Saturday, November 1, 2014

The ABC of GRUB Noodle Bar

The same team behind GRUB and FIX, does it again with a brand new supper noodle concept place called GRUB Noodle Bar. Don't be surprise if you find only two types of noodles on the menu as they are delicious enough to form the pillars of the bar. Think of it as a ramen-ya or a noodle hawker stall which doesn't throw out a platoon of choices.
First up is the Assam Laksa, a vibrant bowl of noodles that boasts an assertively punchy fish gravy, enlivened with the medley of textures from the sliced cucumbers, rings of onions, sweet pineapple chunks. I haven't try a Penang Laksa in Penang before but I enjoy the richness and acidity, sweetness and heat; it's primal satisfaction in a slurp 

The Beef Noodles is another competent bowl served dry using preservative-free egg noodles sourced from a local ramen manufacturer and comes with the bowl of hearty beef soup. It does resemble a bowl of Bak Chor Mee with familiar toppings of minced meat and braised mushrooms but the flavour is very different. Subtly sweet like the 卤汁 sauce of braised meats, this bowl tastes actually comparatively light unless you throw in their powerful chincalok that brightens everything instantly. Just be careful that too much of a good thing can turn this into a chincalok noodles instead. 
Another way of enjoying the noodles which I discovered, is to dip the noodles into the beef broth which contains hormone-free and antibiotic-free 150days grain-fed Angus Ribeye ($19) measured with careful precision of 100g per bowl. Casting all the big facts aside, the beef slices were amazingly stretchy and tenderly soft, a stark contrast to the three disappointingly dry beef meatballs in the noodle bowl. In fact, one can also choose the brisket ($12), rump ($15) or sirloin cut ($17) but the ribeye could possibly be the safest bet. 
Besides the noodles, there is a fair number of appetizers ranging from steamed alcohol-infused dishes such as Venus Clams sautéed in beer, ginger & lemongrass broth ($13), live tiger prawns steamed in sake, garlic & ginger glaze $15 to the common deep-fried food with mayonnaise items such as the Soft shell crab mayo & house seasoning $13 and Baby cuttlefish basil pesto mayo $9.

I was highly anticipating the Kang Kong Salad with nonya achar $7 which turned out to be non-spicy at all. Without the fiery kick from Sambal, this has become a pretty light, healthy dish with plenty of crunchy greens.

Speaking of the Chicken Drumlets with curry leaves, garlic and sesame seeds($9), they were crunchy gold outside, juicy perfection inside. However, it would be nicer if the fragrant of curry was sharper and the seasoning was reduced slightly. 
Perhaps the most memorable bites that night would be the Hokkaido scallop tataki ($15) that glides down your throat effortlessly. These raw scallops sliced deftly to thins were merely lightly torched with mustard glaze that tasted fondly of teriyaki sauce, yet without sacrificing its natural fresh sweetness. This place opens till 12.30am so if you are planning to come here for late night supper, just remember the ABC: Assam, Beef & Chincalok
GRUB Noodle Bar 
221 Rangoon Road Singapore 218459
 10-15min walk from Farrer Park Station
Tues-Sun 6pm-12.30am
Closed last Tuesday of every Month
Special thanks to the folks of GRUB Noodle Bar

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