Wednesday, August 31, 2022

Small Potatoes Make The Steak Look Bigger : Year Sixteen

Year XVI. 22.M2. Will the number of years surpass the number of legions by the Emperor of Mankind?

Tuesday, August 30, 2022

Les Bouchons, Rochester Commons

Les Bouchons, Rochester Commons

Les Bouchons has a new location just behind Star Vista (Rochester Commons, 10 Rochester Park, tel : +65 6904 8972).

Les Bouchons, Rochester Commons

Pretty little Parisian styled restaurant sequestered behind tropical verdant lushery. Then again, their decor have always adhered to a similar visual style to their parent L'Angelus.

Les Bouchons, heirloom beetroot salad

There's a few items on the menu that aren't available at both their Ann Siang and Robertson Quay restaurants. One of those was their heirloom beetroot salad. Loved the earthy sweetness of those beets. Had these once or twice previously at Le Bistrot du Sommelier. I especially liked how the fragrance of the lightly toasted walnuts and pine nuts added to the salad.

Les Bouchons, ceps soup

Pretty impressive ceps soup which I'm sure was loaded with butter and cream. Flavour of the mushroom in the piping hot soup was robust to say the least and that was paved by a smooth velvet texture. Would come back for this. Also not available at the other two restaurants as far as I know.

Les Bouchons, foie gras

No complains on the pan fried foie gras. It was delicious. The caramelized liver had the prerequisite crusty exterior and quivery insides I was looking forward to. At the end, we were mopping the rendered oils from from the foie with bread. The onion compote/jam thingy on the side seemed to have curry flavour. Pretty sure I did not imagine it.

Les Bouchons, wagyu onglet

Great grilled wagyu onglet which we haven't seen on their menu before. Pretty sure it's available only here. Not cheap at all but seeing how much Le Bistrot du Sommelier charges for their onglet these days, this one didn't feel quite so expensive. Knife sliced through this like butter. Mostly. Flavour was also a beefy intensity like I was expecting. 👍🏼 

Les Bouchons, wasted sauces

The sauces were kinda wasted tonight because the onglet definitely did not need them. Neither did their fries.

Les Bouchons, poulet aux 40 gousses d'ail

I've always been curious about the 40 garlic chicken dish I've seen around. For some reasons, it has appeared in this restaurant. Again, not in the menu at Ann Siang and Robertson Quay.

The chook was fork tender seeped in the rendered garlic butter in the pot, perfumed with just enough rosemary. Part of what was enjoyable about this was slurping out the creamy cloves of garlic from their skins.

Les Bouchons, salad

At this point of time, we had neither the room nor interest with the salad. I did tried to dig out as much of the walnuts and the cherry tomatoes with a few leaves before throwing in the fork towel.

Les Bouchons, affogato

Would have liked to get something bigger but we only had room for an affogato after all the food.

Les Bouchons, Rochester Commons

Monday, August 29, 2022

Star Coffee, Bukit Merah Central Food Centre

Star Coffee, Bukit Merah Central Food Centre

Came across this stall (#02-22 Bukit Merah Central Food Centre, 163 Bukit Merah Central). Freshly ground local styled coffee pulled with an espresso machine.

Star Coffee, signature coffee

This was their signature coffee which has condense milk. Coffee's ok-ish. Lacked smoothness and was not particularly outstanding or aromatic. Drinkable would be an appropriate description for me. I spied a garlic toast set which I don't mind coming back to try.

Star Coffee, Bukit Merah Central Food Centre

Sunday, August 28, 2022

鄧文記/炒翻天 (Deng Wen Ji/Chao Fan Tian), Toa Payoh Central

鄧文記/炒翻天 (Deng Wen Ji/Chao Fan Tian), Toa Payoh Central

I'm not sure if 鄧文記 or 炒翻天 (J99 Eating House, 186 Toa Payoh Central) were the same stalls or were they separated ones. Both of them occupied the same end unit of the coffeeshop; directly opposite from the end where Fu Xiang Chicken Rice is. Same order taking person who also processed payment.  Fu Zhou Ban Mian (福州板面) is there as well if you needed another clue.

鄧文記 sells wanton mee while 炒翻天 stir fries a pretty mean Hokkien mee.

鄧文記/炒翻天 (Deng Wen Ji/Chao Fan Tian), wanton mee

鄧文記's wanton mee was pretty similar to the style at Eng's Wanton Noodle - one that is attributed by thicker noodles and a fiery chilli sauce. This one blows Eng's soulless rendition out of the water by having firm texture for those noodles, a solid lard (猪油) flavour in the sauce and pretty tasty caramelized char siew for a princely sum of $4.50. 

