Known to be the largest al fresco restaurant in the heart of Orchard Road, Alfresco Gusto serves modern Italian fare. Alas, due to the haze, I had no choice but to forgo the idea of dining outside to save my vulnerable lungs.
The restaurant is managed by Gusttimo World that has been around since 2007, which simple motto is to "bring good food to the table". My little bear couldn't wait to indulge in his appetiser! :D
Mozzarella Cheese Balls S$14.00
Even though the balls of deep-fried mozzarella cheese were a bit greasy, I enjoyed their crunchiness, as well as the sticky texture of the filling.
Yet, what made them even better would be the spicy tomato sauce - infused with garlic, onions and herbs - which hit the right spots. It could, however, be just slightly thicker.
Squid Ink and Prawn Risotto S$26.00
The presentation of this particular dish was pleasing, even though there could be more of the chopped spring onions. The briny iodine smell was evident in the short-grain rice, but it was neither weak nor overpowering. Overall, it could be creamier, but what shone in the dish were the prawns which were seared and seasoned well.
The best catch of the day would be the sea bass, pan-fried till crispy and topped with tangy mango salsa. The fresh fish that sat on a bed of delightful beetroot quinoa had natural sweetness oozing from its flesh, even though it was a bit too thin. Besides that, the asparagus stalks were surprisingly pretty juicy despite the looks.
Gusto Tiramisu S$15.00
The perennially favourite Italian dessert came in a nice balance between the coffee-soaked ladyfingers and the mascarpone custard. I really dislike those which have too much of the creamy stuff, and I was glad that the restaurant wasn't guilty of that. Yet, even though the menu states the use of Kahlua and Marsala wine, they were hardly detectable.
Gusto Mocktail S$10.00
The alcohol-free drink came in a glass that was definitely big enough. It was a refreshing concoction of orange, lemon, green apple, cucumber and mint. Being mildly sweet, it could do with less ice cubes.
The restaurant does have an interesting array of appetiser dishes, which is one of the reasons why I'd love to come back one day. Pika's advice: The three guys sitting at the table next to mine seemed to be enjoying their pizzas. You may want to try one of their pizza dishes!
2 Orchard Turn
#01-15 ION Orchard
(Sun-Thu: 11.00am - 12 midnight; Fri-Sat: 11.00am - 2.00am)
*Prices quoted are subject to 10% service charge and 7% GST.
Have a nice meal,