The 1-Rochester Group has introduced a new dining concept, Roast, at its One Rochester establishment recently. The brainchild of Chef Christopher Millar, Roast’s main selling point is its new communal menu, which is based on the belief that a delicious meal is even more perfect when shared with loved ones. Remember: Sharing is Caring!
Here’s how the communal menu works ($65++ per person, min of 2 diners): In addition to a nibble platter and desserts, 2-3 persons can select 2 dishes from Pasta & Mains categories; 4-6 persons get 4 dishes; and if there’s 7 or more persons, it’s the full set of dishes on the menu. Confused? Don’t be! Just check out the menu here.
The al fresco dining area is beautifully surrounded by mature trees and walls of lush tropical greenery. Think Dempsey Hill but without the cars, noise and pollution. One Rochester is an oasis of calm personified.
Being a gastrobar, One Rochester has a comprehensive list of cocktails. While the Berry French Martini ($15++) is so-so, the Temasek Smash ($15++) has bold flavours that appeal to the palate. The queer mix of red chili, ginger flower, gin, mango, pineapple, and cucumber works amazingly well together.
The ‘Nibble’ Platter is such a clever idea to start the meal with. There’s herb crumbed stuffed olives, foie gras parfait, pork & rabbit terrine, prosciutto, and raw veg crudités with a thick and rich olive tapenade for dipping.
I personally vouch for those moreish little potato skins! Filled with sour cream and ocean trout caviar (which pops in the mouth, awesome), they have “eat me!” written all over them.
This is one of the chef’s recommendations for salads: Tiger prawn salad with cous cous, mint and Persian feta. I don’t really fancy lettuce but this is a nice combination, especially with gems of pomegranate adding a dash of colour and sweetness to liven it up.
We had differing views on the smoked sea urchin risotto. I thought it’s a tad undercooked; she thought it’s perfect and practically polished off the whole dish by herself. A matter of personal preference, I suppose. But the plump and succulent seared king scallops had us nodding in agreement.
My favourite tonight (after those killer potato skins) is the roasted cod fillet. Simple with no surprises, but not boring either as it’s so tender and juicy. I particularly like the fennel, blood orange and pistachio salad too, which goes very well with the fatty fish.
What didn’t impress was the grilled yellow fin tuna loin which was too fishy for our liking.
Consistent with the theme of communal dining, the ‘Grande Assiette‘ is a selection of 5 petite desserts meant for sharing.
My personal favourite is the coconut ice cream, chockful of toasted bits of shredded coconut that make it so much more fragrant. A pity that this is not on the menu!
The rose perfumed panna cotta with poached pear is light, without any unnatural ‘bandong’ aftertaste.
A cold lemon and lime soufflé (more like a mousse), wild honey & pistachio nougat parfait with cherry compote, and a Devils flourless chocolate, mascarpone & raspberry ripple cake complete the ‘Grande Assiette’ and our lovely evening at Roast.
My special thanks to Ms Audrey Rabarot, marketing manager of the 1-Rochester Group, for the kind invitation!