Monday, 31 August 2009

Swissbake II- Delectable Cakes @ Affordable Prices

Swissbake’s cakes had always captured our attention whenever we walked past their kiosk in Takashimaya. We can’t help wondering: “For $3.90 per slice, does it taste good?” We decided to give it a shot especially when all their cakes look so alluring and exquisite.

Walnut Cheesecake
The texture of this cake reminded us of the Apple & Nut Cheesecake from Cedele. The sweet aroma of slightly toasted walnut in combination with cream cheese was luscious. The cream cheese was smooth, soft & delicate, with a delightfully sweet taste of maple syrup.

J's & A’s rating: 4.25/5

We tried out 2 more cakes last Saturday when they’re having a promotion. 2 slice cakes for only $5! What a good deal!

Paradiso Di Nocciola
Being one of their signature cakes, this cake does not disappoint us. Hazelnut rocher sponge cake sandwich with rum soaked crunchy vanilla biscuit. It was divine! The rum was very mild which was quickly overpowered by the strong taste of hazelnut rocher.
(A: Hazelnut lovers would fall for this!)
J's & A’s rating: 4.5/5

Oreo Cheesecake
This oreo cheesecake was a little disappointing. The cookie chunks were soft & soggy unlike the one we had at Bakerzin. Cream cheese was a little sour to our displeasure prob due to the addition of lemon.
(J: The oreos were sooo finely mashed and stuck together tt there's no crisp to it at all. I love big oreos tt r chunky and crunchy.)
A’s rating: 3.5/5, J's rating: 3/5

Overall, we were surprised and pretty satisfied with Swissbake’s quality cakes, at reasonable prices! We will certainly patronise again to try out other signature cakes! 

Visit for more info

Ngee Ann City

Friday, 28 August 2009

Sweet Stone Parad'Ice- The Angmoh Liège Waffle War!

Sweet Stone Parad’Ice caught our attention when we had our dinner at Old Airport Road Food Centre. It reminded us of Sweet Stone Holdings (SSH), the Liège waffle stall at Golden Mile Food Centre. The store display and prices bear close resemblance to its competitor.
James, the owner of Sweet Stone holdings, once told us that they are the original Liège waffle stall. We had a little chat with the owner of Sweet Stone Parad’Ice. He told us that the angmoh and James were once partners. But things changed when the partnership ended. And this led to intense competition between the two Liège waffle stalls. So which is the original Liège waffle stall? Well, we wouldn’t care much as long as we get to eat good waffles and belgian chocolates! We‘re waffles & chocolates fanatics remember? Haha

And this led to the next question:
Which is better?
Sweet Stone Holdings or Parad’Ice?

We specifically asked for freshly baked waffle instead of the premade ones and requested for more chocolate. Definitely in terms of generosity, Parad’Ice won hands down because without hesitation, the owner topped up our choc dip so much that for the 1st time, we actually had tiny bit of choc left after finishing our waffles!

Set A- 1 waffle + 1 choc dip $2.50, Set B- 2 waffles + 1 choc dip $4.30
The waffle here is more similar to the Liège waffle that we had in Brugge. It is more chewy than SSH's rendition of bready Liège waffle. The waffle was also coated with coarser sugar crystal to give an extra crisp. Hence, it is also sweeter than SSH's caramelised waffles. The owner did accede to our request for "MORE chocolate please!". We like the fact that the chocolate dip was really thick and intense. We could fully dip all the waffle into the chocolates even till the last bit! We love it so much that we ordered one set each after sharing the first set!
(A: We always requested more chocolate from SSH but they are usually more reluctant and stingy in the portion of choc dip due to high costs. The owner from Parad'Ice explained that they usually give smaller portions of choc because they can't afford wastage of these expensive heavenly belgian chocs but wouldn't mind giving more to those who can appreciate & finish this sweet treat =D)
(J: SSH though did impress me many times but their quality can be quite inconsistent. At times, their waffles can be quite crispy, prob due to over-heating. Sometimes, their choc can be quite diluted and not warm enough to give you e shiok factor.)
Both stalls may claim that they are the original Liège waffle stalls. But to us, it's the quality that matters. So who wins? We chose the latter.

