Monochrome Fusion Bistro is a newly opened restaurant along South Bridge Road. True to its name, its decor is all black and white. In fact, its indoor lighting is so brightly white that sunglasses may be needed. We checked out this bistro to see if its food will pass with flying colours.
The storefront of the restaurant was interesting enough. But upon entering the restaurant, we find that the it was furnished very simply with the monochrome colour scheme being the standout feature. We were hoping to find the monochrome theme being followed through in the food, but were disappointed when we saw the menu. Other than a few items that may qualify as black food such as the squid ink risotto, we found that the menu did not hold any surprises. We ordered the Snapper Loin Cha Soba ($24), Monochrome Squid Ink Risotto ($24) and Oven Roasted Chicken ($23).
The dishes were well presented and looked rather attractive. The soba and risotto dishes came in small portions. An average person will still be hungry after eating each dish. The snapper loin cha soba dish was the best dish of the day. The unusual combination of pan-fried snapper in a miso broth garnished with seaweed and bonita flakes was a successful marriage of Western and Japanese cuisine. The menu described the dish to come with alfalfa sprouts but there was none in our dish. That would have added some nice crunch to the feel. The risotto was well made and had a rich squid ink flavour. The endamame and alfalfa sprouts topping added to the taste and visual appeal of the dish. Our only complaint was that the portion was really small.
Finally, the roasted baby chicken was tender and rested on a bed of carrots. This was the only dish which was not too small. We thought that it was a blessing in disguise as the small portions meant there was room for dessert. The dessert items in the menu looked enticing with names like spiced chocolate lime and vanilla cake and black velvet cake. Alas, it was not to be, as we were told that none of the dessert items were available. We were asked to select from the cake display as those were the only things available. Apparently, the desserts are outsourced and the only supplies they could get were the few types of cakes and cupcakes on display. None of them looked very interesting. We selected a slice of the macha cake ($7) to go with our cappuccino ($5 each).
The cake is not a beauty but tasted ok. The cappuccino looked like those we make at home with our one-touch coffee machine. Again no looks but the taste was not bad. All in all, we could see flashes of brilliance in the work of the chef. Perhaps due to teething problems or issues as a result of the long Lunar New Year weekend, the dining experience was not as good as we would have liked. Nonetheless, Monochrome would still be a good place for weekday lunch as its executive lunch sets are priced very attractively – a soup, a choice of main course (aglio olio, roast chicken or the snapper cha soba) with coffee for only $18.
Monochrome Fusion Bistro
291 South Bridge Road
Tel: +65 62211798