Saturday, December 29

Barossa (Holland Village)

Hello (:

Am finally back in the comfort of home (: Though I managed to retreat home every night to rest and go back for camp early in the morning the next day, it brings me great relief to know that I can finally stay in tomorrow morning to do my own things and to rest. I really have to thank the kind colleagues who offered to stay over in school, thus giving the few lucky people like myself the option of going home to rest every night, so thank you!

Barossa serves pub food and it is usually pretty empty in the day time (not too sure about night time). Like most restaurants and pubs, Barossa has its own lunch and dinner deals and I guess these go very well if you were to like drinking! The setting of Barossa in Holland Village is quite cosy as Barossa occupies a corner and the seating area is not very big.  

What I remembered most fondly about Barossa was the Barossa Salad ($12), and I had hoped to try it again when I visited the outlet at Holland Village not too long ago. Though the ingredients are still the same, the salad I had at the Holland Village branch was much sweeter than the one I had years ago at the Esplanade branch. I would have preferred this if it weren't that sweet but it was still quite nice (: I think the cranberries stood out for me because I love dried cranberries! (:

Matty ordered a ginger ale ($6) and it was pretty normal. I was thankful he chose a fizzy drink so I could get a sip or two when I felt like I needed some fizz! 

I had a glass of orange juice, which came with

the Wholesome Breakfast Set ($28). It was actually pretty large, as you can see from the photo above, and we were thankful that we were sharing both our mains or we would not be able to finish our food on our own! On the whole, the items in the wholesome breakfast set were saltier than usual and they weren't as well-made compared to other breakfast sets that we have had. Well I guess we should have gone for something more 'pubbish' like fish & chips but generally this was average. It would fill you up but it won't leave you craving for more nor would you want to order this again in future. 

Comparatively, the scallop and asparagus pasta in cream sauce ($22) was much better but again, I was thankful that we were sharing this or it'll definitely be too gelat for one of us to finish this entirely on our own! This was a pretty average and 'safe' dish to have and if you are a big lover of cream sauce, this would go right down your alley!

This trip to Barossa kind of wiped out the relatively good impression I had of this pub partly because their only saving grace - the Barossa Salad - is not as wondrous as I had remembered it to be. But no matter, I'm sure I'll find another place that serves kickass salad with cranberries in the near future! (:

Alright I'm off to take a break! Happy counting down to 2012! (: Have a great weekend!

Sunday, December 23

The Bar and Alfresco


I'm still very much in the holiday mood and I persist in being ignorant about work but I realise that this self-indulgence has to come to an end soon =S So I shall make most use of the last few days of unbridled freedom before 2013 (and work) comes!

If there is one thing that I like and dislike at the same time about dining during the festive period, it is the ubiquitous festive menus! It can get quite frustrating when all you want is to eat something that you normally would be able to get but I guess it's also quite a nice change from the usual if you are 'forced' to have festive dishes. A few days ago, we went to Four Season's Bar and Alfresco for their Classic Afternoon Tea, which came up to $50/pax after taxes. Pardon the rather dark photos. Lighting was low and we were seated at a corner so there was even less light, hence some of the rather dark photos.

Tea begins at 1pm and ends at 5pm so you drop by anytime in between though I would highly recommend that you call to make a reservation, especially during this busy festive period, lest you end up not having a table! We managed to get an indoor table so I was quite thankful because I didn't want to be battling the afternoon heat (it was extremely sunny when we went!). That day, I tried the Jade of Africa decaffeinated tea and it was surprisingly nice! (: The waiter had recommended it so I thought to give it a shot! I think it's my first time drinking decaffeinated tea and I don't think it tastes very different from normal tea. 

This was our refillable three-tier high tea stand! (: I think it's only refillable if all parties at the table choose to have the hightea set. Otherwise it'll be non-refillable, which I guess makes economic sense.

On the top tier, we have festive cookies and fruit cake, which I didn't really like because they tasted like the things we could get from Cold Storage or other supermarkets that sell these =S I wish they didn't serve these but I guess they had to since it adds to the 'festivity'.

