Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Salted & Hung - Delicious Modern Australian Cured & Grilled Meats.

"All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others." Under normal circumstances this would be a stark reminder on how powerless us common plebs are in comparison to the aristocracy; demonstrated particularly bitterly by a certain Malaysian Official #1 whose identity is all but known to anyone who cares.

But this is a food & travel blog, not a political one, and Salted & Hung is a restaurant, not a hall in parliament, so let's skip the melodrama and move on to the food!

Salted and Hung all animals are equal

This Modern Australian-ish restaurant on Purvis Street (in between Bugis Junction and Raffles Hotel) specializes in cured & grilled meats, and serves up all manner of cured, grilled, smoked and pickled dishes in relatively small portions designed to be shared by the whole table.

There's also an interesting sub-focus on the 'path less traveled' - i.e., cuts of animals that aren't commonly served in Singapore such as tripe, tongue and sweetbreads. Oh, and they actually cure most of their meat in house.

Salted and Hung Ham Fridge

We start off with Crab ($23): A nice portion of fresh, vinegary crab meat, made awesome by a dollop of creamy, briny uni, and thin sliced apple. The asparagus being served cold was a little unusual to our palettes, but other than that this was a faultless start to the meal.

Salted and Hung Crab

Next up: Pork Jowl ($18), which was a bit of a disappointment. The jowl was garnished with samphire and dandelion (both of which are new ingredients to us), and thin slices of chewy abalone. Overall the dish was seasoned well and had nice flavour, but we couldn't get over just how chewy both the pork and the abalone slices were.

Salted and Hung Pork Jowl

In contrast, the Iberico Secreto ($32) ranks right up there as one of the best pork dishes we've ever tasted. Secreto is Spanish for secret, so Iberico Secreto roughly translates to "a secret cut from an Iberico Black Pig." Google seems undecided about where exactly this secret cut comes from, but in any case this particular hunk of meat on our plate is tender, juicy, tasty, cooked perfectly sous-vide and then seared. The pickled kohlrabi (sort of from the cabbage family) is sweet with a hint of sour, and is a great accompaniment to the meat.

The only downside? This dish is a special and not a regular menu item.

Salted and Hung Iberico Secreto

For our sides - we ordered the Kale ($14) and Black Mash ($10). The Kale is cooked & tossed in a cheese sauce and is served with some nicely toasted pine nuts - not too bad for a vegetable dish.

The Black Mash, as you might have guessed, is a pot of mashed potato that owes its midnight black colour to squid ink and charcoal. It's an amazing experience: The brain insists that something so black and served in a pot (with a leaf on the side, no less) should taste like soil and dirt, but the tongue says it's rich, creamy, mashed potatoes with just the right sprinkling of salt.

Salted and Hung Kale and Black Mash

This restaurant isn't cheap: Five plates and two soft drinks came in and just under $130 - and the darling and I have small stomachs. Regular appetites could easily do four plates each. Overall, we really enjoyed our dinner, though, and wouldn't hesitate coming back again.

Salted & Hung is located at 12, Purvis Street, and is open for lunch & dinner on weekdays, and dinner only on Saturdays (closed on Sundays). Non-halal.

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