Wednesday, March 10, 2010

The French Stall @ Macpherson

"Give me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the strength to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference. " Very nice words. I took it off my friend's facebook page. (I am sure he copied from somewhere.) But yes, they do speak volumes.

The French Stall had been around for some years now. It was first opened at 544 Serangoon Road (near Boon Keng) and subsequently another branch (very near my place) sprouted out near Kovan. They shifted the branch after a couple of years and now this one at Macpherson Lane is here. It is near a very good kway chup place which will be featured here sooner than later. 

Anyway, after hearing all the hype and good reviews from friends and blog-o-sphere alike, (yes, Mr Sailor SMS did help the decision)the Pancakes finally found time to visit it. (It was not easy to ignore the kway chup and head straight to the French Stall.... :( aww.... i can see the bubbling of the braising liquid... )

We were presently surprised to find the stall at the heart of the neighbourhood. They combined three shop fronts, you can sit in the shop or sit here! (spot Mrs Pancakes.)

And yes, many of the patrons chose to sit outside rather than in the shop. There was a nice breeze going on there and the weather's not hot and humid like what it is nowadays. So we were all set for dinner.

The French Onion soup (SGD 5.80) came served with the usual bread and cheese topping. And yes, the cheese as you can see in the picture was in the state of awkardness of half-melted form. The waiter also didn't know what is the base of the soup used, but we suspect it's chicken stock. Nevertheless the soup tasted decent and the bread could be just a little bit crust-ier. (3.5/5) Soup of the day (SGD 4.80) was pumpkin and carrot soup. Nothing to shout about. I tasted very little of the pumpkin. (3/5) I suspect that they do not use cream and that's why the soup was a tad bit watery. No complaints though, save some work in the gym. 

Next comes the mains. Mrs Pancakes ordered the Braised duck leg with pan-fried foie gras on stewed lentils with bacon and red wine sauce (SGD 25.80). Not exactly confit but tasted good. The foie gras was cooked to perfection with just that little bit of salt to perk up the creamy liver. The duck leg was somehow crispy (it's braised) with very tender meat. The lentils were a great accompan-iant to the meat and Mrs Pancakes really loved it. (3.75/5)

Mr Pancakes had the Grilled Duck Breast with Orange sauce and Risotto (SGD 22.80). The duck breast was well marinated and grilled to the order. (well-done, medium rare is available). Do you know that the breast of a fowl (chicken or duck...) is known as white meat while the legs are known as red meat? Interesting. And yes, to continue, the duck breast was tender and has that nice, very slight, gamely smelll. Very tasty. The risotto was however disappointing. As you can see, it is overcooked and mushy. Flavoured nicely with chicken stock but it lacks the punch of the cheese that all risotto dishes deserved. The sauce suspiciously tasted like what was served with the duck leg, even though they are supposedly different as stated on the menu. Tart, with the taste of red wine. (3.75/5)

The servings were rather small and we ordered one dessert each. Usually we share one serving of  appertiser/soup and one serving of dessert but this time round we orderd a full set each. The chocolate souffle (SGD 7.20) was decent but tasted very similar to what Mrs Pancakes made at home previously, unlike those that blows you away at Max Brenner or some other chocolatier. (3.25/5). And the Pancakes can never resist tiramisu (SGD 7.20). The presentation of the tiramisu is.... simply ugly. Taste-wise we didn't like it as it didn't have neither the ommph of the coffee nor the alcohol. The fingers just tasted wet and the cheese... flat. (3.25/5)

Overall, an average experience. Pricey for a place in the heartlands, with small servings and disappointing desserts. Stick to the mains if you going. And they do have a nice listing of beer and wine.

The French Stall
83 Macpherson Lane


1 comment:

  1. The original one is at little india... between farrer park and little india mrt... It was at victoria st about 10 over years ago...


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