The Place Taking over the space which used to be The Rabbit Hole, the new restaurant by Odette’s Chef Julien Royer and the Lo & Behold Group took over this pre-war chapel at Dempsey Hill. With the reputation as one of Singapore’s finest chefs behind this new concept, Claudine Restaurant naturally opened with much fanfare. I decided to visit Claudine to find out if it is worth the hype.
The interior revamp of the space at Claudine is perhaps worth half your spendings at the restaurant. The upper half of the chapel has been painted with a very bold dark red colour, while the lower half takes on a more French countryside colour palate of light brown and beige. The configuration of the restaurant makes it ideal for date nights, or a meal with friends and family. The dining ambience is lovely to say the least.
The Food Head to Claudine for some comfort French food, with a focus on home-style French mains which are meant for sharing across the table. It is quite an extensive menu here, and while it is marketed as a relatively more casual restaurant as compared to Odette, do not expect the menu to offer affordable selections.
Firstly, complimentary bread and butter were served. That Iberico butter is so good, I had to control myself from having too much bread. I also had some Chardonnay to start which was lovely.
We started with the Charred Leek (S$18) which comes complete with cornichon, chives & gribiche dressing. Despite the name of the dish, I would not mind if leeks are more charred as I feel that the dish was a tad too bland.
Ordered the Organic Egg Forestiere (S$28) after reading some good reviews about this dish, and also for that nice photo of #yolkporn for the grams! The dish did not disappoint, with the egg forestiere coming in perfect running yolk. The black truffle vinaigrette sauce balances out the 40-month parmesan crust of the eggs well.
From the sharing plates, decided to go with their namesake Claudine Bouillabaisse (S$178), which is a traditional fish stew from the Provence region of France. I last had a really good bouillabaisse when I visited Marseille back in 2014 and I have been looking for a restaurant in Singapore that can beat that version.
Claudine’s version comes with john dory fish, carabinero, scallop, razor clams and mussels to complete their Bouillabaisse, and the best kept secret is that the seafood broth is refillable if you ask for another round of serving. That is a generous offering, though the price of this Bouillabaisse is quite hefty to begin with. Enjoyable dish, especially if you like a good seafood broth and fresh seafood. Best to share this for 2 pax, as the ingredients came in pairs.
Finished my meal here with the Warm Chocolate Tart (S$18) which was recommended by a friend. The Guanaja 70% dark chocolate tart has a molten inside, going really well with the fromage blanc sorbet. Cannot resist dark chocolate desserts, so this is a definite must-try for me.
Rants While it is always a nice gesture to check in with your guests, the team at Claudine might be a tad too hospitable during our visits with multiple queries on “How’s the food?” and “Is there anything else I can be of assistance to?”. Admittedly though, the service was very polished, and all’s forgiven.
Will I Return Again? Claudine lives up to its promise of serving up home-cooked French dishes. Best enjoyed in a larger group setting to afford trying more items on their menu, both calories and wallet wise. The interior decor is perhaps amongst one of the nicest restaurants to open its door in recent years in Singapore.
Taste bud: 4/5
Hole in the pocket: 4/5
Overall Experience: 4/5
39C Harding Road
Tel: +65 6265 2966
Monday to Saturday: 11:45am to 2pm; 6pm to 9:30pm
Closed on Mondays
Ranted by The Rantee