Morsels Singapore – a small new restaurant in Dempsey
Morsels Singapore is a new small restaurant in Dempsey Hill serving small bites. According to their website, “The 40-seater restaurant founded and run by Chef-Owner Petrina Loh since 2013 serves wildly creative fusion dishes which are ingredient-driven.” Morels was previously located in Little India and moved to their current location in Dempsey in January 2017. The description about the restaurant with wildly creative dishes intrigued us. The no-corkage day BYO on Tuesdays sealed the deal for us. We headed to Dempsey Hill, bottle in hand.
Morsels Singapore is indeed very small. It occupies this little white building behind Long Beach restaurant. With only a small signboard and the wooden doors all closed, one could hardly notice that a restaurant was in operation. Only the congratulatory floral arrangements provided a clue that something was happening inside this building.
The inside of Morsels Singapore is more beautiful than its exterior. It does look barnyard like, with its choice of rustic furnishing and the exposed roof struts. It is a bit of a squeeze to fit 40 in this space but at least it has atmosphere and is quite unlike other restaurants in Singapore.
Morsels Singapore Lunch Menu
During lunch at Morsels, there is a choice of a weekly noodle set ($25), the lunch omakase ($40) and the ala carte menu. The noodle set that was served on that day was the wild Sri Lanka tiger prawn noodles. We opted for a lunch noodle set and a few items from the ala carte menu.
The noodle set lunch was a two course affair. The appetiser was a combination of a small salad and a toast with brie cheese. The appetiser was delicious. The toast in particular was crisp and light.
The main course of the lunch set was this bowl of prawn noodles. Somewhat like our usual prawn noodles at hawker centres, but with sweetness and a more refined taste. It was not bad but we would have liked it more without the sweetness. The best part of this dish was the onsen egg which was perfectly done. The prawns were tasty but over-cooked.
Now we show you the items we ordered from the ala carte menu. The devilled egg ($4.50 each) had quite a bit of toppings that combined to make it a delightful morsel. We can’t identify all the ingredients but according to the menu it contained crabmeat and duck prosciutto. A very enjoyable but tiny dish. We could each eat five of this.
The mushroom toast ($5 each) was another small but yummy morsel. Like the egg, two bites and its gone leaving you wanting more.
Next was the Snake River Farm Kurobuta Char Siew ($24) which was served in a larger portion but still small, almost like an appetiser in a conventional restaurant. These slices of char siew were garnished with a mix of sauces, vegetables and pickles. How does this compare with the common char siew? We like the flavour and texture of this pork. The grain of the meat was smooth and even. No fatty bits and yet not dry. The sauces added an unusual twist. But we miss the charred edges of the common variety.
The final dish was listed under the Morsels’ Classics part of the menu. The charred house-poached octopus ($28) was squid ink risotto dish topped with nice pieces of octopus. This was the best dish of the day. The squid ink risotto had a rich complex taste. The octopus was tender and well prepared. It was also the most substantial dish that day.
Our wine for lunch was a rather elderly 1995 Chateau Boyd Cantenac. Fully matured and ready to drink soon after opening. We applaud the move by Morels to have no corkage BYO on Tuesday. As many restaurants have quiet weekdays, this is an added attraction for us to visit. Their normal corkage policy on other days is $45 or “one for one”.
Overall, it was an enjoyable lunch at Morsels Singapore in Dempsey. The restaurant menu was certainly interesting. Two words best describe the dishes we tried that day at Morsels – delicious and small! Be prepared to order more items than you are used to. With hindsight, we would probably have been better off ordering the $40 omakase menu.