Restaurant revivals

40C Harding Road, Tel: 6679-1800, Open all day Mon to Sat: 11.30am to 10pm

PATRICK HEUBERGER HAS COME full circle. It’s as if a stars have mapped out a career devise for him given his attainment in Singapore in 2001 to helm a excellent dining French griddle Au Petit Salut – one of a colonize tenants in hipster cluster Dempsey Village. Now, 17 years and a sundry career later, he’s behind where he began, to take over a now tired-looking 3 turn structure and revitalise it as a place of his own.

As distant as chefs go, cook Heuberger hasn’t strayed distant from a trail of classic, country French cooking. And his judgment for his new griddle Atout – French for “trump card”, “chance of success” – revolves around fresh, anniversary mixture and infrequent food we can nip on during a day, or sit-down dishes for lunch and dinner.

Now 44, cook Heuberger had his eye on a space when he motionless to go behind into a griddle business after operative during Huber’s Butchery for roughly dual years.

“My ex-boss, Alice Low, had renovated a griddle final year, though we motionless to proceed her, given we never know until we try.” As it incited out, Ms Low agreed, as she had skeleton to retire. “But we didn’t wish to take over a Au Petit Salut branding,” says cook Heuberger. “It’s too upmarket. we wanted to do something some-more casual, where we can come during any time of a day, and we don’t have to have a full meal.”

Soft-opened on Mar 12, Atout takes adult dual of 3 floors (the tip turn is rented out to a new bar concept) and has 3 dining areas, one of them outdoors. The cook himself will male a charcuterie opposite portion salads, rillettes and cold cuts, many of them done in-house by him. The prohibited kitchen will be manned by executive cook Nelson Chua, a Les Amis alumnus who was final during a Poulet organisation of infrequent restaurants. He’s cooking adult Heuberger classics such as 40-garlic roasted chicken, steep confit, 6 kinds of pellet and grass-fed beef and a good seafood preference baked over a colourless grill.

One specialty they’re bringing in is smoked cod liver, that presumably tastes usually like foie gras during a fragment of a price. There’s also a sell shop, and they are also bringing in lots of obtuse famous aged universe wines, labelled from S$60 to S$80.

Finally, a cook feels he has finally staid into a slit given he quit a rarely successful Bistro du Sommelier that he non-stop 4 years ago after withdrawal Au Petit Salut. It was doing well, though he was over-worked, that was inspiring his ability to detect a child with his wife.

Wanting a slower gait of life and to do his dream of training charcuterie in France, he sole out and took off to Paris to file his skills, where he represented Singapore in a Best Caterer of a universe competition – fixation third after France and Switzerland. He came behind to start a little sell opening in a Clementi condo development, that morphed into a griddle and again, became tough to control. His mother was profound during a time, and he motionless to join Huber’s for unchanging operative hours and to learn some-more about meat. “It was a good training opportunity, though now we feel I’m prepared to go out on my possess again. we already have a repute for charcuterie and meat, with a lot of followers. I’m still immature adequate – we have during slightest another 10 years.”

He’s corroborated by a internal financier who has been a crony and believer given Bistro du Sommelier days, while a front of residence is managed by associate Frenchman Jean-Philippe Joye, a maestro who’s worked during Culina and five-star hotels around a world.

“My sign is ‘simplicity is a ultimate sophistication’,” says cook Heuberger. Hopefully, he’ll have a good few happy years to pursue that.


The Les Amis Group is during it again. Just when it seemed to be in a peace in a enlargement activities, it’s kickstarted again with a slew of openings in Singapore over a subsequent integrate of months.

The exhausted second building of Shaw Centre will come alive with a highly-anticipated opening of Mui Kee, a permanent outpost of a famous Hong Kong congee eatery, after a successful pop-up during Casa Verde in Botanic Gardens. Opening finish March, it offers fans of a fluffy well-spoken Cantonese congee a wider menu to select from including claypot dishes, steamed rice noodles and side items.

And if it’s tough to find a niche in a proliferation of Japanese restaurants in town, a new Jinjo is set to sire a trend of sushi and ramen joints. Scheduled to open in April, this complicated sumiyaki emphasises a art of grilling, where a peculiarity of mixture is a categorical draw. Fresh reserve are approaching to come 4 times a week, featuring signatures such as Alaskan aristocrat crab and black throat sea roost from Ishikawa.

Another initial is a donabe menu – featuring beef, truffle, uni or crab rice baked in normal claypots.

Its acclaimed fritter cook Cheryl Koh has also changed her little Tarte emporium from her belligerent building mark to a incomparable space on a second floor, with dine-in options. The menu is larger, incorporating delectable croissant sandwiches and cakes in further to her signature tarts.

Her aged space has been taken over by La Strada, a group’s Italian restaurant, that is being renovated and will re-open during a finish of a month.

According to a organisation spokesperson, partial of a reason for a enlargement is to move some-more hum to a second building of Shaw Centre. “With a depart of Vinum, that used to occupy 3 emporium spaces, we had a event to launch 3 some-more concepts in a place.

We are also bustling lovely some of a comparison concepts that have been around for over 10 years, such as Bistro Du Vin and Peperoni Pizzeria.”

It’s also adding on to a abroad operations with a new NamNam Noodle Bar in Seminyak Bali, “a full-service, mid-market infrequent griddle with full bar service”.

What’s next?

“The organisation is always on a surveillance for engaging concepts to deliver to those staying in Singapore, and even abroad. To us, it is all about rising a judgment that serves good food, regardless of a cuisine and cost point.”


Fat Lulu’s – that cult favourite of hipster diners drawn to a “#noburnnotaste” Asian grill by Sam Chablani and desserts by Pang Ji Shuang – is shutting down on Mar 18. But wait – not for good, as a twin is set to open Version 2.0 in incomparable premises, nonetheless cook Chablani is tight-lipped about what a new place will be like and even if a name will stay.

“We started dual years ago on a little opening bill and took a play on my cuisine, Asian barbecue,” says cook Chablani. “A griddle with dual chefs – grill and dessert – has always been a tough sell, though we now know some-more than ever Singaporeans adore a food.”

While profitable, servicing and upkeep of a charge building it’s in has eaten into a change piece to a indicate that “moving divided to another plcae would improved offer a concept”.

Chef Chablani will take a mangle for a few months to “come adult with new stuff” and re-open in a fourth entertain of a year in an undisclosed plcae though it will “definitely be a executive location”.

And as a teaser, “We will continue to work with reward meats and specifically sourced seafood as partial of a categorical menu. We do not trust in unreasonable prices, it’s always about value – an receptive dining knowledge with musty nonetheless informed food and desserts in an unobtrusive setting.” They haven’t motionless on a name yet, “but it will be focused on a suggestion of Lulu’s”.

Chef Chablani openly admits it’s tough going in a FB business. “Quoting Elon Musk, ‘You gotta be connected for this.’ In a final dual years, a griddle has emptied me physically, mentally and socially. It’s pushed me not usually as a chef, though also into meditative how to move value and some-more income to a restaurant. But I’m sanctified with friends who have upheld my character of cooking and enabled me to take my food to a subsequent level.”

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