Balzac Brasserie Fort Canning is located in the basement level of the restored heritage building that also houses Singapore Pinacothèque de Paris, the Singapore branch of the French private art museum. Balzac Brasserie Fort Canning is now in a location that is more inaccessible as compared to their former location in Rendezvous Hotel along Bras Basah Road. But the new space is much better. Lighter and brighter, it makes this French restaurant look more upmarket. It shares the building with some other restaurants – Myra’s (Mexican and Indian food), Fort by Maison Ikkoku and Giovanni L (gelato cafe).
Balzac Brasserie Fort Canning is located in this lovely building. The only problem is that there is no car park. The nearest car parks are a ten-minute unsheltered walk down the road. One alternative is to catch the free Museum shuttle bus that goes around the museums (provided your trip originates near one of the other museums served by the bus).
It may require some effort. But once you reach the Balzac Brasserie Fort Canning, you enter an oasis of calm that makes your effort seem worth the while. Because the building is built on a hillside, the basement is not the dark and musty type but one that faces outwards and receives natural light.
The restaurant has a simple, tastefully appointed interior and attractive wooden tables. Its menu is not very extensive but adequate.
Our meal started with the amuse bouche – a cup of hot creamy soup and smoked salmon on toast. One of the better amuse bouche we have tried in recent times.
We shared a foie gras starter ($24). This was an elegantly plated dish. The foie gras had a firm texture. Its taste was not too strong. The apple slices provided good contrast and enhanced the taste of the duck liver. It was one of the two better dishes that day.
The duck confit ($38) was the other dish that was good. It was a high quality duck. Its taste was clean and was cooked just right. Quite a small portion but we are happy to have small but good portions. Balzac did well with the two French restaurant classics.
Our other selections were acceptable but not great. The Atlantic Saint Peter’s fish ($38) was fresh but very plainly prepared and dry. The light sauce provided some taste, but we would probably try something else the next time.
The same can be said of the braised Wagyu beef cheek ($38). The beef was well cooked till soft but the flavours were quite ordinary.
The desserts that we tried at Balza Brasserie Fort Canning were good. The chocolate fondant and vanilla ice cream was a plain-looking dish but scored highly on taste. The chocolate was rich and strong and went well with the ice-cream.
The souffle ($18) was beautifully done. It was light and fluffy and was enjoyed by all. If only they had held back on the sugar that was sprinkled on it. With the sugar content severely controlled, it would be almost perfect.
Overall Rating: 4 TOPs
Balzac Brasserie & Bar
5 Cox Terrace B1-08 Fort Canning Arts Centre
Phone: (65) 6336 0797