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x2dino
This is x2dino living in Bukit Panjang. I am a Executive, work in Toa Payoh. French, Thai are my favorite cuisines. I also love Restaurant, Café and Seafood, Steaks and Grills, Buffet .
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x2dino  Level 4
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A perfect weekend hideout  Smile Oct 20, 2013   
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Categories : American | Burgers and Sandwiches

Located within Trade Hub 21, this casual American dining outlet is a perfect weekend hideout for those seeking asylum from the bustling town area. The laid back cowboy ambience provides an idyllic dining experience where one can simply chill and enjoy the afternoon with good company!

Platter Set ($45+)
The platter set, consisting of 300g Australian Marbled Beef Steak & Grilled US Corn-Fed Pork Chop, Mini Bloomin' Onions, Potato Gratin, Salad, 2x Mushroom Soup, and 2x lemon tea, is good to share among 2-4 pax. The portion is generous and value for money.
Platter Set

Platter Set

 
The Marbled Beef Steak was juicy, chewy and grilled to perfection! The marbling was excellent as the fats literally melted in our mouths and was a joy to savour.

The Pork Chop was a disappointment, however. Although it was pretty well marinated and glaced with a thick layer of tasty BBQ sauce, the meat was dry and tough on the palate.

The sides were decent except for the Bloomin' Onion which we thought was too floury and lacked the crisp we were anticipating.

The rich and creamy mushroom soup was excellent!
Mushroom Soup

Mushroom Soup

 
Beer Butt Chicken ($32+)
The Beer Butt Chicken was the highlight of today's meal. It was truly a feast for the eyes and a tantalising treat for the tongue!
Beer Butt Chicken

Beer Butt Chicken

 
The waitress presented the picture-perfect chicken (in its original cooked form) for our photo-taking sake before cutting it up, with one portion infused in the beer broth and the other, au-natural style. Although both versions were tasty in their own way, I preferred the beer-soaked version as the essence was well absorbed into the chicken, exuding a hint of light bitter-sweet aftertaste.

The chicken was exceptionally tender and smooth while the skin was sinfully delicious and crispy .

BBQ Wings ($14+)
The BBQ wings were well marinated and flavourful. A pity, however, was that it wasn't served hot and the meat was slightly dry.
BBQ Wings

BBQ Wings

 
Blacken Dory (16+)
The dory was well grilled, with a crispy surface and soft, moist centre. However, the taste could be further improved upon as I found it to be a little on the blend side. Perhaps adding a dash of sea salt or some rosemary herbs might do the trick?
Blacken Dory

Blacken Dory

 
Overall, we were pleased with the quality and hearty portion of food served! Although the location might be a little inconvenient for those taking public transport, it was definitely worth the extra mile!
 
Recommended Dish(es):  Beer Butt Chicken
 
Date of Visit: Oct 19, 2013 

Spending per head: Approximately $27(Lunch)

Other Ratings:
Taste
 4  |  
Environment
 4  |  
Service
 3  |  
Clean
 3  |  
Price
 3

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Food Tasting @ Ambush Smile Oct 06, 2013   
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Categories : European | Pasta | Paella

I was privileged to be invited to the OpenRice food tasting event at Ambush. Upon entering, the sight that immediately greeted me was a bright and spacious interior overlooking a sky garden – a warm and inviting ambience to spend an afternoon over good food and company!

Ambush serves up a wide array of European cuisine – ranging from Swiss German Wurst, Belgium Moules/Palourde, Spanish Paella, French entree to Italian Pasta – that will definitely satisfy your palate without emptying your wallet. For the reader's info, they are currently running an Oktoberfest promotion featuring interesting fusion creations such as the Curry Wurst and Chicken Gordon Bleu which I found to be quite delectable. Do read on for my reviews of some of the more impressionable dishes which I enjoyed...

