Tag Archives: Cafe

Privé Bakery Cafe

I have been left a pretty good impression of Prive Cafe & Restaurant by many bloggers who had spread the word about its delightful brunch items and mains from the dinner menu. Since then, I told myself I would be there. So after a few months the effort finally succeeded as made my way to the scenic Keppel Bay.

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Prive is divided into 3 sections, Prive Grill (dinner), Prive Waterfront Bar (late nights) & Prive Cafe (brunch, lunch). Prive Cafe serves comfort Western food including selections from all day breakfast, burgers, pastas, salads, cakes and shakes.

Despite the heat, the choice was made to munch outdoors simply because the view of Reflections @ Keppel Bay, the marina of yachts and clear skies of dotted white on blue seemed to be there for me to admire at. I loved their menu – how it seemed that they managed to use the perfect font for my liking.

We opted for the DIY Omelete ($15), Homestyle Pancakes ($13) and The Ultimate Fish & Chips ($19).
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I chose smoked leg ham to be in the omelete and it was a simple but delightful fare. Alongside with roma tomatoes and toast I would not mind waking up in the morning to the smell of it.
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The pancakes at Prive have been widely known as not just any pancake, but to my disappointment the pancakes were overdone that day hence not being as thick and fluffy. Was I not a starved soul on that sunny afternoon I would have called for another order. As I recount my experience I do yearn for another plate of those.
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Fish and chips was nothing fantastic to rave about which I thought was a pity. That only fed my desire to find the best fish and chips in Singapore.

The selection of cakes, tarts and other desserts were mind-boggling as all of them sounded as equally good as the other on the menu. In the end I decided to play safe and go for the chef’s recommendations of a slice of Carrot Cake ($7) and Oreo Mud Pie ($12).  The Carrot Cake could be a contender of Cedele’s signature carrot cake. Prive’s version was less dense. On the other hand, the oreo mud pie was awesome. Coffee flavoured ice cream was sandwiched between generous oreo bases with chocolate sauce. An explosion of sweetness, it reminded me of architectures of so and so pyramid. Only I call it food architecture.
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Prive. My expectations are 90% satisfied. Until then we shall meet again.

 

Marina at Keppel Bay

2 Keppel Bay Vista

Singapore 098382

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Laurent’s Cafe and Chocolate Bar

I had a pretty good brunch that day at eM by the River. I knew Laurent’s Cafe and Chocolate Bar, or Laurent Bernard’s Chocolatier. From the outside, it is easy to walk past Laurent’s Cafe and Chocolate Bar on a sunny day where your eyes are insensitive to the dull. Already having the initial plan to indulge in chocolate desserts there, I had to walk up and down the street several times before spotting it.

The interior bears a cosy and pretty decor and allows only around 10 patrons to be seated. Alfresco dining is available with comfortable, cushioned seats with unnaturally grown palm trees wafting atop. I find it a little weird that photography of the cafe itself was not permitted, there is even a sign bearing the warning.

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On that fateful day, their specialty – the souffle – was not available as they had just opened for business and so it was only available at later times. Waiting around 30-45 minutes for a souffle would already be a huge sacrifice, a few more hours of waiting time would be a no-no.

I had the Crispy Chocolate Tart ($7.80) which turned out to be dark chocolate. Being a sweet and savoury person, I am not a fan of dark chocolate but it was a different story in this case, in which the tinge of dark chocolate was what made me give it a thumbs up.

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The Profiterole ($12) was atop three large scoops of vanilla bean ice-cream, and I thought that it was a light and refreshing choice in contrast to the chocolate tart. The only loophole was my expectation of the pastry ball to be softer. The icing on the icing would be the miniature teapot of chocolate sauce. Or it shall be called the chocolate pot. You know, everything is better with chocolate.

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80 Mohammad Sultan Road

The Pier @ Robertson Quay

#01-11

Singapore 239013

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PAUL Bakery

A legend from France has arrived.
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The very much anticipated french bakery and cafe-restaurant, PAUL, has made its way to our doorstep. Paul is a renowned bakery establishment most famous in Europe, and not to mention hundreds of franchises worldwide. When the boards for renovation of the area where it is now were put up, I felt the wave of excitement.