J's & A’s rating: 4.75/5 for waffle, 4.8/5 chocolate

Sweet Stone Parad’Ice
Old Airport Road Market & Food Centre #01-85
Open daily but closed from 2.30 - 5.30pm

Wednesday, 26 August 2009

Chikuyo Japanese Cuisine

Since we were young, Old Airport Road Market & Food Centre has been our frequent makan place. Each time we visit there, it brought back all our childhood memories. Remembered the times where we used to buy our clothings from the shops on level 2 and thereafter, we would head down to the food market to have our meals. But as we grow up, we started to stray away from the food centre as we can find better clothings and food from the shopping malls. This evening, we decided to head back there for our meals.

A: I've been craving for Unagi since last week! And decided to order my unagi bowl from Chikuyo, they serve yummy unagi!

For only $5.50, you get such a huge serving of unagi! The unagi was well-grilled and soft. The teriyaki sauce was nothing special, pretty much the same that you can find in other Japanese restaurant.

Janelle ordered the Cold Soba Noodle with Unagi ($7.50). Though it was slightly pricy, it came with a generous portion of soba noodles! The soba noodle was definitely better than Ichiban Boshi. It was very springy!
(J: I would prefer the soba and the sauce to be more chilled though.)
There are 2 japanese stalls near Chikuyo but if you observe, most people will order their food from Chikuyo. Try it and you'll know why! But we would recommend you to try out the unagi, we tried salmon and chicken before but felt that unagi still tasted better. Quality food, generous portion and reasonable price!

J's & A's rating: 4/5 Unagi and Soba Noodle

Chikuyo Japanese Cuisine
Old Airport Rd Market & Food Centre

Tuesday, 25 August 2009

Billy Bombers- Quick fondue fix at decent price

Had an awful dinner yesterday evening and we thought of heading to Billy Bombers for chocolate fondue. We simply can't resist the 50% promotion! ($12.95 after discount)

The chocolate fondue didn't look appetizing at one glance as it looked sticky and burnt. We only had Ben n Jerry's cookie dough ice-cream as they ran out of flavours. However, the chocolate was deceivingly good! Although it paled in comparison to Sweetstone or Swissculture, it's pretty decent for its price. The chocolate was bittersweet which we enjoyed. The cookie dough ice-cream was not too bad, with chunks of cookie dough and chocolates inside which made it a good combination with the chocolate fondue. To our dismay, the waffle was soft and soggy but we just used it as a dipping tool for the chocolate fondue. haha! How we wished we had the sweetstone waffles with us!
Overall we felt that the chocolate fondue was not too bad, but definitely not the best. With the current promotion, the chocolate fondue is value for money given the type of chocolate that they use.

J's & A's Rating: 4/5

Billy Bombers
The Cathay Orchard
#01-12, 2 Handy Road S(229233)
Tel: 6735 5381

Sunday, 23 August 2009

Oriole Cafe & Bar- Back with Satisfaction!

Oriole Café & Bar, situated at a quiet corner in Pan Pacific Service Suit, is a hidden gem in Orchard road! The cozy and quiet ambience is definitely a place to chill out and relax in the noisy and bustling city.
This was the second time we patronized the café. There was a slight disappointment the first time we went, which we will talk about it later. Nonetheless, we decided to give it another chance to prove its worth. This time we’re back with satisfaction!
We made a reservation for dinner tonight as we knew the café will be quite packed at night.
We like the ambience in the café. The lightings and music in the café make us feel so comfortable and relaxed. It was a great place for date, chilling out, and gatherings! The staffs here were pretty efficient except that it was a little difficulty in getting their attention when they’re busy. Our drinks were refilled quickly and our dishes were served swiftly after placing the order.
Beef Cheek Tagliatelle ($15)
Melt-in-the-mouth tender beef cheek slices, it was exquisite and heavenly! Red wine braised beef cheek rendered both of us speechless. It surpassed our expectations on the beef slices and we did not even need to cut them! They simply dissolve in our mouth.
A & J’s rating: 4.75/5
Fish and Chips ($15)
The snapper loin was firm and the batter was light, thin and crispy. We thought the tartar sauce was pretty good, with a slight combination of sweetness and sourness. The wedges could be better as it tasted a little bland on its own. However, we must point out that the tartar sauce with the fish and chips was so palatable that we actually requested for more!
A & J’s rating: 4.25/5
Chocolate Fudge Cake ($6)
Being one of Oriole’s signature cakes, this definitely enthralls chocolate lovers. The warm, rich chocolate cake was moist with oozy molten chocolate in the centre. We love the fact that it was not overly sweet but it could be too rich to be finished by a person.
A & J’s rating: 4.25/5
Chocolate Brownie with Vanilla Ice-cream ($5.50)
Being chocolate lovers, we wanted for more and ordered an additional chocolate brownie. The brownie was more of a fudge brownie, the texture was gooey rather than cakey. The rich, creamy vanilla ice-cream with the brownie was pretty pleasant.
A & J’s rating: 4/5
We were very satisfied with the food this time round and will definitely be back again especially for the beef cheek tagliatelle! We spent $48.85 (after GST and service charge) in total for 2 mains and desserts. Reasonable price for such exquisite food and excellent attentive service in Orchard road!
Now we will tell you about our slight disappointment we experienced on our previous visit.
We went in the afternoon for brunch a few weeks ago. These were what we ordered:

