Running out of da bao ideas, we decided to try our hand at putting together a Culina charcuterie and cheese platter using products purchased from the Culina Market at Dempsey. Ordinarily it would be easier to buy them and have them served at the Culina Bistro, but now that dining is still in limbo, a takeaway DIY platter at home is the next best thing.
Visiting the Culina market is a nice experience. The place is filled with gourmet food products ranging from fresh fish and meat to artisanal cheeses and lots of wines. Some products can be selected from the market and prepared and served at the bistro, with a preparation fee charged. You can see more pictures of the market and the adjoining bistro in our previous posts on Culina Market and Culina Bistro.
Culina Charcuterie & Cheese
The Culina charcuterie and cheese sections are in the centre of the Culina Market. A good selection of dried and cured meats are available at the charcuterie section. We selected a pack each of sliced Parma ham and chorizo salami.
A wide range of cheese awaits at the cheese section, many of them foreign to us. The lady attending to the counter was quite knowledgeable and helped us to choose two items based on our preferences – soft cheese that was not too strong – and no goat’s cheese.
We also saw some boxes of “Toast for Cheese” made by The Fine Cheese Co of Bath, England. We had not tried these before but the packaging looked attractive. Just as interesting are the descriptions. These thinly sliced toast were embedded with nuts (such as pistachio and sesame seeds) and dried fruits (dates and apricot), which seem like the perfect companions for cheese. This is a picture of our haul from the Culina charcuterie & cheese section. The wine was from our chiller and not from Culina.
Our cheese selection of the day were slices of Brie de Meaux AOP ($9) and Munster Gerome AOP, the smaller slice in the picture ($7.70). The cheese were sold by weight and we roughly indicated the sizes that we wanted. We are familiar with brie but not Brie de Meaux, which is type of brie from Meaux, which is a region near Paris. Compared to generic brie cheese, it seemed to have a creamier texture and richer taste.
The Munster Gerome AOP cheese from the Alsace region of France was a stronger cheese than brie but still much lighter than, say, a blue cheese. We thought it was a nice cheese to progress from a mild cheese. It has a light orange colour. Its creamy texture is similar to brie but with pronounced flavours. We noticed in particular, a grassy taste in the cheese. We liked both cheeses and the pricing was quite reasonable.
Our meat items were Pio Tosini Parma Ham DOP (20 months) and Don Carlos Chorizo. Both had been sliced and pre-packaged for sale. The shelf life of these thinly sliced cured meats is quite short – a few days. Both were nice but did not stand out as much as the cheese. Costing around $12 and $7 for the packs, it was not terribly expensive. What we thought was expensive were the biscuits or sliced toasts which cost $12 a box. They certainly had a lot of dried fruits and nuts in them, but we found them to be too hard. They were like biscotti – best dunked into coffee to soften them. For our next Culina charcuterie and cheese platter at home, we would be happy to repeat everything, but replace the biscuits with slices of bread from a baguette.
Our choice of wine was a 2016 Château Labégorce Margaux – which was still young but wonderfully fruity and went perfectly with the platter.
Culina Market at COMO Dempsey
Blk 15 Dempsey Road Singapore 249675
Tel: +65 6854 6168
Opening Hours: 9am – 9pm
The Ordinary Patrons | Real Dining Experience of Ordinary People
an independent Singapore food blog