Thursday, May 23, 2024

Singapore’s Spanish Culinary Scene Expands: 16 Restaurants Earn the Prestigious Restaurants from Spain Certification in 2023

SINGAPORE, Aug. 4, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — ICEX Spain, the government agency responsible for promoting Spanish firms internationally, has announced the launch of their Restaurants from Spain certification program in Singapore for the third year. Following the success of the 2021 launch, the program aims to further promote and support Spanish restaurants in Singapore, recognizing their efforts in promoting authentic Spanish gastronomy.

This certification program ensures that Spanish restaurants meet specific quality standards and are recognized as authentic ambassadors of Spanish cuisine in Singapore. The certification process includes a rigorous evaluation of the restaurant’s menu, wine list, service, and overall dining experience. It is valid for one year and is assessed on an annual basis to ensure that certified restaurants maintain the program’s high standards and continue to offer an authentic Spanish dining experience to their customers.

Restaurants from Spain is launching a communication campaign to further promote the certified restaurants in Singapore by reaching out to key influencers and media outlets and sharing exciting news from the restaurants.

To date, a total of 16 Spanish restaurants in Singapore are certified by the program and have received their Restaurants from Spain diploma from the Ambassador of Spain in Singapore. LUMBRE has joined the list of certified establishments in 2023, further enhancing the diverse and vibrant Spanish culinary scene in Singapore.

ASADOR

Asador is a Restaurant inspired by traditional Spanish food and cooking methods. It is located in Joo Chiat—a neighborhood that is up-and-coming to become a food and lifestyle district. This outlet represents the second chapter of the adventure started in 2020 with Next Door Spanish Café. Asador aims to bring a truly Spanish experience that will engage all your senses by cooking food in direct contact with the embers of a fire on a Basque-style grill or in a Castilian oven at high temperatures.

As a company, our mission is to establish an outlet in Singapore to indulge our customers with authentic Spanish flavours cooked from ancestral wood fire cooking styles. Recently, they opened a post-Prohibition era-inspired Cocktail bar: 60ml by Asador.

Chef Javier Vicente Rejas. Born in Valencia (Spain) and quickly start his culinary career abroad after spending a few years working in Spain. His steps led him to cook in Switzerland, the United Kingdom, Finland, and India before he landed in Singapore. Joining forces with Chef Houssein to showcase a part of Spanish DNA through food.

Book Now Asador

BINOMIO

Binomio Spanish Restaurante showcases a menu of authentic Spanish cuisine. The menu includes popular, all-time Spanish favourites as well as personal dishes prepared by their executive chef, Gonzalo Landin. Balancing the taste, texture, appearance, and colors of dishes, guests will be delighted to find that they do not only enjoy what they eat, they will also enjoy what they see.

The menu changes at least 4 times a year depending on available seasonal ingredients. Chef Gonzalo comes up with special dishes and tapas every day, that are based on fresh produce available on that day to add to the dynamism of the food.

Deviating from the traditional approach to presentation, he has also introduced some interesting twists to some of the tapas dishes. Adopting a simple and uncluttered presentation of dishes, guests will be pampered by creative culinary skills and well-crafted dishes.

Book Now Binomio

ESQUINA

Established in December 2011, ESQUINA continues to be in the forefront of the local Spanish food scene in Singapore. The modern

restaurant, spearheaded by Barcelona-born Head Chef Carlos Montobbio, specialises in contemporary cuisine showcasing Spanish and Catalan flavors.

Located at the corner of Jiak Chuan Street, the two-story space is aptly named ESQUINA (“the corner” in Spanish). Offering two distinct experiences, ESQUINA boasts an overall design with both rustic and modern industrial cues that evokes a sense of being in the heart of Spain with its buzzing atmosphere and vibrant setting.

The ground floor features an open-kitchen concept and communal seating that encourages interaction and allows guests to watch the chefs in action.

Sophisticated and refined, the second floor is designed to create an intimate setting perfect for group bookings and private parties.

The brainchild of renowned hotelier and restaurateur Loh Lik Peng, ESQUINA forms part of the Unlisted Collection’s group of design boutique hotels and restaurants in Singapore, London, Shanghai, and Sydney.

