After a five-year break from restaurants, Singapore's best-known fusion chef, Jimmy Chok, is back with the 29-seat Bistro Soori. Chok, who has been publishing cookbooks and catering to exclusive dinner parties in the interim, brings three articles of faith to his new project.
The first is slow cooking: at 5 p.m., meat and seafood go into Bistro Soori's ovens to be cooked to perfection in advance of the evening's arrivals. Adding Asian insights to a culinary genre that has long been dominated by Western chefs is the second tenet. "Why do we have Western chefs coming to Asia and discovering lemongrass, and it becomes such a big thing when it's in our backyard all the time?" Chok asks.
The third and most important dictate is that Bistro Soori shall serve fusion cuisine of a purist style in their flavor combinations and nouvelle presentation, dishes like scallop carpaccio with yuzu miso, and rack of lamb with orange hoisin, hark back to fusion's origins in mid-1980s California. To Chok, who has stuck doggedly to the style, even when it fell out of favor in the late 1990s, that's a good thing. Fusion, he says, "is the only way I can describe my food. Don't call it a dirty word. I will be upset."
For reservations, call (65) 6438 3802.