Thursday, September 25, 2008

Tom's Palette

I've found my numberr 1 icecream!
made with love, passion, hope and sweat.

oh how much i love thee~

I couldn't jump for more joy over Yide's recommendation.

This little place in Shaw Towers (along Beach Road, not to be confused with Shaw House/ Shaw Centre) deserves a

textures hit, flavours wow & service thumbs up description.

I have nothing but true admiration for the owner's never-say-die, always-climb-higher work attitude, a perfect role model for any cafe-owner-wannabes. Like me. By sheer chance he spotted my food photo book in my friends hands, requested to have a look, and then *POOF!... we began our long discussion on f&b matters! When the food-creating-passionates meet. haha.

Through the conversation i even dug out that he is actually the trusty supplier (and creator) of the icecreams served at Wild Rocket.

How stunning.

Ed's Tea & Apple Pie

Returning to the highlight: fabulously smooth icecream that gets you scooping up till the last bit. I revelled in the familiar goodness of Ed's Tea (aka Teh Tarik), liberal in tea essence yet halting before reaching overdoneness. Apple Pie flashed meek notes of cinnamon to my delight, and the Cherry Almond bore a unique character. Whats more, new flavours are constantly being generated!

Hazelnut & Cherry Almond

Not sure about you, but i was certain i loved it. These were Large cups at $4.40 each and something is urging me that i should opt for the jumbo packs next time round. Lol.

tell them how much you love them!
my love doesn't stop here.
i'm already yearning for more. you have my reverence (:

Tom's Palette
100 Beach Road
#01-25 Shaw Leisure Gallery

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Hotcakes & Berries

fresh, hot, cakey.

I looked beyond the american versions and followed a japanese recipe this time. The batter fluffed exceedingly and the cakes upheld the milky kick i wanted. Time to work on improving the colour... when can they be evenly browned like Mcdonald's hotcakes?

Macs' are my childhood favourite (:

the colour tells it all...

it never disappoints (unless you pack home cold soggy ones)


This can be finger-lickin' good,
This can be fork-and-knife-lickin' good.
Because this is Relish. Relish by Willin Low.

Like how donuts can be upmarketed and dressed in the most uncommon ways, Willin Low have uplifted the fastfood icon with conciliated efforts. Just as we've had enough of McSpicy Double and Mushroom Swiss, these junkfood-turned-gourmet-creations came in the nick of time to revive some excitement.

Relish stands proudly on the second deck of Cluny Court, a bright mirthy enclosure to feel comfortable in. The atmosphere may be casual but expect no simplicity in their menu; every burger invention is meticulously crafted with unconventional details. local style.

Curry Chicken Burger, BBQ Char Siew Pork Open Burger... If not at Relish, you would have to wait on for some future hawker centre+fastfood joint venture, haha.

Mapo Sauce Grilled Mushroom Tofu Burger ($16)

I traced the transformation of my chinese roots. Taugwa, shiitake slices & eggwhite summed up the bulk of the Mapo Sauce Grilled Mushroom Tofu Burger, completed with a spicy sauce and two dense milk loaves.

It resembled nothing like the wet smooth and gravy-ful dish i once loved as a child, yet i happen to feel repleted in this clean simplification. Not too oily, not too spicy, no irritable aftereffects to my throat or stomach.

Seafood Burger w Lemon Mayo ($19)

the luscious innards...
The Seafood Burger with Lemon Mayo kept Dad numb on complaints too. Who would fuss over a sturdy pattie bursting with crab, prawns and octopus crammed in fresh fish paste? Dad wouldn't... neither would i.
Pandan Panna Cotta ($9)
I loved this even more. It was legendary Pandan Panna Cotta of a miraculously smooth wobbly texture, lushing with full-bodied pandan fragrance and optimally chilled into heaven bites. Enough said.
Elaine's best panna cotta till date.
This won't be the only entry. I need more of relish.
501 Bukit Timah Road
#02-01 Cluny Court
6763 1547

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Lunch at Sun with Moon

There is no physical obstruction to quality good food, except for its price.

If you are drooling for the exquisite Japanese fare at Sun with Moon, my sound advice is... hit noontime to avoid a hefty bill.

The lunch menu is designed to fit variety into a tighter budget, along with the same charming ambience. Except you'll miss the moon.