Book Now Esquina

FOC Restaurant

FOC Restaurant is the pioneer outlet of FOC Group established in 2014, igniting the rather sleepy Hong Kong Street with its energetic and fun Barcelona spirit. FOC, meaning “fire” in Catalan, is a buzzy, interactive experience, a vibrant Spanish affair in the heart of Singapore.

The 78-seater is located in a refurbished shop house, designed by lauded Barcelona-based design firm, Lagranja. Quintessential Catalan elements have made their way into the art and decor, such as ‘Porrons’ (traditional Spanish wine decanters) remade into lights, wall decals of the legendary ‘Sagrada Familia’, and a playful take on the ‘Correfoc’ (Catalan fire-run) with installations in the shape of giant heads. Banquette seats line the restaurant, with a prized 14-seat bar counter lit with custom-made lamps constructed from pepper grinders. The open-kitchen concept makes for a highly interactive experience, where diners can watch chefs and mixologists working side-by-side, whipping up Fine Fun Food and Drinks from Barcelona.

“Fine Fun Food from Barcelona” features traditional tapas and playful contemporary creations by Michelin-Starred Chef Nandu Jubany and Chef Juanjo Carrillo, providing fine, top-notch quality produce and a fun, creative approach to Spanish cuisine in a laid-back, yet chic atmosphere, evoking the essence of the city of Barcelona.

Book now FOC Restaurant

FOC Sentosa

FOC Sentosa is a Mediterranean Restaurant and Beach Club inspired by Barcelona’s world-famous beach culture, the second outlet opened by FOC Group. In line with the island’s cheery atmosphere, FOC Sentosa transforms from a relaxing morning hangout to an idyllic Mediterranean lunch spot and, come nighttime, a vibrant gastronomic getaway. Combining truly Mediterranean fare, including Paellas, large-format grilled meats and seafood, summery drinks, and a sophisticated yet laid-back atmosphere, the striking two-story locale is the epitome of stylish beachside living.

Located at the east end of tranquil Palawan Beach, the tasteful and airy beachfront space is resplendent with bright interiors and panoramic views of the sea from the second-story private events space, which can be reserved and transformed to accommodate intimate beach weddings, private parties, or corporate events. Seamlessly transitioning between indoor and outdoor spaces, FOC Sentosa caters to a variety of experiences—from beach daybeds and a spacious pool deck to a breezy alfresco terrace and an indoor bar and restaurant to escape the heat. FOC Sentosa was designed by lauded Barcelona-based design firm, Lagranja, and famous Barcelona designer, Javier Mariscal.

The thoughtfully prepared cuisine focuses on the contemporary Mediterranean concept, by Michelin star Chef Nandu Jubany, Alma Mater of FOC Group, and FOC Group Executive Chef Juanjo Carrillo.

Book now FOC Sentosa

GAIG

Located in bustling Telok Ayer district, Restaurant Gaig Singapore is the first international outpost of the Michelin-starred restaurant in Barcelona by Chef Carles Gaig, a celebrated name synonymous with Catalan cuisine. The family-owned restaurant is operated by Carles’ daughter, Núria Gibert, with executive chef Martí Carlos Martínez, who trained under Carles.

To traditional recipes, some as old as 150 years, Chef Marti brings modern cooking techniques, finely-sourced ingredients, and his own personal interpretation to create contemporary dishes that celebrate the vivacious Catalan spirit.

Diners can enjoy a rich array of tapas, paellas, and mains, and a cannelloni recipe that dates from 1869. Now in its 5th generation, the restaurant is steeped in the warm ambiance and heartfelt hospitality the Gaig family is renowned for; making the experience similar to dining in a Catalan home.

A signature at the restaurant, Gaig’s Traditional Cannelloni is a comforting dish of roasted meat wrapped in cannelloni sheets and served with a truffled cream sauce. The 150-year-old recipe, traditionally served during Christmas in Barcelona, makes a year-round appearance here.

Book now GAIG

KULTO

Housed in a historic unit of 87 Amoy Street, KULTO takes its customers on an insider trip to Spain through a sensory experience of Spanish food and decor steeped in history.

