We had brunch at The Marmalade Pantry at the Bukit Timah Saddle Club over the weekend. It's a windingly long drive in from Eng Neo Ave, which, in turn, is a long way from the main Dunearn Road, so it may be a little tough to get to if you don't drive. But, once you get into the compound, it's like a whole different world. A tranquil countryside of a historic Singapore, replete with lush greenery and restored colonial black-and-white bungalows.
The restaurant was surprisingly popular, and the air-conditioned indoors was full, leaving only the outdoor seating available, which, in this heat and humidity, wasn't conducive for lingering. Which was just as well. We were told we had to vacate our seats within the hour anyway.
Service was a little cold and stony-faced. You'd have more luck getting those marble statue buskers to crack a smile than the lady who ushered us to our seats. Maybe the wait staff were bothered by and melting in the nasty heat, hmm?
We enjoyed the food though. The Marmalade Pantry is a bit of a hit and miss place, but there are a couple of winning dishes. Like the Truffled Field Mushroom Risotto ($22), rustic, every mouthful generous with the truffle-scented mushroomy goodness of Mother Earth, and not in the least bit cloying. This was very very good and an absolute must-try.
The Crabmeat Linguine ($24) was spiked with sliced red chillis for a spiced heat, complementing the sweetness of the shredded crabmeat.
The Berry Lime Soda ($8), a refreshingly cool fizzy thirst-quencher, was integral in the heat of the outdoors.
The Hubs opted for a Latte ($7) instead, but this was lacking in body and excessively milky.
To be frank, we'd originally wanted to visit Rider's Cafe, but made a quick turnaround to The Marmalade Pantry when we were informed that there was a waiting list of an hour. On the flip side, we saw this...horsey outside my window!
The Marmalade Pantry at the Stables
55 Fairways Drive
Tel: 6467 9328
Open Tuesdays to Fridays from3pm to 11pm
Fridays to Sundays from 10am to 11pm