The coffee in Oriole Café was fantastic.
Starbuck’s coffee was incomparable to Oriole’s coffee. For the price you pay at Starbuck, you could get a better coffee here. We read up a review on stating that Oriole had two of the best baristas in Singapore! That explains their unqiue creation of coffee in Oriole Cafe.
Piccolo Latte ($5)
A rich espresso latte that does not leave an acidic taste in the mouth. The full-bodied aroma lingered in our mouths. The presentation was absolutely lovely~
A’s rating: 4/5, J’s rating: 4.5/5
Mint Mocha ($6)
Sipped slowly and you could taste the subtle mint flavor in the latte. Quite a unique latte actually except that the mint flavor was not distinct enough.
A & J’s rating: 4.25/5
And these were the 3 dishes that left us in bitter pit.
Mushroom Toast ($11.50)

Smoked Salmon Toast with Poached Eggs ($14)
The toast was overly toasted and the poached eggs were SUPER SOUR! The vinegar taste was so strong!
(A: I could make better poached eggs than them! haha!) Waitress said it could be because the chef wasn't in a good mood that day. What a reason -___- The mushroom was normal, nothing special to mention about. The smoked salmon was too salty, saltier than an average normal smoked salmon. Salty salmon, super sour poached eggs with hard toast. It was disastrous! Deeply regretted what we ordered. (J: With my toothache tt day, this meal simply worsened my condition *faint*)
A & J’s rating: 2.5/5 for both toasts
Last but not least, Bread Pudding ($8)
The texture of the bread pudding was too firm and dense for our liking. It was similar to the texture of agar agar. We expected it to be softer, soggier and warmer. Though we requested it to be warmer, it was still not up to our expectation. Perhaps you may have a different view on this. But for us, the taste was just not right.
A & J’s rating: 3/5
Though the first visit was not a pleasant one, but we were glad that the second visit make up for it.
Oriole Café is a great coffee place in the day and a fantastic chill out place at night! We highly recommend Oriole Café to all our readers.

Oriole Café & Bar
96 Somerset Road #01-01
Pan Pacific Serviced Suites
Tel: 6238 8348
Call to make reservation especially on weekends

Hakka Ho Po Lei Cha Fan- Thunder bolts tradition!

Thunder tea rice is an iconic Hakka dish with several finely-diced ingredients such as tofu, green beans, ground peanuts, pickled radish, ikan billis, shrimps and other vegetables mixed into cooked brown rice and served with tea made from tea leaves, basil and mint steeped in hot water. You either love it, or hate it. We're loving it~

The owner is really generous with the servings of ingredients. There was actually soooo much veg that we felt we had consumed more than HPB's recommended serving of vegetables from 1 dish! How healthy we are! haha! Unlike amoy's thunder tea rice where they added our hated coriander ("yan xu") into the tea, there was no trace of coriander here *phew*

Each mouthful was full of crunchiness from the well roasted peanuts, red rice, green beans etc. The portion may look intimidating but definitely did not leave us feeling over-satiated. The tea was of cos minty but not too overwhelming to douse our appetite.

Thunder Tea Red Rice $4
J's & A's ratings: 4.5/5

Hakka Po Lei Cha Fan
134 Sims Ave (near Lor 17 Geylang)
933 Roast Duck Coffee op
11am - 8pm (Closed on Wed)

Saturday, 22 August 2009

R Burger- The 1000mg Collagen Burger!

