Friday, September 26, 2008

Foo House

a posting to the far east of the island and a recommendation by a very kind consultant (who generously signed everything for the day ie EARLY DAY!! and also rushing off for lunch right after our tutorial with his gp friend of his) brought us to bedok simpang area again to this very quaint sleepy row of shophouses... along there were places like miss u cafe which offers set lunches for under 15 bucks, and house of bread which is a bakery-cafe ie. more reasons not to be moody whenever i tio a blardi far east posting...

a very casual eatery, the consultant promised good food (as the chef here was previously from grand hyatt and there were like reminders on the table too rattling off his prior culinary experience and his famed roast duck) and even drinks and beer ! of cos, some of our cg mates immediately woke up during the tutorial (me at food and some others *ahem* at the booze)

if you can like zoom in you can read the menu..everything sounds very good doesn't it? the set lunch is very worth it, for the cost of $9.80 ++ , the meal comes with a pumpkin soup, a mains of either the rosemary lamb sandwich, beef steak sandwich or hainanese pork chop, and a drink - either iced tea or coffee.
between the 8 of us, I had the Monster Picardy burger (added mushrooms and fried egg), Foo house roast duck (with butter rice) with sterling , and the Irish lamb stew again with sterling and kok. the others had set lunches - basically all the options for the set lunches were tried out by my very hungry cg mates (with another ala-carte rosemary lamb sandwich right at the end ordered by 2 insatiable guys)

Pumpkin soup

my orders were not part of their set lunches so this didnt belong to me, i tried some but im not much of a fan of vegetable soup but my friends said that it was quite good..

Traditional Irish Stew, $9.90

Braised lamb simmered with potatoes and veggies in a clear broth served with European style bread rolls

I actually wanted to order this for myself but sterling kept pondering over the burger and i also wanted to try that so after negotiating we settled on lamb stew, burger and roast duck...happiness!! because all these are the recommended dishes and i got to try all! more people makes eating very interesting... eating 3 types of meat at one sitting makes julie a very happy carnivore..

so instead of the pumpkin soup as my starter, this main dish option on the menu became my starter instead and im so glad i didn't forgo this. the lamb flavour permeates through, and even the cabbages and carrots were well flavoured with the herbs of the soup. i only wish there was more meat ! (and it was a european style bread ROLL not rolls but at least it was warm)

The Picardy Monster Burger, $14.90

'The crowning glory is the humongous 6 oz juicy fresh beef patty topped with melted cheese.

Caution: not for the faint hearted!'

For the 'FOO works' you can choose the option of adding bacon, fried egg, caramelized onions or mushrooms for 1 buck per option..we added the egg and the mushrooms...actually it wasn't that monstrous (i mean, after the king brew burger at brewerkz i think anything else is actually not impossible). It was a good size, and the meat was indeed juicy as described, and the patty was just as i liked it - well minced, and medium well. but after awhile, my friend and i got sick of our burger cos it was really very only grouse is that i couldnt really find the mushrooms!! the burger comes with fries and fresh veggies (i guess to be eaten with the burger to offload all the evil LDL)

Foo House Roast Duck, $15.90

'Marinated with more than 10 herbs and spices, its sure a winner!'

well, yeah a sure winner cos this dish triumphs the others in terms of price being the most expensive of the lot. but we simply had to try it cos this decorated dish was raved about by bloggers and is the specialty of the chef and it didn't disappoint. the first bite of it when i tasted the crispy skin with the succulent meat i really thought that i was eating duck confit. i think the tastiest part was that nearest the skin but it got a tad dry nearer the bone. the sauce itself was average and it would have been better if there was more. continue onto this dish after the burger means diminishing returns towards the end..we couldn't really finish the rice (and after all that meat, the butter rice did taste a bit like chicken rice) although i did like the sides of this dish.

