Garuda Padang Cuisine Restaurant

The mere mention of having Padang cuisine would conjure up mental images of non air-conditioned pondok (hut) eateries, which is a common sight all over Indonesia . However, Garuda Padang Cuisine is a far cry from these pondok eateries with its modern façade and interior. Located in the heart of Singapore , Cairnhill Place, Garuda Padang Cuisine is the first endeavour in Indonesian cuisine, by the Tung Lok Group. It serves authentic Minangkabau cuisines, more commonly known as Nasi Padang in Singapore .

The Vibe
With its contemporary and chic minimalist setting, Garuda Padang Cuisine is definitely a class of its own. The restaurant in its simple hue of white walls and furnishings paints a serene and modern minimalist, greets its patrons with a welcoming touch. Complimenting the theme of the restaurant is the parquet flooring and the lights selectively dimmed which illuminates the spacious restaurant. An elevated platform marks the private dining area, with its huge mock white banana leaf lightings, panels of mirrors and white muslin curtains. This area is recommended for small parties and gatherings or for that lunch meetings with business associates. Friendly staff decked in floral printed tops awaits diners, all ready to serve.

The Food
All the dishes like the traditional nasi padang style, are displayed at a glass counter near the entrance for patrons to select their favourites. The wide array of food displayed is enough to whet one’s appetite. Kick-start your meal with an appetizer of Chicken Soup ($5.00) or Oxtail Soup ($6.00). The latter has a stronger aroma as oxtail has been stewed for hours to bring out its flavour, making it a more distinct dish than the chicken soup which goes light on the palate. A complete Nasi Padang meal usually includes a balance of vegetables and variety of meat. Check out the Curry of Tapioca Leaves with Banana Flower ($6.00), which exudes a fragrance from the banana flower that is used, making it a delightful dish. Be truly spoilt for choices when selecting the main course. The Beef Rendang ($8.00), being a favourite among Indonesians and Singaporeans alike, goes easy on your palates as it is moderately spicy with coconut used to bring out its aroma and the beef slices off easily making it a pleasure to dine. The sambal prawns with Petai ($8.00) has a slight piquant taste but when coupled with the other Padang dishes, the piquant taste is masked and instead, compliments the other dishes.
For the more adventurous, try the Crisp Fried Lung ($6.00) or the Gulai of Tendon ($8.00). The Crisp Fried Lung is easier to stomach as it texture is akin to crackers because of its crispiness. However, the Gulai of Tendon which on its own has no significant taste, is not too easy to swallow. Take it with rice and other dishes so as to bring out the flavour. Cool off after your satisfying meal with the sweet desserts that Garuda Padang Cuisine has to offer. The Es Teler will be for the sweet-toothed and an uncommon find in Singapore , deserves mention. The “snow” crushed-iced dessert drizzled in pink rose syrup with slices of jackfruit, coconut flesh and atap chee added into it giving the dessert a burst of flavours, makes it almost sinful. Those preferring a lighter dessert will opt for the more common Es Chendol, made of beans, jellies and gula melaka.

The SD Food Advisor’s Take on Garuda Padang Cuisine
Dining at Garuda Padang Cuisine is definitely satiating. Though adopting a modern façade, the restaurant manages to retain the authenticity of the food that is served. The service staff is attentive and friendly and the dishes offered were delectable, with each tasting distinctively different from the other. However portions are small and ordering too many dishes may reduce your dining space as each dish is served separately. So be prepared to exchange quality for quantity and request a larger dining table if you are in for a feast. Located in Orchard Road , it is ideal for one to walk the entire stretch of shopping malls before and after the meal to rid the calories!

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