It’s business (lunch) time
There’s something curious about Beppe de Vito’s venture on Market Street. ‘Value for money’ and ‘CBD’ aren’t usually mentioned in the same sentence, but de Vito’s new fine dining restaurant bucks that convention. At Osteria Art, he puts out the Italian food he’s known for – you must have heard of ilLido, &SONS and Southbridge – without inducing too much pain if you’re not swiping the company card.
This osteria – Italian for a restaurant that serves simple meals – takes cuisine classics and updates them with modern techniques in à la carte, lunch and dinner menus. It’s not a place to take clients to if, like us, you make blissed-out faces around good food. Not rolling our eyes back in ecstasy when we crack into a communal boule-like loaf is our first challenge: the bread remains crisp outside and fluffy inside – even after we’ve successfully guarded attempts by the servers to take it away.
Appetisers bring a wave of lovely aromas to the table. A velvety flan of earthy porcini, and headily scented truffle and leek velouté ($22) wins the round of orders. The Bollito Misto soup ($23), which floats tender cuts of pork, veal, beef and chicken in a clear broth, is another triumph. They make the simpler but well-executed plates of burrata, grilled vegetables and 25-year-old balsamic ($23), and a one-note yet mains-sized crab frittata ($23) dim in comparison.
A section of the menu is dedicated to pastas, with the pork cheek pappardelle ($26) being one of the highlights. A light, red wine-laced sauce flavours al dente sheets of pasta, and that final touch of seared bits of tender pulled pork is an inspired move. And you’ll want to make a return trip just for the suckling pig porcetta for two ($98). Each crackling slice, cut table side, yields a disc of tender light and dark meats wrapped in a crisp of skin.
At the bar before our meal, the barman treats us to tasters of a very potent wasabi and chilli padi-spiked Bloody Mary mix. It jolts us, but not so much as the prices of the refreshing aperitif cocktails, all named after Ferrari models – they go for a steal at $12.
Which makes us wonder: how does de Vito give us so much for so little, and what’s really stopping the rest from doing the same?
|Venue name:||Osteria Art||Contact:|
55 Market St
|Opening hours:||Mon-Fri noon-2.30pm, 6-10.30pm; Sat 6-10.30pm|
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Average User Rating
5 / 5
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I truly enjoy every time I go to this place. It's great for having a drink after work or in the evening. The staff is one of the most attentive you will find in Singapore, a true pleasure. Do keep in mind that it's a rather upscale place. Often it's quite and rather picturesque I would say. It might not be suited for everybody, but if you want to sit down and enjoy some time with your party or a chat with the bar people it's great. Personally I only went for the drinks so far.