Wagyu. Juxtaposed to the red wine braised beef cheeks I had over at Bistro Du Vin just 3 days prior to this meal, I found the beef cheeks at Au Petit Salut more suitable for my palate as it hosted a milder flavour with a less pronounced hint of red wine, in addition to being more tender.
For Dessert, we had the Choux Bun filled with Vanilla Ice Cream, in warm Chocolate Sauce and Sliced Almonds. Just a heads up to the pronunciation of Choux, it should be pronounced as Chou rather than Chox. I made that mistake when ordering and felt a bit sua-gu after hearing the waitress repeat back my order with the correct enunciation.
Now for the Executive Set Lunch($48++), for Starters we had the Pan Seared Duck Foie Gras, Baby Spinach and Onion with Xeres Sauce($5++ Supplement). For the foie gras, I found it a bit overcooked and somehow not as fatty as most foie gras I have eaten, lacking the “oomph” factor. That said, I liked the complementary nature of the sweet Xeres Sauce(aka Sherry Sauce) which formed a nice pairing for the rich liver.
For Main, we had the Crispy French Duck Leg Confit with Sauteed Potatoes, Bacon, Mixed Green Salad & Walnut Dressing. Well executed crisp duck skin and moist succulent meat, the only downside was the excessive saltiness that accompanied it though I quickly got used to it. The bacon came as chunks of pan-fried belly pork which I felt was a little bit out of place.
For Dessert, The Warm Melted 70% Chocolate Cake served with 64% Dark Chocolate Sorbet and Red Current Jam and Pistachio Nuts, in short Chocolate Lava Cake. This Chocolate Lava Cake is definitely one of the better ones around but I would have preferred a non-chocolate Sorbet since I couldn’t really taste the dark chocolate sorbet over the sweeter decadent Warm Melted Chocolate Cake.
In conclusion, I reiterate my Buy Call on Au Petit Salut for 3 reasons; it’s uncompromising quality in French Cuisine which allows it to entrench its foothold as a key player in Singapore’s French Cuisine market segment; it’s classy yet back-to-nature ambience and fine service standards; and lastly the fact that most of the items on the menu are undervalued and being sold at a discount compared to it’s peers (Gunther’s, Saint Pierre etc).
AU PETIT SALUT
40C HARDING ROAD
TEL: +65 6475 1976