Fine French omakase along Duxton Road
Restaurant JAG is the brainchild of Michelin Starred-Chef Jeremy Gillon and restauranteur Anant Tyagi, who met during their stints at ME@OUE Singapore. In a cosy shophouse along Duxton Road, the duo present a charming French fine dining experience that will surely catch the eye of serious foodies.
The hype: Two maestros in the fine dining scene have come together for a venture unlike any other. Restaurant JAG is the brainchild of Michelin Starred-Chef Jeremy Gillon and restauranteur Anant Tyagi, who met during their stints at ME@OUE Singapore. In a cosy shophouse along Duxton Road, the duo present a charming French fine dining experience that has not only caught the eye of serious foodies, but earned them a Michelin Star as well.
The vibe: Step through the doors and you’re whisked instantly away from the streets of Duxton, into a space that feels genuinely European. Just five tables and an airy, open kitchen area occupies most of Restaurant JAG’s quiet first floor. Against custom wood and stonework, have an intimate meal with loved ones; or take your conversations upstairs to cocktail bar IB HQ (they work very closely together), which also gives way to a fun top-down view of the kitchen below.
The food: The best way to enjoy the restaurant's offerings is via their French omakase experience. For lunch, get the more extravagant 6-course $175 omakase degustation if you have time to linger, or opt for the simpler 4-course set lunch for $98, if you're more in a hurry. A personalised, 8-course French omakase offering awaits for dinner ($223 each), and it's the one we'd recommend going for.
At Restaurant JAG, Chef Gillon refocuses back on his French roots with a French (especially of the Savoie region) herb-driven menu of exquisite eats. Seasonal vegetables and seafood also play prominently here, with meats taking a back seat. As you'll find when dining here, this is actually a good thing.
Be treated to a luxurious canape course from the start. During our visit (it was summer season), we had an amazingly-balanced pea tartlette as an opener. Fresh and creamy, this was a great sign of things to come. We then finished several more canapes even before the amuse bouche came (yes, they are generous like that). The amuse bouche itself is a play on the various textures of corn, where you're treated to cream of corn, popcorn powder and more with each spoonful.
When it's time for mains, it's their heirloom tomato salad dish that was the first to truly impress. Find the tomatoes resting on a plate of tart, refreshing honey vinegar sauce that when had together, works magic on your tongue. And when we thought it couldn't get any better, the next dish impressed yet once more. Here, Chef Gillon has turned cabbage into a truly appetising item. Served as vegetable chips, you'll be craving for more thanks to how well they go with the mussels and clams in the dish.
An amazing langoustine course appears around midway. This one is worth mentioning, for how it harmonizes so well the tastes of the crustacean, with unique uses of chlorophyll and nuts for a grassy, earthy bliss. Then comes our final main (after another main and a palate refresher), our first meat dish of the day. It's quail; meaty enough to quell any cravings for real meat you may have, but light and delicate enough that it doesn't overpower the lively, elegant notes offered by the vegetables and seafood thus far.
Before dessert comes a cheese trolly (we counted at least 15 types to choose from) and a pre-dessert, that's all part of the omakase experience. Like we said, they're generous, and an 8-course here certainly feels like a 10- or 11-course offering. Surely, no one will be left unsatisfied at Restaurant JAG.
The dessert itself is sublime by the way, a dish of chocolate, olives and herbs so moreish you'd actually want more even though you're likely at capacity at this point. It's also a nice touch that once you're done with your entire meal, they'll bring out jars of the Savoie herbs used in all the dishes you just ate. Look at 'em, smell 'em, and get a better appreciation of the diversity and richness of the region's culinary produce.
The drinks: Find a wine pairing program very much in line with the theme of the cuisine here. For dinner, the pairing comes at $198. The range we tried during our visit included bottlings from Savoie itself, showcasing the variety you can get from the many sub-regions and often-isolated vineyards there.
When dining, you'll likely notice a digestif cart tucked away near the kitchen too. From potent armagnacs to rare whiskys and unheard of plum liqueurs, they all make fine endings to an already fine meal.
Why you’ll be back: It’s always great to see a chef step out on his own, and Restaurant JAG is an artfully executed, sophisticated establishment by Chef Gillon. Beyond the refined flavours, it’s the team’s warm hospitality (and genuine enthusiasm for something as peripheral as herbs) that will draw you back—something you don’t always find in a fine dining French restaurant.