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jiaksimipng
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Interesting Australian concept! Smile Jun 06, 2014   
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Categories : Café | Burgers and Sandwiches

 
The area behind Buona Vista seems to be rather happening for the cafe scene lately, especially with many fanciful concepts opening within walking distance from each other that targets the office workers in the area. Charlyn’s Milk Bar is a two-month old bistro operated by an Australian that shares its space with Palate Sensations Cooking School. The “milk bar” is a term more on the shop itself; a corner space shop that sells food in Australia. The menu items includes main courses, sandwiches, cakes and other bakes as well.

 

 
I was in luck that day when I visited as they were serving a special of Chicken Corden Bleu ($8.00), a favourite dish of mine and we had the last one before they ran out. It came with a choice of sides; potatoes or vegetables which they ran out of the latter as well. The breaded chicken was crispy but a tad dry for the meat, though not really bothersome in any way. They could have been a bit more generous with the amount of cheese however, as only one half that we cut had cheese flowing while the other seemed completely devoid of it. We did appreciate that they had used high quality ham for this dish though. The side of grilled potatoes were wonderful; seasoned with butter and rosemary, it was flavourful, soft but crisp on the exterior.

 
Since it was a milk bar, we decided to try their bakes. Unfortunately, both the recommended Lamington and Tiramisus were not available for the day and we went for the Cinnamon Roll ($3.00). Sticky buns coated with gooey cinnamon on the inside and condensed milk on the outside, the spiced sweetness was not too overwhelming and in fact just nice without that burning sensation to the throat.

 
I asked the cashier if he had any idea on the coffee blend used here, which he had no clue of but assured me that the boss was particular with the beans she use. The Americano ($3.00) was splendid, as it carried a full body that was rather acidic; a signature of Americano. A butter cookie comes at the side, though it was not really much to mention.

 
For more photos and the full review, please visit: http://jiaksimipng.wordpress.com/2014/06/03/charlyns-milk-bar-biopolis-chromos/
 
Recommended Dish(es):  Cinnamon Roll
 
Table Wait Time: 20 minute(s)


Spending per head: Approximately $14

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

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Categories : English | Café

 

 

 
While Biopolis sees the addition of more eateries as the place became more developed of the late, Envy Coffee opens up in the upcoming one-north development at Fusionopolis, which is just not too far off from Buona Vista. Unlike cafes of the late, Envy Coffee somehow feels less hipster as it adopts a colourful theme without being too bright or outstanding with the help of wooden accents. The limited menu here features Lasagne, Pasta and Sandwiches, while serving cakes from Bukit Merah bakery, The Bakery Chef.

 
Their specialty, the Smoked Duck Miso Spaghetti was sold out by the time we visited them, so we went with the Roast Beef Sandwich ($8.30) instead. It was fairly decent; multi-grain bread with vegetables, roast beef and what seems like wasabi mayo in between, that gave a tinge of numbness which made a good contrast in terms of taste. It could be improved though; the meat was slightly gamey though should be acceptable to anyone who can take beef, and that it seem to have a bit of fatty meat that my dining partner was not too found of. The Potato Chips seemed to come out of the bag, but the salad was fresh and refreshing.

 
The coffee here was decent; the Flat White ($5.50) had a light chocolatey and nutty tone although it bubbled up pretty quickly. Quite like the latte art here which is different from the usual that cafes serve these days.

 
For more photos and the full review, please visit http://jiaksimipng.wordpress.com/2014/06/05/envy-coffee-fusionopolis-nexus/

 
Table Wait Time: 10 minute(s)


Spending per head: Approximately $15(Lunch)

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

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Sweet treats, satisfying mains! Smile Jun 06, 2014   
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Categories : Bakery | Desserts and Cakes

 
Relatively new to the neighbourhood, Ply Baked Goods hides behind the main Upper Thomson stretch of shophouses, which is a pretty getaway from the crowd being situated within a stretch of automobile workshops. 

 
The main items here are their cakes and tarts, but we were glad to see them serve Quizza (Pizza-styled quiches), Baked Spaghetti and some sides because we missed our lunch. Drinks include tea from 1872 Clipper Tea as well as coffee from Illy.

 
The Ambra ($6.50) is essentially illycrema served with hot chocolate. illycrema is Illy Coffee's latest product; espresso with micro crystals of ice that somewhat resembles Slurpee.  The thick hot chocolate was not too intensively sweet, and the illycrema injects that coffee aroma that makes it similar to Mocha, though the ice slush texture is the novelty of this drink. I could only wish for more!

 
Going on to their bakes, one of my dining partners decided to go for a Lemon Meringue Tart ($5.50). It comes with a layer of chocolate hidden in between the lemon curd and the tart base; all of which a nice tinge of sweetness that helps mediate the tart flavour of the lemon curd with a fluffy and torched meringue layer.

 
My choice was the Earl Grey Tiramisu ($6.50), given my obsession with all things Earl Grey. Tiramisu purists might be disappointed; there ain’t any ladyfinger biscuits nor alcohol, but the white chocolate biscuit pops were an interesting sensation in the mouth, while the vanilla cake went very well with the aromatic Earl Grey flavoured cream. An item truly deserving to its signature status.

