Portico.. Hmm.. Aren’t they located at Alexandra? Yes and I’ve got a review here! And they have expanded to Dempsey for a more upper class experience, worthy enough to make you feel like a tai tai. Confirm plus chop.
With the opening of their new outlet in a more centralized area, albeit equally inaccessible at Dempsey, they have launched a High Tea Set for just $48++/pax! While the price might be a little steep for students, I honestly think that with the quality of ingredients used and THE QUANTITY, they are actually priced pretty competitively as compared to other upscale hotels’ high tea sets! Besides, the lush and comforting environment that Portico Prime presents is definitely one of the highlights of the entire experience. Hey, it doubles up as a good place for your OOTDs as well!
Before I go on to the review, here’s a PROMOTION that Portico Prime is running from 15 March to 14 April 2016. Like their Facebook Page here or follow their Instagram (@porticosg) to enjoy this high tea set at just $38++/pax! Excited? Read on to find out what this experience entails!
This location also means that you get to enjoy the peace and serenity from the usual hustle bustle in town, and really just take a good break from the rest of the world. Portico Prime has both indoor seatings as well as their al fresco dining area. The interior of Portico just shouts SO ATAS. I really liked how the bar takes center stage here, and it also doubles up as a space for the baristas to prepare their coffee for you. The area with warmer lights for a more cosy dining experience. Then for the area for the instagrammers. HAHA! This is part of the al fresco dining experience. Stepping out from the interior of Portico, you’d just go WOW because their outdoor seating just looks amazing. So serene, so pretty. ARE WE EVEN IN SINGAPORE? This is their garden where they plant some of their edible flowers and other produces to be used in their food. Just so you know, they have already been on this edible garden concept since their birth at Alexandra! I never knew that!And this is my new Facebook Page’s picture because.. LOOK. THIS PLACE IS JUST SO PRETTY, I didn’t even have to try to make this picture look nice! *Flicks hair* No really. The place just looks amazing. REALLY. And thank you Karl for this picture!
ON TO THE HIGH TEA SET
*Disclaimer: The set we used for photographs caters to 3 pax, but everyone gets a piece of everything lah.When this was first served to us, you could hear the audible gasps from almost everyone because of how gorgeous it looks. SO PRETTY.
The items in this high tea set are picked because they are the all time favorites from the diners, chefs, bosses, staff etc. You bet they are gonna be good.
What does the entire High Tea Set include?
1. The Trio of Starters:
a. Chilled Truffle-scented Angel Hair Pasta, Avruga Caviar, Kwa Ebi Shrimps
b. Crostini of Asian cured Salmon Gravlax, Coriander creme fraiche
c. Skewer of Tiger Prawn, Compressed Melon Sheet, Tobiko Roe and BRANDY sauce (YES YOU CAN TASTE IT)
I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the chilled truffle scented angel hair pasta. The taste and smell of truffle lingers on even after you are done with this dish! Thank goodness this dish is also served on their regular menu, and we even heard it is so well liked that people actually order 2 portions of this pasta to make up one meal. I KNOW I WOULD DO THAT! The other dishes were okay, I especially liked the distinct taste of brandy on the tiger prawn!
P.S. The prawn can get quite difficult to get it off the stick. Or maybe it’s just me!
From the bottom tier up..
2. The Savories
a. Singapore-style chili crab meat eclair
b. Fish otak toast
c. Squid and SALTED EGG croquette
That eclair was a clear winner. It’s amazing. Words can’t even describe how much I loved this little eclair. INGENIUS CREATION. A SAVORY ECLAIR??! NO WAY. I wish they sold this separately so I can buy an entire box back. These eclairs were topped with GENEROUS, GENEROUS AMOUNTS of chili crab. I bet you every mouthful has chunks of meat within. Okay lah not a lot of mouthfuls BUT this was really one of the best renditions of a chili crab dish ever.
The otak toast was okay, because you just can’t go wrong with otak. The crew at Portico love their food so much they actually researched on how to make a solid otak from mackerel. PROPS TO THEIR PASSION FOR FOOD! And lastly, I thought it was a potato croquette cause I’m mainstream like that, could you imagine that look of delight when I realized it was salted egg within? DAMN. I’m in love already.
