Just about 1 o'clock from the entrance of Forty Hands sits Open Door Policy, the newish baby also by the folks from Forty Hands, together with Chef Ryan Clift of The Tippling Club. Designed to be a casual bistro with affordable fare, and great coffee, ODP is set to be the next cool kid on the block.
The decor certainly fits the bill. I particularly like the zinc-roof-look-alike design of the sunroof allowing natural light, and the limited number of sushi-counter-style seats upfront, right in front of the open kitchen.
You get an old-school folder that doubles up as a menu cover, a rather clever idea most befitting of the equally old-school estate the restaurant sits in. The food selection appears to be your "usual fare" at first glance but actually involves modern twists. And vegetarians won't have to fret about having nothing to eat. There are pretty tantalizing choices available.
The starter of tuna carpaccio with radish and yuzu dressing was shared. Not a fan of tuna in general, I thought it was just okay. The stand-out though, was the dressing - slightly citrusy, sweet, salty, all at once. Pure goodness. For the first time I wished I had more dressing. This is a very light and healthy dish, perfect for those into that sort of flavors.
The other starter that I ordered was a watercress soup served with a poached egg and truffle soil. Now, I love my greens and have quite a high tolerance for bitterness. That said, I was really challenged by this soup! Stirring in the creamy rich yolk was but a futile attempt to mask the intense bitterness. To be honest, I was this close to aborting the soup for good but held on for health's sake. But I personally really would not order it again.
For the main course, my friend ordered the duck confit with puy lentils cooked with smoked bacon. The dish looked delicious and was deemed so.
On the other hand, I ordered the grilled salmon with panzella salad. The fish fillet had a lovely crisp skin, but stayed a little too long in the oven so the inside wasn't as pink as it could be. The saving grace was the panzella salad that was made with chunks of fried (or could be baked) croutons that had been tossed with colorful peppers and a vinaigrette dressing that was tangy and salty.
We didn't have much room for dessert so we decided to go straight to the coffee. Strong, aromatic coffee notes paired with creamy, sweet steamed milk, oh that was one good piccolo latte that remains etched in my memories.
The meal was interesting enough to warrant a return and I am quite delighted ODP is open late, and on Sundays too.
19 Yong Siak St
Mon–Sun: 12pm–4pm, 6.30pm–11pm
(Closed on Tue)
Tel: +65 6221 9307