Opus Bar & Grill @ Hilton Hotel: Good Steakhouse with Flaws

Opus Bar & Grill is a relatively new Steakhouse that opened in 2015 and is located in Hilton Hotel on Orchard Road. I went with my dear friends last night for dinner because: (a) there was a 15-20% credit card discount for Citibank Credit Cards; (b) 50% off bottles of wine (free-flow on Sundays to Thursdays) but not applicable together with (a) – hence we chose promotion (a) as it was a better deal; and (c) two of my friends tried last month and raved about it: they have extremely high standards for steak. As it turns out, another foodie friend of mine has visited Opus twice and enjoyed it too. While I arrived at Opus last night with high expectations, Opus’s steak and pork belly exceeded all expectations for they were very good. In fact, I thought the steak quality was better than Bedrock which I just had last week. Service was impeccable too. But all these left me extremely puzzled as to the reason behind the the quiet restaurant on a Friday night that was mostly filled with tourists.  

Our dinner began with the now-I-know-is-an-extremely-common-sight-in-Steakhouses: Bread with butter. Unfortunately the huge roll arrived cold/ room temperature. Now that was unusual. If you must know, I got all diva and asked for the roll to be heated up (not in the name of a food blogger, mind you but for the fact that all the steakhouses I visited recently served their starter bread hot so why shouldn’t Opus?) Anyway the bread roll returned and came back piping hot and lovelyyy. The shallot crust was all crispy, fragrant and so satisfying that I did not even bother with the fluffy white interior. I pray the kitchen did not spit on it.  

Shortly thereafter we were presented with a wooden box and asked to choose our very own steak knife. What an unusual tradition. O.k. I was down for it but in all honestly, I did not think my knife was that sharp. 

Between four of us, we shared the Signature 800g Rangers Valley Angus OP rib dry-aged, marble score 4 (for 2 persons) – $120++. Excluding the bone, the gorgeous meat alone weighed 600g. Grilled in the open-planned kitchen, slices of the beef arrived with an intense char. 

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Cooked to medium rare, as requested, the steak was outrageously tender with tons of fat (yay!) and as beefy as we hoped. I also could not resist grabbing that huge-ass bone and gnawed off that even more tender and charred beef. Maybe it was the quiet restaurant that shook off my inhibition. This was steak done very right. Impressive.

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However I did find problems with the two complimentary sauces for they were sub-par to that hunk of a beast served alongside. The Garlic Herb Butter was a solid piece and wasn’t exactly spreadable. Wait, was I supposed to spread butter on the slices of steak?! The delicious-sounding Black Truffle & Mushroom Sauce was so thin. I expected a thick gravy to compliment the meatiness but it was so liquid. However it was flavourful. But halfway through I realized both did not compliment the steak and used the puree (from the dish below) to go with it.

We ordered an additional protein and this turned out to be equally as impressive as the steak: 36 hours Pork Belly served with Romaine Lettuce, Beetroot and Ginger Pumpkin Puree ($36++). 

The braised pork belly was again, outrageously tender and juicy. Plus that thick and smooth ginger pumpkin puree was unbelievably good! It even went very well with the steak.

All sides at Opus were priced for a value-for-money $6++. At 20% off, I was all ready to go to town. But my friends were not in the same mood so we got just three dishes. We got the Mac & Cheese, Truffle Fries (that lacked truffle flavour) and Grilled Asparagus. The stodgy thick Mac was good with a strong smoky aftertaste. It definitely came close to triumphing my favorite at Bedrock if not for the fact that I prefer that to Opus’s macaroni pasta. Compared to the disappointing fries, I would have happily traded in the truffle fries for more Mac.

After our satisfying mains, we could not resist ordering a couple of Opus’s four desserts. However I did not think the three out of four on the menu were satisfying or exceptional. Desserts at Opus can be improved.

First up was the Chocolate Dome ($12++) that comprised of Bailey’s Ice Cream with Blueberry Crumble, and Hot Chocolate briolette. Subtle flavours (I did not taste any Bailey’s or blueberries) made this an underwhelming sweet ending. 

The Strawberry Composition was an unusual trio of strawberry-flavoured elements like a delicious but tiny strawberry tart, good strawberry sorbet but weak strawberry salad that just tasted of chopped-up strawberries. 

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Another disappointing dessert was the Charcoal Grilled Banana accompanied by smoked salted caramel and coconut calamansi ice cream. Unfortunately the ice cream suffered from a lack of flavour again although the brulee-topped banana was delicious!

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Will I return to Opus Bar & Grill? With the generous discount, sure! Did you see that steak or pork belly up there? Although I will be very selective with the ordering next.

Opus Bar & Grill
581 Orchard Road
Hilton Singapore
Tel: 65 6730 3390
Daily: 6.30pm – 10.30pm
Nearest Station: Orchard Road

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