Cover Plant-forward small plates

The new pocket bar concept breathes new life to the space with imaginative offerings that inspire diners to live a little more consciously

Pastry queen Janice Wong’s pocket bar concept, 50Fifty, where culinary talents are invited to showcase their creative menus for a limited period only, has now been rebranded to Mallow. The permanent bar is named after the edible plant that grows abundantly in Denmark and is led by its “muse”, Danish-American chef and forager Christina Rasmussen. The Culinary Institute of America alumnus was formerly the head forager of Noma (ranked The World's Best Restaurant 2021) and conscious dining group Ark Collection.

Joining her is Singaporean head bartender Sasha Wijidessa, who worked at the now-defunct Operation Dagger before moving to Copenhagen in 2019 to become the Asia brand manager of flavour company, Empirical.

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Rasmussen and Wijidessa have put forward a plant-forward menu of tasty bites and creative cocktails which, Rasmussen hopes, will inspire guests to live a little more consciously.

Ramussen adds: “Spending all my days foraging in forests and beaches have given me an encyclopedia of ingredients and flavours that connect my dishes to the native land, wherever it may be. Being immersed in some of Copenhagen’s world-class culinary institutions has inspired many ideas that lend themselves to the dishes created for Mallow today.”

Her dishes are presented in six-course “Taste of Mallow” degustation menu. In order to reduce carbon footprint, a conscious effort was made to remove meat, seafood and dairy from the menu. Instead, the dishes are made with locally grown plants foraged from all over Singapore, as well as herbs and vegetables grown by local and neighbouring farms.  

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The results are delectably impressive from the get-go. A reimagining of the ubiquitous twin tacos, the Wild Wraps uses foraged wild pepper leaves as the wrap for two different fillings: the first is the confit carrots, miso caramel and hazelnut dukkah; the other with caramelised king oyster mushroom with garlic lemon butter and shio koji.

As for the Sourdough and Pesto, the mini buns are baked by homegrown bakery Mother Dough and are served with toasted pine nuts and pumpkin seeds seasoned with shio koji and garlic. In the Tartlet Tears, she revisits her Danish Heritage and draws cues from an old kelp tart recipe from her Noma days. It is essentially a snack of thinly sliced kohlrabi that wraps around a creamy, briny filling made with oyster leaf. It’s finished with bronze fennel, kelp “pepper” and rose petals.

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The plant-forward concept extends to Wijidessa creative cocktails which accompany the degustation menu. Off to the Races is a refreshing combination of charred feta rum and green grapes, while That Easy is an ‘easy’ drink concocted with green apple, yuzu, sumac, red rice sake and a touch of fizz.

Mallow is now open from Wednesday to Sunday, 4pm to 10.30pm. Book here.

Mallow, 1 Nanson Road, 02-07B, InterContinental Singapore, Robertson Quay, S(238909), +65 8399 0679

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