R Burger, a totally new concept of burger franchise that sells generally healthy and tasty burger. It completely revolutionized the fast-food burger chains from Burger King or MacDonald’s. The most distinct feature of R Burger is the use of marine collagen in the steamed bun, with 1000mg of collagen in each burger! That’s good news for ladies who want supple and youthful skin! We are able to eat healthily and at the same time, getting more collagen. *Just from our point of view. Haha*
We ordered a Salmon Burger ($4.30) and a Tofu Burger ($3.80).

The Salmon Burger tasted alright but we wished that they could be more generous with the salmon in the patty. There was hardly any taste of salmon. However, we do like the Ankake sauce (black vinegar) in the burger. The steamed bun was soft but it was not warm enough when we ate it. The shisho leaf had a herbal minty taste. You either like it or dislike it.

J's & A’s rating: 3.75/5

We preferred the Tofu Burger because of the soft, juicy chicken tofu patty in the burger. The patty was also thicker than the salmon patty. The sauce was lighter and more forgettable though.
J's & A’s rating: 4/5

R Burger
Ion Orchard

Patisserie Glace- The tart heaven~

Patisserie Glace~ A place for cake lovers... It is an authentic japanese pastry shop located in the quiet Chinatown Plaza.
(J: So glad tt it's within walking distance from my workplace! :)) They were featured in many media and food blogs. Surprisingly, what Glace attracted us was not their cakes but their rin rin cheese tarts!

We tried the Strawberry Souffle ($5) on our first visit. Undeniably, it was a light cheese cake just like any other japanese cheesecakes topped with big strawberries. The strawberries were fresh and sweet! However, it failed to impress us.
Had Fromage Syun ($5.80) and Maple Syrup Rin Rin Cheese Tart ($3.50) on our second visit. The cheese tart left us speechless, our eyes lit up immediately and we exchanged glances. OooHhmpH WOW~ This is heavenly! Surprisingly, the maple syrup cheese tart was of the right sweetness and the strong fragrance of maple syrup flashed back strong nostalgia of the times J spent in Vancouver. The tart was crusty and buttery.

Fromage Syun left us feeling bewildered. The taste was indescribably d-e-l-i-c-i-o-u-s. We were overwhelmed with a mixture flavors. Oh, raspberry? Oh, lemon? Cheese? This is soo intriguing! Will definitely try it again and hopefully by then, we can give a better description lol.

Our tart cravings brought us back to Glace again for the third time. This time round, we tried the Chocolate Rin Rin Cheese Tart ($3) and Raspberry Cheese Tart ($3). Felt the rush of endorphins as the creamy chocolate cheese melted in our mouths. Dark bittersweet chocolate was used, definitely satisfying for chocolate lovers!

Raspberry cheese tart is basically the original rin rin cheese tart with raspberry puree filled in the centre of the tart. Cant really taste the raspberry from the swirls until we bite into the centre of the tart. The original cheese tart had a tinge of saltiness which we suppose come from the smooth, rich cheese. Raspberry puree added a tinge of sourness which complemented decently with the cheese. And as usual, we love the crispy, buttery cookie base :)

Mont Blanc $5.60 is a Japanese perennial favourite. Glace imports the chestnut from Japan, paired with chestnut paste from France. Sadly, it disappointed us. Probably the chestnut paste was not our cup of tea. We actually could not detect any trace of chestnut from the paste, other than the small toppings of chestnuts. It felt more like whipped cream. The cake again, was the usual japanese light sponge cake.

We ended our dessert session with a Caramel Rin Rin Cheese Tart ($3). Sadly, this was the most disappointing cheese tart amongst all others we've tried. It tasted just like the original cheese tart with no trace of caramel. Maybe it was too faint to be picked up by our tastebuds.

