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jiaksimipng
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Categories : Singaporean | Fusion | Restaurant | Seafood

Being one of the ten restaurants that had made it to Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants of 2016, Wild Rocket sits at the 38th position on the list amongst other restaurants in various parts of Asia. Wild Rocket is started by Chef Willin Low, who used to practice law before his foray into the F&B industry in 2005. Nestled in the tranquil environment of Hangout Hotel, Wild Rocket is within walking distance from Little India MRT, though it is a steep climb up a hill. In 2014, the space was renovated to what it looks like today, exuding a clean, Japanese-inspired vibe that is classy, comfortable yet without being pretentious or over the top. For lunch hours on weekdays (which was the time we had made our visit), diners can choose from the ala-carte menu, the 3-course set lunch menu ($38++) or the Omakase menu (between $120++ to $160++), while the 3-course set lunch menu would be replaced with a 4-course set dinner menu ($75++) in the evening.

 
First to arrive at the table would be the bread service, where we were served house-made Brioche with an accompanying olive oil to dip in. Baked in-house, the Brioche may seem just a tad dry initially, but it turns out to be fluffy afterwards as the bread simply disintegrates into smaller pieces instead of clumping up so there is pretty much close to zero effort to chew. The consistency of the bread might be done intentionally so that it does not turn too mushy if dipped into the olive oil, which is pretty fragrant and flavourful. For those who prefer their bread to go with butter, they do also offer salted butter on request.

 
For my starter, I have decided to go for the Giam Chye Mustard Leaf Duck Consommé with Duck Confit Cubes, which is Wild Rocket’s take on the Chinese Salted Vegetable Soup that is served with daikon, tomatoes and duck confit cubes. I am one who does not really fancy Chinese soups, but this was one that got me going for more. While seemingly light to drink, the soup was immensely flavourful especially for how clear it was; never a moment too oily. Duck Confit cubes were spectacular; felt pretty smoky and savoury at the same time and definitely gave a good flavour contrast to the soup. Indeed, a great starter to the meal ahead.

 
My dining partner picked the Barramundi Carpaccio with Orange Shallot Oil. A harmonious marriage of the Chinese Yu Sheng into Carpaccio, the fish was amazingly fresh and drizzled with orange shallot oil for a little tanginess going hand-in-hand with the shallot was fragrant of its roasty flavour; that flavour you would have expected from the same shallots you add into a piping hot bowl of Porridge. It’s really that comforting.

 
Picking from the selection of mains, my choice was the Iberico Pork Char Siew with Shanghai Kao Cai & Quinoa (supplement $8++). The instructions to enjoy this dish was as follows; peel off the rice paper over the bowl, then squeeze the Calamansi to release the juices over the dish. Digging into the Iberico Pork Char Siew first, the tenderness of the slab of pork was mind-blowing; a really soft, tender, juicy slab of pork where you can pull the streaks of flesh effortlessly with a fork. Coated with a layer of sauce that exudes a smoky sweetness, the pork itself really stood to the occasion basking in the limelight for how stellar the execution was, making every bite an ironic moment because it’s just so good to have, but every bite that was taken would mean one bite less afterwards. The Quinoa was decent, but the Kao Cai was umami which helped to lift the flavours of the Quinoa while the lone Shiitake mushroom at the side also deserves a little mention for that subtle sweetness that sets it apart from the usual Chinese dried mushrooms that we are used to having. It is told to us that this dish is their take on the “Tau Yu Bak”, and the rice paper served alongside is intended to be the replacement of the bread that usually comes along as a carb; the wait staff however advice patrons against eating the rice paper as the texture of a half-steamed rice paper is not something everybody might fancy, but it is known that some patrons still do eat it.

 
Unlike the Iberico Pork Char Siew, the Baked Halibut with Curry Hollandaise (supplement $6++) would really hit those who prefer softer flavours. Twice-baked; once just by itself and the second time with the Curry Hollandaise on, the Halibut achieved flakiness without losing moisture within. Since the Curry Hollandaise is baked along with the fish rather than being simply drizzled over the top, the Curry Hollandaise actually “sticks” on the fish instead, which definitely helped to lock in the flavours of the sauce above the fish. The Curry Hollandaise helps add a hint of curry fragrance into the dish, and alongside with the root vegetables did seem like Wild Rocket’s twist on Fish Curry. While the root vegetables on the side seemed to be devoid of excessive seasoning, they were still flavourful from their natural flavours; possibly an intended move to bring out the unadulterated, natural flavours and sweetness of the root vegetables with no distractions.

 
With four desserts on the menu to choose from, we have decided to go for the Trio of Flowers and Strawberry Cheesecake (supplement $2++). Between the two, the Trio of Flowers would fit well for those who prefer lighter desserts; coming with Osmantnus & Chrysanthemum Granita, the flowery flavours work as a good palate cleanser for a flavour-intensive main. Together with the Elderflower Jelly sitting beneath the granita, it adds a tasteful sourness that provides for a flavour contrast with the granita, making the dessert a truly refreshing after-meal treat. For those who crave for something more conventional-sounding, the Strawberry Cheesecake is actually Wild Rocket’s signature dessert. Served deconstructed with layers of cream cheese, digestive biscuits and macerated strawberries, they were bound together with a Maple Walnut ice cream that introduces a mildly sweet, yet nutty flavour to the dessert. Despite how normal it might sound, this is probably one of the best renditions of a cheesecake out there; Wild Rocket had made their own twists to the elements that make up the dish, hence the flavours are really balanced and uplifting that one will never get sick of. Truly living up to the name of signature indeed.