Salmon Kamameshi ($19.80)

You could rely on the Salmon Kamameshi, though down-sized during lunch, which was sufficient to satiate Dad's appetite. Usual portions of salmon and salmon roe topped the fanciful rice, and is best enjoyed after the 60-second hourglass fills its base.

The pickled unagi appetiser was completely invaded by me.

Gindara Teriyaki & Sashimi Salad Set ($22.80)

Trayed up next was my Gindara Teriyaki & Sashimi Salad Set. A sticky-teriyaki-glazed cod slab, rice, pickles, miso soup, fruits and mini sashimi-dotted salad. The fish was excessively oil-bathed but i chose to bear deceptive optimissism about it- that its healthy fish fats in the works.

Matcha Tiramisu ($6)

Putting aside the unconscious appearance of our Matcha tiramisu and my minor issues with its sponge-mousse imbalance, i thought it was a mascarpone-and- bittergreentea-pairing worth forgiving. Good to go with our two cups of english breakfast tea.

...Announcing: I am now a fan of Sun with Moon.
Like many others.
Sun with Moon Japanese Dining & Cafe
501 Orchard Road
#03-15 Wheelock Place
6733 6636

Sunday, September 14, 2008

La Forketta

It was an impromptu turn into Valley Point.

We were on our way to Da Mario (my favourite italian!) when dad's cashcard summoned a requisite search for a top-up machine. Upon exiting from the petrol station, i exclaimed:

"oh look, there's another italian restaurant here!"

and there we were.

Unconsolingly, my yell turned out to be a mistake. The place was smartly dressed-up no doubt, but they truly lacked in authenticity and customer-welfare principles.

1) We noticed the kitchen being chinese-occupied.

This didn't mean to be a discrimination statement. But i would never imagine chefs from china taking over the pasta duties; italian chefs are certainly more assuring.

bread basket

2) We were completely deluded into the unannounced bread-fraud.

The Bread Basket surfaced as an optimisstic generousity-indicator, where we happily dunked into their hospitality. Never did we anticipate a $4.50++ charge issued on our check. It wasn't about the money.. it was about the unethicality of this aggresive illusion. They could have at least informed.

That aside, the olive-tomato paste-topped pizza bread pulled off.

Linguine with Seafood ($25)
Things brightened a little with my Linguine with Seafood, truthful in lavishness to justify its steep pricetag. An crayfish half came as an unstated bonus (:

Vongole ($20)

Oddly, the pasta and clams of dad's Vongole took their individual positions like separate islands. spaghetti in white wine, clams independently sauteed in cherry tomato sauce.
3) Sweets aren't the atas dolces.

We agreeably skipped desserts from their american-certified list- new york cheesecakes & american carrot cakes simply don't fit legal italian endings.

Decorum place with many shortcomings.
It only made Da Mario appear more acclaimable.

La Forketta (Valley Point)
491 River Valley Road
#01-01 Valley Point
6836 3373

Sakae Teppanyaki

You know at times you yearn to watch chefs cook right infront of you, but the 'live' enjoyment ironically transforms into sheer horror?

This is Teppanyaki- it could backfire.

Like picturing stern men-in-white psychotically splashing oil all over their workpieces (thats going to end up in your plate in a matter of minutes), schemed to set your tummy into raging flames moments later.

I'm beggining to develop a teppanyaki-phobia.

Months back i had an oil-overdose dinner at Inagiku, which left me heading to the doctor's straight after. That was a hefty nightmare i would never forget, and would certainly deter any repetition of.

So as we stepped into T3's Sakae Teppanyaki for a swift lunch (while we wait for Mum's flight), i stepped in with extra caution.

Seafood Set ($13.99) each for all of us.

chef at work

I instantly spotted a tub of butter beside the working pan and thought i'd better warned the chef to go easy. He nodded as we instructed "no butter for one of the seafood sets" and the next thing i knew, he went segregating one portion to down it in OIL.

I was about to scream, but i'll definitely control myself infront of my most respected profession. Basic respect. I slowly worked on my dishes.

Kani Salad

Oh salads come in the nick of time to cleanse before you meet the grease. I enjoyed this one with fine kani shreds and a thai-inspired dressing.

Salmon Fillet

Garlic Prawns

Garlic Squid

Prawns are the better ones here with a good dose of garlic added to every portion. The squids lacked elastical resistivity and the salmon too flat.