A & J's ratings: 4.75/5 Maple Syrup Rin Rin Cheese Tart, 4.5/5 Fromage Syun & Chocolate Rin Rin Cheese Tart , 4.25/5 Raspberry Rin Rin Cheese Tart, 3.75/5 Strawberry Souffle & Caramel Rin Rin Cheese Tart, 3/5 Mont Blanc

Pâtisserie Glacé (Cadence Products Pte Ltd)
34 Craig Road #01-10
Chinatown Plaza
Singapore 089673
Mon-Fri: 1100-1800 hrs. Sat, Sun & Public Holidays: 1100-1700 hrs

Friday, 21 August 2009

Swissbake- The Luxurious Pecan Pie~~

Ever since we tried Swissbake Pecan Pie ($3.50 for a slice) at takashimaya yesterday, we got addicted to it! Today we went to buy it again and spotted a 12 cm pecan pie at only $9.95. More worth it than buying individual slices!

Reason for addiction??
The pecans was so well-toasted that we could literally smell the fragrance of the pecans when we bite into wonderful pie. The sour dough was moist and gooey in the centre with a tinge of delightful brown sugar sweetness. The crust was savoury and full of buttery flavour. We love the nutty crunch of this pie with generous pecan fillings.
Crunchy, savoury and luscious...
We're hooked! :)

*we will post a close-up of the pecan pie soon!*

One good thing about this pecan pie is that you can actually store it for weeks! Checked out the expiry date: 17.09.09. Need not worry that it will turn mouldy in a few days! AND you eat it at room temperature. Save the time on heating up a pie!
 J's & A's rating: 4.75/5
Visit for more info

Rochor Beancurd House- Silky smooth beancurd~

J: Rochor Beancurd House has been my favourite beancurd stall since years ago. I simply love their silky smooth beancurd which literally glides through my teeth down my throat :P
A: I feel that the soyabean milk was a bit diluted. The lady only add a scoop of soyabean milk to the beancurd!

We also tried their youtiao and portugese egg tarts. The egg tarts were decent, just like any other Madeline portugese egg tarts but a little dry and the tart lacks the buttery taste. The youtiao however, was lacking in crispiness. Still, we like to soak the youtiao inside the soyabean milk and enjoy the burst of dao huey upon chewing the youtiao.

A's & J's ratings: 4.5/5 beancurd, 4/5 egg tart, 3/5 youtiao

745 Geylang Road (Lor 39)
Tel : 7483989
432 Balestier Road
Public Mansions #01-436
7.30am to 12.30 midnight

Monday, 17 August 2009

Lao Hong Ser Rojak

Before we went Tai Shek Hei for dinner, we actually went to check out the famous rojak stall at Dunman Food Centre. When we saw that there was no queue at all, we were baffled and at the same time...happy of course! But don't be deceived by it! When we placed our order, we were told to collect an hr later! Then we realised that most people called in to place their order in advance.

Finally when we finished our dinner at Tai Shek Hei, we went back to Lao Hong Ser. Queue is already forming up there! You could see many eating the famous rojak in the food centre. Glad we actually ordered 1 hour in advance. The owner is a very punctual person. When he told us to collect at 8.15pm, we really got our packet of rojak at 8.15pm even though we went back at 8pm.

The you tiao was well barbequed till crispy! The rojak sauce was thick and fragrant, accompanied by the crushed peanut. Spicy, sweet and a tinge of sourness from the pineapples. It was awesome! One thing that was special was that they actually add in water chestnuts ("ma ti") in the rojak! Additional crunch and juicyness~

Lao Hong Ser Rojak is definitely worth the 1 hr waiting time. Next time just call in to place your order in advance!

J's & A's rating: 4.75/5

Lau Hong Ser Rojak
271 Onan Road
Stall #02-14 Dunman Road Food Centre
Tel: 63466519
5pm to 38am
Closed every Sunday
Call 1 hour in advance to place your order

Tai Shek Hei House of Bamboo Noodle- Springy noodles~

The legendary bamboo noodle, though it was ordinary looking but this is definitely a gem among other restaurants in Joo Chiat road.

Many people have a misconception that "machine made" noodles may not taste as good as handmade noodles. Well, you will definitely change your opinion after trying out Tai Shek Hei's bamboo noodle! The bamboo noodle is made using a bamboo machine created by the owner, John. The dough was repeatedly pressed upon to increase the elasticity of the dough.

The results? Springy noodles which dances on your tongue! Simply amazing~

We must comment that we like the service provided by the waitress there. She gave good recommendations and told us how to order to save costs!

