Neon Pigeon 2.0

It’s quite tough to write an encore review for a restaurant that you’ve already visited previously. The exception being if I end up trying something entirely new that gives a new reason to emphasize once more, why its worth visiting the restaurant.

Since my first visit to pigeon in March, I’ve been back a few times, but mainly for drinks (which I confess are extremely potent and has resulted in some embarrassing behaviour). W, however, has been back a few other times for a proper meal and she commented to me once a few weeks ago that the food at pigeon has been getting better and better and I should consider going back for a proper meal again

Interestingly, the next time I visited Pigeon, it was not planned at all. I had originally arranged dinner at another restaurant a few doors down and even made a reservation BUT the restaurant closed down and did not even notify me! Thankfully, Pigeon had a table for 8 of us. One thing to note is that Pigeon has a very strict seating policy. They don’t take reservations and will only seat you if the entire party is present. This means that it pays to be punctual here – a trait which people in Singapore are not known for.

You can get priority seating (not a reservation) though if you order their pork shoulder, which requires a 2 day advance order minimum and which I shall talk more about later.

On my last couple of visits, I was able to try the following dishes for the first time. You can read on the previous dishes that I’ve tried at Pigeon and my thoughts here

Tuna tartare with avocado – It’s a dish that is becoming very popular in Singapore, but it is still somewhat of an acquired taste. Pigeon’s version was very nicely executed. It was tasty and did not have that strong fishy smell that is sometimes associated with raw fish. There was some of us at the table that were initially apprehensive about this dish, but after one bite, they were hooked.

Mussels with noodles – This was one of their specials and not on their menu. If I remember correctly, it came with a sake broth that was really delicious.

Smoked baby back ribs with barbecue sake sauce – these were really delicious and the ribs were really tender. This went away pretty fast.

House smoked bacon rice with crispy pork skin and egg yolk – This was done well, though between the pumpkin rice that we tried on our first visit and this dish, we preferred the pumpkin rice.

Below is an assortment of the vegetable dishes that we’ve tried on the menu. From clockwise, we had the smoked eggplant, the grilled shishito (peppers), the chilled cucumbers, charred carrots and parsnips and the butter mushrooms. I felt that the cucumbers were a crowd favourite and a really good snack to have while waiting for a table or just as an accompaniment for the the drinks.

Barbecued pork shoulder – 2 day cooked pork shoulder served with buns, pickled vegetables, salad and smoked yogurt and teriyaki sauces. This is probably one of Pigeon’s best dishes, and one that requires an advance order if you want to enjoy it. A warning though, it does not come cheap. The shoulder is meant to feed 3-4 people (though honestly, it could easily feed up to 6 people) and costs $240. Whether the price fits the dish is another discussion altogether, but certainly it was delicious piece of meat and I really liked having it with the yogurt and teriyaki sauces.

At this point of writing, I venture to say that I’ve tried almost the entire menu in pigeon. Other dishes that I did try and were not able to get photos of included the edamame, chicken liver mousse and their sliders – all were really good. I do admit that some dishes do stand out more than others, however, most of the food is very much enjoyable (eg. the brussel sprouts, the pork shoulder, the bone marrow, the ribs) and atmosphere is really something worth coming back for. There is a sense, when you sit down, that the service is seamless. Orders come relatively quickly, glasses get filled up efficiently with little prodding and all of the staff (waiters, bartenders, kitchen staff) seem very attuned to the reactions of the customers around them. Once or twice during the meal, the staff checks in back with us on how things are going and they do take feedback quite well – which I think really helps to build the relationship between the customer and the restaurant.

Definitely a place that I see myself coming back to again and again.

Add: 1 Keong Saik Rd

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