Monday, May 13, 2013

Brunetti Pasticceria

  As the whole world probably knows, Mother's Day fell on Sunday. While many families made reservations at posh restaurants days, or even weeks, in advance, my family was one of the few families who were clueless as to where to treat our beloved mother to for Mother's Day. We usually just pick a restaurant on a whim, perhaps a few hours in advance? (or minutes, rather) So, we ended up roaming the floors of Tanglin Mall as we searched for an Italian restaurant that dished up a mean spaghetti alle vongole, which is my mother's favourite pasta dish. We dined at the restaurant some years back and knowing how times have changed, we should have expected to see it replaced by another restaurant, called Brunetti.

  As we had already parked our car in Tanglin Mall, we had to choose either Chili's, Nando's, Cedele or Brunetti. It was an easy decision to make. The display of desserts lining the front counter of Brunetti appealed to us, and though the restaurant seemed a little...cramped, we settled ourselves down and tried our very best to enjoy the afternoon. Thankfully, we didn't have to try very hard for it was an extremely pleasant meal at Brunetti.

Assortment of pizza slices, which all looked deliciously greasy and yummy.

All sorts of chocolate pralines.

A must-have in any pastry shop nowadays: macarons and cakes.

The tarts look so lovely!

I ordered the salmon bagel ($10) and it came freshly toasted, with a slab of cream cheese in the center, like a doughnut ring. How cute! However, my bagel came a good ten minutes or so before the other dishes, so I waited ten excruciating minutes before I could sink my teeth into the sesame-spotted bagel. With each passing minute, thoughts of the bagel getting cold agonized me. However, family comes first and I like to observe traditions such as waiting till everyone's food has arrived before eating.

I spread the cube of cream cheese all over the top bagel and boy, was I tempted to devour every single bit of it!

The slices of smoked salmon, as you can see, are thick and orange and simply drool-inducing. The combination of flavours - cream cheese, smoked salmon and spinach, were absolutely divine, making me savor every single bite as the bagel slowly disappeared from my hands. I felt that this was one of the better smoked salmons that I have had, and tried not to envision cold pre-packed salmon bagels being hauled from delivery trucks and then proceeding to the magical microwave oven before being plated before me. I preferred to imagine a chef patiently assembling the bagel layer by layer and filling it with care and love (ha) before presenting it to the waiting customer. Nonetheless, it was a good and healthy meal, and rather affordable too!

Fish and Chips ($17). My brother did not clarify that he wanted the Fish and Chips from the kids menu, and thus ended up being served a plate of good ol' Fish and Chips double the price of the one that he had originally intended to order. However, the fish was fried rather nicely, with the coating of batter being quite tasty. It was not simply thrown into a pot of boiling oil and smothered with flour, but was carefully fried, thus resulting in a crispy and browned exterior. The tartar sauce that came with the fries was lovely and we mopped up every but of sauce with the french fries. The french fries were well fried, and they had better be. After all, any one would be entitled to a full-blown fit if he paid $17 for McDonald's-rate greasy fried potato strips.

My mother's Seafood Aglio Olio ($18) looked a little small-sized, but toss the pasta and you unearth a whole mine of seafood goodies. There were even pieces of codfish in the pasta, which were absolutely divine. My mother enjoyed her pasta tremendously. After she had slurped up every last strand of spaghetti, I saw the layer of olive oil lining the bottom of the bowl and felt so relieved that I had not chosen to eat the spaghetti. Oops. I guess my mother deserved the treat, since, after all, it is Mother's Day... ;-)

The father's Pan-Seared Red Snapper ($19.90) was another winning dish. The fish was very well-cooked and the presentation of the dish in its entirety simply blew us away. It was very classy-looking, and the serving of truffle by the side was an delightful surprise. I enjoyed the taste of the snapper and could taste the herbs and spices added in the cooking of the fish. Every bite oozed fishy goodness...mmm.

  After a satisfying lunch, we looked around and the wide array of desserts beckoning us. Should we? Should we really? We shall.

  Armed with my wallet and a greedy smile on my face, I marched towards the gelato counter and was immediately spoilt for choice. There were two counters-full of gelato, each with exotic flavours of gelato that were in such pretty and tempting hues. In the end, we decided on a large cup of Di Prendo, Cappuccino and Extra Dark Chocolate gelatos which set me back $9.50, but was well worth every cent.

The gelato was honestly one of the best gelatos that I have eaten. Even beating many of the ones I've had in Rome, which is well-known for its excellent gelatos. The Di Prendo was basically chocolate hazelnut, and the hazelnut was extremely powerful in this, over-powering the chocolate. Just how I like love it. The Extra Dark Chocolate was good eaten together with the Di Prendo as its slightly bitter taste complemented the husky hazelnut extremely well. Dark chocolate is supposed to be the healthier choice for chocolate as it is known to have anti-oxidising effects and will boost metabolism. The Cappuccino was rather average, as I am not exactly a lover of caffeine-flavoured products. I'd choose a cuppa any day over some artificially-flavoured coffee candy or ice-cream. However, my brother loves anything coffee-flavoured and thus I only ordered this flavour to satiate him. My reward was to see his beaming smile as he scooped up all the Cappuccino gelato enthusiastically. Also, I did not want to quarrel with my brother over such trivial matters, not on Mother's Day at least...tee hee!

  Brunetti would probably be the place I would go back to for gelato and maybe the occasional smoked salmon bagel. However, I find that their main meals are a bit over-priced and not really worth top dollar. However, their cake and pastry selection looks very impressive and I may decide to try some one day when I am in need of a sugar rush. If only they offered pastries like these at a buffet...

Brunetti Pasticceria
163 Tanglin Road
#01-35 Tanglin Mall
Tel: +65 6733 9088
Sun to Wed: 8am – 9pm
Thu to Sat: 8am – 10pm

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