Today’s post is about Spruce, a quaint little establishment on a hill, a little off Tanglin Road. Heard nice things about it, so decided to go and try it out. Only realised later that it had gotten rather negative reviews online, but still glad I went there.
My conclusion is that – it is another restaurant with great ambience but just moderately decent food. The stairs up to the restaurant feels a little like a pathway to a castle. Up there, there is a light breeze, and ceiling fans in the outdoor patio so it’s not too hot, and in the air floats the smell of mosquito coils; which I kind of like actually – makes it smell smoky in a herbal way.
To start, we had the winter salad with tomatoes and mozzarella. Quite delightful, the slightly bitter rocket blended well with the sweet juicy tomato and soft and creamy mozzarella. The vinegar/vinegrette/balsamic added a savoury bite to it. Combined with the crisp buttered and toasted bread, delicious. A little pricey though, at $16. (You can get the famous Spruce burger for a dollar more!)
My companion had the seared tuna – sadly to say, it was kind of disappointing – the tuna was, as he said, ‘insipid’. While I didn’t think it was that terrible, I had to agree that the tuna tasted kind of bland, and didn’t have the light sweetness with a slightly cooked, browned taste which most seared tuna have. The bok choy and the cute chinese plate were a nice touch, and the carrot and giner broth was quite tasty, but otherwise, this dish really isn’t too great. And at $22 for a few slices of tuna, it is also not quite worth the price.
I had the whole roasted snapper – it was actually pretty good, lightly crusted with salt (I think) and roasted til the skin is nice and crispy, and the meat soft and warm inside. Nothing fancy really, just a fresh fish tossed on a grill and dressed with some herbs. Simple but enjoyable. The dish name was a bit deceptive though – there was no lemon jam, just a roasted lemon, and the herbs were more like vegetables and garnishes than herbs! I quite liked it though; if you’re a fan of whole fish, you might like it too. $23.
Well, I wouldn’t say it’s anything to shout about, but I do think it’s worth another try – I would go again to try the other dishes. Prices for the appetizers, are a tad on the high side, but if you’re comfortable with that, do give it a try. The charm of the place is quite something else. Tends to get busy though I think, so do consider making a reservation if you plan to go on a weekend night.
320 Tanglin Road, Phoenix Park 247980
Tel: 6836 5528 Fax: 6836 5527