Saturday, March 28, 2009

Ice Monster, A-Roy Thai, Ah Chew Desserts

Kelly and I took the train to Dhoby Gaut MRT cos we were desperate to get out of TTSH and we were trapped in by the rain. And by the time we reached town to catch the 225pm show (Departures) at Plaza Singapura only front row seats were left - this was our second attempt in 2 weeks - so we ended up buying tickets for the 340pm show at Vivocity (where there is no students discount!)
Before setting off for Vivocity, we decided to go for desserts at Ice Monster (Basement 1, Plaza Singapura) - this is our third time here so we are really quite a fan of their icy desserts though we found something more interesting today.

Mixed Fruits

This was a really sweet treat - the fruits which are normally sour are especially sweet when soaked in their puree - there was mango, strawberries and kiwis, topped up with milk and a scoop of mango icecream, this is really refreshing especially for a fruits fan like Kelly =)

Yam and Red bean
This is a repeat try because I really like this dessert - the yam and red bean are thoroughly soaked in the sweet condensed milk and the yam is particularly creamy smooth.
Durian with Chicken Floss Egg Crepe $6.50

After seeing the adjacent table order the crepes, we got curious and consulted the menu. We realised that Ice Monster serves a whole variety of savoury food (like za jiang mian) and there are many permutations and combinations for the sets - for both savoury foods and desserts sets. For example, we should have ordered a crepes and mango ice set, which comes with a drink as well. But oh well, we wanted 2 icy desserts.
There are 3 crepes offerings here - the 2 dessert ones pair fruit (either mango or durian) with chicken floss - doesnt it scream strangeness??- and the third is a more normal sounding beef egg crepe. We ordered the first one- gasp - durian with chicken floss egg crepe.
Check it out. The durian paste (which we like when we tried the mango and durian shaved ice during our second time here) was like the sauce, the meat was the chicken floss, the perfunctory piece of lettuce, and the deep fried egg crepe - its like a version of Subway, Taiwanese style. The sweetness of the buttery durian paste, the salty and crunchy bits of chicken floss, the crunchy lettuce, and eventually the eggy oily thin piece of prata. It was really an interesting mix - gotta give the chef points for creativity! I actually quite liked the odd combination.

Kelly wants to try the mango version but....i think I'd pass..heh.
We walked by Candy Empire (Basement 1, Vivocity) and decided to get these snacks for the movie. I am a new fan of the Sweet Chilli & Lime Dip Stix - it is a longer and sturdier version of the Synders of Hanover Pretzel pieces. It has the texture of pretzel pieces and the intensity of nachos.

The Chilli Pretzels was also quite good- the spicness hits you after you eat your third mini pretzel.
We saw the popcorn popping away in the machine so we got so excited! We bought a large popcorn ($6) and it surprisingly it wasn't scorching (we thought the freshly coated sugary coating'd be way hot).

Departures is an excellent show. There are many elements to the show, death being the central theme - but the issues of passion (the main character's hobby and love for cello - the only connection with his father) versus practicality (how he moved to his hometown when his orchestra dissolved and he fell into the hilarious advertisement of landing the embalming job), and how deaths in different families touch him differently. His first few encounters with the dead made him very emotional and acutely aware of how much he needs to hold on to his loved ones (his wife) and embalming his father who abandoned his paternal duties brought him a step closer to forgiving and eventually accepting his father - the symbolism of the stone was powerful - it embodies the father-son relationship and his eventual duties as a to-be father.

The show highlights the importance of jobs shunned by society - are professional jobs the most respectable? Think about what society be without those people who hold occupations you'd never dream of doing. They guard your condos, keep your places clean, build those swanky shopping centres and IRs rain or shine, clean up bedpans. Did you say your thanks today? Have you ever wondered how there are some jobs you never knew existed? Who will chose and eventually do those jobs?

Death was dealt in a very respectful manner - not in-your face depressing, sombre and grave, but extremely thought provoking because it potrays the different ways of how different people and different families dealed with the deseased - young or old. Some families blame each other for indirectly causing a suicide, or how the course of the life of the deseased could have run differently possibly altering the outcome, others celebrate the love of an elder, and how she has touched the lives of people around her.

At your loved ones' deathbed - are you likely to say Thank you for the wonderful memories you have left behind? Or will you be seeking forgiveness, saying Sorry for taking you for granted, not having the chance to say a Good Goodbye? Do you spend enough time, make enough effort to reach out to your loved ones? Who matters in the end?

There was never a dull moment to the movie - with the opening sequence having bits of humour (he-she confusion, and the maggots were particularly memorable) especially with the boss and lady employee - I will never forget the fried chicken scene and the fish roe scene! Well, after anatomy class in year one, barbequed beef bakwa and jerky never looked the same..

