I have been to Mandarin Oriental a few times, but never been to the poolside area. And although I read about how Michelin Star Chef Marco Pedrelli is currently helming the kitchen here at the Italian restaurant, I did not have the chance to try out his food till today.
To access Dolce Vita, take the lift to the 5th floor. Follow the direction and pass through this entrance.
What greets you is a spectacular sight. A few more years and our skyline will be comparable to that of even Hong Kong.
I guess most Singaporean won't know this small corner because most of us won't think of staying in a 5 stars here in Singapore. In the background is our very own Marina Bay Sands and the Singapore Skyline.
I am not sure if diners are allowed to go swimming in the hotel's pool, but the pool area seems very open. So if you have little children, I think it is possible for them to have a swim while the adults enjoy a leisure Italian meal by the pool side.
For me, I cannot stand humidity and the heat, so my only dining option is indoor.
Complimentary bread with choice of spreads. We wanted to try all of the spreads, so the waitress gave us all 4! I remembered there were some onion garlic dip, a cheese spread, tuna spread and tomato pesto dip. Of course, there is also the good old Balsamic vinegar and Olive oil dip.
Dolce Vita serves free flow of iced water, but if you prefer sparkling or still water, please feel free to order from the service staff.
The Chef first presented to us our complimentary starter. We have a breadstick, assorted ham and also pickled capsicum. As were were hungy, everything tasted great.
I ordered this Tartar of grass-fed Australian beef tenderloin with chive salad. poached quail eggs, potato roesti and red caviar (S26), which is the signature appetizer. This was delicious, especially the potato roesti. If they had the whole potato roesti as a main course, I would have gladly ordered. The beef was not too flavourful, but fresh. No beef taste here.
And when you break into the quail eggs, mix the yolk with the beef and potato. Comfort food for the stomach.
Home-smoked Scottish salmon with potato salad, oyster vinaigrette and green asparagus (S$24), which was another of their signature starter. The failure of this starter is that the salmon was not smoked enough. Perhaps it was "home" smoked, and that explains the very faint "smokiness", but it could do more on the smoky part.
My order of Lobster Bisque with shellfish tortellini and fresh basil (S$18), which is again their signature. It's good as it tasted like what all lobster bisque should taste like. No surprises here, just good old fashioned lobster bisque.
Oven baked whole sea bass in a crust of Hawaiian sea salt, served with Mediterranean vegetables (S$36) - This is a dish which you cannot order if you are in a rush, as it take 30 minutes just to baked the fish in their huge oven. We took a photograph of the whole sea bass before the serving staff deboned it. Notice that white mould around the fish? That's actually the crust of Hawaiian sea salt. As the fish is baked, the salt is slowly released into the fish. So now seasoning is required prior to baking.
The end results is a wonderfully fresh fish with a hint of saltiness from the baked salt and no other seasoning.
Also had this Chef's choice of three assorted homemade pasta specialties of the day.
In the foreground is the Homemade Penne pasta cooked with roasted pork. Not bad.
The homemade potato gnocchi with cheese sauce was good. Unfortunately, I was really too full and could not finish the yummy gnocchi.
The best was the Linguine with seafood and cooked with a garlic olive oil glaze. It's light and with the sweetness from the fresh seafood.
Next time, I will just order this Linguine dish. But for first timers here, I would strongly recommend you to order the Chef's choice of 3 pasta just to try out what suits your tastebuds.
Our stomach nearly exploded, but we still could squeeze in one dessert, to be shared. I was really too full, so I didn't enjoy this as much as our mains. But I remembered the sweet lychee sorbet was one of the best with whole chunks of lychee inside. The macarons (sliced into halves) were definitely not as good as those from Marina Bay Sands.
When we stepped out, I was quite attracted by the beautiful night view.
I love the food (and the view) here at Dolce Vita, and when I return next time, perhaps I will also bring along my swimming trunks for a dip in the pool!
5 Raffles Avenue
5th Floor (Next to the pool)
Mandarin Oriental Singapore