The menu had a wide array to choose from ranging from bread baskets to breakfast items like eggs to sandwiches and more. I thought the Potato Pancake with Salmon ($21.40) sounded more special and ordered it. The potato pancake is something like rosti but quite different from it. Fried to a crispy skin revealing strips of well-flavored strips of potato, I enjoyed it especially with slices of smoked salmon atop it. To my surprise, they tasted good together. A vegetarian alternative would be the potato pancake with mushrooms.
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I wouldn’t recommend the Waffle with Chocolate Sauce ($6) over here. Sure enough, it was rather crisp but I thought it was normal as a find anywhere else.
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On the other hand, the Chocolate Millefeuille ($6.40) is one of the must-try pastries at Paul. It is more like a stacked chocolate biscuit full of creamy goodness of chocolate. After that, I found some reviews claiming that the Vanilla Millefeuille is even better than the chocolate one! Uh oh, I guess I’ve got to make a trip back to Paul.
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I would like to think that this one’s made specially for the ladies. This Strawberry Tart ($6.40) certainly grabs the attention of any girl. The strawberries were glazed, hence turning out sweet more than sour. This time, yet another creamy goodness surrounds the strawberries in held together as the centerpiece, making the tart taste as sweet as it looks.
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Some feel that the franchise in Singapore has fallen short of their expectations while others are simply enjoying the new food. Perhaps it may not seem at its best compared to the franchises in Europe but I think that it’s just it being placed in the Singapore context. There are 2 dining areas to Paul and I don’t really fancy the squeezy sitting area outside the restaurant. The ambient is just not there. If I were to ever head back, I would probably ask for a sit in the more comfy main dining area. Queues are still going long so be prepared to wait.

Also, don’t forget to takeaway some bread and pastries like their pain au chocolat, croissant and even huge macarons home from their bakery!

391 A Orchard Road
#03-16/16A/17
Ngee Ann City Tower A
Opening Hours

Bakery: Sun–Thu: 8.30am – 10pm
Fri–Sat: 8.30am – 11pm
Restaurant: Mon–Sun: 10am – 11pm

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Canele Patisserie II: Sw-weet

I was hungover from my last visit to Canele. Since then, new chef Christophe Grilo has taken over the helms of Canele Patisserie in Singapore. A few new creations have been added and everything seems bright.

I see that macarons have become an “in” thing recently. Whoever has the privilege of enjoying macarons anywhere has the same privilege to give a statement to the world with just a click. It is certainly claimed that Canele is one of the best places in Singapore for its macarons, and I’ll like to declare that as well. This time I went for the fat Oreo Cookie macaron ($2.35). Surprisingly, it does not totally taste like an oreo, maybe just half an oreo. The sweetness does not settle in instantaneously, but through it you’ll love it.
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Such lemon-y stuff would be pushed away by me, but at that moment it just so happened I called out its name. The Tarte Citron ($6) was a massive burst of citrus infused with buttery and crust sweetness. The peels topped on the tart gave me a sour shock, they were nothing but zesty and very zesty. How massive a burst is too massive for a burst? Love or hate? Call the judges over.
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Among the three, I enjoyed the St. Marc ($6.50) the most. I love its glistening, marble-like yellow top which just captures the attention. The surrounding plain layers of sponge cake were rather plain, but they served a greater purpose: it brought out the taste of the dominant layer of mild dark chocolate in the center very well. This seemingly ordinary slice may just fool your eyes.

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Wherever I go, it appears that Canele is making big waves here in Singapore. I wouldn’t deny that. With their classy display panels of colorful cakes, macarons, cookies and chocolates, plus all day dining treats, there’s no reason why you would miss such a deal. For me, I feel that the outlet at Shaw Centre has the best location compared to the rest. It is probably the best alternative to retreat into the air-conditioned patisserie and watch the Orchard crowd while pouring bits of sweetness into your mouth.

Shaw Centre

1 Scotts Road

#01-01A

Singapore 228208

Sundays : 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Mondays to Thursdays : 8.30 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Fridays : 8.30 a.m to 11 p.m.
Saturdays : 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.

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Twelve Cupcakes: From Celebrities With Love

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Cupcakes are on the rise, and especially the perfect Best Friend Forever for ladies on a dreamy off day. The reason is quite simple. These sweet things in life are getting prettier and prettier by the day, not to forget by the new bakeries as well.

