Brought to you by the lovely folks behind the The Plain and Ronin (2 very essential cafes to visit in Singapore) is their latest venture, Punch. Cue the expectations.
The café is divided into two areas – the open air courtyard with benches, concrete tiles and walls lined with greenery, preferably for a chilly day, and the main air-conditioned dining area with tables and chairs. Despite it being a little warmer, my favourite spot is still the (natural) light-filled table by the windows. Perfect for the wannabe minimalist in me.
On weekday mornings from 8am – 12pm, the café only serves Filter ($6.50) – Chemex and V60 and Batch Brew Coffees ($4.5), together with the Donuts with Jam, Custard or Nutella ($1.20 each, $10 for 10 pieces). The donuts were mini, and tasted pretty normal. Nothing to shout about.
Milk-based coffees like the White Espresso ($5) I had are only available from 12pm onwards. For non-caffeinated drinks, there is the lone option of Pineapple Slushie ($8). It may not be the cheapest drink around ($9.60 after GST and service charge omg) but it proved to be refreshing.
Though the Poached Eggs on Avocado Toast ($13) may be a fairly simple dish to prepare, but the mountain of avocado piled on the two slices of slightly tough, slightly crisp sourdough toast sure did appeal. Would be better if the egg yolks can be slightly runnier though.
We tried another main course for lunch – the Grilled Seabass ($26) with mango salsa and greens. I liked the tangy, slightly sweet yet sour mango salsa which went well with the seabass.
I believe there is a main course option for the fried chicken here, but we were offered the small portion of the Fried Chicken Wings ($11 for 5 pieces) on a particular Sunday. Sadly we didn’t really like the batter used.
The food and coffee at Ronin are still my favourite amongst the three cafes, but I have to agree that the atmosphere at Punch is the most conducive for chilling. Well, apart from the smell of fried chicken from their open kitchen of course.
One final gripe – no printed menus around, only verbal ones from the servers. Which means you won’t know the prices unless asked. Eeks. Good thing that the café crew here is friendly and helpful.
P.S. They are open through Chinese New Year from 12pm – 5pm. Only for coffee and some small sweets though!
32 North Canal Road
Tues to Fri 8am – 11pm
Sat & Sun 8am – 6pm