I remember reading a review about this place on Asiaone in December, right after we came back from Scandinavia, and telling A that we should come here to relive our holiday memories. Somehow, the review gave me the impression that it was a quaint little restaurant with a warm, cosy interior much like a little stone hut, and a ceiling with tiny little lights, almost like sitting under a starry sky.
Reality could not be more different. The restaurant, along the Millenia Walk stretch of restaurants, is very basically decorated and looks like any other generic café, and the ‘starry’ lights are actually just an array of pendant lamps hanging from the ceiling.
The menu was again a surprise. Amidst some traditional Scandinavian dishes like herring, smoked salmon, Swedish meatballs and Scandinavian roast pork, there were some totally unexpected items like tom yam soup, curry chicken and a Japanese style linguine with fish roe and seaweed.
A had the Traditional Scandinavian Soup to start with – a chicken broth with tiny meatballs, little flour dumplings and chopped vegetables. This was nice and warming (the restaurant was pretty cold because it was empty), and reminded us a little of the reindeer soup that we had in Lapland. I had, surprise surprise, the fried chicken wings, which were coated with a thick batter which ensured that the wings retained their heat. They were quite greasy and salty, but strangely addictive at the same time.
For our main course, I had the liver pate open-faced sandwich, which was rye bread with liver pate, crispy bacon and sautéed mushrooms with some salad. This was a bit of a letdown because although the pate was nice and smooth, the rye bread was quite chewy and the bacon was incredibly salty. A’s main course was much better – the Scandinavian roast pork with crackling, served with red wine braised cabbage and roast potatoes. I wish we’d taken photos, because the crackling was certainly something else. It was incredibly puffy and crispy, and the pork was quite tender and juicy too.
I think the roast pork is probably the only dish worth coming back for, but with still a long list of should-try places, I don’t think this place warrants a repeat visit any time soon.
I was damn scared we’d be the only customers in this place that night but luckily, another couple ventured in as well. The service was definitely excellent, but then with only 2 tables occupied, you’d expect it to be.
I can’t really recommend this place as a Scandinavian themed restaurant because it just really isn’t. And the menu is just too schizo for my liking. If anything, I’d say it’s an interesting sandwich joint and nothing more.
Aböf Restaurant & Tea Lounge
Millenia Walk #01-109
9 Raffles Boulevard
Tel: 6338 7113
Opening hours: 8:30am - 11pm daily, last order at 10pm