I have said this before and I will say this again – if a restaurant can entice me enough to go back again – it is DEFINITELY worth a shot.
Morsels is so good, I’ve been back three times already, and was the only new restaurant that I was raving about for the longest of times. Especially since it is run by a Singaporean couple who are the heart and soul of the restaurant.
First, take note that Morsels’ Bryan Chia was named Rising Chef of the Year at the World Gourmet Summit Awards in April, 2015. Him and ex-banker Petrina Loh – who incidentally was also one of the nominees for the award – helm the kitchen at this humble restaurant at Mayo Street along Jalan Besar. If someone is passionate enough about cooking to leave a high-paying banking job – you can probably believe that there are some mad skillz going on there.
I first tried Morsels during Friday lunch, and was pleasantly surprised to have the restaurant all to myself. They don’t have a set lunch, but I highly recommend that if you don’t want ala carte, to try the chef’s selection of 3 or 5 dishes from the menu. $58++ n $98++.
At the time I did what they offer for dinner usually – $65 for a taste of some of their more popular dishes. And boy was it worth it!
I also tried their self-infused alcohols. Pandan-infused vodka with sprite, and my friend had the lemongrass infused rum with ginger ale. Both of us were surprised by the power of the punch. Do not drink these on an empty stomach, or you’d be rolling home.
The thick, generous rounds of scallop carpaccio are a good way to “open your appetite” as the Chinese say. I also loved the mushrooms that you were to dip into the sous-vide egg. Simple, but delicious. The zucchini pancakes were very hearty, and honestly, if I had not been in a mood to eat that day – this could have been a meal in its own. Served like a breakfast/dessert – complete with cottage cheese sitting atop the pancake stack, and drizzled with honey – the zucchini pancakes were dense with zucchini – and not heavy with flour, a delicious combination. Note to self: Don’t eat all the cheese with the first pancake.
Didn’t take a pic of the gazpacho – but definitely a good call on a hot day. It was like a yummy cold salsa soup, and it was gone before I remembered to snap a pic. So… sorry about that one.
But let me tell you about my favourites. I do not eat clams. Generally, I avoid most shellfish because I tend to be allergic. But, in general I don’t like the taste of mussels, oysters, clams – “hum”/”lala” etc. I don’t like the metallic taste that most shellfish tend to have. So I was surprised when I tasted the broth of Morsels version of vongole.. and even more surprised when myself, and, my non-clam-eating-friend (honestly, I didn’t know that he didn’t eat clams too, and I just ordered the waitresses’ recommendations) kept dipping bread into the broth for more. It was so tasty.
I actually “dabao-ed” this dish home for the man to try, and he declared it the most delicious clams he had ever tasted. He couldn’t finish it all because of a heavy dinner, but when he ate the remainder the day after- he said it was even better, “the best he’s had, it was worth it and he didn’t even mind that I had gone there with another guy first because of this”, and… yup – we went back to Morsels for him to try the dish served piping hot. (The second time I went back – the man had TWO servings of this. TWO!!!) I don’t know what it is, and I loathe to throw around words like “mouthfeel” – but this is a robust broth that you would not expect your seafood to be in, with home made kimchi for some extra kapow. Don’t worry. The dish is not spicy.
Short ribs are not the easiest dish to do – but these two chefs do it oh so well. You barely even have to use your knife on the meat because your utensils will glide right through it, like butter. The meat just.. melts. And the bed of purple Okinawan potato mash it was sitting on was just… divine.
And the lamb. THE LAMB. Lamb is another meat that I tend to avoid. I have only been to three places in my life where lamb was done well. This, is one of the three. The meat falls of the bone as soon as your teeth sink into it. And oh, did I forget to mention that all their smoking is done in-house? The burnt corn was a thing of beauty, it actually reminded me of one of Chef Andre’s favourite classic dishes to serve – a single ear of baby corn grown on a farm in his home town in Taiwan, that he grills and salts lightly. But here, it is done perfectly, and with meat too! The joy!
Honestly, I was too full the first time around for dessert. But I powered through. The almond milk panna cotta was smoother than the famed lao pan beancurd desserts. Refreshing, and not cloyingly sweet. I should have stopped there but I can’t reject anything Milo (or nutella) so I went for the Tiramisu. ohmywaistimissyou. This was definitely delish, especially if you are craving cocoa, as I always do. But, I think they could definitely go bigger with the milo flavor in there.
The second time I went for dinner there, they also had a special – in-house smoked wagyu beef. It was seared perfectly and just on a simple board with a couple of fresh tomatoes. Nothing pretentious or fancy. But it was gone in less than 60 seconds, we ordered another one too.
All in all, this is seriously one of the best local restaurants I’ve tried, with pretty reasonable prices too. So I would definitely recommend it. #MUSTTRY #saraannkapproved
RATING: A solid 4/5
Oh, and if you want to give it a try.. just so happens that I saw this on their Facebook page. They are having a special Argentinian wine- dinner on Sept 10th, 2015. I won’t be around – but with a menu that sounds that good… give it a go!
35 mayo street s208316
+65 6396 6302
friday 12pm – 230pm
tuesday to thursday 6pm – 1030pm
friday to saturday 6pm – 11pm
closed sunday and mondays
1. URA open air car park across the road from Jalan Besar, next to Sim Lim Tower, and Weld Road. Access from either Jalan Besar, Rochor Canal Road or Arab Street leading to Weld Road. coupon parking 08.30 AM to 10.00 PM daily 30min $0.50. walk across towards Hotel 81 with Cheers minimart turn into Mayo Street, Morsels is at the end of the street across Abdul Gafoor Mosque in a quaint shophouse.
2. The Verge – 2 Serangoon Road, S(218227)
MON-SAT before 5/6 PM
$1.30/hr from 7am to 5pm
MON-SAT after 5/6 PM
$1.60/entry from 5pm to 12midnight, $1.10/hr from 12midnight to 7am the following day
SUN / PUBLIC HOLIDAYS
$2/entry from 7am to 12midnight, $1.60/hr from 12midnight to 7am the following day
*charges before gst
take elevator to first floor, facing sungei road and laselle turn left follow construction pathway toward perak street turn right into mayo street, morsels is across abdul gafoor mosque in a quaint shophouse.
nearest mrt stop: bugis or little india