An Introduction

An Introduction
The Simplest Aphrodisiac

Flavours of the Month

Flavours of the Month
Rocks Urban Grill & Bar

Overseas Trips

Overseas Trips
The Reason to Travel

The A List

The A List
Featuring the Best

Privé Bakery & Cafe II

19 April 2009

The exams are drawing near and I needed some place quiet, some place relaxing where I could just destress and have a nice dinner. Privé immediately came to my mind, and this little islet is indeed becoming a favourite spot for both me and Daphne. Away from the hustle, away from the bustle, just enjoying the gentle sea breeze and lapping of the waves.

The N.Y. Burger: 8/10

"200g wagyu patty, melted english cheddar, crispy onions". I've read about this burger on a couple of blogs and I can understand why they like it so much. The beef was very fresh, juicy and tender, even after I asked it to be "medium-done" instead of their usual "medium-rare". The bread tasted a little salty actually, and what's a burger without its fries! Still, a very good burger indeed, even if it's not exactly big on size.

Chicken Milanese: 7.7/10

"Breaded chicken breast, Grana Padano cheese and Arugala salad". This was something interesting for the both of us, but it's actually quite flavourful given the cheese and herbs infused in the chicken. The chicken was also very tender, slightly crisp on some sides, and (I know some chefs don't exactly like this coming bit) it goes very well with chilli sauce!

Shoe-String Fries: 7.8/10

"Medium cut, fines herbes, sea salt". I was playing around with my camera, so the picture of the fries above was a shot with only the yellow meant to be seen, everything else fading to black. Anyway, those type of fries at MacDonald's, they're shoe-string as well. Daphne was expecting something thicker since there was a thin, medium and thick cut choice on the menu. Understandably, she probably thought the thin would be like those at Macs, the medium would be like those at Mos Burger, and the thick probably more like wedges. The ladies at the table next to us had the same thought, and one of them was saying, "It's medium cut right, why are these so... puny?"

And this is a shot Daphne insisted was necessary, since it not only shows the true colour of the fries, but it also captures the crispiness of it all. On taste, it was actually quite good given the salt and herbs used, but at some point I was wondering if the word "sea salt" and the actual marina just outside could have had some form of psychological effect, if you know what I mean. I guess the final question you would have to ask yourself is, would you pay $10++ for a bowl of fries? Well, we did, it was quite good actually, but more would always be good!

Service was really good, they're always so polite and friendly. Makes me like this place even more.

$28.00 for the n.y burger
$18.00 for the chicken milanese
$10.00 for a bowl of shoe-string fries

*Prices subject to the usual 7% GST and 10% service charge.

2 Keppel Bay Vista; Marina at Keppel Bay
Near Keppel Bay Tower. Entrance before and beside The Casuarina Condo at Keppel Bay.

Additional Comments
Operating Hours: 9am to midnight (last order 11pm).

Chicago's Steakhouse

12 April 2009

Many restaurants have started their own promotions to attract customers given the current economic recession, and Chicago's Steakhouse at Orchard Cineleisure is just one of them. Coupon leaflets, just like the one you see below, have been handed out in the past couple of weeks with simply enticing one-for-one main course, tapas and dessert offers.

If you do not have the coupons, don't worry, because I remember that there was a chalkboard just outside the restaurant that seemed to be promoting a similar one-for-one offer as well, but probably more in terms of set meals.

Fries: 7.5/10

You can't go wrong with these fries. Served hot and crispy, these fries tasted really good with the cool tartar sauce.

Grilled Calamari: 7/10

No rubbery texture, which is good, but somehow seemed to be lacking in taste. I reckon the deep-fried calamari would probably have tasted better.

BBQ Half Spring Chicken: 7.4/10

The chicken was very tender and I really liked the gravy that came with it. This dish would have been better though if the portion was a tad larger (don't be taken in by the picture).

Fish and Chips: 5/10

The picture on the menu actually showed two fish fillet slices, but there was only one small one to be seen. Gerald joked that since this was a one-for-one promotion, all the restaurant did was to split the two pieces between two different plates. The fish was really ordinary and comparable to those you can easily find at heartland foodcourts and hawker centres.

Root Beer Float
Cool it all down with a nice (albeit, small) glass of root beer float! =)

Excellent, you could see that the trainee staff was really doing her best to please her customers, being all smiles with good manners.

$7.90 for the grilled calamari
$5.90 for the fries
$14.90 for the bbq half spring chicken
$12.90 for the fish and chips
$5.90 for the root beer float

Orchard Cineleisure #01-03.

