Chef Jean-Charles Dubois, who used to cook at the Raffles Grill, has been running the French Kitchen for over a year. The restaurant serves classic French and is located in the quiet surroundings of Central Mall. The narrow dining room is plainly decorated and hosts up to about 40 guests.
We were served some slices of wholewheat raisin walnut and mixed grain bread, accompanied by a salmon rillette and thyme butter sauce. I didn't think the raisin bread was a good match with the rillette due to its intense sweetness.
The menu includes 3 fixed price options, at S$78++, S$68++ and S$58++. I decided to order the Traditional Dubois degustation menu, $68++ per person.
The first dish was an Œuf en cocotte et boullion de pain de campagne. A soft poached hen’s egg was served in a small cup, covered in a farmer bread emulsion and decorated with an asparagus and a parmesan cracker. I wasn't blown away by this classic dish, which was an OK starter. I guess it wouldn't have been my first choice, if it hadn't been a fixed choice on the menu.
I was more impressed by the Bisque do homard, a traditional lobster bisque with tiger prawn beignet and leek custard. The bisque was very creamy and had an intense flavour. I personally loved the combination of leak custard with the prawns. A larger portion of the custard would have made me even happier.
In preparation for the main course, we had a 'palate break' with this Fraicheur d'angers, which was an apple granite.
The main dish was a Boeuf Bourguignon: a bourguignon of braised angus beef short rib with glazed onion, mushroom, seared pork belly and soft potato fondant. I liked the beef and its sauce and enjoyed the dish. Having to find fault with the dish, the 'potato fondant' seems like a grand way to describe a boiled potato, and the carrot puree' was quite watery and had such a mild flavour that it didn't really pair with anything else on the plate: neither the crispy pork, nor the beef. I thought that was totally redundant.
The chocolate fondant was well done, complemented by a salted caramel ice cream.
I liked the meal at the French Kitchen, but taking a look through their menu I would say that lunch time is a better option. For only S$36++ you can have exactly the same dishes, and for that price I will definitely go back.
The French Kitchen
Tel: +65 6438 1823
Location: Central Mall