Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Lunch at Etna Italian Restaurant & Pizzeria: One of Amex's 30licious Meals - S$30 treats for 30 days!

Lunch at Etna with Amex folks
Had lunch with the Amex folks today. We were at Etna, trying out one of the 30licious deals (presented by Amex and HungryGoWhere) - S$30 treats for 30 days! From now to 25 April, there are 30licious special menus at more than 30 restaurants islandwide. The list of restaurants looks pretty good too - you can see them on http://promotions.hungrygowhere.com

The 30licious menu at Etna is a very filling three courses, with options. The dishes were selected to showcase the chef's best skills. Etna focuses on Sicilian cuisine, and many of the ingredients are imported from that region.

Borlotti beans, crispy pancetta, extra virgin olive oil
Zuppa di faglioli borlotti, pancetta croccante, olio extravergine d'oliva
Borlotti beans, crispy pancetta, extra virgin olive oil

This is one of the two starters. It's a thick and comforting stew of beans and bacon. Mmmmh, pancetta - makes everything tastes good.

Tuscan "panzanella" salad with fresh basil, lettuce, roma tomatoes
Panzanella Toscana con basilico fresco, lattuga e pomodoro
Tuscan "panzanella" salad with fresh basil, lettuce, roma tomatoes

Or you could go for the panzanella or bread-and-tomato salad, if you want something lighter. This looks like it's entirely vegetarian. The roma tomatoes are so sweet and juicy! I don't normally like tomatoes, but these were excellent.

For the mains - again, there seems to be, thoughtfully, a vegetarian and meat option.

Homemade potato gnocchi, gorgonzola and walnut sauce, fresh rucola
Gnocchi di patate caserecci, fonduta al gorgonzola e noci, rucola fresca
Homemade potato gnocchi, gorgonzola and walnut sauce, fresh rucola

The gnocchi is one of the highlights at Etna. It's not on the regular menu, but Italians will often request it. The gorgonzola sauce is incredible. It's suitably thick and strong, to go with the dense little dumplings which are nicely soft but chewy. Bits of walnut add textural crunch.

Braised chicken leg "Cacciatora" style, marinated vegetables
Coscia di pollo brasata alla cacciatora con verdure marinate
Braised chicken leg "Cacciatora" style, marinated vegetables

Oh this will take you by surprise. The chicken is fork tender and intensely flavoured with herbs. I was expecting a tomato based dish, but this was very nice for a change. With the salty crispy skin, it is reminiscent of duck confit. The accompanying mash is also lovely.

Etna's Signature Pistachio Tiramisu
Tiramisu al pistacchio
Etna's Signature Pistachio Tiramisu

You also get pretty much a full-sized dessert, and it's their signature one at that. This one doesn't have alcohol in it, but is soaked with coffee. The mascarpone is really sweet. The nutty pistachio is a subtle but nice change from regular tiramisu.

The dishes are really filling, especially the beans and gnocchi. I would recommend coming with a friend and sharing a half-portion of each dish, so you get variety and balance.

Etna's Group Executive Chef/Partner Anna Borrasi is also their wine sommelier
It was a pleasure meeting Etna's Group Executive Chef/Partner Anna Borrasi, who is also their wine sommelier. Her son is in the kitchen at Duxton, while she is mostly at the East Coast branch, which I have tried and liked - the menu there is exactly the same. Another nice thing is - they are open daily, yes, 365 days a year!

The 30licious deals are available on promotions.hungrygowhere.com - just log on to to make your bookings and pay with your American Express Card. If you don't have an Amex card, you can use other modes of payment but the deals cost a little extra ($35++). But hey, check out the Amex platinum cards which give you complimentary Feed at Raffles (FAR) and Palate dining discount program memberships (up to 50% discount at participating restaurants).

50 Duxton Road
Singapore 089534
Tel: +65 6226 3351

110 Upper East Coast Road, Singapore 455298
Tel: +65 6444 9530

Open daily: 12:00 pm - 2:30 pm, 6:30 pm - 10:30 pm

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