KULTO brings a slice of Spain to the dining experience with an iconic feature of Madrid and Barcelona apartments, the wooden shutters. The beautifully restored space is lined with wooden shutters and completed with clean and neutral colours featuring accents of wood – so diners will be in the moment to truly enjoy the food and atmosphere.

A customer’s experience at KULTO is fully taken care of by the Chefs, customers get front-row seats to see them working their magic in the open kitchen, which is an extension of the private dining room. The dishes come out rhythmically, just like parts of a symphony, landing on the tables, where the colours and energy of the food get to shine on their own.

Born and bred in Rioja, Spain, Head Chef José Alonso helms the kitchen of KULTO. Inspired by his heritage, culture, and philosophy of letting good quality products speak for themselves, every plate at KULTO steers close to the traditional rendition of the dish and lets the freshness of seasonal produce take center stage.

“As chefs, we have the power to make people happy… or upset, and quickly. In many other jobs, you can’t really see that. If you’re an architect, you’re going to wait years for people to approve your art”.

Book now Kulto

LUMBRE

Taking its name after the word for fire and warmth in Spanish, Lumbre is a Spanish restaurant bringing the best from land and sea, farm to table, cooked by two signature means of choice – an open wood-fire grill or Josper charcoal oven.

Lumbre is a new dining concept by AC Concepts (who runs Kulto in Amoy Street and Kilo in Duxton) and Plan B (who runs Señor Taco and La Mexicana).

Book now LUMBRE

PURA BRASA

Born in Barcelona in 2010, Spanish restaurant chain Pura Brasa is a concept created by Josper®, the internationally recognised brand of charcoal ovens. Its 100-seater Singapore outlet is its seventh outlet and only overseas outpost, offering an intimate, enjoyable dining experience where diners enjoy a friendly atmosphere while savouring our wide and varied offerings.

Eating at Pura Brasa is the best way to experience the Josper® technology in action. The restaurant’s menu epitomises originality, and showcases a wide variety of dishes: tapas, salads, burgers, seafood and meat, all with the characteristic flavour of grilled cooking. The best products, coupled with the latest cooking technologies, come together to offer a unique gastronomic experience.

Book now PURA BRASA

THE NEXT DOOR SPANISH CAFE

Next Door Spanish Café is a dream of two friends who always wanted to bring a piece of Spain to Singapore. Being situated in a neighbourhood area, chilling and eating traditional tapas and paellas, pairing them with a glass of wine or sangria while you listen to some flamenco music making you feel as if you have been transported to Spain on a summer day.

Chef Houssein Hafian, after studying at the culinary school of Gijon and spending a few years in different restaurants and hotels, arrived in Singapore in 2013 to be part of a Spanish restaurant. In 2019 he decided to give a turn to his life and open Next Door Spanish Cafe. Nowadays, Chef Javier Rejas, originally from Valencia, lends a hand in developing traditional recipes with Chef Houssein.

Book now The Next Door Spanish Cafe

OLIVIA RESTAURANT AND LOUNGE

Olivia Restaurant & Lounge transports guests to a setting that’s unique to Barcelona. Embodying the essence of Mediterranean soul, where values are centred around the kitchen, Olivia Restaurant & Lounge exudes a welcoming atmosphere and champions an elevated homestyle cooking.

The Chef and co-owner Alain Devahive unleashes his culinary wisdom on the curation of the menu, drawing upon more than a decade’s expertise in Michelin starred restaurants, including the unrivalled  El Bulli Restaurant. A meticulous articulation of Alain’s love for quality and versatile ingredients, the food at Olivia Restaurant & Lounge uses hearty and honest flavours inspired by Barcelona, channelling the diversity and eclecticism of the Mediterranean coastal city.

Book now Olivia Restaurant and Lounge

TAPAS,24

In 2006, Chef Carles Abellán opened the award-winning Tapas,24. A stone’s throw from Passeig de Gràcia, the lively tapas bar marries staple Spanish dishes and unfussy service to create one of Barcelona’s hottest dining destinations, which continues to attract locals and tourists alike. While the bustling cobbled streets of Barcelona are littered with pavement cafes and tapas bars, Tapas,24 continues to retain its status as one of the best – and busiest – in town. A convivial atmosphere, innovative twists on classic Spanish cuisine, and stellar selection of Spanish wines and cocktails combine to make this a must-do pit stop for every foodie visitor, as well as a local favourite.

