One of the best places to savour beef in Singapore, Lawry’s The Prime Rib
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Lawry’s has been one of my favourite places in Singapore to enjoy a good chunk of beef, ever since my good friend introduced them to me many years ago.
The up-scale restaurant chain originated in Beverly Hills, California and is one of the flag ship names in the industry when it comes to roasted prime rib. What has won me over was their consistency in taste and service.
Lawry’s decor is very classic. It’s old fashioned but works. Sure, some may treat the ambience at Lawrys as somewhat a novelty place, akin to visiting a theme restaurant. Servers are dressed like butlers and maids with a couple of chefs occasionally looming over the tables, prepping their signature prime ribs in their signature steel carts reminiscent of the Industrial era of the US. It’s a spectacle that you don’t see at any other restaurants.
There lighting oozes warmth and comfort, with old fashioned but well-polished maroon wooden furniture throughout the restaurant. The decor is so old fashioned that you would almost expect to smell cigarette smoke in the restaurant, which thankfully in this modern age, you do not.
We see a combination of couples, groups of friends as well as business diners enjoying their time in the restaurant. In the restaurant business, it is rare to come across a component that is ‘one size fits all’, but in this case for Lawry’s decor, it actually does fit all occcasions. 9/10
As I had mentioned earlier, the service at Lawry’s is very consistent and consistently good at that. The well trained staff would greet you warmly whilst asking for your reservation at the entrance. Upon being led to your table, you would be further greeted courteously by any and every other employee that you pass by.
Recommendations would be given for menu items if unsure, and introductions for every course would be made, along with tips on eating. Truly, the service at Lawry’s is commendable for being at such a consistently high standard even though they are not exclusively a super high-end fine dining restaurant. 10/10
Lawry’s signature dish is their prime rib, which is a whole roasted beef rib (akin to a rib eye steak), sliced table-side in the huge metallic serving carts according to the cut ordered.
Along with their signature prime rib, they also serve some other pan-seared steaks, seafood and starters.
Every prime rib meal comes with the spinning bowl salad, which again is a novelty gimmick, but still entertaining on the 10th time — A server mixing up the salad by spinning a metallic bowl rapidly (See it in action in the video).
Standard sides that come with the Prime Rib also include a wedge of yorkshire pudding which is a sort of fried buttery pastry and buttery US Idaho mashed potatoes.
Oven Baked Chicken
Slow roasted chicken marinated in a citrus and herbal brine for 48 hours, served with herbed Idaho potatoes, assorted vegetables and truffle mushroom sauce for $63.
My wife didn’t want to eat beef and opted for this baked chicken.
The chicken arrived looking a little dull on it’s skin, but surprised us with its tender and juicy meat, a result of the 48 hours brine.
The skin was not as crisp as I had wished, but was flavourful on the parts that were more charred.
The full-bodied and flavourful truffle mushroom sauce went very well with the chicken and potatoes. 8/10
Spinning Bowl Salad
This very well-seasoned and balanced salad catch me off guard every time I have it.
The romaine, iceberg lettuce and baby spinach always fresh and crisp. Every piece coated evenly with Lawry’s own vintage dressing which tasted like a sort of caesar salad dressing to me. Simple, but very well executed. 8/10
Traditional Lump Crab Cake
Two pieces (70g each) for $28
I had these on another occasion, and they were very nicely executed with very little fillers and chock full of lumpy clumps of crab meat, none of that finely shredded stuff. Crust was light and crisp. Deceptively simple starter, but so very good. 9/10
The English Cut
This was my first time trying the English cut, which were 3 thin slices of prime rib, adding up to 200g worth of meat for $88.
The beef was perfectly medium rare as expected, which made me wonder, how does the server come up with the various doneness? The roasted ribs had already been cooked and were resting in his metal cart waiting to be carved.
The prime ribs at Lawry’s are USDA Prime grade beef, aged 21 days before being slowly roasted. The flavour is apparent in the beef; A slight beefy funk with a tinge of sweetness in the pink and tender flesh. There is no char here, as this is not a traditional steak. The thing to go for here is texture and flavour.
That said, I preferred the California Cut (160g for $75) over the English Cut, because the single thicker slice produced more mouth feel with each cut, as opposed to the 3 thinner slices which seemed more at home between 2 slices of bread.
The Yorkshire pudding was airy and buttery, as was the smooth and velvety US Idaho mashed potatoes with it’s gravy.
I did wish for the beef jus to be just a little thicker and reduced.
All in all, it was still a lot of happiness on a plate and very, very filling. 8.5/10
This is my preferred cut at Lawry’s.
For $75, you supposedly get 40g less meat than the English Cut, but the single slab seems much heftier than the 3 thin slices, and definitely much more satisfying to cut and bite into. 9/10
So that’s that. Ok, if you’re looking for a superbly charred and marbled steak, Lawry’s may not be the best choice in Singapore, my peers seem to lean towards Wolfgang Puck’s Cut steak house. But for a hearty yet polished experience, Lawry’s is definitely a top choice for the trifecta in ambience, service and taste.
Let’s see another shot of that glorious beef, I can never get tired from looking at it.