Privé, Clarke Quay
Apart from its Keppel Bay, CHIJMES and Asian Civilisations Museum outlets, Prive is now also open at the heart of the buzzing excitement of Clarke Quay. Facing the fountain area, Prive is the perfect spot for people watching. It is also close to designated smoking spots, which smokers would be pleased to note.
Live music is available in the evenings, so you can enjoy being serenaded while dining. The menu here caters to both locals and tourists with local and Western fare.
Those looking to get their drink on will also be pleased to know that this Prive carries a good selection of drinking games to keep things lively.
The interior is dark and alluring and great for adult parties. The night we reviewed Prive, there was a private function going on, hence the balloons. But service staff were still prompt and very accommodating.
For some reason, we decided to try some craft beers to start the meal off with and it happened to be the chili devil ($17). Don't discount the tiny little chili in the bottle, I am sure you know those are the deadliest. This tiny little chili packed a gigantic punch to both the tastebuds and the stomach. It is definitely not for the weak-hearted. After a few sips, we had to take turns taking a swig to finish the bottle. I will take my hat off to whoever can finish this in one-go by themselves.
Thankfully, to balance that out, we ordered the house special Absolut Elyx cocktails, which came in beautiful copper pineapples. With appealing names like The Ocean Drive, Butterfly and Hammertsmith Flyover, we knew we would be in for a treat. Each pineapple cocktail is $20, but is big enough to justify that price.
The Ocean Drive is a passion fruit puree mixed with pineapple juice, agave syrup, cayenne pepper and kaffir lime leaves. It was everyone's favourite out of the three Elyx cocktails. It is just the right balance of sweet and sour and the Elyx is so subtly blended in that there isn't a very strong alcoholic taste to it. Only once you've finished the whole cocktail and start feeling all warm and fuzzy inside, that you know you've actually consumed quite a bit of the Absolut. So, this may not be for the really lightweight drinkers.But Absolut-ly perfect for me!
The Butterfly (pictured below) is Elyx with Cocchi Americano (an aperitif wine), jasmine tea, lemon juice, orange blossom and jasmine honey. As you would imagine, it is a very fragrant and floral drink, also light on the tastebuds.
The Hammersmith Flyover is most gentle on the drinker out of the three, in my opinion. The coconut water drink is mixed with grapefruit juice, lemon juice, pineapple juice and agave syrup as well as angostura bitters.
Once we had settled into the cocktails, we started off with a lovely smoked duck and orange salad ($19) - very classic pairing of the two ingredients. The sweet orange against the smokiness of the duck and finished with the freshness of the vegetables makes it a very well-rounded dish.
Those who absolutely cannot live without local fare should find solace in the seafood laksa ($18). You may be put off by the price tag, but no coffeshop will ever serve up a bigger bowl of laksa than this. You're paying for the quality of the ingredients and the seafood, of course. Surprisingly, this is one of the best laksas I have tried. BUT! Be forewarned that if you're going to have this dish, it should be the only dish you have throughout the meal. If you want to mix it with the other savoury dishes, it will be rather subdued in taste, especially if you don't cleanse your palate with water in between. Remember, cheese, vinegar and other western ingredients tend to leave a very strong, long-lasting taste on the tongue.
For example, this Moroccan chicken and onion pizza carries an incredibly potent flavour. Each bite bursts with flavour from the cheese, the marinated chicken and of course, the ever-powerful onion taste. I generally tend to taste the food when I on a review... meaning, I just try each dish. But I couldn't resist having more than one slice of this heavenly fusion pizza. For $18, this 10-inch stone-baked pizza is easily the most value-for-money dish available.
Should you want comfort food, the braised beef pie ($25) is also something worth having. The portion is large enough for two to share and the beef is cooked to tender perfection.
Pescatarians will enjoy the penne with pink vodka sauce. The sauce is made with tomato, cream and Absolut vodka, the choice brand for Prive. It is topped with smoked salmon and parmesan. Like the rest of the dishes here at Prive, they come in sizeable portions.
We were so full from our mains we only had space left for one dessert - but the oreo mud pie was the best way to end the meal. A little decadent, but enough for four of us to share and enjoy the sweet ending.
Prive @ Clarke Quay Blk 3C River Valley Road, #01-09A Clarke Quay, 179019