Seasonal Vegetables

Rice & Miso Soup

Unwilling to leave dissatisfied, i decided to order a dish my neighbour across seems to be enjoying.

Seafood Chawanmushi ($3.90)

Ta-dah this was it! Indeed the Seafood Chawanmushi deserved special mention. The process of making was an eye-opener, the result.. smooth wobbly egg custard ensconced in its personal onion wall. Served right off that teppan pan.

Scoop of Chocolate Icecream

We did not leave with mouths full of grease. They had it washed down by a scoop of chocolate icecream, on the house.

I know i know, teppanyaki without oil is ridiculous to ask for, but overdoing the grease seems to be the common thing now. Drowning food in oil is NOT an ethical way to flavour the diner's palate, i feel. Especially for weak-stomach consumers like me ):

Teppanyaki may be for you, but teppanyaki is just not meant for me.

Nevertheless, if you want a decent teppan meal with 'live'-witnessing coverage, Sakae Teppanyaki will not burn a hole in your pocket.

Sakae Teppanyaki (Airport)
65 Airport Boulevard
#03-43/44 Changi Airport Terminal 3
6242 6378

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Big O Cakes

Big O has never struck to me as a big deal, and definitely not somewhere i'll target for tea time. Not until i heard about a high tea deal from Sarah.

$6.95 tea set.
Not that i know of.. not that they advertised.
Or at least even listed somewhere.

No. It was like this deep dark secret that would kill the restaurant's profit charts as much as it was revealed. When we visited to double-confirm, we couldn't even find any hint on the erasable message board, not to mention the menu.

Only the staff gave a slight nod when i checked with him.

so i'll announce it Big & Loud...
its $6.95++ for any slice of cake off the shelve and a single coffee/tea. not just the usual house coffee/tea, it is (of) your choice of coffee/tea from their menu. 3pm to 5pm WEEKDAYS only. go tell everybody.

Happy pick: Vanilla Sencha.
A lovely blend of green tea leaves and buttery vanilla.

Bailey's Cheesecake

I had been eyeing the Bailey's Cheesecake from arrival to entrance. Sleek, light and elagant... nothing short of the fair lady material. Miss Bailey's had an alluring crown of smooth glossy fudge (for chocoholics) and a tiny smack of Irish Cream (for alcoholics)- worth an ooh and a wow.

Anything with Bailey's thrills me.

Just like how the Mocha-mechanics can thrill Sarah.

Mochaccino Cheesecake

Mochaccino+Iced Mocha= full caffeine intesity. I could tell how much a coffee-lover she was. I'd figured the Mochaccino Cheesecake was probably a mocha and cuppuccino marriage, very ideal fix for the expresso fans.

Iced Mocha

Average service didn't deserve much praise, but i could leave with a wide smile after that Bailey's uplift. And the contentment of finally being part of the "Big secret club". hah.

Big O Cafe & Restaurant
501 Orchard Road
#02-04/05 Wheelock Place
6737 8472


Time again for the sarah-elaine japanese food hunt. we love checking out authentic japanese fare together, our nipponya-gastronomic therapy~

Nanbantei was next on my research list.

yakitori grill bar

A small wood-furnished shop holds a limited capacity, solely counter seats available for the walk-in visitors (like us). Come minutes later and you would have to seal in to the watch-as-we-finish-our-meal fate.

Thankfully we are punctual lunchers.

About a metre-and-a-half away stood the grill bar, where i found entertainment observing the experienced Japanese chefs do their yakitori act.

No, nothing of flaming or amusing juggling. simply skilled serious work is good to see.

Dashi Maki Tamago ($6)

Set lunch prices here ranged from hefty choices to economical options. The value ones were doubly enticing, like stitching treads to nurse our injured wallets. We could even spare for an extra side order.

Like OHHH how glad i was to have the Dashi Maki Tamago. Something i used to detest as a child but grew to find delight in as my age rose.

Their version chilled, filled with optimum juices seeping out of the sweet distinctive layers...was impressive. excellent execution here.

Obento Set ($12.50)

Clearly a bestseller, the Obento Set featured an array of their signature yakitori sticks paired with minced meat over rice. I tasted a quail egg, was decent.

