Staying true to the rich comforting flavours of northern Italian cuisine, chef Marco Fregnan appeals to local taste buds with an exotic and affordable wine list and hearty dishes inspired by his nonna.
The namesake of the restaurant - which references Bacchus the mythical god of wine and merrymaking - holds true, as much attention has been paid to the well-curated list of 90 Italian and French wines that will liven up any occasion for merry making - or meeting.
Representing terroirs from various regions, the wine varieties include nebbiolo and barbera from Piedmont, corvine from Veneto, sangiovese from Tuscany, and montepulciano from A'bruzzo as well as primitive and negroamaro from Puglia in South Italy. White wine varieties include the uniquely Italian cortese, arneis, garganega and vermentino, to name a few. More than 10 varieties are available by the glass and carafe. A wine flight is available from the enomatic machine, which has a rotating selection of wines. The bar area seats 30 pax.
The house-made pastas are a speciality and chef Marco has made it soft and delicate to complement the rich, smooth flavours of creamy dishes such as gnocchi with gorgonzola and walnuts, and Venetian green pea risotto. Both offered such soft, smooth bites that I could literally just let the flavours linger on my taste buds without biting into them. Although rich, the dishes are uplifted by the walnuts that added texture to the gnocchi and the touch of mint-infused oil that gave a fresh note to the risotto. These are best accompanied by a glass of Pomino Bianco. I tried two mains that were absolute stunners: the milk-stewed codfish and stewed veal cheek, both lovingly slow-cooked for hours to absorb the rich flavours of their marinade to yield tender meat with robust umami flavours. I enjoyed them with a glass of Cesari Amarone Della Valpolicella Classico 2010.
The 45-seater restaurant exudes a warm rustic ambience in its quiet Craig Place location, offering a respite from the busy Tanjong Pagar district. No private rooms are available, but small groups of 16 may occupy a section of the restaurant that can be easily partitioned off. The bar area could be used for a small networking or meeting event with the option of a wine tasting session.