SINGAPORE RESTAURANT

Braci

A secret modern Italian open kitchen and rooftop bar above Boat Quay.

Contemporary Italian restaurant group Il Lido, who most recently brought us the pleasures of Aura at National Gallery Singapore, have followed up with a much cozier concept above the bustle of Boat Quay. Braci, just a few buildings down from their already popular Southbridge rooftop bar, comprises a 16-seater restaurant with an open kitchen and, upstairs, an alfresco bar with a small but solid cocktail program. Little separates chefs Beppe de Vitto and Mirko Febbrile and their team from the diners, save a large kitchen island, so not only do they have to cook with you watching, they have to look good doing it! Upstairs, the alfresco bar is much smaller than Southbridge, and the vibe is very different from the dining room, with glowing tables and a retractable roof for rainy days. The small, modern Italian menu is simple, beautifully and unfussily presented and is sprinkled with lovely little touches and techniques. Get the romanesco, served alongside a burrata mousse, and topped with toasted hazelnuts, little dots of pickled vegetable pesto and shavings of bottarga. Also delightful is the cannellone ($38), boiled but not baked, filled with scampi and a puree of sweet peas and truffle, served with a luscious egg yolk and topped with a veal jus. 

The buzz: Contemporary Italian restaurant group Il Lido, who most recently brought us the pleasures of Aura at National Gallery Singapore, have followed up with a much cozier concept above the bustle of Boat Quay. Braci, just a few buildings down from their already popular Southbridge rooftop bar, comprises a 16-seater restaurant with an open kitchen and, upstairs, an alfresco bar with a small but solid cocktail program.

The vibe: Wander down the Boat Quay juggernaut and you might miss the entrance to Braci completely. Pro tip: it's the little door to the left of Imakatsu Japanese restaurant. Walk down a sleek, Matrix-esque hallway and take the elevator up. The dining room is pretty casual with blondwood chairs, tables for parties of two and four, windows over Boat Quay and the all-important open kitchen. And when we say open kitchen, we mean open. Little separates chefs Beppe de Vitto and Mirko Febbrile and their team from the diners, save a large kitchen island, so not only do they have to cook with you watching, they have to look good doing it! The point of pride here is the Josper oven and the charcoal shrichirin grill (Braci means ember, btw). Upstairs, the alfresco bar is much smaller than Southbridge, and the vibe is very different from the dining room, with glowing tables and a retractable roof for rainy days.

The food: Don't expect a tome detailing pasta sauces and pizza toppings. The small, modern Italian menu is simple, beautifully plated and sprinkled with thrililng little touches and techniques. Take the romanesco starter ($24), for example. Romanesco is steamed, then grilled and served alongside a burrata mousse (which is a fantastic idea!), and topped with toasted hazelnuts, little dots of pickled vegetable pesto and shavings of bottarga, all resulting in a deep and complex savoriness. Also delightful is the cannellone ($38), boiled but not baked, filled with scampi and a puree of sweet peas and truffle, served with a luscious egg yolk and topped with a veal jus. Mains have some nice accompaniments, too, like the grilled heirloom carrots that come with the tender, house-aged duck ($38) and the sea urchin sabayon that comes with the Miyazaki wagyu sirloin ($88). You can also opt for a five-course omakase at $100 per person.

The drinks: Take in views of the river bend while sipping on the brief and well-executed cocktail list here. Classics like the rye-based Boulevardier ($24) and the Toronto ($25) are balanced and generous with the booze. They also have the Sbagliatissimo, an oh-so-Italian twist on the Negroni, with Cynar (artichoke liquor), Amaro Montenegro and Bombay Sapphire ($18). The gin selection is especially interesting, including the Gin Marconi ($17) by renowned grappa producers Poli and Kyro Napue ($8) from Finland, along with other craft gins that are becoming all but standard now, such as The Botanist and Monkey 47. Like your gin in a cocktail? Go for their signature G & Tea ($25), which involves a mix of Marconi, Bombay and Monkey 47 along with lemon ginger tea.

Why you'll be back: You love a good, unfussy rooftop bar and interesting and delicious Italian-leaning food. Or you're taking your secret squeeze on a post-work date.

Venue Details
Address: Braci, 52 Boat Quay, Singapore, 049841 Singapore
Phone: 6866-1933
Website: www.braci.sg
Area: Boat Quay
Cuisine: Italian
Price Range: $$$ - $$$$
Open since: September, 2016
Opening hours: Mon-Sat 5pm-12:15am
Nearest trainClarke Quay
Alfresco, Reservation recommended
Report a correction