This seafood restaurant on the 4th floor of ION Orchard is part of the group that includes The Prime Society. Ironically, we actually tried desperately to get a Restaurant Week table at Prime Society cos the menu looked awesome and very reasonable (Hokkaido scallops, gunpowder wagyu, all for $35), but I guess everyone had the same idea because it was booked solid. We decided on The Nautilus Project when A saw gnocchi featured on the menu.
Starters were a choice of Tuna Nicoise salad, or Crab and Corn Chowder. The salad was alright – they were pretty generous with the slices of seared tuna, and the poached egg on top was a nice touch, but overall I found it slightly underseasoned. The chowder fared much better – very flavourful and chockfull of crab meat and corn kernels.
A naturally ordered the home-made gnocchi with braised oxtail, lemon, rosemary, mint and peas. I didn’t taste much of the lemon or mint, but the sauce was good and the meat was very tender. The gnocchi had a good texture too – not too heavy and floury.
I had the Nautilus Soup Kettle – a spicy Thai coconut broth with mussels, clams, prawns and fish served with steamed rice. It was a bit too creamy, even for me, and I would have appreciated slightly more pronounced Thai flavours, but overall not bad.
Dessert was warm chocolate fondant with pistachio brittle and white espresso ice cream. This was really good, particularly the ice cream. It looked like vanilla but had a really strong espresso flavour. What was slightly disconcerting was the popping candy that was sprinkled on the plate. I initially thought they were chocolate rice krispie bits, so imagine my surprise when they started exploding in my mouth. Interesting touch.
Unlike Julien Bompard, this meal does inspire me to return to try out the other offerings on their regular menu. Service was polite, food was fast, and the only criticism is the fact that the windows form the facade of ION, so the everchanging lights can be a bit overwhelming.
Good service, and while the view is great, the changing colours of Ion’s external lighting really throw you off.
The food here’s not bad and since I doubt it’s ever crowded, it’s probably a new option for us when we come to Ion.
The Nautilus Project
2 Orchard Turn
#04-09, ION Orchard
Mon – Fri: 11 am to 10.30 pm
Sat – Sun: 10.30 am to 10.30 pm