ravello, serangoon gardens

average-ly, is how I would describe this place. I was full of hope – an italian diner, complete with bona fide italianos right-smack in the middle of the expatriate-rife serangoon gardens. the place looks gorgeous and welcoming – and very much the epitome of the neighborhood round-the-corner.

but for the but. it’s expensive, almost bewilderingly so, and the food was nothing to really shout about, even if it scores plenty high on looks.


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I’ve wanted to come here for a while, just because it looks so welcoming – just the right mix of rustic and modern. and high expectations are very often the preamble to disappointment.

we decided on a starter of beef carpaccio, thin slices on rocket leaves and topped with grana padano, which wasn’t too bad. drizzled with a little evoo, it went nicely enough with the bread (which was served decently warm, but was pretty tasteless and a little too-charred on the edges).

the filetto di manzo alla ravello (clearly a house specialty, given the name) was slab of tenderloin on rocket, topped with home-fried potatoes. salted well, and cooked pink with a beautifully-charred outside, it certainly was a sight to behold.

but the meat was rife with fats – you can see that last piece on the left is more fat than muscle – so much that it got a little too rich and tiring to eat. even the bitter arugula could barely save it – and what a waste, especially since they clearly know how to cook it.

tonnarelli ingarbugliati was black ink spaghetti noodles in a tomato sauce, with squid rings and (mostly) clams. I can’t say I remember much about the dish, but it certainly didn’t strike me as strongly as the beef.

there was a one-for-one lunch promotion, and even then the bill brought a little sticker-shock. I think they need to rethink the model – the location isn’t quite date-night-style, and the pricing seems overtly high.

Ravello by Cesare Cantarella
14B Kensington Park Road
Serangoon Garden Estate
Singapore 557265
tel +65 6287 7330
$$$: 40-60 a person

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