This is soo overdue.
My mum had always wanted to come here but I can't see to see what the big deal behind this place is. Worse, I did have a meal here sometime back and the experience had been less-than-pleasant. All the more that I avoid coming here (so far it's only been the VC outlet).
And come Mother's Day this year, I ran out of ideas as to where to bring my mum. Then I recall her eagerness to come to Fig & Olive that one time so I decide to just give them another shot. I was contemplating between their numerous branches and settled on Vivo City (yikes, I know!) for its convenience.
I actually forgot to make a reservation until that very day. Thankfully, I was to dine there at 4pm, which was in between actual meal-times so we managed to secure a table. I informed them that I have a baby pram and they thoughtfully gave us a table near the entrance.
We ordered one of their specialty platters (there's 2) but was later informed that they ran out of it. So I ordered the other specialty platter. No luck, too.
No surprise there. Considering it's Mother's Day and also due to their prime location, I'm not surprised if their turnover had been exceptionally high and food ran out fast.
But darn, I would love to sample the various things on their platter!
"Herbs grilled chicken with Mediterranean style sauce serve with Olive rice..."
My mum's order. For once, she ordered chicken.
Honestly speaking, this reminds me of a Malay wedding. Namely, Nasi Minyak with Ayam Masak Merah.
But that is one heck of a Nasi Minyak. The rice was very fragrant and fluffy. My mum picked at the topping of olives but she eventually realised that they're aren't as bad as the ones that she's had before.
And that chicken dish was delightfully spicy with robust herb-y, tomato flavour. So not like the Malay version of Ayam Masak Merah. Maybe they really used Moroccan spices for this one. Delish!
"Herbs grill chicken with BBQ sauce on mayo spread, onions and greens with choice of pita or herbs bun.."
I don't know if it's because my bro was watching his weight or he's skeptical of the food served at a Mediterranean restaurant (he dislikes Mediterranean food).
I was disappointed that he wasn't adventurous enough to try their gourmet sets. Not even the Fish & Chips. To me, this doner kebab is just sooo... common.
But to his advantage, a specialty restaurant should be able to transform something as simple as this into something really different. Or maybe it's just me, as someone who loves her sauces. They were pretty generous with the juicy chunks of marinated chicken that was drenched in the savoury BBQ sauce.
"Beef sirloin steak with Olive herbs, potato cilantro and fresh greens.."
My order and supposedly, one of their specials? I was gunning to order one of their steaks and I settled for this one cos' of that really Mediterranean-sounding name plus their side serving of baked potato, which I'm a big fan of.
The size of the steak got me kinda' taken aback. It's a tad small and thin, seriously. And the edge seemed to be where the tendon is and is kinda sinewy and tough. By the time I cut off that part, I ended up with an even smaller piece of meat. When asked about the done-ness, I was asked, "Rare, Medium or Well Done?"
I know that there are risks when I asked for Medium. The term medium, there are also medium-rare (slightly red/raw) or medium done (too cooked). Mine turned out to be medium-rare (50% reddish meat). Not that I really mind but I was worried if my dad got the same. He wouldn't have liked it.
The fresh garden salad appeased me a bit and that raw onion did go well with my slightly raw meat. I only picked at 3-4 olive bits before letting my dad relish in popping them into his mouth. He loves them olives!
The single potato was pretty small. So unlike the slightly bigger ones that I'm used to at Eatzi Steakhouse. I remember seeing in my cousin's photos that her friend had TWO of these small-sized potatoes on her plate. hmmph!
What's with the term, 'Cilantro Potato'? Where's the 'cilantro' aspect of it? Not a single green speck on it!
Figo Cyprus Steak
"Beef sirloin steak with fig herbs, fresh veggie served with choice of pasta or Olive rice..."
Sorry, but this plate was my dad's and it came out last so he was pretty ravenous by then and was not willing to co-operate with me to allow me to properly photograph his plate. Pfft.
Seeing my dad's plate made me regret my own order even more. His piece of meat was definitely bigger and come from a better part of the cow (more lean, less sinewy). And it came topped with fresh slices of figs! This dish should be the restaurant specialty then (has both Fig & Olive).
Seeing him relishing his meat, maybe the meat is done more to his liking (most likely, really Medium), thankfully.
And that clump of tomato-based pasta definitely looked more appetising than my 'cilantro' potato.
One of the actual reasons why I was drawn to have a meal there was because of the pic that my cousin posted on Facebook; of the meal she and her friends had at Fig & Olive (Jurong Point branch).
I was pretty disappointed to see that the portions that they had were definitely bigger and slightly different. I'm aware that Fig & Olive do franchising and all but shouldn't they at least monitor to see that portions and servings are at least standardised throughout all their branches?
Anyway, we ended our day with a picnic on the roof garden while munching on Yuo Tiao, Butterfly fritters and Ham Chim Peng (halal, from the stall in Food Republic) with perhaps hundreds other families out there. I dare say that at least 1/2 the crowd at Vivo City Mall that day pushed baby prams. And I'm no exception.
For once I enjoy being part of a crowd. These crowd of people who are out to let the women in their lives who are mothers; enjoy their day of celebration. These crowd of people where the women gladly display the prominent, yet unseen badge that label: MUM.
And for myself, who is celebrating my first Mother's Day as a mum, with my own mum - well, that day is indeed unforgettable.