Ivins has been around for many years now, and is quite far inside Binjai Park..I never saw it despite passing by that Caltex station opposite Maplewoods all the time in the past. Ivins is known for Peranakan cuisine on a budget - each dish varies from the 5-10 bucks range and it is possible to overorder since its inexpensive - but each dish is actually small. We each ordered a bowl of white rice (at 80 cents each) to eat with the dishes. I don't suggest you try a low-carb and avoid the rice because the dishes are quite rich and salty and the rice will be good to eat with the gravies.
Terong Goreng Chilli $3
fried eggplant served with chilli
This was our favourite dish because the eggplant remained taut and slightly crunchy and the chilli gave it that spicy kick. Very good with rice.
It is supposed to be a crowd favourite but I didn't think the sambal provided enough kick - the sambal was not strong enough! Somehow the kangkong was too garlicky for me.
I don't know how these people fry their lady's fingers till there's no sap at the cut surfaces - when my grandma does this at home, there's alot of those gooey stuff at the cut areas. I thought this was clean tasting, not too oily. The lady's fingers were crunchy too!
I'm not sure how beef rendang is supposed to taste peranakan style..but this makes me miss my grandma's beef rendang (she only whips it up on Hari Rayas and Chinese new year during those family gatherings). This wasn't very rich, and the beef was slightly tough- I prefer my beef rendang to be more tender and spicier.
Then we remembered that the Australian Open finals was on...it was already 5pm (time flies when you indulge in greed and sloth) and the match started at 4 pm !! We scurried over to Ba Ba Black Sheep (failed again, the bar doesnt screen tennis matches!!!!!) so for 2 days in a row I was at Brewerkz (903 Bukit Timah Road) !!
Everyone is glued to the tv....
Oh I must say that this place is really interesting to people watch..families come to have meals, guys for their mugs of beer, and the passerbys along Bukit Timah.. its not too crowded, its breezy, and the service impeccable - they refill your iced water all the time if you just order the food and not the beer.