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You can drink like Singapore’s first Master of Wine at Saint Pierre

Can a mass-market wine pass muster with an exceptional wine pro? With Tan Ying Hsien, it does.

The Singaporean Master of Wine (MW) has collaborated with two-Michelin-starred Saint Pierre to oversee their wine programme, with an eye on keeping the French restaurant’s list of over 2,300 bottles relevant for today’s consumers.

As one of only 419 MWs in the world and the first local to pass the notoriously tough qualification, Tan is also working with Saint Pierre’s chef-owner Emmanuel Stroobant to refine their food and wine pairings.

“My goal is to work within the fringes of the restaurant’s largely classical European wine list to find the best fit with the modern French, Asian accented cuisine,” Tan said.

Marron with buttermilk and wild basil (Image credit: Saint Pierre)

Tan’s pairing suggestions are thoughtful with a dry wit – at home, he serves sweet champagne with spicy chips, and his hand is evident throughout Saint Pierre’s six-course Opulence menu. A rich and nutty chardonnay from Jura producer Domaine Pignier plays up the natural sweetness of hata (grouper), and a Pouilly-Fume sauvignon blanc by Henri Bourgeois teases out the buttermilk tang in a poached marron.

Kegani, or Hokkaido hairy crab, is baked under a salt crust to retain its sweet flavours, then served with roasted capsicum, green pea sauce, and passionfruit juice. Paired with Germany’s Schloss Vollrads 1211 riesling, the dry white wine reveals notes of lychee and candied lemon. Omi beef, an A4 wagyu from Shiga Prefecture, sits in a umami seaweed sauce, and a fruity Chateauneuf-du-Pape from Domaine du Vieux offers restraint to the luscious dish.

Omi beef with nori and shallot (Image credit: Saint Pierre)

Dessert is an option between a Manjari chocolate tart with fresh raspberries and lychee sorbet, which is matched with the honeyed richness of Oremus tokaji, or gariguette strawberries married with pepper and soy accentuated by a delicately floral sweet riesling by German winemaker Fritz Haag. The latter wine is also available widely through retail channels here, and a refreshing testament to Tan’s pragmatic approach.

“A good restaurant caters to the needs of its customers,” he said. “It should be restorative.”

Saint Pierre is located at 1 Fullerton Road, #02-02B, One Fullerton, 049213. Book here.

You can drink like Singapore’s first Master of Wine at Saint Pierre

Jethro Kang

Jethro enjoys wine, biking, and climbing, and he's terrible at all three. In between them, he drinks commercial lagers, and eats dumplings and gelati.

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