Twelve Cupcakes was set up by Singapore celebrity couple Daniel Ong and Jaime Teo. Why the number 12, it’s because Daniel Ong loves bowling, and 12 pins down indicates a strike. There are also 12 holes in a baking tray. Jaime mainly comes out with new flavors and bakes the cupcakes as well. The celebrity factor is not the only reason why it has become a hit among locals recently.

I wouldn’t say that the cake part of their cupcakes are anything special, they are just plainly light without much sweetness. The trophy to Twelve Cupcakes would be their cream cheeses on the cupcakes. Their cream is not just any useless, just for display, fattening lump of calories.

I felt that the Peanut Butter cupcake was quite substantial, I especially loved the peanut butter, it was just the right peanut butter for me. Now I wonder if I can get it in a jar to scoop some for every meal…

Meanwhile, the Vanilla Chocolate cupcake was a lighter and plain one, but with a sweeter and cheesier vanilla topping.
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A best seller to try would be the Red Velvet Cupcake which is its most prominent and familiar cupcake you’ll ever hear about. Sweet vanilla cream cheese piled atop a muffin of moist red velvet cake. Sweet and classic.

The Baileys Cupcake was of light milk chocolate cream which was easy to finish off casually.

And finally, the Rum & Raisin was based on a light vanilla cupcake with a tinge of rum in it.
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While the cupcakes may be smaller and a little pricier at $3 each and at $3.50 for special flavors, I barely hear any whining or complaints of overpricing and under-performing. A half dozen of cupcakes comes at $17 while a dozen at $33. Another deal is that you can get customised cupcakes for any event from them too (Only available at Millennia Walk). Be it custom decorations, different colors of cream cheese, printing words or logos on the cupcakes, they’re all available for you to select. The stall at Millennia Walk comes with a small and relaxing dining area to have your cupcakes which I thought was great.

101 Thomson Road

#B1-60 United Square

Singapore 307591

9 Raffles Boulevard

#01-52 Millennia Walk

Singapore 039596

50 Market Street

#01-28B Golden Shoe Carpark

Singapore 048940

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Olio Cafe: Splurting chocolate

It was a casual day and so I thought I would step inside this casual looking place for lunch. Perhaps the ambience seemed a little plain and the food looks normal but there’s no reason to underrate it. What I liked most was its value-for-money quantity but not overlooking so much of quality.

The Classic Roast Chicken Sandwich ($12.50) was nothing too much to rave about, but it’s huge portion did shock me a little. The surprising thing was the dish was made sweet: the chutneys in the sandwiches. I didn’t really know if it actually made the sandwich more or less fulfilling but I wouldn’t say that I did not enjoy it. Alongside the two huge sandwiches are a serving of sweet potato fries which were – – – sweet. This time, I felt that the sweeter fries went well with the sandwiches, somehow chosen deliberately for this purpose. Worth it or not – depends if you prefer quantity or quality.
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The cakes and pies on display at the glass counter at the cashier looked ordinary, I was contemplating if I should do away with a sweet ending to my meal, when I saw the name of the Olio Sizzling Brownie ($6.80) in the menu. Looking up, there was a poster picture of it hung on a side wall. And so I made my decision. I got a little surprised when a plate of sizzling and fizzling sounds arrived at my table. A hot plate of bubbling chocolate sauce and a centrepiece of a brownie laid before me. The brownie was great, a harder chocolate layer on the top with peanuts, the second layer full of freezing vanilla ice cream and the last layer a moist and soft sponge cake. With so much chocolate sauce given, I could not resist but finish it clean. A reminder to myself: not to be too eager and burn my tongue with sizzling chocolate sauce again.
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I was happy to realise that Olio Cafe has takeaway and delivery options as well, so next time I’m out of home-cooked or hawker food and tired of fast food, I know where to head to.

180 Kitchener Road

City Square Mall #03-39/40

Singapore 208539

No. 1 Sengkang Square

Compasspoint Shopping Centre #01-14/15

Singapore 545078

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Barracks Cafe @ House Dempsey

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Dempsey Hill. The heaven of food districts. On my very first visit to the prestigious food centre, I had to start off with a bang. So I headed to a well-liked and review place, House. Dempsey House consists of a beauty emporium, a Camp Bar for drinks at night, and the more renowned cafe, Barracks. It was formerly an army barracks, hence its name.

