There’s something so appealing about no-frills, hole-in-the-wall spots where all you have to worry about is rocking up and digging into really good food. And for a few months now we’d been hearing great things about Pistachio Grill; mainly that it was a small, unassuming mall restaurant that cooked up darn tasty food. We finally made a trip to check it out and were impressed with this new find. Located in Zhongshan Mall, don’t expect much, aside from a surprisingly tasty Middle Eastern and Mediterranean meal.
Why you should come here:
Egyptian-born chef Khaled Elelimi spent years working at high-end restaurants in Egypt, India, the Maldives, and here in Singapore at the Shangri-La Hotel. Pistachio Grill is his first solo venture and a chance for him to indulge his passion for cooking healthy versions of classic dishes from the Mediterranean region. On the menu you’ll find a good mix of veg and non-veg dishes made from scratch with fresh ingredients and healthy oils instead of trans-fats like butter and ghee. Despite the healthy slant, the dishes still have a touch of decadence to them; think Moroccan couscous with marinated lamb chops, chicken, and lamb sausage.
What we love:
It’s one of those places where you put in your order and pay at the counter, then the servers bring your dishes to the table. Our group of four ordered quite a few dishes starting with a rich, creamy hummus and falafel with a side of silky tahini drizzled with extra virgin olive oil. The lamb shank tagine is worth coming back for; the meat was perfectly tender, the rice was aromatic and complemented with crunchy nuts, and the portion size was generous. The market fish of the day in a spice-infused sauce was also excellent and decently priced at $98++ for four people. Although we wouldn’t necessarily place Pistachio Grill in our Top 50 Eats, it’s definitely a hidden gem kind of spot that’s worth checking out. We'd probably skip the mussels next time, we could tell the quality wasn't the best but would opt in for the kebabs instead.
If you’re looking for something off the beaten path and a bit different, Pistachio Grill is an inviting little spot with solid food at decent prices. We recommend it for a Sunday lunch or dinner when you’re looking for something really easy-going and tasty. Keep in mind that they don’t sell wine here, but they do have a free corkage policy for the first bottle and then it’s $20 for the second bottle.
Would we go back?
Yep. But most likely on a low key Sunday night when we want an easy, quick dinner with some good grub - followed by a movie or straight to bed.
Starters kick off at $7++ and mains range between $17.90++ and $48++.
Pistachio Grill, 20 Ah Hood Road, Zhongshan Mall #01-15, Singapore 329984. p. +65 6262 6400. Open daily 11:30am - 10pm