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Equinox Restaurant

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Located on the 70th floor of Swissotel is Equinox – famed for its breathtaking view of the city area and its exquisite European cuisine. We kicked off the first Restaurant Week in 2012 with dinner at Equinox.

Bread

Bread

We were offered a choice of three kinds of breads – plain, multigrain and baguette. In general, the breads were of a hard and chewy form. The baguette did not have a crispy crust either. However, when served warm, the inner loaf tasted softer and lighter. The multigrain bread was the most impressive. The sesame seeds, wheat and oats added much fragrance to the otherwise plain bread.  The breads were free flow and the waitress was prompt in offering more every time a new batch of freshly baked bread arrived.

Tomato Gazpacho

Tomato Gazpacho

Before the appetizers were served, we were each offered a shot glass of Tomato Gazpacho to cleanse our palate. The Gazpacho was refreshingly cold and immediately awoke our taste buds. It was very thick, more towards that of a salsa dip and less of soup. There was a very strong taste and smell of raw vegetables, which could be a turn off for non-vegetable lovers.

Poached and Smoked Salmon Rillette with Beetroot Carpaccio and Pink Grapefruit

Poached and Smoked Salmon Rillette with Beetroot Carpaccio and Pink Grapefruit

Poached and Smoked Salmon Rillette with Beetroot Carpaccio and Pink Grapefruit. A dish of carpaccio is usually made up of thinly sliced raw meat. Here at Equinox, beetroots are used in place of the raw meat to give a vegetarian carpaccio. The thin slices of beetroot were soft, breaking into smaller pieces easily when we attempted to lift them up. However, they were juicy and slightly sweet and went down well with the rillette which was slightly more bland. The rillette was garnished with a few pieces of smoked salmon, which left a slightly fishy aftertaste. However, contrary to the description of the dish, the rillette tasted more of tuna which had been chopped and poached, instead of the smoked salmon rillette we were expected.

Classic French Onion Soup with Gruyère Cheese Crouton

Classic French Onion Soup with Gruyère Cheese Crouton

The Classic French Onion Soup with Gruyère Cheese Crouton was unlike other French onion soups. It was more unique in that the soup base was thick with a sourish vinegar punch. There was abundance of softened mushy onion slices but these did not turn out too overpowering. However, the chewy thick cheese which we were looking out for was nowhere to be seen. A very negligible layer of gruyere cheese was spread on the crouton bread and there was somewhat an equally strong taste of butter present.

Salad of Marinated Baby Artichokes, Frisée Lettuce, Shallots, Green Beans,  Hazelnuts with Round Radish and Truffle Dressing

Salad of Marinated Baby Artichokes, Frisée Lettuce, Shallots, Green Beans,
Hazelnuts with Round Radish and Truffle Dressing

Salad of Marinated Baby Artichokes, Frisée Lettuce, Shallots, Green Beans, Hazelnuts with Round Radish and Truffle Dressing. There was nothing to rave about for the salad and we thought we should have given this up for either of the other two appetizers on the menu.

Confit of Duck Leg, White Bean and Smoked Pancetta Cassoulet with Thyme Jus

Confit of Duck Leg, White Bean and Smoked Pancetta Cassoulet with Thyme Jus

Confit of Duck Leg, White Bean and Smoked Pancetta Cassoulet with Thyme Jus. The duck confit was well prepared, with a very good balance of juicy tenderness and the amount of fats and oil in the meat. The duck skin had a slight crisp but did not taste overly oily. In fact, it felt more pan-fried than deep-fried. Equally appetizing was the side dish of beans in tomato sauce. The taste resembled that of canned baked beans, only that these tasted much fresher with the beans being harder and less soggy.

Pan-Seared Barramundi, Saffron Confit Potatoes, Baby Spinach,  Dried Cherry Tomatoes with Lemon and Herb Dressing

Pan-Seared Barramundi, Saffron Confit Potatoes, Baby Spinach,
Dried Cherry Tomatoes with Lemon and Herb Dressing

Pan-Seared Barramundi, Saffron Confit Potatoes, Baby Spinach, Dried Cherry Tomatoes with Lemon and Herb Dressing. There was nothing to pick on for this dish either. The Barramundi was soft and tender. The skin had a slightly salty crisp. The sliced potatoes were uniquely prepared. They tasted sourish, but there was no suggestion of saffron. On hindsight, it was likely that the potatoes had absorbed some of the dressing. The baby spinach was broiled and served bland. These felt healthy but we found them a little over cooked and soft. The dried cherry tomatoes were a combination of sweetness and sourness. The texture was somewhere near that of fried peeled potato skin, which we had almost mistaken them for.

Tagliatelle Pasta, Wild Mushrooms, Spinach with Pine Nuts and Goat Cheese Sauce

Tagliatelle Pasta, Wild Mushrooms, Spinach with Pine Nuts and Goat Cheese Sauce

Tagliatelle Pasta, Wild Mushrooms, Spinach with Pine Nuts and Goat Cheese Sauce. This dish would have been better if the cheese wasn’t goat cheese. The cheese sauce was creamy and not overly salty. However, it was way too heavy on the palate due to the sharp overpowering characteristic goat cheese taste, which we found it hard to swallow. We had difficulty finishing this dish.

Seasonal Crème Brûlee

Seasonal Crème Brûlee

The Seasonal Crème Brûlee has got to be the most impressive dish of the night. In fact, it would be the best non-flavoured creme brulee we have tried thus far. The custard base was very rich, creamy and milky. It was of the right level of sweetness and softness. The curd like textured custard disintegrated and went down smoothly in our mouths. The creme brulee was studded with some chewy sweet prune, giving the dessert an additional dimension of texture, on top of the contrasting layer of burnt caramel.

Pineapple Carpaccio, Lime, Chilli Syrup and Coconut Sorbet

Pineapple Carpaccio, Lime, Chilli Syrup and Coconut Sorbet

Pineapple Carpaccio, Lime, Chilli Syrup and Coconut Sorbet. The use of thinly sliced pineapple in place of meat proved to be another revamp of the conventional carpacccio to a dessert dish. However taste wise, there was nothing too unique.  There was barely any hint of lime and chilli syrup too. Dried coconut shavings were laid across the plate as extra garnishes. Not fans of coconut, this healthy fruity dessert did not really appeal to us.

Selection of Seasonal Exotic Fruit Sorbet and ‘Langues-De-Chat’

Selection of Seasonal Exotic Fruit Sorbet and ‘Langues-De-Chat’

Selection of Seasonal Exotic Fruit Sorbet and ‘Langues-De-Chat’. The wild berry sorbet and pineapple sorbets were refreshing. The coconut sorbet, also found in the other pineapple carpaccio dessert, was thankfully not too overpowering in the coconut milk taste.

Chocolates

Chocolates

The meal ended off with complimentary confectionery of dark chocolate coated orange peel sticks and chocolate pebbles. We especially liked the chocolate coated nuts. They tasted like M&Ms and the hazelnuts encased within were very fresh and crunchy.

Equinox Restaurant
70F, Swissotel The Stamford
2 Stamford Road

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Written by foodphd

March 24, 2012 at 9:06 am

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