The Place If you are working around Marina Bay Financial Centre, you would have noticed that OLA Cocina Del Mar was undergoing renovation for a period of time. The Spanish restaurant reopened a few months back, with an expanded space and private dining area. While we work in the financial district and have been to OLA previously, we were still excited to check out the revamped restaurant when it reopened.
We have been trying out ShopBack GO recently and we found through browsing the curated collections that OLA Cocina Del Mar is one of the various partner merchants. More on the new feature on ShopBack later, although you will be excited to know that using ShopBack GO while dining allows you to earn 5% Cashback in a matter of seconds.
The Food Opened by Chef Daniel Chavez, who also owns Peruvian restaurant TONO Cevicheria, the menu at OLA comprise a wide range of tapas, main course, charcoal grill and paella. We started with the Ceviche (S$25), the must have Peruvian tapas reflective of Chef Daniel’s background. The fresh flavours here are prepared from New Zealand wild snapper marinated in tiger’s milk where you get the citrusy taste. This is an enjoyable starter.
Another dish I tried from the tapas menu is the Grilled Octopus (S$28). This is one dish commonly served in most Spanish restaurants but which I feel few execute it well. The texture of this grilled octopus is just right, beautifully prepared with delicious rouille sauce, grilled fennel and orange zest. The flavours are wholesome and I am impressed by the execution.
The last tapas I had sounds more like a brunch dish. The Huevos (S$24) is quite like my kind of brunch fare, where you get scrambled organic eggs, oyster mushrooms and grilled Spanish iberico pork. The star here is the grilled pork, marinated overnight which lends it the tender texture. The pork jowl elevates the whole dish rather effortlessly.
For mains, one seafood to try is the Wild Market Fish (S$43), with salsa verde, clams and asparagus. The fresh New Zealand flavours remind me of my recent trip to New Zealand where I managed to try a good variety of local produce.
Of course, no meal here is complete without ordering the paella. I had the Paella Valenciana (S$35), where the Spanish rice is served with organic chicken, rosemary, chorizo and green beans. I am very fussy about paella, but the one thing I like about this version is that the edges of the rice are slightly charred, which gives that slight crisp in terms of texture. It does remind me a little of our local claypot rice. As the paella here is cooked with chicken stock, the overall taste of the rice and the chicken meat is really awesome. This dish is a must have.
After the series of good savoury dishes, I expected dessert to meet expectations but the Panna Cotta (S$16) I had exceeded my expectations. It has ingredients I’m usually not very fond of like chestnut, but the flavours are smooth and subtle. The blood orange sorbet and bits of almond crumble blends well with the panna cotta, to create a harmonious flavour.
Dining with ShopBack GO
After a scrumptious meal, I whipped out my phone and launched ShopBack GO, which is housed within the ShopBack mobile application itself. It is very simple to start using it to earn Cashback on the go with this latest feature; just a few clicks and you’re well on your way to saving every time you dine out at their partner merchants!
Here’s what you gotta do:
1) Link your Visa or Mastercard credit/debit cards to Shopback GO – It can be as many active credit cards you are currently using, and you will never be charged by ShopBack for this linkage. Your card will only be charged by the restaurant for whatever you spend there when you make your payment via credit/debit card.
2) Activate Cashback – In order for the Cashback to be credited to your ShopBack account, you have to click on the “Activate” button for the restaurant, which will entitle you to earn the Cashback. This activation will be valid for the next 30 calendar days, which will be automatically extended if you make a purchase within this period.
3) Pay as you normally would – Make sure you pay using one of the credit/debit cards you have linked on ShopBack GO. Make payment before the Activated Cashback offer expires, or you can also choose to reactivate the offer any time should it expire. Cashback earned can be withdrawn into your desired bank account or PayPal account once you accumulate a minimum of $10 in your ShopBack account.
In addition to OLA Cocina Del Mar, other restaurants which are on ShopBack GO include the likes of Bearded Bella, Paradise Hotpot, Paradise Classic, The Dark Gallery, The Salted Plum, Uya Unagi Restaurant, Xin Divine, Pince & Pints, Alter Ego and Aburiya. The list is rather exhaustive and is still growing, so do make sure you check out ShopBack GO to decide where to go before your next meal!
Find out more on ShopBack GO!
Rants The pricing is steep at OLA.
Will I Return Again? I left OLA Cocina Del Mar feeling very satisfied with the food. The flavours are robust, and it is one restaurant I will come back again.
Taste bud: 4.5/5
Hole in the pocket: 4/5
Overall Experience: 4.5/5
Monday to Friday: 11:30 am to 2:30 pm
Monday to Saturday: 5:30 pm to 9:30 pm
Ranted by The Ranter