Cuscaden Patio

11 April 2009

Ce Zheng has been going on and on about his deep-fried chicken wings at Cuscaden that it was only a matter of time before the whole group of us trooped down to the pub to see (and taste) what he has been raving about. It's a small pub that's oddly placed at the basement of Ming Arcade (just opposite Hard Rock Cafe), but once there you would really 1) smell the scent of deep-fried chicken wings wafting through the air, and 2) see at least a plate of chicken wings on every table. I'm not kidding.

Deep-Fried Chicken Wings

Well, truth be told, it's deep- and over-fried chicken wings, but eating them piping hot with ice cold beer (Coke does fine as well) was simply satisfying. The chicken was juicy and the batter gave it a very crisp outer layer, as you can probably tell from how golden-brown the wings are.

Of course, being a food blogger, I must show some discernment and not be carried away, so I must add and reiterate that the chicken wings were over-fried and oily. It's certainly not something for the health-conscious, but then it's a pub anyway and all health concerns usually go out of the window. There were seven of us that night, so we ordered a couple of dozen chicken wings all to ourselves. Calories and fat concerns all out of the window indeed.

Service could be improved, the staff seemed to be trying very hard to balance between being polite and aloof.

$18 for a dozen deep-fried chicken wings

21 Cuscaden Road,
#B1-11 Ming Arcade,
Opposite Hard Rock Cafe.

Sakura Halal Thai Chinese Restaurant

The name itself is unique and deserves mention surely - four cultures under one name, one restaurant. Some of the food in the menu is Thai-inspired no doubt, but most of the rest are your standard, no frills Asian dishes like fried rice and stir-fried noodles. It's certainly a draw for many Muslim patrons, but I realised that half of the tables in the restaurant at Far East Plaza were filled by Chinese customers as well.

Nothing much to review on the food, so it's more or less pictures from here on. The portions are just nice, probably a little too much for weight-conscious young ladies, but it's good enough for me.

Dendeng Fried Rice

"Dendeng" is your Halal, beef-version of the Chinese "bak kwa" (barbecued pork slices), and it fits quite well with the rice here, especially since the dendeng has a slight peppery taste. Looks empty here because I didn't want any vegetables haha.

Beef Fried Rice

Crispy Noodles with Seafood

Mee Goreng

Fried Kway Teow with Cockles

Young staff, but attentive most of the time.

$6 for the dendeng fried rice
$4.50 for the crispy noodles with seafood

*The rest of the dishes are around $4 to $6 as well.

Orchard Far East Plaza, #05-34/36.

Additional Comments
1. Certified Halal.
2. Has a Cafe as well, which serves Western food and snacks.

Recipe: Chocolate Cheesecake

09 April 2009

I'm feeling very satisfied as I'm typing this post because the cheesecake was simply divine. I've been persuading my mum to bake this cake, making special requests on how I want it to be and how it should look like, and it's finally done. And eaten with much relish of course :)

I would have wanted a single (thick) layer of chocolate at the bottom and a single, equally thick layer of cheese at the top, but my mum had other ideas and came up with a triple layer. I think it was a good call because I can't imagine a thicker layer of chocolate honestly, this was just nice. The biscuit side (and base) was made with Digestives biscuits instead of the usual Oreo cookies because the both of us felt that Oreos are wayyy to common on cakes these days. The picture above would certainly look a lot better if we had a sharper knife, but nonetheless it does go a long way to show you how soft and smooth the whole cake is.

I realise I'm kinda showing the pictures backwards, but the first picture is really meant to show how it should look like (sans a prettier plate, but that'll have to do for now), at least it's pretty close to what I had in mind. Good job mum! =)

The Recipe: Chocolate Cheesecake

For the base:
200gm Digestives biscuits (optional choice of type and brand of biscuits)
125gm butter

For the cheesecake:
200gm sugar (3/4 cup)
250gm cream cheese
100ml water
1tbsp gelatine
1tin Nestle cream

For the chocolate ganache:
150g cooking chocolate (optional choice of type and brand, we used Hershey's)
50g dairy whipping cream

1. Crush biscuits and mix well with butter.
2. Spread the mixture on a 22.5cm diameter aluminium tray and press hard to form a base.
3. Leave base in the fridge.

