Seasons Bistro | Seasonal Cuisine Inspired by the Americas

25th June 2014.
Replacing Applebee’s at the Triple One Somerset is a promising American-inspired bistro headed by Chef Benjamin Fong. The new venture by the Belgasia takes inspiration from different parts of the American continent for the food and its décor which was done by OP3 International who also designed Ootoya at Orchard Central and the former Novus Restaurant Café.

The food at Seasons Bistro is characterized by its simplicity and clever pairing of ingredients. The food doesn’t try to be sophisticated and certainly not pretentious.

It was explained to us that the chef takes was influenced by his trip to North America which is the starting point for the cuisine at Seasons Bistro. The meal begun with some pre-dinner drinks such as the Planter's Punchless, which is a refreshing mocktail of apple juice, raspberry syrup and lime juice.

The first dish to be served at was a delectable Seared Yellowfin Tuna Taco (14++ SGD) with avocado mayonnaise, pickled onions, crispy shallots, cotija cheese and cilantro jalapeno watercress salad on tortilla shell. Succulent tuna was contrasted by the crispy taco and a harmonious mix of colourful ingredients that complements the flavours of the tuna rather well.

The Pan-Seared Foie Gras (16++ SGD) with pain de mie, chocolate ganache, bacon jam, caramelized bananas and granola crumbs uses chocolate and bacon jam instead of the usual sweet conserves which gives an interesting combination of very well-seared and smooth foie gras and the sweetness from the chocolate, of which the slight bitterness gave a nice subtleness to the dish, as opposed to a stronger, richer fruit conserve.

Seasons Bistro, as its name suggests aims to provide a seasonal cuisine based in the Americas, as such the menu changes according to the seasons depending on the availability of the seasonal ingredients. One such seasonal item featured during our visit is the Japanese inspired Chanterelle Chawanmushi which is a very aromatic fungus prepared in a rich egg custard with soy sauce. Too heavy to be eaten alone, it is best enjoyed with the slices of toasted baguette served alongside.

Moving on to the mains, the Surf and Turf Gumbo (27++ SGD), shrimp, chicken, sausage, okra tomato stew with dirty rice, pickled onion, cilantro, chow chow relish and French bean salad is a savoury and delicious stew-like dish with a mix of chunky shrimps and spicy sausages that are made in house.

I also enjoyed their Southend Summer Pasta (18++ SGD) which was prepared with their house-made tomato sauce and sausages tossed with tagliatelle, fennel, tomatoes, basil, chilli and parmesan. This is rather rich pasta with chunky gravy that goes very well with the broad tagliatelle.

For something lighter, their Seared Albacore Tuna (26++ SGD) with Asian pear, avocado, jicama, watermelon with chipotle mojo and salsa verde is pretty decent too.

It is not an American diner cuisine without fried chicken. Seasons Bistro serves a tasty Buttermilk Fried Chicken (22++ SGD) with succotash and deviled ranch dressing as well as homemade ketchup (yeap they made their ketchup in house too). Unsurprisingly, the fried chicken resembled KFC and it was adequately juicy. The ketchup tasted different from the usual ketchup, with a slight fruity flavour on our visit.

The desserts paled in comparison to the mains or starters. The Season’s Red Velvet Cheesecake (10++ SGD) for example could use a crunchier base to break the monotonous flavour and texture profile while the Season’s Deconstructed Banana Split (12++ SGD) of caramelized bananas, chocolate, vanilla ice cream, granola nut crumbs, fresh strawberries, nutella and fresh cream is good but boring.

Nonetheless, if you prefer something classic and quite decent, it will be their Season’s Carrot Cake (12++ SGD) which is quite well balanced, not too sweet with a beautiful frosting and sufficiently moist. For something more unusual, the Mojito Tart (12++ SGD), toasted coconut tart with mint lime curd and rum cream is a must-try.

Overall, the food was very good except for a couple of misses at the desserts department. However, what makes Seasons Bistro stood out as a choice for dining along the competitive Somerset-Orchard corridor is their low-key (and hence quieter) ambience away from the busy Orchard Boulevard and the excellent service, which I witnessed first-hand while observing other diners and the staff making and trying their best to making the diners happy despite the busy night and shortage of workers.

Thank You Imen and Shasha from FoodNews for the invitation and hospitality!

Seasons Bistro
 #01-11/12, TripleOne Somerset
111 Somerset Road
Singapore 238164


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