NOX – Dine in the Dark: Refreshed 3-Course European Menu & Locally-Inspired Cocktails, Hosted by the Visually Impaired.

NOX Lounge [Photo: NOX]

Just like that, it has been five years. Five years since NOX – Dine in the Dark welcomed its first guest to the highly immersive, multi-sensory dining experience. It has also been five years since my last visit to NOX. Second time – I still felt a little nervous, but a stronger state of excitement. One might wonder why the nerves. I find it difficult to justify too, except likely because of not knowing what lies ahead, except that you would soon be surrendering one of the five senses you are strongly reliant on.

NOX – Dine in the Dark is a restaurant that allows you to, well, dine in the dark. At the dining area where the room is pitch black (so black you will have problem making out the shape of your hand when it’s reached out), you will be served by the visually impaired – some of whom are blind since birth, others whose vision deteriorated only some time later. In response to my question of how long before they get used to navigating around the 60-seater restaurant, our host shared that it took him 2 – 4 weeks, but that it varies from person to person.

There is a disparity between the perceptive and actual experience eating in the dark. I imagined that I would be able to confidently pick up the knife and cut through the meat like I always do. What I found myself doing instead was placing the edge of the plate so close to my mouth I was almost slurping.

3-Course European Dinner [Photo: NOX]

NOX offers a 3-course dinner ($88++), each course comprising four tasting portions of different dishes (now you understand why I could slurp my food). I remember paying about the same price when I was here on my maiden visit. I am happy to find out not much has changed. Now, guests can also opt for Wine Pairing ($30 – $40++), Cocktail Pairing ($50++) or Mocktail Pairing ($30++).

When it comes to quantity of the food, you may wish to know that you will not starve, but neither will you be stuffed. I find it sufficient. In terms of quality, I feel that they tend to be heavy-handed with the flavours and seasoning. Despite so, my opinion remains the same from five years ago: it’s a one-of-a-kind adventure everyone should try at least once. The selection, however, was satisfactory, with the likes of foie gras, lobster, and beef (no further details as to the dishes will be shared to preserve the element of mystery).

While you are there at the lounge before heading up to the dining area, try your hands at this one-minute game, the task of which is to pick out as many paper clips as you can from a bowl of rice grains, while blindfolded. We were told that the best record to date is only four. Sounds easy, but we learnt that many ended up with zero.

Address: 269 Beach Road, Singapore 199546
Contact: +65 6298 0708 / (accepts reservations)
Opening Hours: 6pm – late (last order at 9.30pm from Mon – Thurs; at 10pm from Fri – Sun)
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