4. Mix sugar with cream cheese in a mixing bowl (an electronic mixer was used here)
5. Boil water, add gelatine and turn heat down. Keep stirring on low heat until gelatine dissolves.
6. When mixture boils, add sugar and cream cheese mixture and stir over low heat.
7. Add cream and stir until mixture boils.
8. Pour mixture onto chilled biscuit base in tray.
9. Chill cheesecake until set.

Chocolate Ganache:
10. Double-boil cooking chocolate and dairy whipping cream until melted and very smooth.
11. Spread chocolate ganache on the surface of the cheesecake, add depending on desired thickness.
12. Cool for chocolate to harden.

For a triple cheesecake layer, just repeat steps 4-9, pouring the cheese onto the hardened chocolate instead.

Decorate as you please.

Yums! I'm inspired just looking at the cake again. I might just have a try in baking or cooking when the holidays arrive, it's time I work my hands on something delicious (I hope!) that I could be proud of :)


07 April 2009

Cityvibe is a new (read: small) shopping complex beside Clementi MRT and houses at least two Japanese restaurants (Ramen Ten and Sakae Sushi) under its roof. I never really found the time to explore the place eventhough I pass by it almost everyday, but Fromage's banner did catch my eye a couple of times whilst I was standing on the MRT platform waiting for my train. Cheese fries, cheese wedges, cheese sticks... So much cheese!

Mozerella Cheese Sticks: 7.5/10

This is nice! The cheese was not too thick and the batter coating, cooked to a golden-brown, was nicely crisp. The cheese sticks went quite well with the salsa sauce too.

Super Cheese Fries: 6.8/10

Yes, this was super cheesy indeed, and it was really a bit too salty without any chilli sauce or spices. Eat this fast, because the fries go limp (and then, even mushy) after a while and it would be very difficult to pick them up, much less put into your mouth!

Chicken and Cheese: 7.7/10

This was very tasty because unlike the (plain) cheese fries, the chicken here had some spicy marinate that the small group of us really liked.

Deep-Fried Cheesecake with Ice-Cream: 8/10

I'm biased. Piping hot and crispy cheesecake with ice-cold chocolate ice-cream and chocolate syrup? It's not exactly great, but it still works wonders for me. Try eating this, and tell me if you can go spoonful after spoonful without smiling. Deep inside, I was reluctant to share this with the rest haha!

Prompt and friendly. It's a very small booth with only a tiny counter for three, so we ate all of our cheese snacks at Subway instead (of course, be nice and get something from Subway, like drinks).

$3.50 for the mozerella cheesesticks
$3.90 for the super cheesy fries
$3.90 for the chicken and cheese
$3.90 for the deep-fried cheesecake with ice-cream

Cityvibe, Level One. Clementi Central.

Additional Comments
1. Certified Halal.
2. They have pasta and pizzas too!

Han's Cafe

I have to admit that much of the food from Han's is really standard fare, but you can't deny that their set meals (consisting of a soup, toast, main course, drink and dessert) are quite "value-for-money", so some Singaporeans say.

The fish and chips was quite fresh actually, and I liked the batter used for the fish. The other is Tyler's roast chicken dish, a whole chicken leg drenched in black pepper sauce. The good thing about the main courses from Han's is that they're in a fairly healthy portion, so added together the set meal will fill you up very nicely.

Of course, if you're getting tired of (Singapore-style) "Western" food, there's always locally-inspired dishes for you. This is Daphne's fried rice, very typical, nothing to shout about.

And oh, for our Muslim friends out there, I heard that Han's has a Halal-certified branch at the National Library in Bugis. It's renamed as "Hanis", well something like that. Something for you guys to check out if you're in the area =)

No service charge, which means it's more or less self-service. You've got to get the menu yourself and write down your order in a piece of paper (pencils and order forms provided), bring it to the counter, order, and take back your soups/drinks/dessert. The main course (and other sides that need to be cooked) will be served to you though.

$8.80 for the fish and chips set meal
$10.80 for the roast chicken set meal
$6.80 for the fried rice

Marina Square, #02-206

Peaberry & Pretzel

03 April 2009

I've read a lot about this dessert place in quite a few food blogs, and have always wanted to give their desserts a try. I was trying to persuade the rest to order different desserts so that I'd have more to blog about. Guess what happened?

Valrhona Warm Chocolate Pudding: 9/10

All of them were hearing me going on and on about how delicious the chocolate pudding looks that everyone decided to order it. We split into pairs and shared the puddings, and if you were there you would have heard us breaking out from time to time in sounds of delight and pleasure. The pudding, or rather, cake, was served hot in a small bowl, and accompanying it were its cold counterparts - vanilla bean cream and ice-cream.

