So what does fake meat taste like? That is a common question when my friends heard about our dinner at Prive Grill at NUS. Also known as The University Club, it is one of the several places where one can find Impossible Meat in Singapore. What exactly is this fake meat made of? It is apparently “meat” made from plants. There is a scientific description on the website of the makers, Impossible Foods – the first sentence goes like this: “We started by using the heme-containing protein from the roots of soy plants. It’s called soy leghemoglobin ...”. That was enough to put us to sleep.
Privé Grill @ The University Club is located in the Shaw Foundation Building in the NUS Kent Ridge Campus. It is next to the NUSS Guild House building. The restaurant is run by the Prive group and is open to the public.
Impossible Meat Menu at Prive Grill
Here is a picture of the Prive Grill Set Dinner Menu which featured the Impossible Meat Specials during the month of May 2019. The Impossible meat items can be ordered as part of a set dinner or individual dishes.
There were four Impossible meat items on the menu – croquettes, sliders, “mille-feuille” style (which we were told would be something like lasagne) and kofta (a Middle-Eastern meatball style). It seemed like all the Impossible meat options were “beef” prepared in small pieces or as minced meat. There were no Impossible steaks. We decided on the sliders as we thought they would be small, but distinct pieces of meat.
Impossible Meat-less Parmesian Sliders
The meatless sliders ($15) were served on one integrated piece of bread. We could potentially cut it up into three small sliders. But we did not as our main task was to try Impossible meat in Singapore. So what does fake meat taste like?
When we ate the thing as a whole with the sauce and toppings – I must say it tasted very much like the beef patty in any other beef slider. That is because we are so used to the strong sauce – tomato, cheese and vegetables that go with it such that we don’t really notice the taste of the meat – unless it is an expensive burger using flavourful cuts of meat.
We took out one of the pieces of Impossible meat and tried as much as possible to isolate its taste from the sauces. I must say that the look and textures were very much like real minced beef. However, there was hardly any (if at all) beef taste.
Real Australian Beef Fillet
For comparison, we ordered the Spice Rubbed Beef Fillet ($33). This dish was made from Australian Riverine beef. It is not the most flavourful beef, but we could still notice the beefy flavours. Just as importantly, it has the fibrous binding texture of a steak. We think that it is hard to re-create this texture in a plant based “meat” which may be why the Impossible meat items were all served in small bits or in minced form.
I think the fake meat substitute works well in minced meat form. The close resemblance to real meat in terms of look and feel of the Impossible Food version is impressive. We would probably not notice if normal beef is replaced with the Impossible meat version in a dish which is smothered with sauces or other side items.
Overall Rating: 3 TOPs
Prive Grill at NUS
11 Kent Ridge Drive
Shaw Foundation Alumni House
Mon-Fri: 11.30am-3pm (Last order 2:30pm), 6-10.30pm (Last order 10pm)
Closed Saturday, Sunday & PH
The Ordinary Patrons | Real Dining Experience of Ordinary People
an independent Singapore food blog