Curry Wurst ($16.50++)
The star of this dish was actually the zesty BBQ/curry sauce that accompanied the pan seared Bartwurst. The Bartwurst were crispy on the outside, while tender and juicy on the inside with a hint of tanginess. When dipped into the accompanying sauce, the full flavours of the Bartwurst was instantly released with a zesty and refreshing aftertaste.
Curry Wurst

Curry Wurst

 


Chicken Corden Bleu ($18.50++)
I have always loved Chicken Corden Bleu, with its multiple textures encrusted underneath the crispy breaded layer. The generous amount of cheese oozing out from the tender chicken breast was definitely an inviting sight. The taste and texture of the chicken was just right and blended well with the creamy mushroom sauce and braised red cabbage.
Chicken Corden Bleu

Chicken Corden Bleu

 


Ambush Paella ($14.20++)
My favourite dish served during the food tasting! Topped with white clams, mussels, scallops, prawns and sliced bacon/sausages, the rice exudes a hint of light buttery fragrance complemented by the natural sweetness of fresh seafood ingredients. Delicious!
Ambush Paella

Ambush Paella

 
Poulet Roti ($17.20++)
A tastefully prepared entree. The chicken leg was very soft, tender and literally melted in your mouth. Special mention goes to the grainy mustard mash potato which added a complementing texture to this dish.
Poulet Roti

Poulet Roti

 
Baby Scallop & Flying Fish Roe - Squid Ink Sauce ($14.80++)
I was initially quite apprehensive to try out this dish after an awful experience with squid ink sauce pasta. However, the taste was pretty acceptable (the squid ink was fresh definitely!). I thought this dish was quite well prepared, well done.
Baby Scallop & Flying Fish Roe - Squid Ink Sauce

Baby Scallop & Flying Fish Roe - Squid Ink Sauce

 
Char Grilled Lamb Saddle Steak

Char Grilled Lamb Saddle Steak

 
Crispy Chicken & Seaweed - Aglio Olio Ambush Style

Crispy Chicken & Seaweed - Aglio Olio Ambush Style

 
Mash Potato

Mash Potato

 
Roasted Pork knuckle

Roasted Pork knuckle

 
Schweinmedallion

Schweinmedallion

 
We were treated to an extensive selection of drinks and desserts as well. I ordered the Green Apple Mojito ($5.50++) , one of their signature drinks recommended by the restaurant manager, and found it to be very refreshing and visually appealing!
Drinks

Drinks

 
However, I thought that the desserts were a little anti-climax and paled in comparison to the mains. The Tiramisu ($6.80++) was quite dry with an overpowering layer of chocolate powder that masked the overall taste of the mascarpone cheese and coffee. The Chocolate Lava Souffle ($8.80++) and Molten Chocolate Brownie ($6.80++) were pretty average and lacked the Oomph factor. The Apple Crisp ($6.80++) naturally became the better tasting desserts of the day (though there's still much room for improvement). I felt that they could be more generous with their apple chunks (and less of the apple puree) to improve on the overall texture of this dessert.

Overall, it was a pretty enjoyable luncheon on an idyllic lazy Saturday afternoon.

Thank you Ambush for the scrumptious lunch! I will be back to try out the other offerings in the menu!
 
Recommended Dish(es):  Curry Wurst,Chicken Corden Bleu,Ambush Paella,Poulet Roti
 
Date of Visit: Oct 05, 2013 

Other Ratings:
Taste
 4  |  
Environment
 4  |  
Service
 4  |  
Clean
 4  |  
Price
 3

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Great Japanese Dinner Smile Jun 22, 2013   
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Categories : Japanese | Restaurant | Sushi/Sashimi | Kids-Friendly

Before catching our late night show at Shaw, we had a nice and authentic Japanese dinner at Hoshigaoka. We were spoilt for choice by their extensive menu which spots of more than 50 over dishes! Their offerings are unique and the food quality is great!

Hoshigaoka Zen ($33.60++)
Consisting of an array of petite dishes including: appetizer, sashimi, amaebi salad, tempura, teriyaki cod fish, beef misoyaki, rice, chawanmushi, miso soup and even matcha ice cream, this is definitely a feast not to be missed! I especially loved the sashimi which is fresh and succulent. The beef was the other highlight of the set as it was really tender and well marinated.
Hoshigaoka Zen

Hoshigaoka Zen

 
matcha ice cream

matcha ice cream

 
Ishiyaki Steak ($17.70++)
This was more of a ‘visual’ dish as we had fun cooking our beef to a doneness of our choice. It was simply enjoyable savouring bite size pieces of all natural, fresh and juicy meat.
Ishiyaki Steak

Ishiyaki Steak

 
Green Tea Tiramisu in Chocolate Cup ($6.80++)
Two thumbs up for this heavenly dessert! The rich green tea tiramisu simply melts in your mouth and leaves a lingering green tea fragrance aftertaste. The dark chocolate cup was a perfect “post dessert” complement and we spared no time in cracking it into bite size pieces to munch on.
Green Tea Tiramisu in Chocolate Cup

Green Tea Tiramisu in Chocolate Cup

 
Overall, it was a gratifying meal that leaves us anticipating our second visit here.
 
