[sauteed seaprawns with spaghetti in olive oil, la petite cuisine, $14]
its a dreary rainy weekend that has foiled but all of my outdoorsy plans and has had a huge dampening effect on the indoor ones. bleah. anyways, i realize what with food blogs is that, to be somewhat successful, people need to try the food you recommend and also give u critical feedback. lol. so kudos to simon who took my advice and went to la petite, and had his own set of misgivings.
well, i have never been to la petite on a weekday evening, but i can imagine with the jam on upper thomson road during rush hour home, getting there already puts a slight distasteful note in one’s mouth. (that being said, getting to anywhere in Singapore has become synonymous with traffic jams and frustrated hair-pulling sensations. seriously, when we thought of pulling in gazillions and tourists and foreign workers, did we magically forget that our transportation infrastructure was not capable of handling such an influx?) anyways, la petite @ thomson road is situated along a row of shophouses lining upper thomson road. this means also, that getting parking is also another nasty experience. le sigh.
thirdly, if we consider ambience, i have quickly realised that what i consider quaint and quiet on a lazy saturday morning (where people are normally sleeping in) can turn into quite a noisy, bustling experience at la petite, further noting that with the kitchen quite close to the eating area (and with see through glass), you can sometimes see the chef”s mounting stress and the orders mount. ahh well, my advice? la petite is best enjoyed on a lazy saturday/sunday lunch.
and honestly, i reiterate that la petite is worth going to, not only for the price point, but for the quality of food and effort gone into each dish. i mean, you really do feel and see the effort — this is the essence of feel good food – the chef conveys his/her passion into the food which gets communicated to the patron.
so this time round, we tried the sauteed seaprawns with spaghetti in olive oil, which was honestly fantastic. i mean, the nuanced flavors imbued into the spaghetti and presentation, and price point of $14 is nary unbeatable. (fyi. my mom ate this on saturday, and she clamored for it and reordered it for sunday lunch. i mean.)
[beef bourguignon and spaghetti, $18]
i ordered the beef bourguignon with spaghetti, which well, to be objective, i have tasted better, so i wouldn’t recommend it. beef bourguignon is a beef stew dish cooked in red wine, flavored with garlic, pearl onions and mushrooms — and i suspect the trick to it is just slow slow simmering that takes forever. i suspect the stew wasn’t stewed long enough and hence the flavors weren’t as strong.
speaking of beef bourguignon just reminds me of julie and julia and makes me feel severely tempted to try and recreate this dish for chinese new year reunion dinner. lol. wish me luck and motivation.
finally, my dad ordered sirloin steak with pommes frites @ $15 (no pictures unfotch). [mind you, ashtons @ centrepoint sell their striploin steak at $18.90, and i didn't find it any nice. the cut was somewhat too fatty and wasn't nice to chew. neither was the sauce very decent. but the worst thing that i did to my dish was to make the mistake of ordering buttered mushrooms as a side to accompany the dish. those who know me well in the past know that i have an embittered history with chinese shiitake mushrooms and the likes because of what I call a childhood "scar" experience, which my mom forbids me to mention about. lol. so when i ordered buttered mushrooms, i was kinda expecting buttons mushrooms, ya'know the sort you eat at the nines in Cornell before the deep dish pizza, or at least something like this (amanda, i remember you cooking this for us once for breakfast. so fantastic.):
[buttered mushrooms, obtained from http://teczcape.blogspot.com/2008/10/buttered-mushrooms-with-onion-and-herbs.html]
so u could imagine my utter horror, when ashton’s interpretation of buttered mushrooms turned out to be black flat hideous big shittake-ish looking chinese mushrooms that was used to support the beef steak. omg. luckily my fren james was willing to swap the mushrooms for his potato skins, of which i am eternally grateful.]
ok.. the nasty detour aside, talking about le petite’s steak. it’s good. im not kidding. i would pay $15 anyday for such steak. its juicy and done perfectly as i ordered — medium (for my dad, who like all older chines generation, seem to think that beef, like all other meats should be cooked to well done. -_-”) but the best thing? the pommes frites.. which omg.. i mentioned db bistro moderne’s fries being the best fried i’ve eaten in perhaps my whole life, the le petite fries do an almost equivalent job in creating marvelously tasty and delicious, non-starchy, crispy fries at half the price. omg. what’s with all these good fries joints sprouting around town?
i actually ventured and asked the chef how she made her fries the way it was, and she explained that the basically fried the fries twice and used actual fresh potatoes, whereas most other places would simply buy fries frozen or made from starch flour. and of course, just like how db’s fries needed to be soaked in water for a sufficient amount of time to remove the starch, this was done here as well. mmmm. u realise something? cooking isn’t just cheap microwaved food and lousy stir-fries. that’s college subsistence. the art of cooking is really so much about technique, passion, and most importantly, careful patience and perseverance. ahh.
so after the revisit of la petite, the ranking of 8.5/10 still remains, mainly due to the attention paid to food and the price point. but this comes with a disclaimer that I went when the chef wasn’t that busy and it was a quiet-ish Saturday afternoon. =) cheers to good french food!