We signed up for lunch during the current Singapore restaurant week at Aura, new restaurant at National Gallery Singapore. Aura and Aura Sky Lounge are located at top floors i.e. levels 5 and 6 respectively of the new South East Asian art museum which is formed by extensive construction that merges the former City Hall and Supreme Court buildings. We were hoping to see the new building during our visit but unfortunately it was still mostly closed. Only the restaurants that were open for business and the access areas to them were open to the public. At the end of this post, we show you some pictures of what we could see from where we were allowed to go.
The photos above show the Aura Italian restaurant. It is a beautiful Italian restaurant on level 5 but we did not dine there. We had signed up for the restaurant week lunch at Aura. But on arrival we (and other fellow restaurant week diners) were directed to go to the Aura Sky Lounge on level 6. As you can see from the photos below, the Sky Lounge is not a bad place but it seems like a more casual version of the restaurant. It also has a large al fresco area that has grand views of the Marina Bay area landmarks including the famous ‘Durian concert hall’, Singapore flyer and Marina Bay Sands buildings.
The restaurant week menu was a four-course lunch with coffee or tea at $40 per person. There was a choice of main course – beef or cod. We selected one of each. Here are pictures of the restaurant week menu and their regular menus.
As my lunch companion was not fond of raw scallops for starter, the Aura staff offered to substitute it with a burrata salad instead. Both versions of the starter were very pretty. They were refreshing and a good way to start the meal.
The second course was whole wheat stracci with duck and foie gras. We learnt that “stracci” means pasta in small sheets with jagged edges. The pasta was good on the whole although some sheets got stuck together and were hard to separate. The smell and taste of foie gras dominated the dish and the duck’s presence was not felt. A very enjoyable dish for foie gras lovers.
The black cod was served on a bed of mashed beetroot which provided a very attractive contrast to the fish, both visually and in terms of taste. The cod itself was very good. There was depth of flavours and no fishiness at all.
The beef sirloin with red wine sauce was not bad but the taste was not distinctive. I can hardly recall its taste although we just ate it not long ago. The cod was the better choice.
Dessert was next. The strawberry, pistachio and chocolate profiteroles were presented beautifully. They were well made and this dessert goes so well with the coffee which had a robust, rich flavour.
Aura, new restaurant at National Gallery Singapore has an extensive wine list with around ten types of wines by the glass. We ordered glasses of Prosecco and an Italian red at $14 each. They were decent wines to go with the meal.
Here is a picture of the floor directory and some pictures of the yet unopened Singapore National Gallery. Whoever designed it should be commended for the design of the ‘attap roof’ structure to connect the two buildings – we think it was a stroke of genius.
Overall Rating: 4 TOPs
AURA Italian Restaurant
1 St Andrews Road
05-03 and 06-02 National Gallery Singapore
(Parking at National Gallery – The entrance to the car park is at Coleman Street next to the St Andrews Cathedral. Turn left from St Andrews Road and you will see it. It is quite an unusual location but there are prominent signs once you get there)
Tel: +65 6866.1977
(December 2015 update) Here are some pictures we took in the National Gallery during subsequent visits.
National Gallery by night