Recommended Dish(es):  Green Tea Tiramisu in Chocolate Cup,Hoshigaoka Zen
 
Date of Visit: Jun 21, 2013 

Spending per head: Approximately $35(Dinner)

Other Ratings:
Taste
 4  |  
Environment
 4  |  
Service
 3  |  
Clean
 3  |  
Price
 3

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Seafood Extravaganza  Smile Apr 14, 2013   
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Categories : Multi-Cuisine | Seafood

The husband and I brought our parents here for a birthday lunch celebration and ordered four sets of “Valuable Seafood Lunch Set” ($32++). Each set comprised of four exquisitely prepared dishes and diners even get to enjoy the dessert buffet spread.
Menu

Menu

 
Set A
Jumbo Oyster with Green Chili Marmalade
Image gulping down one fat and succulent oyster – indulgence overload! And did we mention that this is by far one of the freshest we’ve tasted in Singapore!
Jumbo Oyster with Green Chili Marmalade

Jumbo Oyster with Green Chili Marmalade

 
Golden Braised Shredded Abalone & Bamboo Piths Soup
The soup was flavourful as evident by the fresh quality ingredients used.
Golden Braised Shredded Abalone & Bamboo Piths Soup

Golden Braised Shredded Abalone & Bamboo Piths Soup

 
Pan-fried Prawn with “Hoi Xing” Sauce
This was a disappointment. Although the sauce was rich and tasty, this “would-be” star dish was smeared by the no-so-fresh prawns used as evident from the shells that were “stuck” to the prawns.
Pan-fried Prawn with “Hoi Xing” Sauce

Pan-fried Prawn with “Hoi Xing” Sauce

 
Thai Curry Fish Fillet with Garlic Bread
The fish curry was rich and creamy. The aromatic fragrance of the spices was thoroughly absorbed by the fish fillet. The two giant slices of garlic bread that accompanied this dish were crispy and tasty. Overall, the curry was moderate (not too spicy) and a little on the heavy side (thick and creamy).
Thai Curry Fish Fillet with Garlic Bread

Thai Curry Fish Fillet with Garlic Bread

 
Set B
Spicy Lemon Fan Scallop with Salad Prawn
One phrase to sum this up: Looks may be deceiving. No doubt regarding the freshness of this delightfully presented dish. However, the taste paled in comparison to other dishes served (perhaps only beating the chili prawns in terms of the freshness of the ingredients used). The lemon sauce tasted bitter and masked the natural sweetness of the scallop.
Spicy Lemon Fan Scallop with Salad Prawn

Spicy Lemon Fan Scallop with Salad Prawn

 
Braised Crab Meat with Dried Seafood Soup
Akin to shark’s fin soup, this was a well cooked broth comprising of fresh quality ingredients.
Braised Crab Meat with Dried Seafood Soup

Braised Crab Meat with Dried Seafood Soup

 
Baked Cod Fish with Pepper Cream Sauce
A definite must try! This was probably the star dish and highlight of the set lunch menu. The cod fish was baked to perfection and was soft and tender. The cod fish was very fresh and the natural juices and sweetness was well preserved. In addition, the slightly spicy pepper cream sauce added a zesty kick to the overall taste, greatly enhancing the flavours of this dish.
Baked Cod Fish with Pepper Cream Sauce

Baked Cod Fish with Pepper Cream Sauce

 
Crispy Thread Noodles with Crab Meat in Supreme Stock
The seafood stock was light and exuded the sweetness of fresh crab meat. The crispy thread noodles were complemented with a generous portion of soft crab meat. The intertwining textures were a delight to savour.
Crispy Thread Noodles with Crab Meat in Supreme Stock

Crispy Thread Noodles with Crab Meat in Supreme Stock

 
The desserts – ranging from fresh fruits, nyonya kuehs, puddings in glass shots, Chinese pancakes and ice jelly – were in all, were a nice complement to our mains.
Ice Jelly with Toppings

Ice Jelly with Toppings

 
Dessert Shots

Dessert Shots

 
To sum it all up, this is a must visit for all seafood lovers, despite a couple of misses as experienced.
 