 
Hazelnut Dacquoise ($6.50) was a bit of a disappointment though; the thick chocolate layer in between had an overwhelming cocoa sweetness which matched quite fine with the digestive cookie layers but it was just missing on the main point itself; the hazelnut, which was rather non-existent here.

 
Incorporating local flavours into a mousse cake, the Royal Chempedak ($6.50) is a unique flavour we thought we could not miss here. We expected this to be a rather heavy tasting cake as Chempedak is known for its intense sweetness. It blew us away with its lightness eventually; the sweetness was really light with the mousse and the flavour was rather refreshing as the light fruity sweetness was evident within the mousse, removing some of its creaminess. The chunks of Chempedak were also rather light-flavoured, which made it really soothing instead of being sharply sweet.

 
Last to arrive at the table was Spaghetti & Sausage Baked Pasta ($10.00), which we had been told beforehand that it would take 40 minutes to prepare. The reason behind it is because each bowl is being prepared on the spot to preserve its freshness; and it indeed did not disappoint. Portion size was generous; a hungry dining partner who did not ate anything since dinner the previous day had some trouble finishing and we were lucky enough to have more than just a pinch of it. The pasta was cooked al dente, despite having a layer of melted cheese with equally generous amounts of sausage hidden underneath it possibly due to the fact that the tomato-based sauce was tossed dry before being baked to ensure that the pasta did not get soaked in too much sauce. Sweet yet tangy, the sauce makes the pasta addictive to eat despite its huge portions, and while it only had two main ingredients, it was delightful to have without being anywhere tiring even after half a bowl. If you do have the time to sit around and need a main to go along, do give this a try!

For more photos and the full review, please visit: http://jiaksimipng.wordpress.com/2014/06/04/ply-baked-goods-soo-chow-walk/

 
 
Recommended Dish(es):  Lemon Meringue Tart,Royal Chempedek,Earl Grey Tiramisu,Ambra,Spaghetti & Sausage Baked Pasta
 
Table Wait Time: 40 minute(s)


Spending per head: Approximately $16(Tea)

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

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Roesti in the neighbourhood! Smile Jun 02, 2014   
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Categories : Coffeeshop | Steaks and Grills

Ivan’s Carbina, a typical-looking western stall located in a food court within a multi-storey carpark that sells unconventional western fare.

 
I was here specially for the Rosti, but also wanted to try their signature chicken chop rather badly; the best option to take was the Carbina’s Signature Chicken Chop with Roesti ($7.80) which brings you the best of both worlds. There are also other Roesti that comes with sausages and fried egg, as well as a plain one if you prefer it simple. A rare find in a neighbourhood western stall, it is also one of the largest Rosti I have ever seen. Well-seasoned with salt and was crispy on the exterior. The sour cream was also rather light and fresh; no choking sourness but a refreshing addition to lighten up the taste of the dish. Their signature chicken chop comes smothered in their mushroom sauce, and comes with an extra saucer of it just in case you can’t get enough of it. The chicken is well-grilled, tender and juicy, but a slight tough if left for a while so have it while its hot. Mushroom sauce was thick and earthy, but the old lukewarm temperature at which it is served was something that did not come well with my tastebuds.

 
For more photos and the full review, please visit: http://jiaksimipng.wordpress.com/2014/05/30/ivans-carbina-blk-354a-woodlands-ave-5/

 
Recommended Dish(es):  Carbina’s Signature Chicken Chop with Roesti
 
Table Wait Time: 7 minute(s)


Spending per head: Approximately $8(Dinner)

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

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Authentic, but can be better OK May 29, 2014   
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Categories : Café | Desserts and Cakes

Opened to much hype, Spanish Doughnuts was almost at its maximum capacity when we visited it on a weekend. For those who had not heard of Spanish Doughnuts before, it is an international brand that originated from Austrailia specialising in Churros. Here, the Churros come in two forms; the Original hot ones or the Premium ones which have fillings in them. For the health-conscious, they would be glad to know that Spanish Doughnut uses Canola Oil to fry their Churros. Other items include Spanish Chorizos; a hotdog bun as well as coffee, tea and even sodas.

 
We decided to go for an Original to test out how theirs would taste like. The Original Hot Churros ($6.90 for 3 pieces) here are churned out via their machine and fried upon order. Unlike American-style Churros, Spanish variations do not come with Cinnamon Sugar. The quality of the Churros here are a bit disappointing; crispy but lacking any taste from the batter, no chewy insides and with the Churro absorbing the oil it was fried in. The chocolate dip was a good balance of bittersweet, but it did leave an oily aftertaste at the end.

 
Creme Brulee is my favourite dessert, so the Creme Brulee Churro ($4.30) was my choice for the Premium Churro. It was however soft, though filled with a subtly sweet custard centre. I loved the bits of crystalized sugar stuffed around the edges of the Churro; replicating the cracking sugar layer of the original Creme Brulee.

 
For more photos and the full review, please visit: http://jiaksimipng.wordpress.com/2014/05/28/spanish-doughnuts-orchard-central/
 
Recommended Dish(es):  Creme Brulee Churro
 
Table Wait Time: 10 minute(s)


Spending per head: Approximately $6(Tea)

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

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