Added together, it was like a match made in heaven really, it played with your senses and you went spoon after spoon at the cake despite making loud protests that this was too rich and sinful to go on. I have to admit that it was so chocolatey good that we were already high and talking anything that came to our minds when we were only halfway through. I'm glad I had space to enjoy this delightful dessert.

Coffee Latte: 8.5/10

One of the smoothest latte I have ever drank. Delicious!

Very good, friendly staff. They serve iced water here and even add in a couple of watter bottles on the table in case we needed more, which we certainly did seeing how rich the warm chocolate pudding was!

$11.90 for the valrhona warm chocolate pudding
$4.90 for the coffee latte (P&P was having a one-for-one offer too)

Blk 106 Clementi Street 12 #01-52, Sunset Way.

Megumi Japanese Restaurant

02 April 2009

It was only a matter of time before we finally made our first trip to Sunset Way, especially since it's only a ten minutes or so bus ride from school. I've walked around this place quite a bit in the past few days to have a look at what they have, and only time will tell if Sunset Way will really pick up in popularity.

Megumi doesn't have that many seats in its small (air-conditioned) interior, certainly not enough for a group of nine, but it does offer the option of going al fresco. There are of course a couple of overhead fans to cool the place down amidst the late afternoon - early evening humidity.

California Maki

Some of them ordered the weekday set dinners ($15.80++ for megumi set, $12.80++ for ramen set) and had the choice of an appetiser. This was what Leon had.


WanHua and Rebecca had this for their appetiser, one of the common favourites for Japanese food here in Singapore. For the uninitiated, "chawanmushi" is a Japanese egg custard dish served hot in a tea cup.

Obi Ebi Yaki Meshi: 8/10

I ordered this not just because it's one of the recommended dishes on the menu, but also because I was curious at how Japanese-style fried rice would taste like. Truth be told, it didn't taste Japanese, but I really liked it for the generous serving of prawns (fairly large-sized too) and well-cooked rice. As you can see, they added a couple of tempura prawn heads for good measure, which were crispy and a delight to bite on.

Kuruma Ebi Ramen

Daphne ordered this, but misread the menu and thought it would be prawn tempura. She doesn't exactly like prawns cooked this way, and wasn't too impressed with the soup base. I thought the soup was not bad actually, a much more refined taste from Maggi's prawn instant noodles, so I think it's really a matter of individual preference here. Both the prawns in the ramen were biggg, and since she didn't like them, guess who it went to? ;)

Yaki Udon

This looked really appetising when it arrived. Fried thick Japanese noodles with traces of seafood. Justin felt that this was slightly above average, but not necessarily outstanding.

Miso Char Siew Ramen

WanHua had more or less the same thing to say about her dinner as Justin did. She felt that Sushi Tei's ramen is better than Megumi's, a sentiment echoed by Khid as well with his Cha Soba (see below).

Saikoro Steak

Teppan-style beef cubes served with rice and miso soup. The three who had this agreed that the beef was good and tender.

Salmon Sashimi

Khid ordered this as a side, and liked it for being thick. He would have preferred it if the salmon was colder and fresher though, with an extra (juicier) slice of lemon.

Cha Soba

As Khid mentioned, this cha soba isn't as good as the ones found at Sushi Tei (which he added tasted great because it had chicken katsu accompanying it as well). He also felt that the cha soba is "a little soggy, (and) not so springy", and the sauce to dip the noodles in weren't cold enough. If he had to rate this, he would give a 6.5.

Salmon Don

And this was what Joy had for her dinner! Cute addition of the flower.

Overall it's alright. Pretty peaceful environment.

$14.80 for the oki ebi yaki meshi (big prawn fried rice)
$15.80 for the kuruma ebi ramen (ramen with big prawns)
$8.80 for the yaki udon (fried udon)
$10.00 for the salmon sashimi
$8.80 for the cha soba
$12.80 for the salmon don
$12.80 for the ramen set (which consists of an appetiser, miso char siew ramen, free flow of hot green tea, and a scoop of ice-cream)
$15.80 for the megumi set (which consists of an appetiser, saikoro steak, free flow of hot green tea, and a scoop of ice-cream)

*Prices subject to the usual 7% GST and 10% service charge.

Blk 106 Clementi Street 12 #01-38, Sunset Way.

2009 ·*the simplest aphrodisiac by TNB | Official Singapore Food Blog.