I was curious as to why a chinese red bean bun ($2.50) would be doing on its menu with a recommended sign next to it. Curiosity gave food to the cat. I thought mini red bean buns were the best buns of all, but this extra large one rivalled it. It’s softness was the winning factor.
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After my first experience of trying truffle shoe-string fries ($11), I can say they are a million times better than normal fries with salt. For 11 bucks of the same portion at McDonalds’, you might say that it is a rip-off, but not until you try it for yourself. White truffle oil does great things.

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The Red Snappper ($28) would be recommended if you’re going for something light but substantial. The clams give the broth a herbal taste which is not overbearing. You will be surprised to find green noodles underneath the fish, and the delicious clams are definitely a huge bonus for lovers.

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A main feature of Barracks would be their signature skinny pizzas. It was difficult to make up my mind with so many flavors available, but I ended up with the Mozzarella Bolognese Pizza ($25) being a fan of mozzarella AND bolognese. Despite being a 9 inch pizza, it was nearly barely enough for 2-3 eaters. What I like most about it was the well matched combination of mozzarella, greens and bolognese sauce. The sauce might have gone better with pasta but it didn’t matter anymore. Everything comes together as a piece of good thing.

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Desserts oh desserts! I must say that if you come all the way to Barracks without trying the desserts, then save the trip. In fact, now I’m starting to claim that it’s all about the desserts at Barracks. People claim that Barracks has the best Strawberry Shortcake ($9.50) in Singapore, which I certainly believe so now. The strawberries in the cake are not left just as they are but they are much more melted and softer. As I am not that accustomed to eating strawberries, I usually avoid strawberry cakes, but these were made such that it was perfect for me. Alongside it comes with a small glass of not milk but warm vanilla bean sauce – pour it all over the cake and tuck it into your mouth.

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The Warm Banana Salted Caramel Cake ($7) blew me away as well. It’s unique appearance appealed to my senses, I loved how warm and soft the bananas and cake was. After you uncover the cubes of bananas, you find a pool of caramel in the middle of the cake. It’s like finding gold. And yes, those are popcorns.

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It was certainly one of my best meals so far. I see myself coming back and I have this *evil* temptation to aim and try everything encompassed in the desserts menu.

8D Dempsey Road

Singapore 249672

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Joan Bowen Cafe: For a Special Cause

Usually the food and beverages outlets you see on a day to day basis are plainly tactics to earn a buck. Not for this cafe cum culinary centre that aims to help the special needs of people in today’s society.

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Joan Bowen Cafe, established by Mr. Khong Yoon Kay and Mdm Jeanne Seah, works to impart skills in the F&B sector to young people with special needs, providing them a job to hold. It is named after their daughter with special needs, Joan Bo Wen. She now works at the cafe as a trainee, along with others employed to learn.

It was tough trying to find this little red house from the MRT station of Potong Pasir. Nonetheless, whatever infinite amount of distance you have to walk is erased away with the thought of a soon to be brilliant lunch.

We had the honor to try one of the cafe’s newest dishes, the Roast Pork ($18). I felt that whatever was on that plate complemented each other pretty well and the roast pork was done just right, neither too tender nor too tough. Yet, the price would be considered a little steep for that portion of pork they serve.
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The Rosemary & Lemon Chicken ($10), on the other hand, was a real steal. For just 10 bucks, you get something worth at least 15 in other places. The greens tasted the exact quality of restaurants I have been before and if there’s any veggie I would eat for a lifetime it would be this. I couldn’t exactly taste the “lemon” in the chicken, but I was well satisfied that it was not overly crisp. Also, I have to admit that the sauces used for the chicken and pork were fantastic.
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I decided to go with the cafe’s most popular dessert and that would be their Oreo Cheesecake ($5). When it first came to my table all that entered my eyes was a “block of chocolate chip ice-cream”. I had my doubts, judging from its appearance. Yet, it overwhelmed me with what I now call it an “oreo ice-cream cheesecake”. Their version is arguably better than a usual slice of oreo cheesecake. Full of creativity, it encompassed everything that an oreo cheesecake has, with the additional point of the taste of ice-cream.
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Service was great, and the staff seemed very comfortable with their jobs, despite being disabled in some ways. They were certainly trained well and I must say that it was a pleasant surprise. Another outlet is located within the St. Andrews premises, more considerably the main branch. Lucky students!

9 Jalan Wangi, Singapore 349354
Telephone: +(65) 6281 3629

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