Rosemary Lamb Sandwich

Marinated lamb fillets stuffed between a toasted foccacia bun

This was good enough for one of my guy friends (that joker has never eaten lamb in his life, believe it or not) to order one more towards the end of the meal. kinda got cheated of his feelings though, the waitress (they all look like they were still in JC - but service is attentive, topping up our iced water and attending to all our additional orders =P) said that the ala-carte sandwich was gonna be bigger than the set lunch one but its not true!!! its the same above sized one... and they all concurred that the lamb sandwich beats the roast beef one...

and if you scrutinize the menu carefully, you can see the deep fried snickers bar? with all the saga over milk, i wonder if they still offer this man....haha..we were too stuffed for desserts after the heavy meal.. but it was a jolly good recommendation, well these consultants are such foodies too, something not difficult to aspire to be!

Foo House Cafe and Bar

6 Jalan Pari Burong , Picardy Garden (oh, no wonder its the Picardy burger)

Tel: 6445 3110

Lunch: 12pm - 3pm Dinner: 6pm - 10pm (Closed on Mon)

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

First Thai

i first read about this place from camemberu's and being a fan of thai food (brings back good memories of bangkok, short and dom!) i had to go and try for myself how authentic the food here can be. i realise that Purvis street is another treasure cove of eats! from the more economical Hock Lam beef noodles and Miss Clarity cafe (ooh, the twin devine chocolate cheesecake there is awesome!!) to the more atas Gunthers and Ying Thai.. if only parking wasnt such a b**** i'd definitely explore this area more. when i excitedly suggested this place to foodclub, i realise i was the slow one cos they already know about this gem!

it was a weekend night and when foodclub arrived the place was packed to the brim. there was no formal queue and people were just standing around outside and i really had to make my presence known to the waitress who was busy and obviously not paying much attention to me BUT when i tried to scout my own seats inside she promptly sent me to the outside saying there are people ahead of me! hrmmmms...

the place has no air con and you'd def smell of food if u do sit inside..and if u do sit along the corridor outside (there are about 2 tables of 4 people each) the hungry waiting masses would definitely hover over your table..pressure pressure! but we managed to get ourselves a table inside...3 of us had to share with another family of 3 so you can imagine how tight the sitting must be

we were given a chit to write our orders down, and we realise upon looking around...there were magazines underneath the table! and so were the utensils, placed in the glass drawer. tissues were plentiful, which we were grateful for because it was really sweltering and our impending spicy feast won't help either..and i think its a good idea to go earlier (we reached around 8 plus but by the time we queued it was close to 9pm) cos the more popular dishes run out (GREEN CURRY!!) There's no GST and service charge (so the prices in the chit reflect net prices) and note that they don't serve free water either.
Mango Salad

The mango salad here was delicious. Chokeful of peanuts and shrimp paste, the tanginess of the mango went very well with the saltiness of nuts and paste, with the shoot-up-your-nose onions providing the last kick. i'd wanna try the papaya salad the next time round.

Tom Yum Seafood soup

There was plenty of prawns(real fresh ones), fish, and sotong..and lots and lots of straw mushrooms. The soup had a full body, and was more sour than spicy. It went very well with the rice (i drowned my rice in soup cos after awhile it got too salty to drink on its own)

Stir fried Kangkong

This was well fried, with the distinct sambal taste.

Basil Chicken

This was my least favourite dish of the lot because I don't like basil and the taste was very strong. It was probably the last dish to be wiped out, proving how my friends aren't fans of this either.

Spicy Claypot Tofu

This was the star of our dinner...and it doesn't come cheap, 15 bucks for this lot here! but it was very very good, the sauce was what made it fantastic, making the piping hot fried tofu topped with minced chicken go well with the rice. Our tastebuds were trying hard to discern what went into the sauce but obviously we weren't blessed with the minds and tastebuds of chefs to know what went into our stomachs =P it was quite salty and spicy and again, went very well with rice.

A very rich meal, washed down with Green bandung (yes you read it correctly it was GREEN) , we were VERY FULL! we paid around 20 bucks each, for the 3 of us and considering how much we ate i think it was quite worth it.. we adjourned to New Asia bar for some good old sangria and beer. And guess what i lugged all the way up to the 72nd storey of swissotel....THIS!! oh my im really an auntie now..