3. Petit Sweets
a. Masala Chai Tea Cake, Honey Ginger Cream, Orange Confit
b. Pistachio nut, Cranberry and White Chocolate Bark
c. Bandung Rose Cream, Strawberry and Lychee Tart
This was the tier when I went OH GOD THIS IS THE BEST DAMN HIGH TEA SET I EVER HAD after I tasted everything. I’ve so much to say about each of these goodies. Bear with me.
My FAVORITEST item in the entire high tea set got to be the Rose tart. The flavors were so distinct YET so light. The first bite would give you the familiar taste of bandung, and you’d feel the oh so light cream touching your lips. The lychee flesh in the middle as well as the addition of a lychee sphere within the tart would add on to the layers of flavor and TEXTURE in this tart. If you don’t gobble this down too quickly, you may very well feel the BURST of the sphere and your entire palate would be engulfed with the amazing taste of lychee. WOW. I CANNOT.
Okay too much detail on that one. Next, comes the nougat looking like item. It’s essentially white chocolate, which understandably tends to the sweeter side. BUT the generous pieces of crunchy nuts within would make my mother (a crazy nut lover, i.e. squirrel) squeal in absolute delight. Lastly, the masala chai tea cake.. I’d think most of us would go UGH GINGER CREAM. NO WAY. Before you give that piece away to a neutral about ginger friend, try taking a mouthful. Trust me, we all HATE ginger, but they’ve managed to tone down the taste of ginger to make it blend into the entire repertoire of a tea cake. This was so comforting, it was like chewing on teh halia.
Bottom up: 3rd tier
The carrot cake is unlike those we usually have. These ain’t dry and crumbly, instead they were light and moist. Gosh. I could possibly have a slice of it on my own! This tier was just average for me. The items were well done, but not too mindblowingly good even though my dining partners couldn’t stop raving about the items here! I AM JUST WEIRD I GUESS.
a. Chilled Cheesecake with mango gel, mini passionfruit spheres
b. Deconstructed Blackforest
c. Baked apple crumble tart with sweet basil cream
The cheesecake was basically a mango cheesecake, and had all the right textures a good cheesecake should be and I loved how they put spheres in everything because I’m a sucker for popping goodness in my food. If you have been to portico, you’d know that their STAR dessert would be their deconstructed blackforest, which is by the way, A MUST TRY. MUST TRY. This is the mini version of it, and for chocolate lovers, this. Would send you right up to heaven.
The baked apple crumble tart hit the right notes in terms of the flavors, but don’t be like us, don’t take pictures for too long because our tart base got all soggy, and it lost its crumbly identity! A pity though!
I assure you, the 4 tiers would keep you filled for the entire day. If that wasn’t enough, why don’t you treat yourself to these humble scones, with their 3 homemade dips: clotted cream, honey kaya and a jam like dip made using seasonal preserves. GO FOR THE KAYA, my partner drank the entire dip. HAHA!
OH AND BEFORE I FORGET, each set comes with FREE FLOW COFFEE AND TEA. And it’s not just ANY coffee and tea. Free flow coffee from Dutch Colony Coffee Co. (REVIEW HERE) and tea from Twinnings. GOT STANDARD ONE HOR.
My iced mocha got standard. I like.
Thank you for bearing with my excitement with all the items in this high tea set. This was truly one darn good high tea, and guess what, I AM SO COMING BACK WITH MY MUM TO LET HER ENJOY ALL THESE AMAZING GOODIES.
Portico Prime is the ideal place if you are looking for somewhere to chill, or just have some quiet time with your close friends, it even makes a solid place for a date because here, you can take pictures of your date without being creepy. HAHA! The place is really too beautiful to even resist!
Remember to like their facebook page or follow them on Instagram to enjoy these amazing treats at just $38++. Available from 3pm to 5pm DAILY, except Mondays. AND DONT SAY I NEVER WARN YOU, THEY ARE LIMITED TO JUST 30 SETS A DAY!
How to get there?
10 Dempsey Rd
Daily; 3pm to 5pm
Closed on Mondays