Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Ma Maison, Bugis Junction

Been meaning to try this place for a while! Out for a double date one Wednesday night, we finally had a chance to visit the Bugis branch. After waiting in line for a gabiliion years and getting increasingly grumpy as heck, we were led into the restaurant. Must say the interior is very homey (I suppose maison-like) and cozy.

Ordered half dozen escargots baked with garlic butter ($9.50) to share and settle the gastric juices. When placed on our table, the waitress set the sand decor-thingajig on fire. I guess that's about one extra brownie point for presentation? Anyway the snails came in their shells and you have to pry the flesh out with a little fork. Tasted okay, nothing to shout about really. It could have been more fragrant. More garlic, more butter (always!).

I thought the escargots were quite run of the mill! Nothing quite as interesting as the vol-au-vent or fantastic as those at Les Bouchons.

C ordered the 'curry rice japanese style' ($14.80). Was quite a big portion. I took a small bite and this wasn't bad - salty, a bit sweet, not spicy. Not particularly memorable though, although C said it got better the more she ate it.

Again, rather normal japanese curry, generous portion of chicken. Hmm. Yea.

The moment we spotted this on the menu while waiting in the queue, we were sure we'd try this - cuttlefish ink spaghetti ($15.90). This jet-black saucy mess is really good! Also comes with bits of mushroom and squid. Nevermind that it leaves a very unflattering stain on your mouth and teeth - this is a must try.

The cuttlefish ink (different from squid ink?) pasta was ... really not too shabby. Might be relative to the other dishes we had but oh well! Flavourful, but quite lacking in terms of 'liao' - not enough seafood and mushrooms were excavated.

Having had AMAZING mentaiko pasta at Spaghetti Goemon, I told that any other versions will probably not be up to par (and this was true!). While it was still generally 'nice', it lacks the distinct oomph and sheer generosity of the mentaiko we had previously.

I had the spaghetti "MENTAIKO" w/ chili cod roe ($15.90) - interesting, is the cod roe chillied or does there exist a fish called 'chili cod'? We will never know (cue dramatic music *dun dun dun*). Anyway, it didn't matter as this pasta was bland. The only taste I could ... taste was the seaweed on the spaghetti. Definitely a disappointment, as I was essentially paying $16 for pasta and seaweed, which for $16, I can buy 4 packs of raw spaghetti and enough Tao Kae Noi to feed 10 people. Disappointment at its finest.

I chose the 'Italian Style' 180g hamburger steak with cheese ($16.90). This was quite disappointing honestly. Maybe because I was expecting a lot more from the hamburger steak, which was just a small chunk of patty sort of lying there on my plate swished in a LOT of brown sauce. I could have had the option of a side of rice, but chose not to indulge in too much carb (ha! who am I kidding now..). The patty itself was small for a big eater like me (:D), but tender and quite juicy. But the SAUCE WAS SO SALTY. I almost gagged towards the end - mind you I finished everything up, save for about half a plateful of sauce. Maybe rice would have balanced it somewhat? But still.. this made my tongue shrivel upon itself.

The patty was good but the sauce, my god. What the heck. It's like distilled soy sauce.

I think the greatest disappointment (besides the aforementioned disappointment at its finest) was this shebang. Montblanc Tart (~$8) - crumbly base, cream, and some hazelnut wishwash. More like MontBland (ahha!).

Looks pretty and enticing on the outside, but really lacking substance. You want to be in its mere presence - then you take that bite and GODDAMN why does it hold so much empty promise?! ..Kinda like that attractive girl/boy you once dated until you realise she/he could not carry a decent conversation that doesn't revolve around her/himself or the people she/he hates.


Anyway, I really thought the food here was completely not worth the price tag, and definitely 100% not worth the wait. Food was exceedingly normal, and you can get much much much better Japanese or japanese fusion elsewhere. Well we probably ordered the wrong stuff, but if you have food items on the menu that are 'wrong stuff' then why is it there?

HGW Link:
Rating (out of 4) :

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