When UsQuBa (which means ‘water of life’ in Gaelic) opened in June, it prided itself as a Scottish restaurant and whisky bar. Fast forward to the present: the concept is now modern European, which mostly uses Scottish ingredients. This is reflected in its new seasonal menu crafted by group executive chef, Guven Uyanik.
No stranger to the culinary scene, Uyanik worked alongside Gordon Ramsay and Thomas Keller, from three Michelin-starred restaurant, Per Se. He is a master of marrying contrasting textures; his expertise distinct in his starters of Aberdeen Angus steak tartare and pan-seared foie gras.
The former sees minced raw beef on a crunchy frittata, created with barley and bone marrow; the heaviness is balanced with the nutty arugula, earthy beetroot and balsamic dressing. Take this all in one bite for a merry explosion of flavours.
The latter showcases the chef’s penchant for comforting dishes, but with a twist. The generous serving of foie gras, though slightly fatty, comes with sweet corn sauce to complement its smooth, buttery notes. Like a cherry on top, it’s finished with a lightly torched and sweet langoustine.
His pairings get bolder with every main. The yamaguchi baby chicken, a crowd favourite, is roasted to perfection—the meat is juicy and succulent. It’s served with seared foie gras, but we think it stands better alone.
Our thoughts are not dissimilar on the Pacific toothfish, lightly seasoned with salt and pepper, adorned with rocket salad. The truffle pork ragout competes with the sweetness of the fish, overwhelming the true highlight on the plate.
UsQuBa is known for its grilled dishes, and Uyanik doesn’t disappoint with his grilled lamb. He cooks it masterfully—the Josper grill is an excellent apparatus—so the meat is tender, most gaminess undetected. The cut is accompanied by British asparagus, long beans and shepherd’s pie.
For desserts, Uyanik brings an Asian touch to the menu. However, the standard rose ice cream and macaron fail to make an impression.
Notables: UsQuBa has a vast collection of whiskies, and sommelier Fong Chan Ten is always on hand to pair your order with the perfect tipple. The whiskey pairing menu—available with a top-up—allows you to enjoy a glass of sweet and full-bodied Dalmore 15 Years with your seasonal main; the medium-bodied Glendronach 12 Years goes with your appetiser.
The interior of UsQuBa is spacious and welcoming cosy chairs aplenty in warm shades. Its prime location at One Fullerton means a picturesque view of the Marina Bay area, and it serves as a wonderful backdrop during dinnertime.
UsQuBa | 02-03B One Fullerton, S(049213) | Call 8728 6378 | E-mail Reserve.OneFullerton@Usquba.com