Newly opened on Hongkong Street, FOC Restaurant is a Spanish tapas bar serving up Catalan cuisine and cocktails. Unlike the commonly known abbreviation of FOC which stands for “free-of-charge”, FOC is Catalan for “fire”, symbolising the passion Michelin-starred chef Nandu Jubany has for cooking.
The buzz: The latest venture by chef Nandu Jubany of the one-starred Can Jubany in Barcelona, FOC has also recruited ex-Foodbar Dada chef Jordi Noguera and ex-Catalunya barman Dario Nocentini. Using only the freshest seasonal produce, FOC allows diners to savour quality Catalan dishes served on small plates.
The vibe: Located on the unpretentious Hongkong Street, FOC exudes a casual vibe with warm hospitality. Its layout is simple and cosy, with table seating as well as bar seating. For an entertaining night, be sure to get the bar seats where you can catch the chefs in action and perhaps steal a recipe or two.
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The food: With an extensive menu of small plates, FOC has something prepared for everyone. An appetiser that is popular with both vegetarians and non-vegetarians alike is the watermelon gazpacho with charcoal smoked olive oil ice cream (S$12++). A stroke of genius, the chef’s use of watermelon juice infused the soup with a natural sweetness, while the charcoal smoked olive oil ice cream enhanced the richness of the soup and provided it with a refreshing touch.
For something more filling, be sure to order the black Mediterranean paella with seafood and garlic mayonnaise (S$22++), considerably the best paella in Singapore. Having mastered the temperature and the timing, the chef ensures that each grain of rice is cooked just right, resulting in a distinct and firm bite.
Our verdict: Served on small plates, FOC is best visited with a group of loved ones such that you can try as much on the menu as possible. Nonetheless, its intimate ambience also makes it an ideal dining location for couples.
In terms of food, while there were hits and misses on the menu, FOC Restaurant is definitely one of the up-and-coming tapas places in Singapore. Since it’s a new establishment, do allow them some time to fine tune their recipes. In the meantime, order up our recommendations and you will definitely be going back for more.
FOC Restaurant, 40 Hongkong Street, Singapore 059679, +65 6100 4040, www.focrestaurant.com
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