I’ve not been doing tastings this year because it’s rather time consuming but when I received the invitation to try out Do.Main at Tanjong Katong I was keen to try because it’s in my area and the concept is something fresh in Singapore! This place is basically a French bakery. A standalone one, not one from a big chain (eg. Paul or Delifrance).
This is the French chef Frederic Deshayes’ first shop but he has been in Singapore for 9 years. I do not eat bread on a daily basis but I love French bread based on my experience in Paris and in French restaurants. Freshly made artisanal bread is always special. It’s good to know that they used specially imported ingredients from France such as their flour to keep the quality as close as you get in France itself.
We were invited to take a look at the kitchen and it was cleverly designed for baking. They make all bread and pastries in house daily to ensure freshness so it’s definitely not from a central kitchen somewhere else. Proofing of bread is done overnight, so the proofed breads would be ready to pop in the oven early in the morning before business hours.
Work area to make the dough.
Multiple ovens because a lot of baking needs to be done.
They even have a walk in fridge.
The lower floor of the area for dine in is designed by the chef’s wife. The upper floor is available for private events.
Other than French bread, they also make French pastries in house.
Guess which one made me really excited?
The Apple Tart is something which holds special memories for the chef, but everything else is equally good according to him. I do not doubt this because taking a look at the variety, they are all French creations like choux pastry, Paris-Brest, éclairs, chouquettes etc and who can make them better than a real French man? Authentic French pastries are not easy to find in Singapore.
They also sell whole cakes for those who want some quality French style cakes.
For this tasting meal, we were served some savoury food which is available all day. These items are a partnership with chefs from other renowned French restaurants like Baroque Grill (Amara Hotel) and they supply the savoury items. Even though it was brought over from somewhere else, at least it isn’t from a random source but was actually specially put together by another French chef. Hearing this alone makes me confident of the food I was going to try.
From the kitchen tour, I tried to spot the stove but none was seen. I was later told that they designed the food menu based on oven only recipes. This is a good idea because having a stove area would just make the workload more and most of the staff are more inclined towards baking than cooking I suppose.
Four Seasons Salad – $18.00
Featuring ingredients representative of 4 different seasons.
My experience in France is that they do a lot of cold dishes so a salad like this is not a surprising offering. The ingredients were fresh and it was appetizing and is good to share. You can have it with bread too since the bread here is fantastic.
Charcuterie Platter with Sourdough bread – $20.00
duck and pistachio pate, pork rillette and kurobuta ham
3 items will always be included but it will change from time to time (perhaps rabbit or duck rillettes instead of pork etc). I particularly liked this one. It would be perfect with wine and a platter of (good) French cheeses!
I’m happy to know that this place offers this cold platter nonetheless. Months ago I was having dinner at Eng’s just across the street of Tanjong Katong Road and couldn’t find a place to chill out after dinner without shifting location. This place gives the option of having wine with rillettes to chill out instead of the typical ice cream (you know sometimes I just don’t want to have dessert..). It would be perfect if they serve cheese too! Like this shop I went to in Paris, Le Baron Rouge.
To Do.Main: PLEASE SERVE CHEESE!!
Broken Eggs – $12.00 – $15.00
This dish comes in 3 flavours – sour cream and ham, tomato confit and plain.
It’s a traditional French dish and to eat you need to mix it up using the mouillettes! The bread itself was so crispy I couldn’t stop eating. The eggs were the perfect runny texture.
I would suggest getting the flavoured ones instead of plain because plain is well, just eggs. Above is the sour cream and ham version.
The tomato confit version was my favourite.
Tartiflette “Reblochon” with bacon and potato – $16.00
This is essentially baked cheese with bacon and potato below. The cheese taste is strong so do not order if you are not a cheese person. Otherwise, it’s a dish that many would love.
Cassolette oven baked escargots with homemade garlic herb butter – $16.00
Everyone loves escargot. Of the 3 warm dishes I think this would be my favourite. The sauce goes perfect with the bread!
I really like how all these food options are really French styled (I do not like places which compromise and tweak their cuisine losing the identity) and most of these items goes well with bread I realise! If you would like to try their breads but can’t simply just eat bread alone, it may be a good option to order some of these savoury foods to go along.
There are also other savoury options like quiches and sandwiches.
Now on to the sweet stuff…
Lemon Tart, Paris- Brest & Royal Chocolate Tart – $5.00 each
These are just a few of the pastries they offer.
My favourite was the Paris-Brest. I knew it would be the moment I saw it on the cake display. I’ve been missing Paris-Brest since I came back from France last year having tried a version which people claim is the best in Paris. I didn’t expect to see this in Singapore and was so happy that this version was actually not bad! Of course it can’t rival the one I had in Paris but I’m satisfied. And I’m not exaggerating about this rave. Everyone else said they liked it best too! They made it into this oblong shape instead of the traditional wheel shape because it’s easier to eat like this. Otherwise it’s pretty authentic.
The Royal Chocolate Tart was my second favourite. In the first place I love chocolate so this is easy for me to like, what makes it different is that it’s gluten free using buckwheat flour. While I don’t suppose I have gluten intolerance, I’ve long read about the negative impact from gluten and I tend to eliminate it with my Paleo diet (which I try to keep when I’m not dining out). The ingredients used here are high quality like Valrhona Manjari in the chocolate mousse.
Dark Plum Tart – $5.00/ big slice
I’m not a fan of such fruit tarts but it’s good to know this is dairy free – no custard here. It’s made with fresh fruit and semolina.
Towards the end of the session we were given some Chouquettes to take home. These are addictive and so much better than other versions I’ve tried in Singapore!
Overall I really like this place because the food is authentically French and the quality is good. I will definitely choose to buy my bread here if the occasional calls for needing bread. While the savoury food option may not be best for a filling dinner, this place definitely makes a good after dinner hang out with the cold platter and wine for those who like a savoury after meal option or the pastries with tea or even beer for those who want something sweet. It’s great that they have both choices (done properly too) so it can cater to everyone.