Al carpone donuts, JCo

First Thai Food

23 Purvis Street

Tel: 6339 3123

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Au Petit Salut

a very memorable lunch, it was a slightly drizzly day when we arrived, fresh from chasing this Audi R8 all the way into Minden road!! it sped off into dempsey of cos, and my clueless bud was wondering why i pulled into the private car park for Au petit salut (cos i wanted to surprise her!)
ah my photo taking sucks, can see the shadow of my hand. the interior of the bungalow was lovely, and there was the option of al fresco (which we were assigned to cos i booked too late but thank god a couple vacated early so we could dine in air con!). i wasn't too impressed with their baguette... which they replenished throughout the meal.

Thin slices of roasted veal, with light tuna sauce, rocket salad

i honestly couldnt see the veal at all and again i forgot to take the THIN slices seriously cos it was really so sobs, the thin layer of veal at the bottom was drowning in the tuna sauce man!

Half dozen Bergundy snails with tomato and garlic butter

i liked short's escargos much much better! but unfortunately they came de-shelled i love digging them out with the small fork..makes eating interesting (though i hate it if the deshelling is too complicated like in crabs and it takes me longer to de-shell than to eat). the sauce was very good we mopped up whatever left overs with the bread.

Red wine braised beef cheeks, carrots, mushrooms and parsley potato

a sizable portion, the beef cheeks was tender and robust. it was more like a stew, though i must say its not as mushy. i enjoyed every bit of this .

Braised lamb shoulder stew, spring vegetables and baby potatoes

this had a distinct lamb taste so don't choose this if you dun like the muttony taste. but fans of muttons we are, so we liked this too! but i still prefer my mains of beef cheeks over this.

Choux buns filled with vanilla ice cream in warm chocolate sauce, sliced almonds

ooh, first bite and i was in gastronomic heaven. The hot gianduja chocolate with the cold vanilla icecream with the crisp savoury pastry and crunch of the almonds was such a classic! the dark chocolate sauce was really awesome, it had a residual hazelnutty aroma to it. oh my, if only Au petit salut has ala-carte options then i wouldnt have to sit throught the entire set lunch to enjoy this!

Mocha: Coffee Souffle with chocolate truffle

short was a souffle fan so this dessert was screaming at her from the meu. proudly risen, this was a delight too , the inside of the souffle being soft and the chocolate centre was a great pairing with the coffee aroma but this doesnt beat my profiteroles! (then again im not much of a fan of souffles)

dropped by ben and jerry's at dempsey to pick up a pint of vanilla ice-cream...short and i sat on the couple swing seats at the alfresco area, chatting about randon musings, car gazing and celebrity spotting ! (we saw jean danker) oh, what a casual lunch affair!

Au Petit Salut

40C Harding Road

Tanglin Village (Dempsey Road)

Tel: 6475 1976

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

hilarious chocolates part 2

as promised! oh everytime she comes back from some faraway land she always brings back goodies like these crackers from japan...

according to her, these are made there and then and packaged...and the fact that its not all broken up makes me so much more appreciative of how she must have plastered FRAGILE all over her luggage .. haha.. oh im so blessed to be pampered by hew.. thank you babe!!

hilarious chocolates

hew bought this and another GIRTH CONTROL chocolate which i'd upload in awhile...totally cracked me up!

Monday, September 8, 2008


I was racking my brains for a place near river valley/chinatown/tanjong pagar area for a birthday lunch and i narrowed down to Persimmon (dang the 1-for-1 deal does not equal 4-for-4 so need 4 DBS credit cards for 8 people so in the end cannot go!!) and Tuckshop so for the above mentioned reason we ventured into the land of cbd and halfhourlydollar parking to check out Tuckshop...

the parking isn't that hard and i ended up parking at duxton hill though there is parallel parking along tanjong pagar road itself, though not right in front of the shop...after jaying the very busy road we arrived into this very cosy small place and thank goodness for the reservation cos the lunchcrowd of many ladies and a few couples sauntered in soon after to fill the place..

