I was invited to try a Martell cognac pairing menu today at Stellar. Available only till 14 April 2013, Stellar has paired its signature dishes with specially-concocted cocktails made with Martell Cordon Bleu.Amuse Bouche: Salmon Mousse, Crème Fraîche & Chopped Chives
Diners can opt to have dishes paired with Martell Cordon Bleu-based cocktails or opt for the 4-course set menu paired with cocktails at S$185++. We started with an Amuse Bouche of Salmon Mousse, Crème Fraîche & Chopped Chives. It was a little bland so I preferred the Brandade de Morue (Creamed Salt Cod) that was served as a dip for the bread.“Inside the Rocks” Martell Cordon Bleu, Cherry Brandy, Dry Orange, Molasses Syrup & Parsley
The first cocktail for the afternoon was named “Inside the Rocks”, an earthy concoction that was my favourite drink for the afternoon. The other ingredients in the drink complemented the cognac’s mellow, well-rounded and elegantly spicy flavour with a touch of fruity sweetness. This is definitely a Must-Try!“Duck and it’s Nest” @ S$48++ if paired with cocktail Pan-fried foie gras in a semolina crust, duck rillettes, corn pancake & quince compote
Paired with “Inside the Rocks”, was a dish with an interesting name “Duck and it’s Nest”. It comprises a bed of flavourful duck rillette (terrine of shredded duck confit) topped with pan-fried foie gras encased in a crisp semolina crust, poached quail egg, accompanied with quince compote and reduced aged balsamic vinegar. The recommended method of eating this dish is to break the yolk and let it flow over the rest of the ingredients, adding a rich flavour to the dish. The cream that was piped over the duck rilette seemed to have some foie gras in it, which went well with the duck. This is also a Must-Try!Seared Scallop Ravioli
Next we had the Classic Lobster Bisque, Leek Fondue and Seared Scallop Ravioli. The above picture shows the size of the ravioli before the bisque was poured over it.Classic Lobster Bisque, Leek Fondue & Seared Scallop Ravioli @ S$40++ if paired with cocktail
Here it is after the lobster bisque had been poured over it. I thought the Lobster Bisque was too stodgy and would have tasted better with a little more cognac and less roux. The Seared Scallop that was sealed within the Ravioli was firm, juicy and sweet. This is worth a try, hopefully with less roux when you visit.“Erlinda 1942” Martell Cordon Bleu, Star Anise, Moët & Chandon Champagne, St. Germain, Crème de Cassis, Rose Water & Lemon Juice
The lobster bisque was paired with a fruity and bubbly cocktail that reminded me of my favourite Apéritif, Kir Royale, which is made of Champagne and Crème de Cassis. The addition of Martell Cordon Bleu cognac, sweet elderflower liquer (St. Germain), Rose Water, Lemon Juice and Star Anise gave the concoction a slightly more floral and tart flavour. This was my second favourite cocktail of the evening.Kobe C Rib of Beef smoked and slow-cooked over wood coals, short rib hash, tarragon baby vegetables and morel sauce @ S$95 if paired with cocktail
The flavourful medium-rare beef ribs had a lovely smoky flavour from the wood and the short rib hash had little chunks of savoury short rib in it. This is worth a try.‘1st & Last’ Martell Cordon Bleu, Zen Green Tea Liquor, Cardamom Syrup & Cinnamon Stick
The beef was paired with the ‘1st & Last’ cocktail, which somehow reminded me of a green tea version of Masala Chai. I thought the green tea liquor and cardamom syrup seemed to mask the natural flavour of the Martell Cordon Bleu. Let me know what you think if you try it.‘El Favorito’ Martell Cordon Bleu, Half-scoop Vanilla Ice Cream, Mascarpone Cheese, White Cacao & Grated Nutmeg
The last cocktail was ‘El Favorito’ which though the name implied that it was the favourite, turned out to be my least favourite cocktail for the afternoon. I felt that the rich creaminess of the vanilla ice cream, mascarpone cheese and cacao masked the flavour of the cognac a little too much. The use of nutmeg in this drink reminded me of Eggnog at Christmas and is worth a try if you like creamy cocktails.1-Caramel ‘Dessert Experience’ @ S$40 (if paired with cocktail) Baked Alaska with strawberry ice cream and warm chocolate brownie Valrhona chocolate praline ‘bomb’ with berry compote Vanilla crème brûlée with dulce leche ice cream
Plated at our table side, 1-Caramel ‘Dessert Experience’ was served on a long slate. The wrinkling of the tablecloth under our slate made it look like dessert was served in bed. After such a heavy meal, I wished I had more room for dessert. Of the 3 desserts, my favourite was the Baked Alaska with strawberry ice cream and warm chocolate brownie for its lovely mix of flavours. The chocolate praline ‘bomb’ with berry compote and Vanilla crème brûlée was just a little too sweet for my liking. I must qualify that I do not have much of a sweet tooth so you should still try it and decide for yourself if it suits your taste.
This pairing menu promotion ends on 31 March 2013 (Sunday) so hurry down if you’re keen to try it out!
PS: Thank you, Pernod Ricard Singapore and Phish Communications, for the hospitality.Stellar at 1-Altitude 1 Raffles Place (Former OUB Centre), Singapore 048616 Phone: +65 6438-0410 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Operating Hours: Monday to Friday: 11.30 am to 2.30 pm & 6 pm to 12 am Saturday, Sunday & Public Holiday: 6 pm to 12 am