Creme Brulee - Caramel, white chocolate, Cocoa Loco - Mocha
We were thirsty after all that popcorn so we went to Gloria Jeans (Level 1, Vivocity) for drinks. Their iced blended drinks are $3 for certain hours depending on the outlet - the hours vary from the Vivocity to the Cineleisure outlets.

Kelly's drink was nicely sweet but my iced mocha was way diluted so I went back to change the drink to the one below (they nicely obliged and eventually agreed it was diluted too)
Cookies and Cream

This was much better - sweeter and more creamy, with bits of cookies inside the drink. I guess the Gloria Jeans barista learnt her lesson and loaded up the sugar and toppings!

We met our CG for dinner before everyone flies off to their elective - at A-Roy Thai Restaurant(04-06, FUNAN the IT Mall). Michelle really likes this place so I must check it out!

Crackers $2
They served us two of this, and charged it to our bill. Everyone thought the dip was really potentily spicy.
Spicy and Sour salad with Lemongrass, Basil, Dried Shrimp, Cashew nuts - Small $12.90
This was our favourite dish of the night - usually I'd always order the mango or papaya salad - i almost wanted to order that but I'm glad we gave this a go - they fry the lemongrass very well, and the spices made it very interesting to it. I don't know what is the principle vegetable in the dish but it was meant to be eaten as a wrap we figure - wrapping up the salad mix with the lettuce leaf. It was highly recommended by the waiter and was one of the star dishes that garnered an award for the restaurant.

Pad Thai - Medium $12.90
I liked the pad thai here because the fish sauce it is fried in makes it very fragrant and wet, and alot of crunchy beansprouts. It is also very eggy which I like.
Pineapple rice - Medium $10.90
I didn't like the pineapple rice - not much wok hei and not many ingredients inside.
Tom Yum Seafood - $19.90 Medium
It is clear and really spicy. I thought the soup was good - intense and chokeful of fish and squid.
Green Curry $19.90 - Medium
A PUNY portion, though the green curry was good (although Kumaran and Weixin thinks its not truly potent). It is a really creamy version, with many pieces of smooth thigh meat and vegetables inside the curry.
The steamed seabass arrived naked...

Grilled Seabass with sweet and sour soup $30.90
....and was eventually dressed up in a lemon sauce...The fish was really fresh and there was alot of spices in the soup - without which it did taste like the Tom Yum soup (although the waiter kept insisting it was not, when I asked him when I was ordering).
Beef Kuay Teow $6.90
This was Maria's beef noodles I took some of the soup it is really very beefy!
Overall the quality of the Thai food was good but the portions are way way way way too small to justify the prices. Somehow after Bangkok, I won't wanna pay too much for authentic Thai food! I shall come here another day to try the mango and durian sticky rice. Sheryl went to buy her semi-pro camera so we accompanied her - and realised I am quite glad I didnt go IT show to get fleeced
After that everyone else left so Sheryl, Kelly and I made our way to Ah Chew Desserts (Liang Seah Street) for our usual Chinese dessert fix. This is one too many repeat visits!
Durian Mango Sago $4.80
This is one of their durian menu specials. We loved it! There was real durian meat inside, and the bittersweet pomelo sacs and sago really enhances the sweetness of the mango.

I was quite skeptical to try their durian desserts again after the disaster of durian with yam and sago with Nat and Xueling but I am quite glad I gave this a go (because we saw another table with the mango pomelo it looked damn good!). I shall try the unadulterated mango pomelo sago soon!
Sesame and Almond Paste, Large $2.50
The paste here is rather gooey instead of being grainy, according to my friends - but I still like the sesame paste here.

Steamed Milk Egg, $2.50

This is the first time I am having it hot and it turns out to be really eggy. I think the heat enhances the egg taste more.

Grass Jelly with Carnation Milk

It is chopped up into ice-kachang type cubes - not the wholesale chunk that Kelly prefers. If you order the plain grass jelly itself - you will get the whole slab of grass jelly uncut, judging from a table that I passed by. It was difficult judging the texture of the grass jelly when its sliced up into cubes, so this dessert wasn't particularly memorable.

Flying off for electives soon, many of our CG mates are already half the world away...cant wait!
Have you seen Kit Kat in a dark chocolate version before? Or in a family block version? Find yours at the nearest Candy Empire today! This was awesome.


*Harris said...

Hey there I was surfing around and stumbled on your blog. I like it that you have a lot of unique places!

The phad thai at a-roy thai looks nice, might go try soon heh ;)

julie said...

heh i'm also a regular reader of your blog actually!you and your girlfriend can really eat!

Edwin Tam said...


I'm a writer for CNNGo ( And I'd like to use your photo of Aroy Thai.

I'll be happy to link back to your blog from the article. Do let me know if it's cool.