The National Gallery Singapore is not just an art gallery - it is also a dining destination. Inside the City Hall wing you will find 4 restaurants - National Kitchen by Violet Oon which serves Singaporean cuisine, Cantonese restaurant Yan, Italian restaurant Aura and cafe & retail shop Gallery & Co. In the Supreme Court wing there is Indian Restaurant Saha and French Restaurant Odette which has been keeping up a storm in the Singapore dining scene.
During my visit I decided to try out Aura, which is opened by Chef Beppe de Vito of the Il Lido Group. The decor of the restaurant is sensational - it looks very European and lux. Good thing is the prices are quite reasonable by Singapore standards and considering the location. That may be why it was packed for lunch service and I had to wait half an hour for a table.
I opted for the fixed lunch which came with 4 courses for SGD40++. The service started with an earthy mushroom soup.
Next came the smoked duck salad with pickled cucumber. It was a very refreshing course.
Main course was Trofie Pasta with Beef Ragu. The pasta looks like little cork screws and picked up the sauce really well, and had a very nice texture.
Dessert was a Pannacotta with berries, mango coulis and cookie crumbs. It was good but not great.
After dessert came a beautiful mystery box. Open it up and there were candied hazel nuts inside. A very nice touch and they went really well with coffee.
Some bloggers have complained about the service, but I found the service at Aura to be friendly and professional. Perhaps it was the second service - not as crowded and more relaxed. Chef Beppe himself was in the room, busing tables and chatting up with the diners. The food was very good and I would definitely go back.