Italian Dining: Trattoria Gallo D'Oro at Central Mall, #01-03 7 Magazine Rd, Singapore 059570

I might have possibly found Singapore's best Italian restaurant. It is also probably one of the best kept secret in Singapore only because it is tucked away at the gigantic maze that is Central Mall (not Central at Eu Tong Sen/MRT, mind you) on Magazine Road, which took about 15 minutes to walk to from Clarke Quay MRT. The invite for Trattoria Gallo D'Oro also only came by because of the beer pairing collaboration with Wunderbar, which is a Bavarian beer that is being imported here by a lovely Singaporean couple. 

Walk to Block 7, and find this entrance. Gallo D'oro means the Golden Rooster. Very auspicious name for a restaurant, don't you think?

The interior is rustic, authentic and very comfortable. It's no fine dining, but more of an unpretentious place for friends to gather and have a good time.

The man behind this restaurant is Executive Chef and owner Silvio Morelli, who hailed from Italy but speaks fluent French. He had a background in Fine Arts and Industrial Design, but chose instead to go into the culinary arts after graduation, to work all over the world including with a 3-star Michelin Chef in France! Despite being a chef, he continued to dabble in art and you could see many of his artwork on display in the restaurant. What a talented genius.

We started with a glass of campari & prosecco plus the amuse bouche, which is just a small but carefully put together bruschetta. That definitely whetted my appetite for what's to come, which looking at the tasting menu that day, seemed to be quite a feast. 

The first appetizer was the Crispy Scallops with Ricotta Cheese and White Truffle ($36). Can you already tell how skillful the chef is, from the plating alone? The scallops were not too big, but very fresh and juicy. It was complemented by the lightly perfumed white truffle slices. The foie gras pate below it was actually not necessary, though it did add a touch of creaminess.

One of the my favorite dishes of all time had to be pumpkin or tomato soup. Here, the Tomato Soup with Anchovies ($14) was served with a crispy baguette, which I used to dip and mop up the tangy tomato soup.

To start off the beer pairing, we had the Wild Pork Cold Cuts with Lardo de Colonnata. Essentially a big delicious plate of cold cuts, just like what you'll have in Europe. I missed this! It is the perfect accompaniment to beer, being salty, cold and meaty all at once.

Speaking of beer, we had the wonderful opportunity to try 3 different types of Wunderbar beers, poured fresh from the mobile draft beer stand. The guys behind Wunderbar also brought in these ABK Bavarian Beers in 3 flavours, which we brought home to try too. 

I am no beer expert, so I'll say first that all the beers we tried went really well with the dishes -- plus they were quite easy to drink too! The alcohol content is not too high, so you can down them smoothly. Other than supplying to craft beer shops, Wunderbar draft beers are also available for events - they will transport their custom beer draft stand to your event and even help you pour if you don't want to yourself (it's easy!). Idea for a company barbecue party, anyone? Contact them now!

The highlight of the dinner that night (other than the beers) was the Ba vettine Pasta with Lobster & White Truffle of Alba. That really just blew me away completely. I don't think it is on the menu, but you could try calling to request when you reserve your seats? What's funny was the chef swept into the room a few minutes after the pasta was served and told us to eat the pasta quickly because "when it is cold you can throw it away!". Of course cameras were put aside. The pasta was thick cut, but al dente, and the sauce was this unbelievable seafoody sweet but tangy (tomato) taste. It will engulf your senses in umami heaven. Don't fight the feeling, just enjoy it!

We also had the Roasted Pork with Potatoes and Rosemary, Tuscany-style ($32). Again, this was superbly done. This is a special cut of the pig, according to chef. I actually only half-listened to him talk because I was so engrossed with the pork which was melting in my mouth in a combination of crispy skin, herbs, fats and meat. It felt like the "3-layered pork / sio bak" that we have, but in a much thicker and juicier cut. The mash bed went very well with this rustic rendition of roasted pork - I have a feeling this is probably as authentic as it gets.

We had another Wunderbar beer to go with our mains. We had fun trying to do the pour ourselves. Here's my dining partner and BFF Roxanne (from LacedIvory) pouring a pint for herself!

By then we were suitably stuffed, so it's time for desserts! Another surprise laid in the store for us, in the form of french Macarons ($16)! Chef Morelli was really proud of his macarons, and he should be because they are DIVINE. Sorry Laduree Singapore, and all the French patisserie shops out there. An Italian chef is making these little babies way better than anyone of you.. though it's rather pricey in comparison, it is worth splurging on. They are not overly sweet - you can taste the berries, lemon and chocolate in them.

We had to eat them with our hands, in 1 bite, according to Chef. With pleasure. Look at how pretty they are on the plate! What's really innovative is those yellow strips there - they are actually dried mango strips! That gave the dessert a touch of tropical delight.

To go with dessert, we had the Rosé beer - probably my favorite among all the beers, because I like them to be slightly sweet. This was an excellent pairing with the macarons and also helped us digest (very much needed). We had so much fun just chatting with our hosts, the Chef, and among ourselves.

I had the most lovely dinner at Trattoria Gallo D'Oro, which I am convinced is one of the best Italian restaurants in Singapore. I don't say this lightly - every dish there is made with passion, topped with perfection, and served with pleasure. I highly recommend everyone to put this on your must-try list. I know it is now going to be my default Italian restaurant of choice!

Trattoria Gallo D'Oro
#01-03, 7 Magazine Road, Singapore 059570
+65 64388131 or Chope
Lunch: 12pm-3pm (Last Order: 2.30pm)
Dinner: 6.30pm- 11pm (Last Order: 10.30pm)
Closed on Sundays

Thanks to Wunderbar for the invite!

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