Sunday, 19 July 2015

ARIA – Food Music Arts [MEDIA INVITE]


Aria is a bistro dedicated to Food, Music and Arts. Located in SUTD campus, the main objective of this bistro is to feed the hungry stomach of the students here and also allow their brains the freedom of expression through music and arts.

Arts & Dining at Aria
Dining Area & Bar


While the bistro is set up with the current trend of industrial style, the walls and floor area are decorated by arts (spray paint or paintings) and even 3D visual effect from paintings and peep holes. There is also a place for artist to show of their works and changed monthly. On Mondays, Wednesday and Fridays, you can enjoy the performance of musicians to serenade you through your meal or chillax time here.

Live Stage and Art display at the back
Wednesday Night Live by Shak

Peep Hole - See the view below
3D Drawing Effect of Earth Quake when the ground separated

True to the theme of the bistro, there are no boundaries for the type of the food served here. For soup, we have Mixed Mushroom Soup ($4), Beef Gumbo ($5.90), Chicken Soto ($5.90) and Tom Yum with Glass Noodle ($7.90). The mushroom soup here uses shitake, button and oyster mushroom. It seems to be like a good combination of mushrooms, but I feel the mushrooms and the cream of soup did not bind well. The same can be said for the Beef Gumbo, tasted like watery tomato soup with mince beef.

Mixed Mushroom Soup

Beef Gumbo

The Chicken Soto and Tom Yum soup provide the upward turning point. The chicken soto is robust, packs with chicken flavour. The noodle and perkedel made it a value meal for any students. The tom yum are tangy and bold, but not too spicy. I said this because I can accept the spiciness and had a good few bites from this dish.

Chicken Soto

Tom Yum with Glass Noodle

Chilli Con Carne with Corn Chips ($6.90) and Truffle Fries ($5.90) with Chilli Mayonnaise were the appetizer. The Chilli Con Carne are thick, tasty and flavourful. The green chillies provide a subtle kick and it was just a perfect companion with the corn chips. The truffle fries is definitely a crowd pleaser that goes well in any occasion. The fries is crispy on the outer but soft on the inside. The truffle oil provide a nice aroma to it, but not overly pungent well combined with mild chilli mayo.

Chilli Con Carne with Corn Chips

Truffle Fries with Chilli Mayonnaise

For something healthy, Balsamic Mushroom Salad ($8.90) is a good choice. Tasted clean, light and healthy. I personally like the combination of feta cheese, sautéed mushrooms and balsamic cream.

 Balsamic Mushroom Salad 

Moving to main meals, we tried Bandung Style Grilled Beef Ribs ($13.90) and Mediterranean Lamb Shank ($13.90). Both proteins definitely been put through long hours of cooking to create the tenderness and melting in your mouth flavours. The beef ribs was grilled before serving coated with kecap manis (Indonesian sweet dark soy sauce) with a dash of chilli. Although missing a little bit of bbq charred flavours like the one that I normally ate in Jakarta, I have to admit it tasted quite good. While the lamb shank was cooked with absent of red wine, the gamy flavour did not out stand. Tender with thick solid robust gravy from the stew is definitely a perfect comfort food.

Bandung Style Grilled Beef Ribs

Mediterranean Lamb Shank

If you feel like fusion food, Chicken Rendang Pasta ($8.90) and Spicy Crab Pasta ($9.90) can be considered. Chicken rendang pasta is a combination of macaroni and chicken strips with rendang. You can feel tasty herbs, slightly sweet and mild spicy flavour in the rendang gravy binding the chicken, macaroni, mini tomatoes together. Topped with perkedel and fried shallots this dish is just so Asian. A good description of spicy crab pasta is chilli crab tossed with linguine pasta. Spicy, thick, creamy and a solid de shell crabs and prawns. Both dishes are great creations and feels very Singaporean.

Chicken Rendang Pasta

Spicy Crab Pasta 

Well, the dinner won't be complete with some desserts. We end the night with Strawberry Pavlova ($5.90), Nutella Brownie ($5.90), Matilda Cake ($5.90) and Banana Date Pudding ($5.90) with ice cream and butterscotch sauce. The Pavlova was light, crispy and not overly sweet. The cream and strawberry provide a good balance to the pavlova. Nutella Brownie is not overly dense but packs with flavour. Accompany by vanilla ice cream, it shows why it has always been the traditional favourites.

Strawberry Pavlova 

 Nutella Brownie 

Matilda Cake is a definite must try for chocolate cake lovers, dense, moist and packs of chocolate flavour. Those who like their dessert light, Matilda cake is nor for you. Banana date pudding has a light spongy texture in the tart shape. The ice cream and butterscotch sauce was a delight. Two thumbs up for the desserts.

Matilda Cake

Banana Date Pudding with ice cream and butterscotch sauce

For drinks, I tried their smooth Thai Iced Milk Tea ($5) and Cappuccino ($3.50) which was pretty decent and one of the lowest price for cuppa ever.

Cappuccino

Overall, dining at Aria really brings back lots of memory from my uni days. Good food, good portion and good value. Although it is located inside the campus, it is open to general public. Do drop by in weekday evening and Saturday for their Food Music & Arts. Cheers!!

Thank you very much to Hungry Go Where and Aria for the tasting invitation.

Food & Drink: 7.5/10
Value: 9/10
Service: N/A
Ambiance: 8.5/10
Budget per Person: $11 - $25

Aria
Food. Music. Arts
8 Somapah Road
#01-204 SUTD Building 2
Singapore 487372

T: +65 6384 0854
IG: @ariasutd
OH:
Mon – Thu: 10.00 – 22.00
Fri: 10.00 – 01.00
Sat: 12.00 – 01.00


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