Today, Singapore-based L’Angélus Group in partnership with Chef Carles Abellán has brought that signature Barcelona lifestyle to Singapore with its first Asian outpost, located within the cosmopolitan Quayside neighbourhood.

Coupled with a fun-loving service team that is always ready with a smile, we aim to bring you an authentic Barcelonian experience each time you visit Tapas,24

Drawing inspiration from the original concept, the menu at Tapas,24 Singapore focuses on authentic tapas dishes and aims to bridge the gastronomical distance from Barcelona to Singapore, highlighting bold flavours & encouraging social dining.

Book now TAPAS,24

TAPAS CLUB

Tapas Club – A casual Spanish tapas restaurant chain serving cuisine that remains true to its Spanish roots.

Tapas Club is the birth of Spain’s sophisticated delicacy to the wider public, offering authentic flavours from the Iberian Peninsula. Our restaurants are a casual dining spot, a meeting point that conveys the traditional and authentic Spanish character, every step of the way: ambiance, food and drinks.

Our food pays homage to Spanish identity, traditions, and culture, showcasing classic Spanish tapas, heirloom fresh produce, and home-like recipes. It will not create a fusion with any local or international cuisine, it will maintain purely, 100% traditional Spanish and only tapas style.

It aims to be a passionate tribute to these little bites and regular dishes that are an essential part of Spain like paella, Spanish omelette, garlic prawns, etc. Tapas Club makes an easy and delicious meal when you’re in the vicinity. We carefully prepare each dish using only the best ingredients to make sure that the colour, flavour and texture are perfect to cater to every palate.

We carefully cater a Spanish wine selection to pair with our food. Our selection of wine helps you to travel in Spain enjoying the different grapes and Denomination of Origin such us Rioja, Ribera de Duero, Priorat, etc.

Book now TAPAS CLUB

UNA AT THE ALKAFF MANSION

Housed at Level 2 of The Alkaff Mansion, UNA pays homage to the age-old heritage of Spanish gastronomy with an innovative and contemporary menu that marries authentic signature delicacies from different regions in Spain. Extracting wholesome and robust flavours through modern cooking techniques, experience the best of Spain through sumptuous tapas, paellas, parrilla grills and more.

UNA is your romantic dining destination that balances traditional Spanish flavours with modernity, creativity and soul.

Book now UNA AT THE ALKAFF MANSION

For more info, visit https://www.foodswinesfromspain.com/en/certified-restaurants-from-spain

About “Restaurants from Spain”
The “Restaurants from Spain” certificate is an instrument for the support and recognition of restaurant initiatives that are focused on Spanish cuisine and, by extension, the Spanish culture, guaranteeing the level of quality of these establishments. It recognizes and establishes quality standards and criteria for the consumer who is looking for quality Spanish cuisine, as well as models that can be followed by restaurateurs who may wish to offer Spanish cuisine in other parts of the world. All the restaurants that have the “Restaurants from Spain” certificate will share a feeling of Spanish gastronomy based on genuine roots, ingredients, recipes, and quality

Awarded following a stringent selection process by a joint committee composed of official institutions and sectoral associations strongly linked to gastronomy such as the Royal Academy of Gastronomy, the Ministry of Agriculture, FACYRE, the Regulatory Council for Sherry Wines, ANFACO, INTERPORC, the Spanish Wine Federation, the REPSOL Guide and the Ministry of Tourism of Castilla La Mancha, the certificate will distinguish those establishments that outside Spain offer their diners not only Spanish products but also authentic quality Spanish cuisine, with a unique and differentiated image.

The certification, which will be renewed annually, will have a direct and immediate impact on the HORECA channel, whose activity has been severely affected by the pandemic, by promoting greater knowledge of the restaurant in the country, boosting its occupation, and the dissemination of authentic quality Spanish cuisine.

Besides the certification, the restaurant’s team will receive specialized training in both gastronomy and Spanish wines, thus being able to expand the Spanish culinary offer available on the menu. And in parallel, the certificate will facilitate access to the restaurant, and therefore to the market, to a greater number of suppliers of Spanish products, which will boost the presence of Spanish food and wine around the world.

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