This might possibly be our favourite new restaurant to open in Singapore this year. The Ottomani is an intimate, sexy new Middle Eastern backdoor supper club, and is the latest venture of The Dandy Partnership (Neon Pigeon and Summerlong).
The Ottomani occupies a secret space behind red suede curtains, tucked away at the back of The Fat Prince on Peck Seah Street in Tanjong Pagar. As you step behind the curtains, you know you’re in for an experience as fantasies of mysterious Arabian nights emerge, blended with roaring twenties vibes.
Candle-light and suspended oil lanterns hang from the ceilings, bouncing soft light off the divine wall murals and creating a truly magical atmosphere. A personalised envelope sits on your table with a handwritten note of welcome from Chef Nick Philip, and the impeccable service begins. Hot somelier/head bartender Thomas Sobota arrives at your table with his trolley and knocks out one of the best Thyme Negronis I think we’ve ever had, cooled with swirling dry ice.
The food is the standout though, and in juxtaposition to the classic, sultry surroundings, is modern and bold. Our favourites were the Coriander Harissa Kingfish, the Adana Beef Tartare “Kebab”, Mum’s Spinach and Cheese Triangles, and the Cabbage Sprouts (to die for). From the wood-fired earth pit came Sticky Pork seasoned with palm sugar and turkish coffee, followed by 14 hour roasted Lamb Shoulder, both of which were nothing but divine.
Sobota features regularly in the cast of impeccable service members and throughout the evening we sampled (way too) many of his signature creations. White Russians, brandies with coffee liquers, whisky old fashioneds – every creation was an elevated version of the classic and truly impressive.
An evening at The Ottomani is truly an experience to be had.