In the midst of so many (>80) reputable restaurants participating in Restaurant Week, it’s indeed a tall order sifting your way through the interminable list to finally shortlist restaurants that’s actually worth your while visiting. Firstly, we must talk budget, where you must consider if the restaurant’s normal set lunch is priced similarly or gasp…cheaper than the Restaurant Week’s set lunch. One of the better deals I spied on was Le Saint Julien whose normal set lunch is priced at $58++, really wanted to visit them but sadly my friend A’s craving for Oysters saw us dining at Oyster Bar on Restaurant Week Day 1 instead…rant rant.
Secondly, it’s also about location. We all know how busy Singaporeans are, and according to an article “Don’t blame lack” by the International Labor Organization (2010), workers in Singapore clocked the most number of working hours per week among twelve nations in the survey. So, I’m guessing most of us have only 1 hour lunch breaks, unless you are an Investment Banker where you can eat as long as you want but OT till 4am, which severely limits our dining options somewhat. Even a student like myself isn’t spared, it’s so much easier to convince a friend to dine somewhere near school than at il Lido in Sentosa.
Lastly, I guess its availability. As beggars can’t be choosers, I’m sure that most of us still rather use Restaurant Week as an excuse to indulge in one of the less renowned restaurants that hasn’t been fully booked than eat at some economic rice stall right?
Having identified all these factors, one eatery seemed to fit the bill nicely; Bedrock Grill & Bar. With a normal set lunch going at $35 compared to Restaurant Week’s set at $25, affordability…check! Located at Pan Pacific Suites near 313 Somerset just a few bus stops down SMU, location…check! Bookings available…check!
I really wasn’t expecting much from Bedrock’s lunch because of 2 reasons. Firstly, the previous night’s Lawry’s dinner would surely have increased my benchmark for good beef and secondly, how good can a steak get when it’s priced at $25, inclusive of appetizer and dessert?
Bedrock’s interior has a rather rustic style, lots of wood everywhere. It’s no fine dining restaurant and doesn’t pretend to be, making do with a casual and cosy setting with professional and attentive staff. The only issue that concerned me was the smell of grease from cooking, which was evident once I stepped into the outlet. Thankfully the ventilator did its job after a while…or I simply got desensitized to the smell.
We were served a pita looking bread, together with butter and cooked cloves of garlic, my first time seeing it served with complimentary bread. I’m quite a garlic fan and thought that it really went well with the plain pita.
We were then served a Smoked Tomato Soup. Nothing memorable about it but it did well in simulating our taste buds with its tanginess.
Mesquite Grilled Half Chicken with Roasted Celeraic, White Truffle Butter and Taragon Jus. The skin was real crispy and enjoyable but I found the meat to be a little dry. The tau kwa looking cubes are the Roasted Celeraic, a root vegetable of the celery family, which tasted much like radish.
For the uninitiated, steak is just steak but to the connoisseur, steak can be likened to wine, with many unique tastes and textures. There’s so many factors to consider when choosing a steak; breed, cut, feed used, aging method and whether hormones are used etc. Today I will be focusing on the feed used, where there are 2 main types; grass (duh!) and grain (corn, barley and wheat). Of course grass is a cow’s original staple but the reason why many farmers choose to feed their cows with grain, which is not supposed to be part of a cow’s diet, is because grain like corn is inexpensive and fattens the cows up faster and gives the meat better marbling, moreover it does not require large amounts of grazing land, hence driving up profits for these cow farmers. But as no panacea is without side effects, grains cannot be properly digested by cows, resulting in bloating and discomfort for the cows. Furthermore, grain fed beef is supposedly less healthy than grass fed beef because it has a higher level of saturated fat etc…I shan’t go into the technicals.
There’s some debate on the difference in taste between grass fed beef and grain fed beef, and even within the category of grain fed beef, cows on a pure corn diet would possibly taste different from a cow fed with a mix of barley and corn. Personally tastewise, I prefer grain fed because it’s fattier and more marbled and even though it’s more unhealthy, I guess the age old adage of “eating once in a while” does hold true…that’s what I keep telling myself at least.
Having gone on about the differences in cattle feed, the one I had here was a gorgeous Grilled 150-days Grain Fed Ribeye Fillet Steak. Let’s just say that it’s a whole different league from what you’d ever get from Astons. The meat was well marinated enough to eat on its own without the overly spicy black pepper sauce. The hand cut Fries were really good as well.
For dessert, we were served a Wedge of Chocolate Valrhona Flourless Cake with Hazelnut Nougatine and Creme Fraiche. Best chocolate flourless cake ever! I really loved the inclusion of a thin layer of Creme Fraiche aka sour cream sandwiched within the cake which gave a really flavourful aftertaste, ensuring that the chocolate didn’t overwhelm the palate. The icing sugar decoration was also a nice touch, simple yet awfully effective.
For that affordable steak meal, I’d seriously recommend Bedrock Grill & Bar.
BEDROCK GRILL & BAR
96 SOMERSET ROAD, #01-05 PAN PACIFIC SERVICED SUITES
TEL: +65 6238 0054