Tag Archives: restaurant

Marché Restaurant Vivocity

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Marche Restaurant used to be my favorite place that I frequent with the family but we kind of stopped going there after I found my love for exploring foodie places. After at least 2 years from my last visit, I thought I should return to test their standards. I guess people more or less know about Marche but I see no harm in writing a post.

Over the years, new outlets have opened at Somerset and Raffles City, but my favorite remains as the Vivocity outlet. It is so much more comfortable there especially with it’s location at the sky deck. In terms of layout, it gets first place.

The Smoked Salmon Crepe was filled with chopped lettuce, red cabbage and smoked salmon and it was super savory. At times you taste the crunchiness of veggies, otherwise you get the softer, savory taste of the salmon.
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Pork Knuckles with Mashed Potato is one of the main courses to order at Marche, except that the quality is not that good anymore.

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Everyone’s favorite at Marche is no doubt the Swiss Rosti. I added on a chicken cheese sausage which was rather juicy. It is no doubt for me too that the rosti is my favorite dish from Marche, but I wish they could go easy on the oil content.

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For desserts, there is the Movenpick ice cream which I have always loved. Otherwise, they have sweet crepes, cakes and tarts.  The Brownie looked good but unfortunately it was a tad too dry for my liking. If not, the chocolate taste would come out good and strong. On the other hand, the Mousse was mainly a good dollop of dark chocolate which surprised yet amazed me.

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This Christmas Fruit Cake did not fail to impress me. It is not a norm for me to order fruit cakes so I was glad I did not make the wrong choice. The taste of cinnamon together with dried fruits and icing sugar was great, I would not mind a second serving.
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The conclusion: Will I continue to patronise Marche? Probably. The food here have their hits and misses but ultimately they have comfort food and ambience which makes everything about them seem homely – perfect for family outings.

 

1 HarbourFront Walk

#03-14

Vivocity

Weekdays 1100 – 2300

Weekends 1000 – 2300

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Keong Saik Snacks

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Keong Saik Snacks have been opened for months and featured in the media for sometime, which brings me to it. The layout is small and homely, with one side of red couches for bigger groups, and the other side of old skool tables and stools. A bar stands out at the back. Upon stepping in we are welcomed with warm service. The best part about it? No service charge over here!

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It was my first time seeing a menu of boxes. Names of each item in a box, so it looks like a grid. When I do not know how to start my meal, I go with the default fries. The Chili Garlic Fries ($6) reminded me of my all-time favorite truffle fries, only that the distinct taste of truffle was not there. Still, it was free of chili and garlic taste altogether and instead was the resemblance of fries with very good seasoning.

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The Kimchi Burger ($20) caught my attention; I expected some kimchi-flavored burger patty but alas, it was a beef patty burger with a side dish of kimchi. It was kind of hard to have it together with the burger so I had to have it separately. Both the burger and kimchi were good but not fantastic. Definitely waiting for an eatery to come up with a real kimchi burger.

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By chance the other main course we had, the Grilled Bone Marrow & London Gentleman’s Relish ($18) was also of beef. I just realised that Gentleman’s Relish is the anchovy paste on the bone marrow after googling. It is a messy affair having to pick out the beef from the bone marrow and to spread it on toast but the result is worth it. It reminded me of a beef pastrami sandwich, but only better.

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Only 2 desserts are available on the menu: Hot Doughnuts with Cinnamon & Vanilla Chantilly ($8) and a selection of home made ice-cream flavors. I had to go with the former which sounds more interesting. Essentially it was two pieces of doughnuts coated with sugar and to be dipped in a caramel paste. A simple light bite, yet it could be better.

The food offerings from Keong Saik Snacks are of a small range yet it sort of brings out the best from every food item. If beef is not for you, try the Jason’s Very Hot Dog, DIY Tuna Tartare and Lobster Roll with Spiced Mayo & Iceberg Lettuce – which are all very special in their own ways.

By the way, a bar next to Keong Saik Snacks is hipster. And mysterious as well. It requires a password which you can get from the staff of KSS to enter. Have fun exploring!
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49 Keong Saik Road

1200 – 2300 daily

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Catalunya: Classic Spanish

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Spanish tapas bars are making their way into Singapore with no small affair. With new names like Bomba, Los Primos and La Cicala popping from areas near the CBD, I took quick (or a little less than quick) action to one of the most lavish Spanish tapas bar and restaurant and also the talk of the town, Catalunya.

Location: fab. It is a lone yet sleek glass dome separate from the usual line of restaurants along fullerton bay, across the marina bay sands. It comes to this close of imagining yourself dining out at sea. Interior: high-end. Wooden furnishings coupled with the glass walls of the dome and complete with symmetrical patterns lining the entire place.

