Dining by the pool – Singapore Marriott Pool Grill
The Marriott Tang Plaza in Singapore is a distinctive building, its roof line reminiscent of a Chinese pagoda. It’s not a new building but many areas have been refurbished. For its position – on the corner of Orchard and Scotts Road – the rooms are amazingly quiet. The hubbub and the traffic outside could be 100 miles away.
We took advantage of a coupon deal for a recent trip that combined business and pleasure, with an executive club room and a number of other benefits. One was a three-course dinner at the Pool Grill.
This is on level five of the hotel. The pool itself looks quite nice – deep blue tiles, day beds and a range of lounges. The restaurant is in a slightly elevated spot and also has a view of the surrounding skyline, including the glamorous ION building.
Not having had particularly wonderful offerings in the executive lounge, we headed for our dinner with absolutely no expectations. Shown to a very pleasant spot at the projecting edge of the restaurant, we were fortunate enough to not have too many people taking an early evening swim. Our last poolside dining experience, at the Singapore Hilton (see the blog Il Cielo here), we had to contend with some, ahem, interesting sights.
The restaurant is a la carte and the poolside daybeds can also be booked for romantic dinners. Our deal was to choose from three options for three courses. There was plenty to take our fancy with the descriptions, so all good. We made our selections, sat back and relaxed.
Shortly thereafter a dish appeared with butter, a mix of olive oil and balsamic and a spicy dukkah. Cubes of warm focaccia were offered to us. Apart from the butter being rather solid and tricky to spread, the other elements were good. A nice start.
Greedy Girl chose a ‘wild mushroom’ soup with shaved truffle and it was a dish with plenty of flavour. It was an enormous serving and Greedy Girl was happy to share it with gluttonous husband. Still, as mushroom soups go, it was quite good.
Gluttonous husband took grilled octopus with ‘crusty’ pork jowl and romesco sauce. The pork was a bit too well cooked for Greedy Girl’s liking but there was a crispy skin (if a little too ‘caramelised’) and the octopus was nicely done. Compared to the soup it was a small serving, but more appropriate to a starter.
Next up were the mains. Greedy Girl took the dish featured at the top of this post, lamb loin crusted with a herb mix, eggplant caviar, cauliflower tempura and a roasted garlic sauce. She requested the lamb be served medium and it was a pleasing pink colour and quite tender. The herb crust was tasty and the eggplant caviar also quite nice – there was just not enough of it, or the jus on the plate. Most pieces of cauliflower seemed to be without their tempura coating and the roasted garlic ‘sauce’ was actually pieces of roasted garlic on the plate. Still, they were tasty. Greedy Girl was very happy with the dish.
Gluttonous husband took the Norwegian salmon, served with a tomato salad and sauce vierge. The salmon was moist and flaked apart easily and there were parts of the skin that were crispy. Gluttonous husband enjoyed the fish but said the tomatoes were floury and left most of them behind.
Finally, we partook of sweets. Greedy Girl chose the chocolate mille feuille with salted caramel and pistachio. She couldn’t really taste the pistachio and felt the caramel was too strong. The dish would have also been improved (in her humble opinion) with dark chocolate instead of milk. It was a very sweet dish.
Gluttonous husband took the strawberries romanoff. Macerated strawberries were topped by strawberry ice cream and orange liqueur and the dish also had a disc of meringue. It’s rare for him to indulge in dessert and he found this to be too sweet for his palate as well.
Done. We signed for the meal and prepared to depart.
The food was enjoyable – and certainly better than we’d expected. Dining by the pool is a treat, especially as the area was quiet throughout our lease on the table. For a hotel restaurant, it’s a decent option for a quick meal.
Pool Grill at Marriott Tang Plaza
Corner Orchard and Scotts Road, Singapore