The second tier was made up of their signature chocolate desserts and red velvet cupcakes. Comparatively, these were much better than the festive cookies and fruit cake but if I were to compare these with other chocolate desserts that I've had, I don't think these were anything special. I guess the most 'outstanding' would have to be the kumquat-chocolate rounds (on the far right of photo) which I thought was something interesting, but other than that, the rest were just so-so.

The last tier was the savoury tier that had excellent egg and smoked salmon dishes. They were actually quite good so we ordered a second helping of only these two items! The rest - the cucumber sandwich, the ham and sunflower seeds nibbles, some turkey loaf (?) - were merely average. I must say that the BEST sandwiches still come from Goodwood Park's L'espresso! So these definitely couldn't hold a candle to those.

Thankfully, the plain and pumpkin scones saved the day! They were well-baked, not too crumbly, not too dense and were actually aromatic! (: We also ordered a third pair because we liked them so much! (: I actually prefer to eat the pumpkin scones plain, without clotted cream or jam, because it is quite sweet by itself.

And that was how we spent one languorous afternoon! Eating and drinking tea at The Bar and Alfresco (: (: (: How indulgent!

Wednesday, December 19

Lawry's The Prime Rib


I'm finally back and I feel pretty good about how the past week had been (: Yesterday, two of my sisters, Matty and myself went to Lawry's for lunch before we split up to do our own things and I was pretty glad we went because my three lunch companions had never tried Lawry's so it was a new experience for them!

Sadly, I didn't manage to take photos of all the dishes we ordered because we were all pretty hungry so I only managed to take some using my trusty hp! Nevertheless, we left Lawry's feeling full-bellied and happy so I guess that's more important.

Alright here are some photos taken at lunch yesterday:

Complimentary warm mini-baguettes and four blobs of salted butter. I would have preferred it if the butter was hard and cold but theirs was pretty good. 

One relatively large serving of spinning bowl salad which was so-so.

Cousin of R2D2 which contains wonderful beef, ribs, mashed potatoes, peas etc!

This is how a slice of beef and a (complimentary) side of mashed potato usually look like. The Singapore Cut costs $63 and the California Cut costs $73. I think it is more worth it to lunch at Lawry's because you will get complimentary bread and salad (as seen above), as well as Yorkshire Pudding (not pictured). I'm not sure if these come with the dinner beef dishes as I've never been to Lawry's for dinner!
Having tried the Cajun Fish & Chips ($36) at my previous visit, I decided to go for the Seafood Pasta ($36) this time. I think it was pretty average but I like that they made the effort to give some steamed veggies for sides (: The scallops were alright to me but I didn't like the tough prawns! I only ate one because it was very dry and tough. Oh well thankfully the rest of the dish was alright (: One of my sisters had the fish & chips this time and she said it was okay too though she commented that she was more impressed with the fries than fish.

Am pretty happy that I managed to head back to Lawry's to try new dishes but I don't think I'll be back anytime soon now that I've tried both mains that I can possibly have. Nonetheless, it is a great place to go to if you would like to shave a nice leisurely meal especially on a weekday afternoon (:

I wish that time would slow down so that we can enjoy the rest of December! The hols are passing way too quickly for my liking!

Tuesday, December 11

Ding Tai Feng


We just came back from our virgin trip to see the Supertrees and we are feeling super happy! (: The weather was nothing short of perfect for an outdoor excursion today so we were feeling superb throughout the entire trip! Gardens by the Bay is REALLY huge and we didn't manage to cover the entire garden. In fact, we only planned to visit both observatories as well as do the OCBC skywalk and we are proud to say that we managed to accomplish all that we wanted to do! (: It truly is an amazing place and we would definitely go back many times in the near future to check out the other parts of the park.

Just before we went to Gardens by the Bay, we stopped by Ding Tai Feng at Marina Bay Sands for a quick lunch! (:

Ding Tai Feng was crowded as usual but we suspect that there is a shortage of manpower hence the less-brisk-than-usual service!

We both ordered the Lemon Grass Drink ($4.20/ glass) and it is THE best drink I've had at DTF! It is surprisingly refreshing and it isn't too sweet so we both liked it very much.