鄧文記/炒翻天 (Deng Wen Ji/Chao Fan Tian), wanton mee chilli

Yeah, that chilli sauce kinda rocks with the noodles. And also with the Hokkien mee.

鄧文記/炒翻天 (Deng Wen Ji/Chao Fan Tian), wanton

Wantons were meaty. Nice.

鄧文記/炒翻天 (Deng Wen Ji/Chao Fan Tian), hokkien mee

Here's their $6 Hokkien mee from 炒翻天 which in my opinion is much more enjoyable than Come Daily Fried Hokkien Prawn Mee because this one had a much more robust flavour from the stock used to stir fry the noodles. It's a little wetter than I usually prefer but the crustacean-y taste and those chunky pieces of fried lard made up for it.

鄧文記/炒翻天 (Deng Wen Ji/Chao Fan Tian), Toa Payoh Central

Saturday, August 27, 2022

Đặng Hồng's Vietnamese Pho at Keef The Beef

Đặng Hồng's Vietnamese Pho / Dang Hong Vietnamese Pho, The Grandstand

Đặng Hồng (#01-12 The Grandstand, 200 Turf Club Road) is a Vietnamese restaurant at the back/balcony area of Keef the Beef. They're different but also kinda the same. Different because payment are separated processes for Đặng Hồng and Keef the Beef. Same because they're technically in the same unit and you can order from both restaurants. Different because you cannot order the Vietnamese food inside Keef. Same because they're using the same USDA beef for the steaks and phở. Wait a minute......

Đặng Hồng's Vietnamese Pho / Dang Hong Vietnamese Pho, menu

We were here for their Northern Star.

Đặng Hồng's Vietnamese Pho / Dang Hong Vietnamese Pho, keef the beef pho collage

One has to admit that the picture used for their social media can be construed as misleading. It did not so subtly suggest that there's sliced steak involved - charred edges and in the dusky pink of doneness and all.

Đặng Hồng's Vietnamese Pho / Dang Hong Vietnamese Pho, the northern star

Here's reality. Not bad at all. I came here with the intention not to measure this against what I think how phở should be. The oil flecked broth was slightly beefy and savoury with sweetness in the midst. After adding some crushed mint, a couple of squeezes of lime and a bit of heat, it was outstanding. Beef was thick sliced and tender like how many don't do their sliced beef in their phở. Will be back for this.

Đặng Hồng's Vietnamese Pho / Dang Hong Vietnamese Pho, kimchi

Remembered the kimchi from the last time we were here and got the upsized portion today.

Đặng Hồng's Vietnamese Pho / Dang Hong Vietnamese Pho, bánh gai

Came across a bánh gai on the menu. Was described as 'thorn leaf cake from the Red River Delta Region Vietnam'. Never had it before. It even had gold flakes. The black stuff was the 'cake' that's made with oehmeria nivea leaf - kinda like the skin of mugwort kueh we have around here. Brown goo on the side was coconut caramel which tasted like a much nicer version of the cheap coconut candy that some of us might have had as kids

Đặng Hồng's Vietnamese Pho / Dang Hong Vietnamese Pho, bánh gai

Inside the super chewy black stuff were stuffings of mung bean paste and strips of dessicated coconut. That was as much as we could tell. From what I found out, these bánh gai were supposed to be steamed in banana leaves. Ours was served piping hot. Had a very South East Asian flavour if you catch my drift.

Đặng Hồng's Vietnamese Pho / Dang Hong Vietnamese Pho, The Grandstand

Friday, August 26, 2022

Sesame bagel with non-essential butter, fried egg and hash brown from Two Men Bagel House

Two Men Bagel House, sesame bagel with non-essential butter, fried egg and hash brown

For the past few times I've been to Two Men Bagel House (           十一 十二 十三 十四 十五 十六 十七), a couple of things come to mind. The first was why do I always think Teenage Mutant Binja Hurtles whenever I see TMBH. The second happens when I unwrap my bagel, feeling that they used to be bigger. Well, you already know what I got myself for today so we move on.

Two Men Bagel House, sesame bagel with non-essential butter, fried egg and hash brown

I don't know what is non-essential butter. The menu says kombu and mushroom infused butter so I was looking forward to something buttery and umami. Couldn't taste kombu or mushrooms and actually, I could barely discern the butter. So not everything from them is great and note to self not to ever get that again. That Sriracha on the side was for scenarios exactly like this.

