By Savitha Hira
Photography: Darren Soh; courtesy Viewport Studio
Read Time: 2 mins
Addressing the needs of the modern high-flying consumer, Bochinche is Singapore’s newest haunt for fusion gourmet and breezy ambience...
Picture this: a traditional shop-house in Singapore’s vivacious, full-of-paradoxes Chinatown; a cuisine that is rich in meat and bears the mark of Italian, Spanish and other influences – Argentinian to be precise; and an award-winning multi-design firm, Viewport Studio, who want to skilfully bring to life a Latin American vibe with a South-East Asian twist – a premeditated nod to the eccentric quirkiness of its location! Thus was born Bochinche, the Argentinian restaurant that stands apart from the milieu as much as it fits in to perfection. After all, Bochinche is the Latin American Spanish word for ‘gossip’!
The narrative begins predictably – with custom-crafted wallpaper designed around the existing Bochinche logo, making for an eclectic backdrop. Surprisingly, it does not clash with the black-and-white chequered flooring; instead accentuates the overall ambience that mimics the same thread of variety in the upholstery and the zoning.
Keeping things accessible and playful, the cafe draws representational influences from native Buenos Aires cafe culture, and resorts to a surrealist display of contemporary Spanish art in gilt-frames, setting the fusion tone of the ambience.
The traditional shop-house architecture of the narrow space is cleverly manipulated to accommodate the bar and the restaurant in defined areas; while a third, display kitchen experience is created over a bar-like counter-top, allowing diners a full uninterrupted view of the cooking.
Dark wood panelling contrasts the polished marble surfaces and adds on to the textured rattan cladding on the front of the kitchen counter, a nuanced nod to South East Asia amongst more traditional South American materials. Vintage sideboards and cabinets abound as storage options contributing to the old-world charm; complemented by a partially sky-lighted ceiling and a disparate collection of vintage cherub lights illuminate and add visual interest to the space.