Matty decided to order ONE truffle xiao long bao ($4.50) just to try it out and he said that it didn't taste as nice as their normal xiao long baos! I guess the truffle taste and smell was just too faint to make a difference? I am pretty amused that they allow patrons to order just ONE xiao long bao on its own! haha I guess it's quite a good idea since some people might just want to have ONE to try.

We also were more adventurous today in choosing our noodles for sharing as we chose to have the spicy noodle ($7/bowl), which is a new item. There are no condiments and it's basically plain noodles with some chilli and some sauce but it tasted good! Not too spicy even for me (my tolerance for spicy food isn't that great) so if you are in the mood for some spicy noodles, you can order this!

I think this plate of stir fried dou miaos ($12) was perfect. I love how they do not overcook the dou miaos till they become soggy and limp; these were still crispy, light and fresh tasting. Wonderful veggie dish to have! 

We never fail to order century egg with ginger ($4) when we come to Ding Tai Feng or when it is on the menu because Matty likes it and I am pretty alright with it too (: I think DTF does a good job of this dish because the egg isn't too pungent and the sauce is sweeter than usual (:

The layered steamed cake ($3.50) which both of us liked a lot as well! I finally was able to eat this cake by peeling layer by layer! It is a simple and comforting dish which isn't sweet so I think it will make for a good dessert for those who do not like to indulge in sweet things.

One reason why I would actually go back to DTF again and again is because of their mini steamed yam xiao long baos ($6.80 for 6 pieces)! The yam paste is mixed to perfection because it is smooth and not overly sweet and the thin xlb skin complements this wonderfully. I always order this dish when I go to DTF and I highly recommend it!

Alright I will be going off on a break till next week so I most likely won't be updating this space till I am back (: Have a great rest of the week!

Saturday, December 8

The Tea Lounge at Christmas Time


It TRULY is Christmas at The Tea Lounge at Regent Hotel during High Tea time because there's just SO MUCH good food to eat!

Here are some photos taken just now during Jo's birthday lunch:

Too stuffed to type anymore for now so I'll let the photos speak for my gastronomical experience! A must-go if you LOVE high tea!

Have a great weekend! (:

Wednesday, December 5

Vegan Burg


Sorry for the lack of updates! I was away the past week on a school trip hence didn't have the time to blog. Right now, I still have a bit of light-headedness and I suspect it's because of excessive airplane air! =S However whatever I'm feeling now isn't as bad as what I felt on the first night after we landed so I am optimistic that my head will be fine by the end of the day or tomorrow :)

I shall do a short post on Vegan Burg because I think that's as much as my brain can handle at this point.. =) I was first introduced to Vegan Burg by my best friend, Jo, and back then I had to travel all the way to the east to eat at this fastfood place because there was only one outlet. Since then, Vegan Burg has expanded and there is one outlet at Turf City now! (: Matty and I went there for my predeparture trip and we had a good time rediscovering that this fastfood place is a heaven to me because I have so many choices! (: Basically I can eat anything I want at Vegan Burg and that makes it a place that I would happily go to any time because I won't have to stick to having one or two types of burgers.

Unlike many other fastfood restaurants, Vegan Burg does not serve soft drinks; instead they are slightly 'healthier' and serve fruit juices and other types of organic teas/ coffees. We settled for Orange Passion fruit (left) and Apple Blackcurrant (right) which were great as they weren't too sweet.

We ordered two meals: the creamy shrooms meal ($11.85) and smoky BBQ meal ($10.85) and they were very filling! Each meal comes with a burger, a packet of thick straight cut fries and a cup of drink. (Both meals look the same so I only took one photo). Admittedly, the meals are pretty pricey considering they are fastfood meals but I guess their burgers do taste distinctly different from other normal fastfood burgers and believe it or not, they taste 'healthier' so I guess the price justifies the taste. Also, you are almost guaranteed to feel full after finishing the entire meal so this beats normal fastfood meals any day! :)

I am pretty sure that we'll go back to Vegan Burg in the near future to try their other burgers (: Till then, I will try to get rid of the movement in my head and settle outstanding work! Have a great rest of the week (:

Wednesday, November 21



After living next to ToTT for years, I FINALLY made my maiden trip to ToTT last Sunday to check it out! =) Before I went to ToTT, all that I knew about it was that it is like IKEA- it even has a little cafe just like IKEA's - except that it sells cooking and baking ware! Nothing prepared me for the well-furnished, gleaming interior and the wide variety of kitchen ware on display! If you love pretty utensils and designer kitchen ware, then ToTT would be a haven for you!

