It was a beautiful Sunday morning for a wedding lunch at the Halia at Singapore Botanic Gardens. The earlier rains cooled the air and made for a very nice stroll through the quiet and green gardens.
It was my first time at Halia (having only passed there previously on the way to Concerts in the Park) and was quite pleased with how the place seems to blend into the environment (mental note to come back for brunch). The wedding itself, was held in the rooms opposite their main restaurant. Unfortunately for larger settings, guests have to be seated in different sections which made it rather odd to clap for the couple’s entry when all you see is of them on the projected screen.
The lunch started off with a very healthy looking platter of a salad of carrots and beets. One of the ladies exclaimed that it looked too organic to be tasty. But we (being meat-eaters) were very pleasantly surprised how delicious it turned out to be with the crunchiness and mix of spicy & sweet flavors, that we wiped out every single veg on the platter.
The Tomato & Basil Soup (no pics taken) was a disappointment. The bowl was so small that we thought it was a tomato sauce condiment. It also tasted pretty much like tomatoes boiled in stock for a while with some basil leaves thrown in just for good measure. 😦
The main dish for the vegetarian selection was the Pumpkin Barley Risotto. I didn’t get to try to but it looks nicely done, with the barley all plumped out with a scattering of crunchy looking chips. Portion is very decent sized.
I thought the Halibut was fresh and prepared well. It was fork tender and light to taste. A great lunch dish, washed down with white wine.
I don’t know if it was just me, but this piece of steak was tough despite being cooked to medium/medium-rare. Had to give up almost half the piece or risk developing serious jaw muscles. Another friend though, enjoyed almost the whole piece and liked the sauce especially.
The Ginger Parfait with Crumble was excellent. It was immediately our table’s favorite dish, and everyone scrapped their plates clean (forget those calories). This dessert is not shy with its strong flavor of ginger, and the ginger spiciness mixed with parfait is nice end to the meal (non-ginger fans may find it a tad strong though). Something I would not mind to come back for.
Overall experience 6.5/10
Food – Hits & Misses
Price – I find it quite pricy (referring to the website menu) considering the quality of food delivered. I suppose one is paying for the location.
Ambience – Nice place in the midst of nature.
Halia is at Singapore Botanic Gardens and Raffles Hotel.
To contact them, go their website at http://www.thehalia.com/