Two Men Bagel House, Tanjong Pagar

Thursday, August 25, 2022

Sauceless, 3rds and blueberry milkshake at 2280

2280, double cheese burger sauceless

This was admittedly my 3rd time having the double sans sauce at 2280. I like it and will be sticking to that as the default for the foreseeable future. Just those tangy pickled onions to cut through the grease and richness of the beef and cheese. Simplicity is good here.

2280, blueberry milkshake

Today's milkshake was blueberry. The 3rd flavour we've come across after the chocolate and vanilla. Would have liked it better if there was a stronger blueberry flavour and it hadn't left a powdery aftertaste. The vanilla was still my favourite and I hope it gets rotated back someday.

Wednesday, August 24, 2022

Cherki, Singapore Chinese Cultural Centre

Cherki, Singapore Chinese Cultural Centre

Cherki's (#01-02 Singapore Chinese Cultural Centre, 1 Straits Boulevard, tel : +65 6514 8345) got this Violet Oon Satay Bar and Island Cafe vibes. Local yet atas and alcohol is a thing.

Cherki, guinness

There's Guinness on tap.

Cherki, foie gras duck confit fried rice

Foie gras duck confit fried rice. The duck, if anyone was wondering was in shredded bits in the rice. I was wondering about the fried rice part since it just looked blue from the butterfly pea flower. To their credit, it tasted like fried rice while my brain caught up with reconciliation between my two senses. Pretty competent achar on the side there. Just wished that the foie gras was bigger.

Cherki, seared scallops with nonya fish maw

Some seared scallops and Nonya fish maw dish. The fresh scallops had their natural sweetness and a nice flavour from the caramelization; notice that there are also dried ones in there as well. Don't know what made the miserable portions of fish maw Nonya but their quality was mediocre. One could taste the beginnings of the oil in them getting stale. 

Cherki, yuzu seafood kueh pie tee

Tried the yuzu seafood kueh pie tee. The difference from the regular ones and these were the scallops and yuzu flavour. Not bad.

Cherki, coconut prawn linguine

Unexpectedly moreish coconut prawn linguine which I felt was the performing underdog today. Pasta was nicely done, prawns tasted good and it was all brought together by the savoury sweet coconut cream that glazed the seafood and noodles. I'd eat this again.

Cherki, cherki ngoh hiang

Ngoh hiang wasn't impressive for me. Couldn't taste the foie fat and duck pate that was listed as ingredients. Bamboo shoots are a poor substitute for water chestnuts. Also, there's five spice powder. I've always felt that good ngoh hiangs never needed them.

Cherki, kaya gula melaka tiramisu

(O_o + 😒) Their kaya & gula melaka tiramisu was a disappointment compared to my mental imagery of a luscious moist cream cake. I had the idea that since this wasn't a run of the mill tiramisu, they'd make something out of the ordinary. Impressive even. This looked like it came from a cake factory. Couldn't taste the kaya at all and here's where I melodramatically lament (in the literal sense of course!) over the injustice done by a Peranakan restaurant to a Peranakan ingredient.

It's also pretty dry. If I hadn't ordered it as one, I wouldn't have recognized it as tiramisu. 

Cherki, Singapore Chinese Cultural Centre

Tuesday, August 23, 2022

Burrata, pork, pineapples and other things at Zazz Pizza

Zazz Pizza, Cross Street Exchange

S'been a quarter since we last crushed the remnants of mycelium routers on a scorched civilization of bacteria at Zazz Pizza. We were back for more.

Zazz Pizza, chicken wings

I know right? Deep fried chicken wings. But they weren't bad. The meat was literally still steaming when it was exposed. We were just curious how these ones from Zazz tasted so beside their blend of herbs from the flour, they were pretty much like most competent fried chicken wings. 

Zazz Pizza, braised pork pappardelle

Their braised pork pappardelle was introduced not too long back. Pasta was served piping hot with pretty generous chunks of fork tender pork and the meaty savoury sauce was flavoured with star anise. 👍🏼 We have yet to be disappointed with what we've had from their house special pastas so far.

Zazz Pizza, pizza burrata pineapples

Pizza burrata with added on pineapples today. Those pineapples were excellent pairing with the oozy stracciatella/cream in the burrata. Think citrus sweet creamy richness. You heard it here first.

Zazz Pizza, affogato

Ended it with how we have been ending it for the past few visits. Affogato.

Zazz Pizza, limoncello

And Limoncello to finish.

Zazz Pizza, Cross Street Exchange