The fall of L’Aigle d’Or


When you talk about fine French dining in Singapore, invariably the name L’Aigle d’Or will crop up. It was considered one of the finest French restaurants in Singapore.

Granted over the years, the Chefs working there were highly temperamental and your meals were a reflection of their temper. However service, has always been excellent.

And, what drew me to them is their cheese cart. By far the most complete with quinces and mince to go with every cheese you can think of and then some.

This is why I’ve left off writing about my experience and impression there at the April Slow Food Function for a while.

L’Aigle d’Or has changed hands many times and is no longer owned or operated by the Duxton Berjaya. The people who made it great are no longer there.

Anyway, the service has much to be desired for. Their lack of experience with dealing with high-end restaurant customers really shows. Holding four wine glasses in one hand and handing them out to be passed around the table by the guests does not do L’Aigle d’Or’s reputation a bit of good at all.

And somehow, serving wine in Ikea wine glasses smacks of something less than the famed elegance that made L’Aigle d’Or famous.

The food was uninspiring and I get the feeling that it was either the Chef’s off day or he has little or no experience cooking for a large crowd of 40-50 people.

Amuse Bouche Foie Gras Terrine with Rhubarb Chutney Pan-fried Jumbo Prawn, Vanilla- Salsify Mousseline and Pistachio Cream Duck Confit, Saute Ratte Potato, Jerusalem Artichoke And Marjoram Jus Crabmeat Ravioli with Baby Chard and Smoked Red Wine Sauce

Served either lukewarm or simply cold, it was really a letdown. Do note the different plates that were used: the designs were all haphazardly used.

Also, in a restaurant, the air-conditioning is important as ventilation is required. Furthermore, a lower temperature is required to drink the wines; too warm and the wines will taste flat and too cold, the wines will taste harsh.

To turn down the air-conditioning just because a guest chose to wear a T-shirt at a fine French restaurant is not a good practice. The other guests have to suffer because of someone else’s faux pas.

And when I asked the air-conditioning to be turned up as the guests at my table were complaining of the stifling heat, the restaurant manager said that we drank too much and it is not the air-conditioning.

I do not see much of a future there.

While I appreciate that everyone is busy, I feel that one should not fob a lame excuse that accuses the customer. It smacks of laziness and a lack of regard of service.

Just in case, when asked to turn down the air-conditioning because of a draft, a few things can be offered in lieu, trading places with another guest for instance. No gentleman can resist the request of a lady, albeit in a t-shirt. Every restaurant should have a clean shawl or a coat ready.

No. Mediocre food, bad service, cheap cutlery and fine dining do not make good bedfellows.

Have a moment of silence as we lament the fall of a fine French restaurant.

Sidenote: The people who run the restaurant now also have a dessert place at Zion road (near Havelock road). It serves 400 different kinds of dessert all day. They sound very proud of it.

Unfortunately, the first thing that pops into our minds as we hear that is a warning flag called "Freshness and Hygiene".

Posted on 28th May 2006 in Food and Drink


There Are 3 Comments


budak commented on May 28, 2006 at 4:03 pm



E commented on May 28, 2006 at 10:25 pm

Si…their food are bland…and when we told them…the manager said we cldn’t appreciate French fine dining…


ivan commented on May 29, 2006 at 12:00 am

@E: Wow. What an asshole he is.

@budak: Keine Handlung bedeutet. Gerade verletzt an der Haltung des Gaststätte-Managers. Folgendes Mal holen ein Schal-O.K.?

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