Calamari Rings, $6.50

i must comment all the fried food here was very good, and the starter of calamari rings were no exception..the rings were huge! it was fresh out of the deep fryer so it was extremely crisp. and the squid was extremely chewy i ate the whole ring at one go.

Crumb coated chicken, $10,50

Super crunchy marinated chicken thigh served with fries and coleslaw

My friend who had this dish actually had the dish returned to the kitchen because the chicken had a metallic-bitter taste and it tasted stale- which he attributed to the oil...but he was more than pleased with the replacement and indeed i concurred as well when i tried some of the chicken, extremely tender on the inside and a tasty crunchy batter! better than your usual McSpicy for sure (though he had massive cravings for this cos he was still hungry)

Steak Foccacia Sandwich, $13,50

Chilled steak, Caramelised onions, Portabello Mushroom

I must say after the rave reviews from ieatishootipost i had huge expectations from this sandwich (and having to brave the rains and gantrys and parallel parking) and personally it really fell flat. The steak itself was too tough and chewy and i couldnt really cut through even with the knife (yeah i tried to be civilised with the sandwich and not use my hands).. the portabello mushroom was puny to say the least oh i miss the mushroom swiss so. bread was lathered with mayonaise and again i do miss the cheese and veggies that never seem to be present in gourmet burgers (other than relish's wild rocket burger with plenty of arugula leaves)

i guess steak sandwiches doesn't equal burger - the steak itself is totally not like a the end i ate it de-constructed. but for $13.50, i expect a decent portion of CHILLED (euphenism for frozen? many of my friends thought it'd be really served chilled and hence dared not ordered it!) meat. imho i think the steak sandwich at 211 rooftop terrace at holland village is much much better, im not biased against steak sandwiches at all, cos i think the roof terrace does a mean steak sandwich. but i still think of burgers at epicurious (i knew i should have persisted on epicurious' sister restaurant, persimmon! makes me all the more sore cos m went to try in my place) or brewerkz! oh and i so do wanna try the lamb burger at the cellar door very soon! AND the hotshots burger at laupasat!

Fish and Chips, $9.50

Dory in a tasty ale batter with fries and coleslaw

Having read in many reviews that the fish and chips was highly recommended, half my table had this dish and all gave a thumbs up! i had quite some fish to try too -cos the girls took pity on me and my puny sandwich yup i was the only one who ordered that so being the ever sweet girls they donated some fish over=P- and ooh the fish meat was extremely tender, and fresh. Nicely crispy too, all it was missing was the vinegar...i miss the fish and chips shop at New Malden alot!

I must say that although the place is SERIOUSLY understaffed (it was a one man show serving all the tables) he did an extremely good job, attending to our needs and handled the matter of the fried chicken without fuss. And cos one of my friends knew the waiter incidentally from previous work, he actually kindly gave us a 10 percent discount (hence waiving the service charge) and we didnt even realise this until we left the restaurant. oh we really do need such gems in our service industry!

i heard that this place does live music on certain nights...and they do serve drinks as well...I'd come back here for the fried food (its a notch above hooters) but i'd give the steak sandwiches a pass. tanjong pagar is such a haven of food! i must explore this area more once im not so intimidated by the gantries and parking!

Finally...happy birthday kmr! i hope you had a good time and cheers to many years of food and laughter ahead!


21 Tanjong Pagar Road, 01-05

Tel: 65349287

Opening hours:

Mon-Thurs 1130-230 pm, 530pm- midnight

Fri 1130-230pm, 530pm- 3am

Sat 530am-4am

Sunday, September 7, 2008

New Asia Bar

Trio Creme Brulee, $12

when i learnt my favouritest bar CLOSED for renovations i was devastated cos i thought it was for good but thank goodness it isnt and if im not wrong it'd be up and running come 5 sept ie time for a return visit soon!

