Recently I have this craving for Spanish tapas and have been to a few – one in SAM and one in Vivo. Don Quijote is in Dempsey cluster, among the old barracks of CMPB. I thought this one served a la carte Spanish fare, but it turned out to serve Sunday lunch buffet of tapas served a la carte. At $33+++ pax with juices and drinks thrown in (and $48+++ if you want to be wasted for the rest of the afternoon with free-flow San Miguel, Sangria and Wines).
Again I will skipped the things that were not interesting, but dwelled on the few that stood out. The Chicken Wings were well-flavoured and tangy but not too hot. It was also one of the few that were flavoured differently as most of the rest of the dishes were based on the same garlic-chilli sauce.
The crab, scallop and avocado dip was savoury and at first taste thought it was pate. Then I studied the menu again, and realised it wasn’t. Very good – we have it twice. You can go wrong with anything that is wrapped in bacon. So the asparagus with bacon was another favourite of the afternoon.
A few worthy of mention because they were unique – the rice rolled in cabbage was a bit like Lo Mai Gai (glutinous rice with minced pork) wrapped with cabbage and steamed, but tasted like the savoury rice cooked in casserole that my mom used to make. She was with us for lunch, and could vouch for that, but of course, Mom’s version is better :-). And the dessert choices of cheesecake and bread pudding were a bit meagre but the saving grace was the beautifully done bread pudding. It was generously drizzled with a milk sauce (a bit like condensed milk poached in vanilla) and served warm. We had second servings because it was so tasty.
So any misses? If I were to narrow it down to one, it would be the pig knuckle stewed with beans. A timeless classic done wrongly, the stew had an overpowering porky tasty (what we say in Teochew Ti Ko Bi – literally Pig Smell). If only they threw in a couple of slices of blue ginger to remove that smell (or white wine to drown it). It had neither and therefore tasted bad.
Service – nothing to scream about. Ambiance – ok, it served as a pub at night and so the decor was a bit dark. Food – good choices and value for money, a few surprises. And being in the Dempsey cluster meant that parking can be a challenge in the evening and dependent on luck.
Don Quijote Spanish Restaurant
Address: Blk 7 Dempsey Road, #01-02 Singapore
Tel: +65 6476 281