Read full review
2011-06-29 48 views
The News RoomIt was a causal dinner gathering at the new restaurant – The News Room. Menu is similar to The Press Room (its parent group)and décor slightly more modern than the classic bistro feel of The Press Room. Normally I don’t have any particular urge to rush to try new restaurants. However, what caught my eyes on the menu was the USDA Nebraska Prime Rib Eye steak on the menu – it’s the same kind that Grand Hyatt Steakhouse (GHSH), the hottest steakhouse in town these days, offer. I v
It was a causal dinner gathering at the new restaurant – The News Room. Menu is similar to The Press Room (its parent group)and décor slightly more modern than the classic bistro feel of The Press Room. Normally I don’t have any particular urge to rush to try new restaurants. However, what caught my eyes on the menu was the USDA Nebraska Prime Rib Eye steak on the menu – it’s the same kind that Grand Hyatt Steakhouse (GHSH), the hottest steakhouse in town these days, offer. I visited GH Steakhouse not long ago and tried the ribeye, so I wanted to see how this place compared (with the mindset that this is not a steakhouse, of course)
Some of my friends do not eat beef, so we ordered a variety of food to share.
French Charcuterie Platter (for 2, starter portion) - Chargrilled Toulouse Sausage – the flavor was ok but the pork sausage was a little too dense and dry. A bit more fat would have helped
- Chargrilled Merguez Sausage – good gamey lamby flavor but again, too dense and too dry.
- Pâté de Campagne – rather ordinary with the pate texture a little too “rough" and crumbly
- Duck Rillettes – not very memorable; again too dry; more duck fat would help
- Bayonne Ham – quite nice and moist, though not exceptional
- Saucisson de Lyon – Same as above
- Smoked Duck Magret – Same as above
- Ox Tongue with Salsa Verde – Not much tongue flavor, though not dry. The parsley flavor in the salsa verde was overpowering everything.
with pickles, olives & onion confits
Roast Shallots, Thyme & Apple Cider Soup
black truffle ravioli Interesting combination. Needed to slit the ravioli to release the truffle flavor which infused the whole soup. Lukewarm and tangy and appropriate for the summer. I was ok with it but didn’t fall in love with it.
traditional garnish - Despite all the condiments, the steak had no discernible beef flavor. Texture-wise it was a bit soft without any “bites”. Not memorable
Goat Cheese Tart
roast red onion, rocket & balsamic reduction - I always love goat cheese and the combination of sweet red onion and tangy and gamey goat cheese was great. But there was way too little goat cheese in the tart. It should be called a red onion tart with goat cheese.
Louisiana Crab Cakes - The very “crunchy” (note: not crispy) coating was interesting. The texture of the crab meat was quite shreddy and lacked flavor. It didn’t have the “lump, juicy” crab cake effect. There are better crab cakes out there.
USDA Nebraska Beef – Prime Rib Eye 12oz -This was what I wanted to try, and I wasn’t disappointed. Before I visited the restaurant I already expected (and warned my friends) that the restaurant wouldn’t have the same type of grill to create the fantastic char and crust on the steaks like Grand Hyatt Steakhouse.
The rib eye was cut much thinner than the gigantic rib eye at GHSH (the largest size here is 12 oz compared to 18 oz at GHSH). Despite the lack of crusty char surface, this ribeye was actually more flavorful than the one I had at GHSH. It was also cooked to the requested medium rare and was tender and moist. Most of us had been to GHSH and were pleasantly surprised by this flavorful ribeye here.
USDA Nebraska Beef – Prime Sirloin 12oz -Naturally the sirloin was a bit “rougher” in texture compared to the ribeye. Although the meat was quite moist and flavorful, there were some connective tissues that were harder to bite through. I personally much prefer the ribeye to this sirloin.
There is also a hanger steak option on the menu which I am interested to try next time.
Grilled Dover Sole
garlic parsley butter, new potatoes, French beans - The skin wasn’t crispy but the meat was soft and fairly moist. However, as expected, it was particularly flavorful and the sauce was much needed to enhance the overall appeal of the dish.
Bacon Wrapped Rabbit
mustard sauce, wilted spinach, truffle potato puree - I hate to say it, but this really tasted like chicken It lacked the gamey flavor and the firmer muscular texture of wild games and animals. The rabbit meat tasted so mild and soft (and luckily moist), I think most people would have guessed chicken if not told. The overall flavor was fine though, with the spinach rolled inside the meat. The potato puree was quite yummy (though not as good as GOLD's truffled potato puree)
Mac & Cheese
black truffles This was good and hearty but not exceptional.
with Ketchup and Mayo The fries or chips at The Press Room are great and here it’s no exception. Crispy and hot, they were gone in no time.
cinnamon ice cream & tropical fruit The pear didn’t seem like it was poached (unless you mean poached in water ) and had just a little sweet sugary flavor to it. The cinnamon ice cream was actually inside the pear. The tropical fruit “soup” was very summery with passionfruit being the dominating flavor
Service was friendly but still needed some polish, e.g. lack of butter knife, no refill of water. Before the meal started, one of the staff accidentally poured wine onto my 2 friends (their clothes were quite wet) and didn’t do anything except for a simple “sorry”. But the assistant manager handled it very well in the end.
Overall, I think the ribeye steak was definitely the highlight of the night. I will go back just for the ribeye. The starters we tried were quite mediocre, and the mains were slightly better. There are actually plenty of dishes that I would like to try, such as the braised oxtail and kidney pudding, the hanger steak, the rump of lamb, and the peach tarte tatin.
Besides dining areas, The News Room also has a bar, a pretty big selection of wine from different regions and by glass, and an attractive 4-8pm 50% Happy Hour. Located right in the middle of commercial areas in Taikoo Place, it’s a good place to hang out and relax with your friends after a long day of work.
I won’t call The News Room a destination restaurant, but with the lack of comfy French bistro food in the area, this place fills the niche. If you are looking for French bistro fares in a relaxing environment in the area (not agnes b Café, I hope), The News Room will work for you.
NOTE: OK for most of the food, Smiley Face for the ribeye and the Chips.