Dining Review · Italian · Singapore

Cicheti – A Slice of Italy in Singapore

It really is a sign of how globalised a world we live in when you find a slice of Italy in your home country, in the least expected way.

So the story goes that I was a little disappointed by the underwhelming pizza and pasta we had at the touristy areas in Venice and Florence last December. However, 4 months later, after returning to Singapore, I found myself craving for Italian food again.

So I suggested that to Ade who promptly suggested Cicheti, which she cites as her ‘favourite Italian restaurant in Singapore.’ 

To be honest, I wasn’t expecting much because I couldn’t imagine how authentic Italian food can be here, 6000 miles away from Italy. And to hear that this restaurant is located in Arab Street, a place more well-known for the Malay-Indian cuisine? That didn’t quite set the tone for an Italian night out for me!

However, my friend here is quite well-travelled and so I decided to trust her opinion on this.

And, we managed to score the last table for 2 at the restaurant, which is an indication of how popular it is…

52 Kandahar Street
Singapore 198901

We had to settle for al-fresco dining
We had to settle for al-fresco dining

And looking through the menu, everything looked really interesting. We had a hard time narrowing down, but we finally did…

Cicheti Burratina - Burratina cheese, parma ham, rocket, grilled peaches
Cicheti Burratina – Burratina cheese, parma ham, rocket, grilled peaches, buttered bread

So we started off with this antipasta, and WOW, that was a real surprise for the night.

Stack 'em up & you get an explosion of flavours with each bite!
Stack ’em up & you get an explosion of flavours with each bite!

I love how all the flavours are combined here, so subtly and all in harmony. The burratina was of course, the star of the dish, with its creamy cheesiness inside. The rocket was not as bitter and peppery as expected so that was a good balance. And of course, the parma ham lent the saltiness and grilled peaches, that caramelised sweetness.

We loved how everything tasted so fresh on this platter – was definitely a good starter for the night!

Our 2nd starter - Polpette Di Carne Grana
Our 2nd starter – Polpette Di Carne Grana

Ade was a fan of the homemade meatballs. This was comfort food indeed, warm and wholesome. Mmmm.

Now, the table next to us had a pasta dish that looked really delectable. But for the mains, we decided to go with pizza instead because of this:

With a wood-fired oven like this, you get a sense of how authentic their pizzas are
With a wood-fired oven in-house, you get a sense of how authentic their pizzas are

So it looks like wood-fired pizzas are a specialty of Cicheti and Ade said she was a fan of the pizzas.

So at the expense of having a bread overload for the night, that settled our choice!

Finally we moved on to the mains - Margherita Pizza
Our main for the night – Margherita Pizza

Digging into the pizza, I can understand what Ade was raving about. Besides the simple but fresh toppings, the pizza crust was outstanding. The crust had a nice chewy texture with a crisp edge, not overly dough or crispy, but just right.

Yes, to my surprise, this pizza tasted a lot more authentic than the ones I had in Italy! (No thanks to those touristy restaurants… humph!)

Dessert - Salted Chocolate
Dessert – Salted Chocolate

We chose this as I thought it was interesting to have chocolate lava cake with the salty dimension. Well, in the end, it was still quite sweet overall, especially with the ice cream and caramel sauce drizzled over. It was a decent dessert but inside, the chocolate wasn’t as gooey – would have loved more of that chocolate sauce oozing out!

Anyway, I thought overall, the food at Cicheti embodied the spirit of Italian cuisine – homely, comforting, simple but done well with fresh ingredients.

And you can guess that that definitely satisfied my Italian food craving. All thanks to our fast globalizing world that is able to bring a slice of Italy to our plates here in Singapore!

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