For more photos and the full review, head over to jiaksimipng in the link below:
https://jiaksimipng.wordpress.com/2016/06/03/wild-rocket-upper-wilkie-road/

 
 
Recommended Dish(es):  Giam Chye Mustard Leaf Duck Consommé,Baked Halibut with Curry Hollandaise,Strawberry Cheesecake,Iberico Pork Char Siew with Shanghai Kao Cai & Quinoa
 
Table Wait Time: 20 minute(s)


Spending per head: Approximately $54(Lunch)

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

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Categories : Café

Habitat Coffee is a modern and chic coffee house that is popular with people of all ages and occupations. Just like it’s name, it just seemed like a a great habitat for coffee lovers out there.

 
Habitat Cheese Cake is a typical New York Cheese Cake. The one here is just so smooth in texture and extremely rich in flavour it is just pure indulgence to have. The crust also provides just the crunch it needs, and the cheesecake was just an enjoyment to have.

 
Affogato here comes with the flexibility of choosing your preferred flavour of their homemade ice-cream. The Bailey’s Ice-Cream here is another item I love. On first taste the Bailey’s flavour may seem very light, but when you feel so the flavour starts to disseminate in your mouth in all corners. The espresso here is also one of the more stronger ones that I ever had so far; it was so aromatic that it’s fragrance just lingers after every sip.

For the full review, please visit: http://jiaksimipng.wordpress.com/2013/05/07/habitat-coffee-upper-thomson-road/

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

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Hidden Gem in Hougang Smile Mar 25, 2013   
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Categories : Steaks and Grills | Kids-Friendly

Chef Hat's is a small cafe located within Hougang Green Shopping Mall. The environment is very relaxing and the decor feels very homely.

 
The Thyme-Grilled Chicken Thigh was served with potato wedges and boiled vegetables as sides. The chicken skin was grilled to crisp and the meat was tender and easy to cut. The potato wedges were one of the best I had eaten as they were very crispy and were addictive. The boiled vegetables were nice too and there were crunchy and very fresh. All of them were makes up for a heavnely combination.

 
The Belgian Waffles with for Cookies and Cream Ice Cream were nice as the waffles were fragrant with the eggy and buttery taste. Ice Cream is from New Zealand Natural so may be familiar to some.

Definitely somewhere that is good to go for a gathering or chill-out given its good food and atmosphere!

For the full review and more photos, please visit:

http://jiaksimipng.wordpress.com/2013/03/01/chef-hats-hougang-green-shopping-mall/

and

http://jiaksimipng.wordpress.com/2013/03/23/chef-hats-part-2/
 
Other Ratings:
Taste
 5  |  
Environment
 4  |  
Service
 4  |  
Clean
 4  |  
Price
 3

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Good old nostalgic flavour Smile Dec 07, 2013   
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Categories : Hawker Centre

 
There are two types of toasts available and we took both. The Steamed Bread with Kaya & Butter ($1.00) was delivered warm and fluffy, with a generous amount of kaya and butter spread. It tasted pretty nostalgic, with a very sinful yet pleasant buttery taste to the toast that it is rare to find these days.

 
The(Toasted Bread with Kaya & Butter ($1.00) comes similar except that the bread was being toasted. It was not toasted excessively, and retained the fluff with the added crustiness on the top.

 
Nothing beats a good cup of Nanyang coffee with kaya toast. After having the Kopi ($0.70) from Da Zhong, I am convinced enough to say that it is pretty nostalgic. It is just of the right thickness without being bland nor too rich. The condensed milk added was also enough to sweeten the Kopi without being cloying sweet. It was the same Kopi we grew up knowing in the past.
 
Recommended Dish(es):  Bread with Kaya & Butter,Kopi
 
Spending per head: Approximately $3(Breakfast)

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

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My Awesome brunch! Smile Mar 11, 2014   
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Categories : Fusion | Café

Settling in the iconic building that used to house Chung Hwa Free Clinic, My Awesome Cafe is yet another hipster cafe that makes use of a old shophouse retaining much of the historical elements into its design and decor. Run by a few caucasians that have hotel, fitness and creative industry backgrounds, which seemed to paint an image that was healthy, innovative and high quality for the cafe’s menu. The industrial blood runs deep here, with cemented walls, big metallic fans and bare bulbs.

 
While usual brunch grub like Eggs Benedict is missing from the menu, there are items such as Scrambled Eggs and Croissants. I got myself a Smoked Salmon quiche that came with a garden salad and a choice of coffee which I got a Flat White ($12.00++). Savoury was the word to describe the quiche; smoked salmon just matched the cheesy layer on the top, while the Garden Salad topped with Vinegarette dressing had slightly bitter leaves.

 

 
My dining partners ordered both the Croissants with Scrambled Eggs; one with Ham & Cheese ($8.50++) and one with Smoked Salmon ($8.50++). The croissant was fluffy inside and flaky outside and somehow contained a tinge of sweetness. Creamy and runny scrambled eggs were a great side that complimented the main dish well

 
Flat White here is rather light-bodied, smooth and creamy. Loved the shape and the transparent glass cups that they come in which was aesthetically appealing.

For more photos and the full review, please visit: http://jiaksimipng.wordpress.com/2014/03/11/my-awesome-cafe-%E7%9C%9F%E6%A3%92%E5%A0%82-telok-ayer-street/
 
Recommended Dish(es):  Smoked Salmon Quiche
 
Spending per head: Approximately $15(Lunch)

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

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