After stints at now-defunct BOMBA Paella Bar and UNA, Chef Jean-Philippe Patruno has finally launched his highly anticipated solo venture.
Opened mid-December, Dehesa Singapore—a buzzing yet charmingly intimate, nose-to-tail communal concept on North Canal Road—offers serious (and curious) diners the opportunity to revel in all things swine and other offal.
Chef JP at work
For the more conservative (or meek), the pork-heavy menu at Dehesa (which means “grasslands” in Spanish, home of the Iberico pig) also spotlights a concise picking of seafood dishes and classic Spanish delights done well.
Crowd-favourites include the robustly-flavoured bowl of Lala ($14)—local clams prepared with Palomino Fino and chillies for an underlying hint of heat—and the Grilled Octopus ($28) where indulgent strips of Lardo meet smokey, tender chunks of octopus on a bed of anchovy-laced Ratte potato mash.
Grilled Octopus ($28)
Bone Marrow ($22 for two)
Dehesa Platter ($25)
However, it is the supposedly ‘less mainstream’ menu items that are most rewarding.
The Dehesa Platter ($25)—featuring pig’s head, ear, Paleta (front leg ham), made-from-scratch fifi pate (belly, heart and liver), saucisson (dry cured sausages), rillons, and crunchy pork scratchings—is a passionate, scrumptious homage to pig, and a definite must-order.
Love pork but not offal? Go for the Iberico Jowl ($28), cooked for more than 2-days till oh-so succulent, teamed with fine celeriac mash and bright, sweet notes of Granny Smith apple.
Ox Tongue ($14)
Other return-worthy highlights include the Ox Tongue ($14), enjoyed with peas, celeriac cubes, and a savoury anchovy-mustard cream sauce, Duck Hearts on Toast ($10) and slices of Ox Heart ($15)—reminiscent of liver but with more bite—luxuriating in a rich, lip-smacking sauce and a light, almost foam-like mash.
Ox Heart ($15)
Pickled Gong Gong ($14) with potato crisps
For desserts, go straight for Chef JP’s take on Torijas ($12, a typical dessert of Lent and Holy Week in Spain) where slightly crusty, caramelized fried milk toast is generously filled with luscious crème fraîche and matched with side of plum.
Address: 12 North Canal Road, Singapore 048825.
Tel: +65 6221 7790
Operating hours: Closed Sundays, Monday-Friday 11.30am-2.30pm, Monday-Saturday 5.30pm till late.