The Ocean・The Ocean
Date of review: July 15, 2016 | Reviewed by: Rachel Duffell
The Ocean occupies a luxurious setting within The Pulse in Repulse Bay, offering diners spectacular vistas out to sea. In keeping with the superior views, design is minimal but sleek and inspired by the seaside setting. In fact, the large windows that offer views of sky and sea see their colours make an almost seamless transition indoors to complement the restaurant’s colour palette of hues of blues, turquoise and white. Tables are well spaced and decked out with crockery that has been especially made in Bali and cutlery from Hermes. Round booths offer the best seating, comfortably apportioned, particularly when there are just two dining and both can look out to sea while you enjoy its fruits.
As its name suggest, the menu at The Ocean is focused on seafood, and in fact, those who do not eat fish need not visit as there is little on the menu that caters to those otherwise inclined.
An eight-course degustation menu is offered, as well as a detailed but relatively short a la carte menu – diners choose from four appetisers and four mains with the optional addition of a caviar course.
Prior to the arrival of the starters, a selection of creatively put together cold and hot complimentary appetizers are presented and range from oysters with mango, and a lobster tartar with Parmesan cream and foam presented in an egg shell, to polenta cake and black truffle puffs, followed by homemade onion bread with whipped butter and sea salt. Not a bad way to begin.
The signature tomato collection is a highlight for both the eyes and the tastebuds, offering a collection of components that complement each other beautifully. Sweet tomatoes contrast with sharp yuzu pearls, while lightly grilled squid and the savoury creaminess of burrata add further complexity. In another well thought-out appetiser, succulent pieces of lobster match with a smooth sweet corn puree in a dish that tastes better than its presentation on the plate might otherwise suggest.
Main courses are outstanding with a charcoal grilled seabass nicely crisped skin-side and served with a creamy and well-seasoned combination of wild rice and carnaroli rissoti, a squeeze of lemon cutting through the smoothness of the risotto to make way for the tender seabass. Salmon en croute is a bronzed parcel of perfectly cooked salmon, served with a flavourful green celery puree and comparatively ordinary pieces of broccoli placed upside down to either side.
An optional artisanal cheese course is comprised of a good selection presented according to diners’ preferences and served with homemade fig jam, apricot jam, walnuts and honey. The menu comes to a close with a light passionfruit, champagne granite, coconut foam and crispy yet lightly chewy meringue that pairs well with the floaty coconut foam and sweet yet slightly tart passionfruit.
A well-versed sommelier is on hand to help you choose from the extensive selection of wines on offer at The Ocean. The collection of white wines in particular, is extensive – as might be expected at a seafood restaurant, though the range of reds is also decent, with selection of each organised by grape. If celebrating and bubbles are called for, diners will not be disappointed by the huge range of champagnes and sparkling wines on offer. Pair your wine with water that is filtered and purified in-house to save on importing bottled water, with half of the $28 charge for 900ml of either still or sparkling water going towards a charitable organisation with a mission of cleaning up and conserving our oceans.
From being greeted by name on arrival to a fond farewell, service at The Ocean was impeccable. The menu was explained when required and dishes introduced with suitable fanfare. Glasses rarely remained empty for long, if at all, and a friendly member of staff was never far away.
Three courses with an additional course of cheese to share and a glass of wine came in at $2800. Considering the pleasant setting and the quality and creativity of food with the added confidence that you are eating responsibly sourced seafood, a meal at The Ocean is worth the price tag.