Recommended Dish(es):  Baked Cod Fish with Pepper Cream Sauce,Crispy Thread Noodles with Crab Meat in Supreme Stock,Jumbo Oyster with Green Chili Marmalade,Thai Curry Fish Fillet with Garlic Bread
 
Date of Visit: Mar 30, 2013 

Spending per head: Approximately $40(Lunch)

Other Ratings:
Taste
 4  |  
Environment
 4  |  
Service
 5  |  
Clean
 3  |  
Price
 3

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Categories : Singaporean Chinese

Was around the newly refurbished SAFRA Toa Payoh for a team bonding session and noticed the interesting ala carte buffet lunch menu offered by Tim Palace. The husband and I decided to give it a try as we found the price to be fairly reasonable ($24.80++ for weekdays and $26.80++ for weekends). For the reader’s info, SAFRA members are entitled to an additional 10% off the total bill lol
Menu

Menu

 


The variety of dishes served is impressive - a total of 50 dishes ranging from appetizer, soup, mains and desserts! However, do note that some dishes (the more high value ones) are limited to one serving only. Overall, the food quality is not bad considering the price and the portions are relatively small, giving you more tummy space to try out other dishes. Service wise, we feel that there are still rooms for improvement. Severs were not attentive (we had to gesture almost 3-4 times before they refill our pot of tea) and food was served out quite slowly (we even wanted to cancel our last order as they took almost 30 mins to serve our last dish which was Sambal Clams).

Must tries

1) Steamed Sea Base with Plum Sauce
The sea base is fresh and cooked to perfection, a hallmark of every good Chinese restaurant.
Steamed Sea Base with Plum Sauce

Steamed Sea Base with Plum Sauce

 


2) Braised Shark’s Fin Soup with Crab Meat
Although it tasted pretty much like the typical Shark’s Fin Soup served in other restaurants, this is one, if not, the most high value item in the menu that everyone should order. The restaurant definitely did not cut corners on this as evident by the amount of ingredients used.
Braised Shark’s Fin Soup with Crab Meat

Braised Shark’s Fin Soup with Crab Meat

 
3) Lamb Stew in Pot
The lamb stew was soft and tender without the usual gamey flavours of lamb meat. Simple dish of lamb meat, carrots and radish well prepared!
Lamb Stew in Pot

Lamb Stew in Pot

 
4) Pork Loin Orange Sauce
Similar in taste to Hainanese Pork Chop, this dish is appetizing and refreshing. T he pork is crispy on the outside and chewy on the inside.
Pork Loin Orange Sauce

Pork Loin Orange Sauce

 
Disappointments

1) Drunken Prawn in Herbal Soup
Was quite disappointed in the soup as I found it to have added too much MSG and lacking the natural sweetness of the prawns. However, the prawns are fresh and succulent. Just order this purely for the high value item - live prawns.
Drunken Prawn in Herbal Soup

Drunken Prawn in Herbal Soup

 

2) Braised Baby Abalone with Broccoli in Oyster Sauce
The abalone was really small and overcooked, resulting in a rather tough texture that was hard to swallow. Again, order this purely for the seemingly high value item – Abalone.
Braised Baby Abalone with Broccoli in Oyster Sauce

Braised Baby Abalone with Broccoli in Oyster Sauce

 
3) Beef Steak with Brown Sauce
We found to beef to be too salty for our liking and was tough and dry. And as the previous two dishes, order this purely because it is limited to one serving.
Beef Steak with Brown Sauce

Beef Steak with Brown Sauce

 
In all, this was a fairly decent meal that’s worth the money less the waiting time for food to be served.
 
Recommended Dish(es):  Braised Shark’s Fin Soup with Crab Meat,Lamb Stew in Pot,Pork Loin Orange Sauce,Steamed Sea Base with Plum Sauce
 
Date of Visit: Apr 05, 2013 

Spending per head: Approximately $27(Lunch)

Other Ratings:
Taste
 3  |  
Environment
 3  |  
Service
 2  |  
Clean
 3  |  
Price
 4

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