Catalunya is helmed by former elBulli chef Alain Devahive Tolosa and serves more as a tapas bar for late drinks nowadays with a cocktail, wine and tapas menu. The place was not as packed on the Saturday afternoon we went compared to weekday or weekend nights. Still, the food from the restaurant menu is worth every penny you pay and I can see why the media was running high on this place.

First up we definitely had to have items from the tapas menu. Pictures of the Tomato Tartar Confit ($18) on reviews were playing on my mind so I went with it. Seemed a little mysterious initially but it was refreshing and a great start to our meal.
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Also we had the Roasted Suckling Pig w/ Lemon Puree ($18) from the tapas menu. One word: tenderness. Each bite was tenderness and I fought hard to savor the meager portion. Forget about roast pork belly, I want to have roasted suckling pig all day. My only regret was not getting the entire traditional suckling pig ($125, feeds 2-3 pax) from the main courses.
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For our main course, we had the Braised Lamb Rack ($55). Not too bad except I find the meat a little tough for a medium cooked meat.
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Not to forget the desserts, which I found both as exquisite altogether. The Torrija with Milk Ice-cream ($12) is essentially fried milk bread with spices served with smoked milk ice cream. The “bread” seemed more like a sponge cake to me and it was soaked with sweetened milk so fully that I loved it so much. You can literally taste smoke while having the smoked milk ice cream. I found it a little eccentric but I guess it’s worth the experience.
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On the other hand, the Warm Creamy Almond Tart ($12) was like the conventional molten lava cake, only much more special. The almond “cream” flowed out with much less viscosity compared to molten chocolate and it sure took me by surprise. The distinct almond cream was the limelight which made this dessert unforgettable.
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Let me go all out and say that this was my blockbuster meal for the year. My only pity was not ordering more hot favorites from the menu… Guess that means another trip back there.
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82 Collyer Quay

The Fullerton Pavilion

Daily 1200 – 0200

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Skyve Elementary Bistro & Bar

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A few months back I made the trip with my fellow companions to Skyve, located at a quiet corner in a lane at a distance from central Newton. Skyve is now the previous Monk’s Hill Secondary School and actually it’s school canteen to be exact. It has been gaining popularity since months ago and even though it may seem overrated these days, there’s nothing to complain about with its charming ambience and food.

Indoors dining is divided into two areas – a classy area with cool green upholstery and another bright, white and airy area. Even though mismatched, the entire restaurant had that magical touch.

On weekdays, breakfast items are available from 1000 to 1600 while lunch items from 1200 – 1500. A la carte main courses etc are only for dinner time. We had a few breakfast items that day, including:

Toasted French Soldiers ($16) – 2 french toasts with nutella & 2 soft boiled eggs
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Croque Madame ($16) – sunny side up with brioche sandwich with sliced ham, melted cheddar cheese, tomatoes and salad
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Skyver’s Breakfast ($22) –  2 eggs with choice of bread, mushroom, sausage, tomatoes and potatoes
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I’ve heard loads about the sous vide cooked dishes from Skyve so I had to have the Sous Vide Eggs Benedict ($18). The poached eggs have to be cooked at an exact temperature for evenness. It was different from the usual eggs ben I had and I loved this different style. I enjoyed the 2 poached eggs drizzled with what seems like a very good hollandaise sauce. The only complaint is that they were too small, easily slurped up within 30 seconds.
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For desserts we had the Ivory Dome ($12) and Valrhona Chocolate Fondant ($14). The former was unique. It was mainly a mango sponge cake but with touches of passionfruit, dark chocolate and marscapone. The creation was vivid. The latter was the traditional chocolate lava cake with vanilla bean ice cream but deserved a thumbs up as well for keeping it a good ol’ must-have.
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On another occasion I had their char grilled burger with truffle fries and it was good but not exceptionally tasty.

On another note, even wedding dinners have been hosted at Skyve hence the suitability of it for birthday parties and more.

Not only are their breakfast items good, their main courses for dinner are also given good reviews and high ratings, including the duck confit, spring chicken, seared beef tartare and crispy pork belly. Skyve is quite packed especially for this season so be sure to make reservations early.
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10 Winstedt Road

Block E

#01-17

Daily 1000 – late

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Sarang Korean Restaurant

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I’ve always adored Orchard Central after realizing it houses many hidden gems for a foodie like me. Sarang is located on the 7th level of Orchard Central with an indoor and alfresco area which looked like a brilliant place to hang out especially at night (when you can admire the lights at the heart of Singapore while ordering a couple of cocktails). On the other hand, the air-conditioned section is cozier with wooden furnishings. Featuring modern Korean cuisine, Sarang has been a favorite spot for Korea lovers (plus several Korean stars).
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Being indecisive about what to order, both of us opted for a set meal with courses perfect for two persons at $58. Despite the steep price, it’s a great option for newbies to have a little taste of everything in the Korean cuisine.  First up we had fresh kimchi with mini sides which are always a great way to start a meal with.