longchong and i arent drinkers and post dinner i decided on this place so that she'd enjoy the magnificent view and viola we were surprised by the dessert offerings here! wondering if the newly opened bar has an expanded menu hmmms

either the waiter wasnt knowledgable enough to explain the dessert offerings or the dessert menu was new - as the waiter tried to justify his ignorance, god forbid- we got annoyed when he couldnt tell us whether the creme brulee was a single serving of 3 flavours or it was to be 3 separate flavours so we gave up and just decided to order it and wait for the surprise

and a surprise it was, with its riot of colours and myriad of flavours. from left to right bottom, there was creme brulee of rose, lychee and black sesame, the latter to be the favourite of long chong and eventually mine. there was also condiments of lychee, some chewy powdery biscuit with mint leaves, and mango puree. it was impossible to bored with this dessert cos there's such an interesting variety and honestly, i havent ventured into trying flavoured creme brulees yet..i think the only other creme brulee i've tried is the currently demised Menotti's version.

the selling point of this place is the view and indeed at the 72nd floor it does wow first timers, so much more scenic than the dhl balloon and alot less expensive too (entry fee payable after 9pm on fridays and saturdays) and with happy hour from 12-1am drinks arent exorbitant either...there was once a group of us went there for drinks and we ordered 20 over shots and it was 116++ before the 40 % discount..(the shots were very yummmy!! esp the irish baileys with butterscorch). and another time i went with food club, and we tried the sangria it was rather stale though ($38 for 2 pax). they do serve pizzas and kebabs too but i dun fancy eating such food in a bar where i cant see what i put into my mouth.. music gets progressively louder and clubbier late into the night. i dun know how the pricing would be after the new opening so i should check it out soon!

interior of pre renovated new asia bar oh i cant wait to see how it looks like now!

i don't think the skyline'd change with the renovation so you don't miss out on this =)

New Asia Bar

2 Stamford Road

Level 71, Equinox Complex, Swissotel The Stamford

Tel: 6837 3322

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Izakaya Nijumaru Restaurant

i'd never have ventured into the land of sleazy japanese karaoke pubs if i didn't read about it in camemberu's blog.. i realise that there are quite a few jap eateries there like kuishigin (which is the sister restaurant of nambantei at far east) and noodle house ken there.. and i like it that its off town, not so congested and commercialised like all the other run-off-the-mill-catered-for-the-tastebuds-of-the-masses kind of generic casual dining places/chain japanese restaurants..
this restaurant occupies much of the second floor and is relatively easy to find with its prominent green signage..its quite interesting cos the shop seating areas are like friend and i were so happy to secure a seat cos it was quite packed but we realised on our way to the (VERY SECLUDED) restroom that there were actually more sitting areas, some not even used cos it was a weekday and it was not that full..
the menu is in japanese and the english translations so do not help as they are direct translation of the pronounciation of the japanese characters (like the hanyupinyin for the japanese) and i think the waitresses are even less of a help when i do ask them to recommend as they'd ask me back what i like instead of recommend the more popular dishes or the restaurant's i'd never have known that the tofu steak was a specialty until i read about it online (and note this dish is not even on the menu)
Tofu Steak
Unlike the regular agadeshi tofu, this piece of tofu was drenched in butter sauce and it makes me think of eating toast drenched in butter or buttery popcorn..anything coated butter is really yummmy!

Unaju set, $20

The first page of the menu had all the meal sets and this was one of the top few recommended (other than the Izakaya bento) so i chose this. I could have the option of tempura or sashimi as a side and of cos i'd choose sashimi..the set came with seaweed, miso soup, pickles and orange (which i did not touch i hate real oranges)

closer look at the unagi don..the slices are really quite thick and succulent this was lovely indeed !

Sashimi set, $14

This was my friend's set and though the sashimi was fresh, after having tried Fish Mart Sakuraya which i'd talk about later and another secret place, i don't think this quantity justifies $14! Just 3 slices of salmon , and another 3 of tuna and 2 yellow tail my friend sure wasn't full at all after her dinner!

Well if i ever do learn more japanese food language and the waitresses are more adept at recommending more dishes (or im suddenly very adventurous) i'd surely be back !

Izakaya Nijumaru Restaurant

5 Koek Road #02-10 Cuppage Plaza

Tel: 6235 6693

Mon - Sat 12pm - 2:30pm, 6pm - 10pm, Sun 6pm - 10pm