Before we went about exploring the place, we stopped by at the cafe to grab lunch! The cafe was surprisingly packed that day partly because there was a birthday party going on so a section of the seating area was cordoned off. Thankfully some very kind people decided to give up their table once they were done eating so we didn't have to wait too long for a seat (: You have to have a table before you start ordering your food or you'll be reminded by the guy at the food counter. I guess that only makes sense because you don't wish to be stuck with a tray full of food and have no table to eat at!

That day, we decided to go for the Braised Beef Cheek ($8.50), Pan Fried Dory ($8.50), French Fries ($2.70) and Chamomile Dream Soya Beancurd ($2.20). We paid $3.80 for the Esprit orange sparking drink. Unlike IKEA's wonderful meatballs with jam and salmon with broccoli and kickass daim cake, ToTT's food was merely average and I don't think I would be actually want to go to ToTT just to have their food. Oh please do not ever order their fries because they don't taste like real fried salted fries; instead, they taste more baked and they were limpy =( The most interesting dish we had was the chamomile beancurd, which Matty quite liked but I didn't take to it. Even after making myself try mouthfuls of it throughout the meal, I still couldn't get used to it and found myself not wanting to have any more of it towards the end. I guess it might be a case of acquired taste but I don't think I would choose to have that again any time soon.

I suspect I'll be back at ToTT soon to look at kitchen ware again because one of my colleagues has been eyeing a sous vide machine! haha Well I guess there are other things worth looking at as well =)

Till the next post! (:

P.S. Thanks Jeffrey for sponsoring more space for this blog :) I owe you a pair of goretex trekking pants or sth that you need in return. Many thanks again!

Saturday, November 17



We went to Bugis Plus not too long ago because we wanted to have ramen at one of the Ramen Champion restaurants! =) I remember that area being very crowded a few years ago when it first came to Singapore because my family queued for quite a long while before we got our table! My impression of the ramen I had then was only so-so hence I didn't think much of going back to have ramen.

However, Matty, who is a huge ramen fan, told me that he had never been to Ramen Champion so we decided to check out one of the restaurants there!

After he did his research, he decided on having ramen from Taishoken so that's where we went to!

Taishoken uses these devices which beep when your food is ready so you know when to go back to the counter to get your food! (: I think this is actually quite ingenious as you won't have to keep hovering around the food collection point to wait for your food to be ready.

Since it was our first time there, we decided to order the two highly recommended dishes. I had the Tokyo Ramen Deluxe ($15 for regular), which is thick ramen noodles with charsiew slices, egg and bamboo shoots. I think the ramen was possibly the thickest that I've tasted so far and it doesn't taste like the normal ramen that I use to eat. I didn't particularly like the thick soup base because I prefer shio base but I think this was more shoyu-ish but it has lotsa flavour! On the whole it was quite a hearty dish and it definitely is filling!

Matty chose to have the Tsukemen Deluxe Ramen ($15 for regular). Frankly, I've never had or seen Tsukemen ramen being eaten before so this was definitely something new to me. Basically this is cold ramen dish where you pick up the cooked, plain ramen from the bowl on the right and dip the ramen in the cold, salty sauce seen in the bowl on the left of this photo. You can control how flavourful you want your ramen to be by controlling how much sauce you choose to coat your ramen with. I made the mistake of trying to taste the sauce on its own and it's pretty strong! Definitely NOT to be drunk neat! Guess this is an alternative choice to the usual warm ramen that we have.

Ramen Champion was surprisingly empty on the Saturday afternoon that we went, maybe because we just missed the lunch crowd? We definitely wouldn't mind going back again to try ramen from other stalls but whether we actually make it to Bugis Plus depends heavily on our moods and the weather because it's not very convenient to get to Bugis Plus from our area.

Alright that's all for now! Have a good weekend! (: