Mamma Mia!

Mamma Mia!

These Italian eateries are sure to satisfy even the most demanding mafia dons for authentic, appetizing Italian fare. And it will definitely satisfy you.
Russell Leong
Russell Leong

@twystpasta is a build-your-own-pasta joint that puts their own twist on everyone’s beloved Italian staple. They’ve never been on my radar until they recently began operating in Singpost Center, right under my gym. Well that’s quite the pleasant surprise, I guess that’s my post workout bulking meals sorted then. If you’re undecided and unsure of what to eat, Twyst has six default pasta options for you to select and they all look plenty pleasant, or you can go wild & build your own pasta.⠀

I chose to build my own pasta on a sauce base of Miso Butter, one of Twyst’s unique, well, twists. I find myself gravitating towards penne in recent years, and penne was the pasta of choice here. You get to choose a topping (think baby spinach, cherry tomatoes and other assorted vegetables) and a protein, so smoked duck & baby spinach it was for me. Of course, that wasn’t the end of it, and I added more smoked duck for the low price of an additional $2.20, cherry tomatoes for a mere $1.20, and more garlic for free. The grand total was a bargain, as this ponderous pasta plate cost all of fifteen dollars and forty cents flat.⠀

The miso butter was rich and notably sweet, and while I was wondering why a miso butter would be this sweet, I certainly didn’t mind it. The sweetness matched the saltiness, and both were potent enough to flavour everything without overwhelming your palate. The penne was done slightly past al dente, but it wasn’t egregiously so. I was proudly patting myself on the back for ordering an extra portion of smoked duck, as I got a whole lot of juicy, savoury smoked duck for just an extra couple of bucks. As for the veg, they’re quite well cooked, and they give pleasant pops of colour to the pasta.⠀

Don’t get it twysted, @twystpasta prices might be a bargain, but their pastas are blockbuster stuff.

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Don’t knock Gnocchi in Bacon Cream ($22++) till you try it. It’s a simple yet decadent pasta dish that you can get a sweet 1-for-1 deal on thanks to #burpplebeyond. That’s right, two plates of great gnocchi for under twenty bucks apiece!⠀

These little Italian potato dumplings are cooked just right, as they are not gummy like overcooked ones tend to be, and they are soft with a pleasant chewiness. Of course, the sauce is what elevates these simple little potato balls, and oh boy did the bacon cream elevate this dish to Flavortown. It was rich, creamy and superbly salted, possessing the right amount of thickness to coat the back of a spoon, as well as the entirety of each gnocchi. The bacon bits were nicely crisped up, but there really needed to be more bacon in there to make an obvious impact on the dish. According to the menu description, there was supposed to be sun-dried tomatoes in there, but that was missing.⠀

Still, the luscious bacon cream, plus the gnocchis themselves, were more than enough to make the gnocchi worth a try with Burpple Beyond. Thanks for having us, & @burpple!


The most memorable surprise at was just how divine all their duck dishes were. Their Duck Leg Risoni ($30++) features a whole confit duck leg perched on a mound of red wine risoni pasta. It’s a truly unique offering, and despite its shortcomings, it’s still worth at least a try.⠀

As mentioned before, the dick confit was divine, the meat was tremendously tender and the duck retained all of its juices, making every moist morsel incredibly enjoyable. The fowl was sufficiently salty, and the skin sported a dark sear on it, adding a nice charred aroma to the duck. Perhaps most impressive of all was how well Picolino managed to render out a large quantity of the duck fat from under the skin while still maintaining meat moisture.⠀

The red wine risoni on the other hand, was promising but didn’t quite live up to expectations. The flavour of the red wine sauce suggested that the red wine hadn’t been properly cooked off, as the boozy bitterness permeated the whole pasta dish instead of the fruity sweetness expected from a properly cooked red wine reduction. The risoni itself was decent, cooked slightly past al dente for a softer chew and drizzled with balsamic vinegar for a little acidity to the dish.⠀

If you find yourself at Picolino, don’t duck, embrace the fowl and enjoy its meaty marvels. Sweeten your meal even more by getting this two of this delish duck dish for the price of one, thanks to #burpplebeyond! Thank you for hosting us, and thanks for the invite @burpple!


Cacio e Pepe is a deceptively simple sounding pasta. How could a pasta that only requires Pecorino Romano cheese, freshly ground black pepper and pasta go wrong? Well, you’d be shocked, as cacio e pepe seems to be something of a tricky one to get right. Fortunately, certainly nails it with their magnificent Mafalde Cacio e Pepe ($18++, additional $8 for a hamburg steak on top).⠀

Mafalde is the curlier brother of the straight laced fettuccine, and the little crevices of the curls are the perfect trap for peppery cheese sauce that coats the pasta. The mafalde is soft with a decent bite, and each strand is amply coated with the rich, cheesy sauce that’s born out of the marriage of Pecorino Romano cheese and starchy pasta water in a hot pan. The sauce was charmingly cheesy, remarkably rich and slightly tempered with the heat form the freshly ground black pepper.⠀

Due to the fact that this sauce is essentially just hot liquefied cheese, you gotta dig in the minute it is served. Unfortunately, we took far too long to take photos, and it ended up going cold. Still, the Cacio e Pepe was tremendously tasty, and the mafalde was a treat to eat. The fried egg added extra decadence to the already luscious pasta, which wasn’t needed but was still fully welcomed. I’d skip the hamburg steak though, as it was notably dry and not particularly well seasoned.⠀

Thank you for the invite, @burpple &!



I was initially gonna put this one into my burgeoning backlog, but then I heard that only has very limited portions of their new seasonal MS9 Mayura Platinum Wagyu Hayashi Lasagnotte.⠀

At $39++, this is definitely a premium dish, but the quality far outstrips the price of admission. A lasagnotte is just an extra long lasagnette, which is the lasagna sheet pasta. Yes, your eyes do not deceive you, that is one solid, massive sheet of pasta that’s made right in house. It’s sauced to the gills with a red wine demi glacé, in which the Mayura Platinum Wagyu, mushrooms, and sliced onions luxuriate.⠀

As expected from a cut of Wagyu with a Marbling Score of nine, the chunky cuts of beef were terrifically tender and so fantastically fatty. They might’ve come from a tougher cut of cow like the brisket or chuck, but it come from a fat Wagyu cow so even these traditionally lean cuts are well marbled with fat. Plus, they’re braised to tender perfection in that red wine demi glacé, so these cuts of beef crumble easily.⠀

Speaking of the red wine demi glacé, it was the true star of this sensational show. The divine demi glacé is so supremely savoury & beefy, it’s almost as if the chefs managed to distill the essence of a whole cow down into this ridiculously rich & redolent sauce, and then enhance its flavours by adding red wine for extra aroma and butter for extra richness. This demi glacé is a demigod in the flavour world, for its rich sapidity is truly divine.⠀

Even though the mushrooms & onions may have been completely eclipsed by the divine demi glacé and the breathtaking beef, they were a vital component of this lasagnotte nonetheless. The button & shimeji mushroom mix provided a nice bouncy contrast to the soft luxuriousness of everything else, and the soft crunch of onions and its sweetness provide some much needed contrast.⠀

The only very minor nitpicks we had were that the lasagnotte was not quite al dente, and the button mushrooms could’ve been sautéed for more flavour. Still, this seasonal special is absolutely Ameising.⠀

Thanks for having us,!


Bro, what’s a brodo? Despite sounding like the Malay word for an idiot, it’s a broth that’s thinner & less concentrated than the usual beef stock. Even though it’s supposedly less concentrated, Spicy Chorizo & Seafood Tomato Brodo ($30++) is no less flavourful than any of its counterparts out there.⠀

The brodo is less concentrated meat stock and more spicy clear tomato soup, and each sip of broth will titillate your tastebuds with its savoury, tangy & spicy qualities. Despite its thin, liquid body, the brodo was the perfect bath for the freshly made pappardelle, which possessed an addictive chew. The Spicy Chorizo & Seafood Tomato Brodo is the most expensive pasta on Ameising La Volta’s menu, but it is also the most lavish.⠀

Even though the pair of tiger prawns weren’t quite as fresh as possible, they were still passable, and they hoovered up all that breathtaking brodo for maximum flavour. Protip: mix the brains & juices in the prawn head into the brodo for extra flavour. The abundant amount of clams in the pasta were fantastically fresh, and there is a charitable portion of fresh, subtly sweet shredded crabmeat in the pasta, plus there are copious chunks of spicy & smoky chorizo for maximum meaty satisfaction. Sautéed capsicum slices are present for little textural changes, injecting crunch into the soft, springy elements in this palatable pasta.⠀

Not only is Ameising La Volta’s stellar Spicy Chorizo & Seafood Tomato Brodo loaded with lots of indulgent ingredients, it’s also fully laden with lots of fabulous flavours. Better yet, they’re on #burpplebeyond too, so you can get two of their peerless pastas for the price of one! Thank you so much for inviting @wobblethebui & I,!


Oh look, have created a pink pasta to celebrate the release of the Barbie movie! All (crappy) pop culture references aside, I haven’t a clue what goes into the pink sauce of Ameising La Volta’s King Prawns in Pink Sauce ($26++). However, I do know that it makes people happy when it goes onto their tastebuds. Despite the luxe ingredients that go into this plate of pasta, it’s still a simple dish at heart. Seared king prawns, fresh pasta, that piquant pink sauce, and shavings of parmesan cheese are all that constitute this pasta, but that’s all that’s needed.⠀

The fresh linguine was a perfect pair with the thick pink sauce, which clung to each strand of pasta tightly. The fresh pasta possessed a lovely texture, with a satisfying snap to every bite. The pink sauce was creamy, savoury, deeply umami, and just a little sweet. It might be tomato based, but it has ascended far past its initial form and I can’t identify what it might’ve been before. As for the foursome of king prawns, they all sported a sexy sear, but the crustaceans were slightly past their freshest. The prawn meat was lacking some firmness, and the shells had gone slightly soft and were a chore to peel.⠀

Despite the slightly less than fresh prawns, the King Prawns in Pink Sauce reigns supreme with the absolute deliciousness of that luscious pink sauce. Thank you for hosting us,, and thanks to @wobblethebui for being my plus one!⠀


While free pizza at @thepizzapastaprojectsg was awesome, their pastas were alluring enough that I was compelled to order a Wild Mushroom Penne and add some chicken breast to it ($7.90, $3 for chicken breast). The flavours in this pasta were WILD, yo. I’ve noticed a trend with quite eateries & restaurants making their mushroom cream sauces so good they could stand alone as a decent mushroom soup, and I’m here for it.⠀

The incredibly rich cream sauce is full of sliced button mushrooms, and they even fortified the cream with chopped mushrooms. What you get is heavy hit of the heady, earthy aroma of mushrooms mixed with the smooth, indulgent richness of the cream. The al dente penne manages to trap some extra cream within its hollow construction occasionally, and everything is a savoury symphony of flavours all performing in harmony. The slices of chicken breast pulled their own weight too, but any inherent dryness was washed away by the unrelenting richness of the cream sauce.⠀

The Pasta Pizza Project aren’t just pizza specialists, they’re plenty proficient with pastas too. If I were to grade this, The Pasta Pizza Project would get an easy A without a doubt.

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@iox_sg Houston Fettuccine Alfredo ($19 before 10% service charge) usually has prawns in it, but since one of my pals was allergic to shellfish, the head chef & owner very kindly agreed to switch the shellfish for chicken. At first glance, this rendition of fettuccine alfredo is far from being glam for the gram, but once you take that fateful first bite, you will sing its praises for a long, long time.⠀

So, what makes this cream based pasta so downright delightful? Firstly, the consistency of the sauce is utterly flawless. It’s thick, creamy and so seductively smooth, but not once does it ever come close to being surfeiting. A pure cream sauce that’s even been reinforced by freshly grated parmesan not being overly rich? What sorcery is this? Well, for that, you can thank the citrusy notes of the lemon that have a faint but distinct presence in the sauce.⠀

I myself was skeptical about lemon in a cream sauce, but it all made perfect sense once I sipped on that sapid sauce. The zest & possibly the juice of the lemon is just prominent enough to rein in the rich, gluttonous attributes of the cream while not overtly clashing with the salty, umami cream. It’s like the flavour equivalent of Jezebel, it seductively beckons you to drink your fill, consequences be damned.⠀

The broad, flat al dente fettuccine noodles give a lot of surface area for that perfectly piquant sauce to cling onto, but that ain’t enough. Trust me, you’ll just grab the whole bowl and guzzle every last drop of that splendid cream down. The cream is so stunningly stellar that I find myself unable to fully expound upon its absolute magnificence.⠀

With Italian Osteria X serving up a fettuccine alfredo this sublime, I’m proud to say that Houston, we have liftoff.


The origins of penne alla vodka are unclear and lost to the annals of history, but one thing that’s crystal clear is that @iox_sg version of Penne Alla Vodka ($17+10% service charge) is smashingly sublime. While you won’t get drunk off the vodka in the sauce as it has all been cooked off, the sheer luxuriousness of the sauce is still intoxicating.⠀

Penne alla vodka is essentially an arrabbiata pasta that has been fortified by the inclusion of heavy cream and vodka, resulting in a tangy and captivatingly creamy sauce. Penne is arguably the best choice for this sumptuous sauce, as the hollow tube structure of the penne captures a whole lot of the titillating tomato sauce. If you’re so inclined, you could even attempt to use a penne noodle as a straw to suck up the creamy sauce, but I definitely advise against that.⠀

The creamy sauce is also strikingly savoury, with sweetness & sourness coexisting in perfect balance, while the salinity makes the tomato sauce come alive on your tastebuds. I’m running outta words to compliment this sensational sauce as it was downright divine. The amount of creaminess, saltiness, tanginess, sweetness and umami cohabiting in the dish were all positively flawless. Even the boring old chicken that was the protein for this penne got new life breathed into it by this breathtakingly delicious sauce.⠀

You know, I love vodka, but I reckon I love Italian Osteria X’s Penne Alla Vodka a little more. I’m definitely returning to get X-rated & saucy with this delicious little thing.


If I told you that a restaurant has a maximum seating capacity of six customers, you’d assume it to be some incredibly exclusive & snobbishly posh private dining experience or an omakase. However, it’s the reality for Italian Osteria X, an implausibly itsy-bitsy osteria in Crawford Lane of all places. It is an actual one man show over there, with the sole proprietor, head chef, sous chef, waiter and dishwasher roles all taken up by the same man. No, I am not joking, the owner does everything by his lonesome.⠀

The chef/owner used to ply his trade at two Michelin starred Italian restaurant Marea in New York City. Yes, he worked at an Italian restaurant, but never worked in Italy. Still, working as a chef at such a renowned Italian restaurant is some serious street cred, and even the seemingly basic Los Angeles Affettati Misti (assorted Italian cold cuts with cheese, $24+service charge) provides glimpses of those credentials.⠀

It’s just three basic Italian elements on a massive platter, but they’ve been carefully curated. Of course, it wouldn’t be a proper Italian charcuterie board without the universal crowd pleaser that is prosciutto, so that salty, fatty and downright delicious Italian ham takes its place on the board. Interestingly enough, the other cured meat is beef bresaola. Bresaola is pretty rare, so seeing it paraded out on a platter was a very pleasant and palatable surprise. It’s considerably more peppery than the prosciutto, and offers more bite due to its soft jerky like texture.⠀

As for the cheese, well, it doesn’t get more Italian than parmesan cheese carved straight off the block. The mild, slightly nutty cheese soothed the pepperiness of the bresaola while adding creamy richness to the cured beef, and it heightened the already delectable saltiness of the prosciutto while unlocking a slight sweetness.⠀

The Affettati Misti was already plenty perfect by its lonesome, but if you’re in luck, you can even have all the cheese & cold cuts with freshly baked crusty bread. Yes, of course the owner bakes his own bread, and the bread is quite scrumptious even on its own. But combine the beautiful bread with the Affettati Misti, and that’s amore.


The second pasta dish, and the last dish to arrive because the waitstaff forgot to put the order in, was the uniquely unctuous Gorgonzola & Portobello Rigatoni ($22.70++). Blue cheese going into pasta isn’t unheard of, but it is rare. Incorporating gorgonzola into the béchamel that sauces the pasta though? Risky, but in @supernovaforeva case, it paid off.⠀

Gorgonzola is milder tasting than other blue cheeses, which does help in preventing this pasta from being too overwhelming. The signature funk of blue cheese is still very much present, but squeezing the juice out of the large lemon wedge provided is more than enough to cancel out the funky, nutty, sharp & salty notes with the refreshing zest of citrus. The Gorgonzola & Portobello Rigatoni is an incredibly rich and creamy dish, and you could describe it as a mac & cheese that got the mother of all glow-ups.⠀

The inclusion of portobello ‘shrooms added a satisfyingly chewy dimension to the dish, and added extra earthy flavours into the mix. The walnuts were a genius contrasting element, as its hard crunchiness kept your mouth from getting bored of all the soft shrooms & pasta. Speaking of pasta, the al dente rigatoni was a stellar selection for this pasta, as its hollowed out middle captured more of that luxurious gorgonzola béchamel for even more saucy satisfaction. And or course, a sizeable slice of fresh baguette is patiently waiting to be used to mop up that beautiful béchamel.⠀

Cheese and bread, such an iconic duo. This Gorgonzola & Portobello Rigatoni ain’t a champagne supernova, but it’s a cheesy supernova and it’s every bit as glorious.


Alcohol may not be good for my body, but my body is good for alcohol. Insta: @okwhotookmyusername

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