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The Japchae, or sweet potato noodles, are stir fried in generous amounts of sesame oil with mixed vegetables.

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The texture of the  Basak Bulgogi – beef gulgogi on a sizzling hot plate was a tad too hard for my liking but the entire dish was still a good formation with more mixed vegetables.

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Haemul tteokboki – rice cakes in spicy sauce with seasonal vegetables. The rice cakes were the type that are soft and easily chewed. Compared to harder, more chewy ones, I think both are worthy to try – each has its own good side.

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World star army stew.

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Our dessert that day was the korean version of ice kacang with less ice and more fruits. Other than the red beans and fruits, it was rather bland and it definitely looked better than it tasted.

\\ Just recently, Sarang has revamped its menu to give more taste of Seoul. I guess this gives me a reason to be back to experience the cool vibe at Sarang while choosing from more varieties of stews and more.

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181 Orchard Central

#07-01

Fridays & Saturdays 1200-2300

Sundays – Thursdays 1200-2200

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Kabe no Ana

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Pumpkin croquette

Nex has always provided the dining option for me whenever I need a quick fix at somewhere convenient. Kabe no ana is a casual eatery specialising in Japanese pastas and pizzas, part of the Japanese chain of eateries at a corner of the mall – Shokutsu 10. Its a cozy space with warm lights and particularly attractive to families. There you can also find seafood by Kuriya market, soba by Shimbashi Soba and japanese pastries from a bakery all on my list to try next.

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Chicken teriyaki

I tried two pizzas – Teriyaki Chicken ($5.9) and Pumpkin Croquette ($6.9) and a pasta – Mentaiko Carbonara($13.9). Personally I find the pizzas here much better than the pastas. They were certainly good and that surprised me. I like that the crust is thin and a little crispy, just of the right consistency. The teriyaki chicken (a house favorite) was certainly flavorful; the pumpkin croquette was special with a quirky yet unforgettable taste. Another point to add is that the pizzas come in small sizes as well – no worries about  sharing.

On the other hand, I felt that the bacon bits enhanced the carbonara but the dish was a tad too dry. Still, the menu has an extensive range of japanese pastas to choose from (more than 25) and with a little bit of luck it may be possible to get a hidden gem. Not to forget, many set lunches and meals are there to satisfy your wallet.

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Service was rather shabby at times with some miscommunications between the waitresses and customers. I was rather disappointed that most of the better-looking desserts on the menu were not available, I had to make do with a strawberry ice cream ($6.9) which looked better than it tasted. Otherwise, I would be more than happy to have the lava cakes and tiramisu on the menu.

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23 Serangoon Central

#B1-80 NEX Mall

Opens 1100 – 2200 daily

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Ssikkek Korean BBQ Restaurant

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Ssikkek is always a popular choice for korean bbq buffet especially with its budget. So when I was asked by friends for dinner there I automatically said yes. Ssikkek is the restaurant with the most buzz along the stretch at novena ville. They are simply spotted as the eatery with the longest queue. On that night, we waited for an hour before getting a table so reservations are a must.
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For just a price of $12++ for lunch and $22++ for dinner, I can’t help but think that Ssikkek is no doubt a very good buffet of comfort prices. I find that it is a cool place for groups of people to hangout and have barbecue at the same time. Unlike some other Korean restaurants, Ssikkek takes on a very casual setting suitable for almost anything. Despite the heat from sitting in the outdoor area, everybody there seemed to be having a great time.
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The meat items here were quite of standard and definitely will make you go back for more and more. The assortment of chicken, pork and beef items are highly popular and quite of standard. This is of course together with side dishes (in which I adored the Korean rice cakes), kimchi fried rice and seafood.

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The whole experience is a satisfying one. That’s what I love about Korean BBQ. That to be said, I had probably ate about a week’s worth of meat – but it was worth the calories.

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275 Thomson Road

#01-01/02 Novena Ville

Monday – Sunday 1130 – 2230

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The House of Robert Timms

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Despite passing by and brushing it off when I step into town, I finally had the chance to dine at Robert Timms when a friend recommended it to me.