We ordered 2 dry version of the bamboo noodle ($2 each) and a Tobiko dumpling soup ($8) to share. The bamboo noodle was way better than wanton mee. Really very 'Q'~
J's & A's rating: 4.75/5

Packed with fresh prawns, meat and tobiko (fish roe), the tobiko dumpling was good. You could literally taste the sweetness of the ingredients. Our only grouse was that the dumpling skin was too thick and a little sticky for our liking.
(A: I feel the dumpling skin tasted like bian mian. Even John agreed to that! Saying the dumpling skin could be use for ban mian.)

J's & A's rating: 4.25/5

John commented that his dumpling skin was the most elastic of all. So we did a experiment with him to test the elasticity.

The normal size of dumpling skin...
Versus stretched dumpling skin... After stretching, it covers all of Janelle's palm! Amazing!
We also like the Spinach Soup ($4). Crunchy prawn bits and scallops add on to the sweetness. It was not too gooey as compared to shark fin soup. The broth is really thick and rich in flavor
A's rating: 4.25/5, J's rating: 4.5/5

Last but not least, the Deep Fried Enoki mushroom ($8). Though highly recommended by many people, we didn't quite like this dish as we can't really taste or even bite the enoki. We could only taste the fried flour.
J & A's rating: 3/5

Overall, the dining experience in Tai Shiek hei was pretty good. Cozy restaurant with friendly & knowledgeable waitresses, we would go back again to try out other dishes!

Tai Shek Hai House of Bamboo Noodles
283/285 Joo Chiat Road
Jn of Koon Seng and Joo Chiat Road
Singapore 427539
10.30am to 11pm daily

Good Morning Nanyang III- Peanut Thick Toast

We had a surprise from Mr Byron Shoh, owner of Good Morning Nanyang Cafe when we went down 2 days ago. Apart from ordering our usual orange ciabatta set, Mr Byron let us try out his new creation: Peanut Butter Thick Toast! We were definitely very honoured and appreciated his treat. Thank you!

The peanut butter thick toast was drizzled with condensed milk but it was not too sweet. Thick gooey peanut butter with the crispy and soft thick toast, it was simply amazing! The bread was softer than Toastbox's thick toast.
(J: I would prefer him to use crunchy peanut butter instead of the smooth creamy peanut butter. I also like my peanut butter to be more watery like those sold in hdb bakery and confectionary shops)

J's rating: 4.25/5, A's rating: 4.5/5

However, this peanut butter thick toast is not in the menu yet. Byron is still in the midst of experimenting and coming up new creations for his menu. Hopefully this will be included in the menu soon so that all of you can try it! We deeply appreciate him for listening to our feedback and suggestions and be sure we'll be back for more!

Saturday, 15 August 2009

Manpuku Japanese Gourmet Town

After a long day of shopping at Tampines 1, we finally settled for dinner at Manpuku! We saw many people ordering Moonlight Okonomiyaki ($12.80) at Botejyu and we decided to try it out ourselves!

Okonomiyaki is a kind of Japanese-style pancakes or pizza. Okonomiyaki usually includes chopped cabbage and various toppings like thinly sliced pork, squid, yakisoba noodles, tenkasu (tempura crumbs), corn, green onion, squid, shrimp, dried bonito flakes, bean sprouts and etc.

Moonlight Okonomiyaki includes squid, prawns and sliced pork with a fried egg on top. The yolk represents the "moon"!

We actually waited half an hour for our okonomiyaki! Look how busy the chef was!
The inital taste of okonomiyaki was fantastic! Crispy pancakes with lots of cabbage & onions inside. The prawn and squid was sooo fresh! Prawns were really sweet and crunchy. However, the okonomiyaki got a bit dry after being put on the hot plate for a while.
J & A's rating: 4/5

Next we went over to try out Tofu Steak Omu Rice ($9.80). Tofu steak was actually minced beef and mashed tofu patty.

The omu rice was much tastier than the moonlight okonomiyaki! Never knew that rice could be so delicious! The rice was flavoured with some sweet sauce which we've yet to figure out what was it. Tasted a bit like ketchup with teriyaki sauce? haha.. the mushroom and onions in the rice enhanced the its taste! If we had room for more, we will definitely order one more set! The tofu steak was super tender & juicy, drenched in some beef sauce with black pepper! We feel that it could be the tofu which made the patty softer!
J's & A's rating: 4.75/5

Manpuku Japanese Gourmet Town
Tampines Central 1
#03-16/19 Tampines 1