The Place Located in Intercontinental Singapore at what used to be Ash & Elm, Luce by Davide Giacomelli is a new Italian concept in the IHG property by Chef de Cuisine Davide Giacomelli. The space retains the same interior as Ash & Elm, so it is still the familiar high ceiling space with skylight over the restaurant. Luce means ‘light’ in Italian, where the new concept aims to focus on fresh, local ingredients, with a seasonal à la carte menu that will be refreshed on a quarterly basis.
The Food The dishes at Luce are a culmination of Chef de Cuisine Davide Giacomelli’s training under the tutelage of multiple Michelin-starred chefs throughout his career and pays homage to his earliest love affair – the sight, scent and flavours of classic Italian cooking at his father’s restaurant in the quaint town of Sirmione, ‘the pearl’ of Lake Garda. The menu is concise from the starters to pasta, mains and sharing plates. You won’t find pizza on Chef Davide menu if that is what you are looking for, as he wants to showcase the lesser-known but equally worthy Italian dishes.
I started with the Bruschetta (S$19) – toasted bread grated with garlic and topped with Parma ham, buffalo mozzarella, cherry tomato concassé, rocket leaves and basil.
One of the dishes the staff recommended me was the Octopus Peperonata (S$36) – Sicilian-style cooked octopus, pan-roasted with ratatouille of red and yellow peppers, red onions and fresh tomatoes. Lovely bright colours on the plate with the mix of greens where the octopus spots a chewy texture.
If there is one dish you must have at Luce, it is the highly raved Acquerello Lobster (S$46), which did not disappoint. The Acquerello Lobster dish uses Carnaroli rice, a type of Italian rice from Northern Italy. Carnaroli is also known as the “king” or “caviar” of risotto rice, and is said to produce the creamiest risotto. This dish is moreish as the al dente risotto soaks up the rich essence of the lobster stick prepared with half Boston lobster. A must order dish here!
For mains, I went for something lighter on the palate, Merluzzo alla Puttanesca (S$46). The pan-fried Atlantic cod is served with homemade fresh tomato sauce, taggiasca olives, anchovies, pantelleria capers and fresh herbs. Not much of a surprise element on this dish, but a well-executed cod fish dish.
For desserts, the Fragola (S$18) is a pretty light option with Strawberry yogurt mousse, yuzu chocolate cream, strawberry coulis and dulce crumble. Otherwise, go for the namesake Luce-misu (S$18), a twist on traditional tiramisu. I Ma usually not a fan of tiramisu but this version is not as sweet, as there is more chocolate elements where the bitterness balances the sweetness. You get Mascarpone cream espuma, espresso syrup, lady finger sponge and crunchy feuilletine.
Rants Would definitely wish to see more standout dishes being created on the menu the next round as while the savoury dishes are generally competent, only the Acquerello Lobster left a deeper impression.
Will I Return Again? It is a good shift from Ash & Elm to Luce by Davide Giacomelli where there is a clearer definition of the cuisine. The concise menu works well and every restaurant should have a signature dish, and in this case, the lobster risotto for me and the Luce-misu for dessert. The spacious setting is also ideal for couples or group dining.
This was an invited tasting, though all opinions expressed are our own.
Make your reservations instantly at Luce by Davide Giacomelli here.
Taste bud: 4/5
Hole in the pocket: 4/5
Overall Experience: 4/5
Luce by Davide Giacomelli
80 Middle Road
Tel: +65 6825 1008
Wednesday to Sunday: 12:00pm to 2:30pm
Wednesday to Sunday:
Bar operates from 5:30pm for pre-dinner drinks
6:00pm to 10:30pm (Last order at 9:30pm)
Ranted by The Ranter