Classy glass panels line the restaurant from the entrance from outside of Wheelock Place. The alfresco areas make a great drinking spot (like slurping cocktails on a beach) with its chic furniture and fans. The interiors are distinctly divided into two areas: one of the light and airy with natural light filtering from glass walls; the other of a bold black and white backdrop hidden from the front.
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The House of Robert Timms originated from Australia so you can expect to find newly added uniquely Australian items such as the kangaroo loin steak and crocodile curry. Not having the feel for foreign meat, we decided to get a few dishes we were comfortable with. Nothing can go wrong with the spicy beef wraps we had as a side. The other mains we had were the barramundi with butter and herb spring roasted chicken. The food here is fairly competitive with generous portions.

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Items here average $25 and the menu has a range of breakfast items, pastas, mains and steaks to choose from. Another outlet can be found at Orchard shopping centre but I would prefer Wheelock one’s to it mainly because of ambiance.

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501 Orchard Road

Wheelock Place #01-02/03

Singapore 238880

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Ma Maison Restaurant

The Ma Maison group of Japanese restaurants include full-fledged restaurants and cafes and what’s making them do so well is their casual yet hearty affair. Ma Maison @ Bugis Junction, the outlet I visited, had a Japanese-French appeal with its dim interiors. Despite seeming a tad too dim and dusty, I loved the rustic charm of the narrow restaurant.

An extensive menu awaits you at Ma Maison as new items are regularly added and may come in the form of a whole set of lunch and dinner offers and set meals.
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A plate of prawn paste chicken wings ($9.80) to start the meal as appetizers. Nothing much to rave about them though.
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Surprisingly, the different outlets of Ma Maison all have differing signature items. Ma Maison @ Bugis Junction emphasizes on their mains of beef steak and pastas. Their hamburg steak dishes look especially appetizing (plus the fact that I have a thing for japanese beef) so I got the Italian Hamburg with Cheese ($16.90). Though the steaks weren’t out-of-the-world fantastic, I still like the idea of what I call “casual beef” at comfort prices.
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Fruit pies and tarts are a must when at Ma Maison. Initially I was pretty much tempted by the massive array of colorful fruit pies, cakes and tarts however a sudden appearance of brownie and ice cream on an isolated sheet of the menu changed my mind in the spur of a moment. Surprisingly, the seemingly out-of-place dessert was made well – a soft, light one for the tummy.

Overall, with its centralized locations, decent food and prices, I see no harm to return. Next on my list: the praised Tonkatsu at Tonkatsu by Ma Maison, new kid on the block Aloha Ma Maison and more cakes at Cafe Ma Maison!

 

200 Victoria Street

Bugis Junction #02-51

Singapore 188021

1130 – 1430, 1800 – 2200 on weekdays

1130 – 1430, 1700 – 2200 on weekends

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Chili’s Grill & Bar

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Chili’s Grill and Bar entered the Singapore food scene not long ago and has been quite a dormant name to mention when looking for somewhere to dine. I myself have never thought much of Chili’s till I stepped into the obvious outlet at Resorts World Sentosa. Curiosity got the better of me when I saw the snaking queues at dinner hours. Now, I wouldn’t say that Chili’s whip out the best Mexican/Western/Tex-mex food out there, but in terms of everything it makes a great place to simply chill out on Thank God It’s Fridays.

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There weren’t a lot of mouths of us there, so we thought opting for some appetizers would be good. Then we came to realize that the portions of their appetizers might as well be of main courses. So an advice would be: Chili’s is good for groups. Quesadillas – of fajita-marinated chicken with cheese served in tortillas. I would not deny that it was satisfying but I thought the flavors could be more distinct.
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On the other hand, the Classic Nachos made up for its shortcomings. There is a dominant taste of seasoned beef and cheese. A good kind of salty; just like how nachos should be. I enjoyed it more than the quesadillas, so this is the appetizer to have.
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As usual, I couldn’t get myself to leave without ordering a dessert. My eyes were all on its signature choice – the Chocolate Molten Cake. Unfortunately (fortunately) my love for molten cakes have not dissipated, I feel that it is triumphing over other inferior cakes and tarts. Shocked but very, very happy was I to have the biggest lava cake I’ve seen so far in my life – five inches. A soft sponge cake with chocolate that flows.

I felt that everything went right with this meal. I was comfortable with the casual spaces, pleasured by the friendly service, appalled by the irrelevance between their serving size and affordable prices and bloated (in a satisfying way) by the food. It will be hard to decide even which category on the menu to turn to so I definitely recommend coming with a bunch of people. Much as the burgers and pastas seem to be special, the fajitas and crispy chicken and ribs here put me in a dilemma. I can already imagine myself going back to get a little taste of everything.

Resorts World Sentosa

26 Sentosa Gateway

#01-072/073/074

Singapore 098138

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