Friday, November 14, 2014

PAUL Boulangerie SG : NEW Menu


The display of glorious beautiful baguettes and other tempting sweet treats of renowned French boulangerie never fail to stop me in my footsteps whenever I walked past any of its outlets, be it in Singapore or Tokyo (fantastic seasonal matcha sweets) . I am always curious to take a peek, in case there might be new items that I have missed out.

But never did it cross my mind that this heritage French brand is already in its 125th year, and churns up to 43 different kinds of bread across 500 outlets worldwide. Apart from the viennoiseries, PAUL has recently gave its dine-in menu a new lift, dishing items from breakfasts, mains to desserts. 
The repertoire of 26 new dishes include hearty salads like the Salad de la Mer ($20.90++), a seafood salad that would make an ideal satisfying light lunch option with plump shrimps, mussels, octopus and creamy avocados. The zesty grapefruit and in house french dressing lends the greens a bright zesty flavour that resonates with me. 
Both main courses reflected the simplicity of French cooking and natural flavours of fresh, seasonal ingredients. The Longe de thon ($29.90++) was essentially a long steak of seared tuna whose core remained pinkish and tender, adorned with white sesame seeds. Magnificent in its own right, the fish fell out of sync with the sweet cranberry sauce and the side of tangy roasted seasonal vegetables, which were so appetizing that they could possibly steal the limelight of the plate. 
On the other hand, the Confit de Canard ($28.90++may be an old-fashioned French classic but never fails to please the palates. Rubbed with herbs and cured in duck fat for one day before slow-roasted for 4 hours, the unctuous duck meat, albeit tad salty, streaked off the bones in strands.

It might be quite a distinct version from most of the crispy-skinned versions here but the duck is fragrantly meaty and not greasy. The same side dish of roasted vegetables did complement the duck but perhaps pairing it with some chestnut velouté with mushrooms may inject some variety? 
New iced teas like the Rosemary lime or Lemongrass Ginger were great options to refresh the palates and get one ready for desserts. However what piqued my curiosity was the beguiling Macaron Drink ($9.50++) shown below. Available also in Raspberry, Vanilla and Chocolate, I opted for the Pistachio flavour. Predictably a sweet maestro of pistachio macarons speedily whizzed to gritty bits with milk, it turned out to be less sugary than the original macarons, tempered to a balanced creaminess with a characteristic texture. 
Leaning gingerly against one another, the golden Waffles ($13.90++)as sturdy as the Pyramids of Egypt, were understandably more similar to the light crunchy Brussels waffles than the dense, chewy Liege waffles. Yet too much of a good thing may warrant a concern to oral pleasure as these square parcels were rather rigid inside-out.  

In all true French fashion, a better option is the Eclair Paris Brest ($7.50++). The pillowy hazelnut cream delivered a soothing finish to the meal, with not much icing sugar dusted the lovely golden pastry shell to distract the palates. 
Above all, I am heartened that Paul stays true to its boulangerie roots and delivers the promised quality in their forte areas, the bread. Out of all the new dishes I've tried, the Tartine Boeuf ($19.90++secured a special place in my heart. 

A touch of herb cream cheese, hints of tart balsamic vinegar and a smattering of soft caramelized onions on succulent sirloin steak is all it takes to bring the humble countryside bread a whole new level. Even the starter basket of crusty baguette (below) sprung to life with just a slight dollop of its creamy unsalted artisan French butter. 
Not exactly a fan of beef? Good news is that there are three other new varieties of tartines--sautéed chicken with melted cheddar cheese and bechamel spread; baked Camembert with feta cheese crumbles and black pepper; prawn egg mayo with fresh avocados and cherry tomatoes.  

As you can tell, tradition reigns on the new menu and the honest straightforward dishes may traffic in nostalgia amidst the cosy French bistro settings, especially when the aroma of fresh bread from the oven calls out to you. 

PAUL Boulangerie Singapore
Marina Bay Link Mall, B2-07, 8A Marina Boulevard
Tel: 65 6509 8339
Mon – Fri : 8am – 8pm
Sat/PH: 8am – 3pm (Closed on Sun)
For details of other outlets: http://www.paul-singapore.com/

Special thanks to Rachel & Hsu Lin

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