Salmon Shioyaki Set ($10.40)

The safest option to pick (also one of the cheapest haha) was the Salmon Shioyaki Set. To my surprise, the heavy slice of fish came from the same reliable multi-purpose yakitori grill... and was fresh enough to dismiss any form of saucy marinades.

Glutinous Ball Red Bean Dessert
A glutinous blob sitted in a mini bowl of red bean paste arrived after the meal, representing the Obento conclusion.
the entrance to good maki tamago..

Now instead of spending two hours shopping at Level One, i would sacrifice one hour having a good lunch here. AND HAVE MY DASHI MAKI TAMAGO again. gosh i'm still in the process of fantasizing...

Nanbantei Japanese Restaurant
14 Scotts Road
#05-132 Far East Plaza
6733 5666

Friday, September 12, 2008

Al Forno East Coast

I consider myself oil-intolerant.

Perhaps due to my earlier stomach (medical) problems, i tend to have a weaker heart for greasy stuffs. And there is a large handful of restaurants out there which does no favour to it.
I'll include this one.

The old building is down for renovation works, incurring great disruptions for the vendors' operations. The famous Geylang Lor 29 Hokkien Mee is taking an undecided break (there goes my favourite hokkien mee!) while Margarita's diverts their business back to the main outlet. And Al Forno choose to stay on for pending regulars- just opposite.

A double-storey makeshift unit across the road.

Spaghetti Vongole ($32)

The spaghetti of Dad's Spaghetti Vongole came displeasingly tossed in more oil than white wine, but adorned with a bunch of freshest clams on hand. A minus and a plus point makes it neutral for him.

Spaghetti al Salmone ($31)

On the other hand, my Spaghetti al Salmone was struggling to meet neutral. The salmon pieces were measly and tiny, barely tastable, plus again doused in soooo much was practically visual terror. even if it was healthy oil.

the visual grease terror

i dread it like blood.
So i shifted my attention to picking desserts.

Tiramisu ($11)

Though badly sliced up, the Tiramisu was like sheep in wolf's skin. Light and palatable. it makes you lose memory of that lousy knife/ poor cutter/ gruelling mascarpone cream and soaked sponge.

Sorbetti di Lemone ($9)

I had my tastebuds baffled by a frozen Sorbetti di Lemone, aka lemon sorbet stuffed in frozen lemon shell. The sugar plunged high after a while, really sweet yet acidly sour. I still scraped it clean anyways.

As i made my way to the washroom, i glanced past the pizza kitchen... there, an Italian chef was big on smiles to bid me goodbye when i left the restaurant. Ah alas, something memorable.

The best came at the last. Cause i adore affable chefs, lol.

Al Forno (East Coast)
400 East Coast Road
6348 8781

Thursday, September 11, 2008

3 Fishes, 3 Ways.

Im into fishy business..
Miso Garlic Baked Cod
i love cod.
Grilled Salmon w Balsamic-Braised Lentils
i love salmon.
Steamed Rosemary Snapper & a Heap of Chickpea Salad
i like snappers.

My three favourite fishes & the way i like them done.

(all elaine's creations)

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Western, Western

My family had another dinner of food-tasting.. western.
i cook, i shoot, we eat, they comment!

Carrot Coriander Soup w Garlic Foccacia

A thick puree packed with beta carotene, slush of cream and hint of ground coriander seeds. Homebaked foccacia stick, toasted crispy, and topped with my chunky garlic-parsley slab.

Baked Macaroni

Macaroni shells, mixed bell peppers and shiitake mushrooms panfried in a herbed tomato sauce, then baked hot and yummy with a mozzarella layer.

Oven Roasted Bacon-wrapped Snapper

The fresh snapper fillet only requires light rosemary seasoning for the bacon-wrap-around to come to play. Oven Roasted, served alongside sauteed asparagus, roasted vine tomatoes and a mushroom white wine gravy.

Cranberry Bread & Butter Pudding

This dessert needs no introduction for most people. Slices of buttered bread set within a smooth baked milk custard... a wonder creation with the commoner white loaf.To use up the bag of dried crans my grandaunt bought from Canana, I substituted the raisins with cranberries. Pink is nice.

cB&B Pudding, Rose-scented strawberries & Vanilla icecream

I stewed sliced strawberries in a strawberry puree, flavoured with rosewater for a more aromatic touch. Served warm with vanilla icecream and vanilla bean sauce.

Dessert's my fav (:


Blog Widget by LinkWithin