Everytime we meet up with Ernie, we invariably find ourselves having Italian or Cantonese food. He loves both cuisines, and I suppose that's one of the many reasons why a born-and-bred-in-Singapore guy like him would prefer relocating to Hongkong than staying in Singapore. There are tonnes of restaurants serving both cuisines there. While Hongkong's homes are notoriously cramped and cage-like, the vibrant nightlife, pulsing beat of the city, tax-free shopping and world-class restaurants make it so attractive for singletons (and married couples with no kids). If you're young and carefree (i.e. no kids) and love to party, Hongkong is arguably more fun to be in. Though, I think that, Singapore is the kind of place I'd prefer if one's inclination is to settle down and grow a family.
Spizza at Balmoral Plaza is one of Ernie's hotspots. Apparently, he patronizes this outlet so often that he's given an informal token discount everytime he dines here. We were here late on a Friday evening after work and despite it being past the peak dinner hours, it was still teeming with families and youngsters.
The Calamari ($13) was served alongside a refreshing pizzaiolo dip. This was largely decent, the squid was fresh and the batter thin, but the rings were a tad more chewy than I'd like. That being said, at least they weren't rubbery.
The Mozzarella ($11), was layered with strips of basil for a peppery accent. The tongue-numbingly hot salsa provided a zesty lift to the creamy fried balls of cheesy goodness.
The Portobello Al Forno ($12.50) was a little lacking in salt, even if the bolognese topping was pretty hearty. We had to heap several teaspoonfuls of parmesan cheese onto these to up the sodium content.
If you're a fan of thin-crust pizzas, Spizza would hit all the right buttons. The pizza crust here is very thin so when baked, it attains a crisp, almost biscuit-like texture. The Isabella ($20 medium) with parma ham and rucola salad.
The signature must-try pizza here, the Quinta ($18), with a perfectly baked egg and heavenly black truffle paste.
The Franca ($19.50) with earthy porcini mushrooms and fatty strips of pancetta bacon.
271 Bukit Timah Road
Balmoral Plaza #01-09
Tel: 6333 8148
Open Mondays to Fridays from 12noon to 2.30pm for lunch; and 6pm to 10.30pm for dinner
Saturdays, Sundays and PH from 12noon to 10.30pm