East Bureau 東局
Marina Square near Esplanade MRT
A fusion place that has gotten the elements right for the savouries and not confusing at all with surprises abound, East Bureau 東局 has indubitably managed to gel the different Asian and Western culinary techniques together without feeling overly deliberate. Just some slight misses which would be elaborated on at the end while service was evidently amicable as the service crew always puts on a smile when dealing with their customers.
Starting off with the Seafood Tomyum Goong on ice, this was a refreshingly sour and lightly spiced appetiser that perfectly whetted the appetite. The fresh seafood on the plate has to be eaten together with the sharp tasting slush as that would definitely awaken your palates. $13.
Sheung Wan cat ear pasta with chicken. The first favourite of this dish was the springy cat ear pasta used, that was cooked to the perfect al dente texture and chewing on it is just a pleasure. Next, the myriad amount of condiments used, such as the soy sauce, Chinese cooking wine, vinegar scallion oil and sesame oil gave the pasta a huge Cantonese twist that was heavily flavoured up further with pork lard, siu york and fried garlic. We loved the entire combination. $16.
Thai Basil Minced Pork. Now, this plump dumpling has some Thai influences in it as the pork stuffing has been marinated differently from the usual. And instead of the tangy vinegar, this was served with the sweet chilli at the side. Substantial amount of stuffing, lightly pan fried skin together with sweet chilli sauce – the taste was well pronounced. $12.
Homemade Glutinous rice with Lap Cheong and Shitake Mushroom. Permeated uniformly with the Lap Cheong fragrance, this bowl was lip smacking good and the heavily loaded fried shallots have definitely helped in lifting its taste.
Lychee Martini infused Sweet and Sour Pork. Widely sold everywhere, gou rou yok is not as easily perfected as it is usually cloyingly sweet but the ones at East Bureau is delicious with a higher portion of lean meat and an adequately light lychee sweetness as an aftertaste. $13.
The grilled 500g lobster is a new item on promotion at $19.90 and it was a miss. Taste was O.K. but the consistency of the lobster was too mushy and lacks the springiness required.
Now this dessert, Menage A Trois, is a dish that we all struggled to finish and understand. Looking all the same, these French puffs were made more local by piping them with three different flavours, yam paste (Orh Ni), Salted Egg Yolk and Black sesame Soy milk. The Orh Ni was the most or perhaps the only acceptable filling as traditionally, this is served as a paste. But in the process of converting them into pastes or cream fillings, the essence of sesame was lost – It was commendably bitty with grinded sesame in it but lacks the fragrance needed, we reckon the original Cantonese Sesame paste would fare much better. The Liu sha may sound exciting again but it was overly salty with a lack of buttery fragrance that we are familiar with, we say again its filling should stick back to the original Liu sha recipe. $19.
Having said all that, East Bureau is still a successful fusion bistro as all its savouries, at least of what we tasted that dinner, are on point with all the different elements forming a great harmony. The Puff dessert and the lobster appetiser though, would require some fine-tuning we felt.
Verdict: A good restaurant. 3.8/5