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Chubby Botak Koala
This is Chubby Botak Koala living in Hougang/Kovan. I am a Foodies, work in Ang Mo Kio. I like to hang out in Serangoon, Katong, Tampines. Singaporean, Chinese, Multi-Cuisine are my favorite cuisines. I also love Hawker Centre, Restaurant, Café, Bistro and Roasted Meat, Desserts and Cakes, Dim Sum, Something not too spicy.
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Sumptuous Mangalitza Pork Belly Smile Sep 25, 2014   
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Categories : Korean | Restaurant | Korean BBQ

8 Eight

8 Eight

 
Eight Korean BBQ originated from the USA open its first outlet in Singapore at the Central, Clarke Quay. The number Eight '8' represent eight different colour and marinate of the delicious Mangalitza pork belly, which is also known as the 'Kobe Beef' of Pork.
The Dining Area

The Dining Area

 
The first thing that you notice when you enter 8 is the setting. Set in chick industrial setting, it is a refreshing diversion from the traditional Korean BBQ restaurants that has been popping up like mushrooms in Singapore. The meat is cooked on angled grill pan by the well trained service staff.
Part of the Dining Area

Part of the Dining Area

 
The Tilted Grill Pan

The Tilted Grill Pan

 
For Oink Oink lovers like us, this place is a dream come true. A must order here is the whole 8 type of pork belly, 8 colours set ($98) which comes with Kimchi, Bean Sprouts, vegetables and Seafood Bean Paste stew. As we were keener to try the Army Stew, we ask to change and top up the difference of $6.
The 8 Colours Set. (From Left: Red Pepper, Miso, Curry, Herb, Garlic, Ginseng, Original & Wine)

The 8 Colours Set. (From Left: Red Pepper, Miso, Curry, Herb, Garlic, Ginseng, Original & Wine)

 
If you order items like us, the following is on how the order of the food will be. Korean Grill Squid ($18) and 8 Special Steam Egg ($12). The squid is quite huge and grilled with a touch of butter for taste. It is springy and tender, and comes with a soy and mayonnaise dipping sauce. Best eaten while it is hot. A unique cooking method that is different from most of the Korean BBQ, 8 will place their kimchi and bean sprout on the grill and it become a hot side dish. The steam egg is light and fluffy, but at side the stone bowl, the eggs can be a bit dry.
Korean Grill Squid

Korean Grill Squid

 
Special Steam Egg

Special Steam Egg

 
The side dishes are very limited, however it is free flow together with the wrapped vegetables. If you need sliced garlic or other condiments just ask the service staff.
Radish Block to Clean the Grill

Radish Block to Clean the Grill

 
Next will be the beef. You can choose from US Prime Beef or Kagoshima Wagyu. We tried their US Prime Beef Rib Eye ($58). The size is about 300 gram with nice marbling on the beef, seasoned with salt and pepper. Cooked to medium rare, it is tender and just melts in your mouth. Awesome!!
US Prime Beef Rib Eye

US Prime Beef Rib Eye

 
The army stew is decent as its objective is to fill up your tummy. Ingredients are pretty basic, instant noodle, sausage and luncheon meat cooked on seafood soup base with bean paste.
The Army Stew

The Army Stew

 
The Army Stew - Ready To Eat

The Army Stew - Ready To Eat

 
For highlight of the dinner, 8 type of seasoned pork belly: Original, Red wine, ginseng, garlic, herb, curry, miso paste and red pepper paste. The first four has a more lightly flavoured seasoning, while the later 4 has a stronger flavoured seasoning.
Pork Belly on the Grill

Pork Belly on the Grill

 
Since the cooking is done by the service staff, the pork bellies achieve the right texture. It was cut to bite size and has a crisp texture and it just melts in your mouth. So Sinfully Delicious!!!
Pork Belly - Ready to Eat

Pork Belly - Ready to Eat

 
Our preference so far is: wine, original, herbs and miso. We find these flavour complements the pork belly instead of overpowering it.
Ginseng Chicken Soup

Ginseng Chicken Soup

 
We tried their Ginseng chicken soup ($25) and Seafood Pancake ($20) on different occasion, but we find them quite ordinary. The ginseng chicken soup version here has a light cloudy broth and the chicken is not stuffed with rice. The ginseng taste is not very commanding. Meanwhile the pancake taste very plain and a bit too oily.
Seafood Pancake

Seafood Pancake

 
Service is friendly and good. Each service staff was allocated between 2 to 4 tables, as they need to be in charge of the cooking so it is easy to catch their attention. In case if you are worried about the oil and smell get to your bags, you can put them inside your stool. The table are very small, so you hardly any space put your stuff on it. Unfortunately, you will come out for the place smelling like bbq pork belly, so not recommended if for lunch if you have to go back work afterwards.
The Exhaust System - too tall to make any difference

The Exhaust System - too tall to make any difference

 
Overall, we find this pork belly centric restaurant is excellent; it is one of my favourite. The pricing is reasonable and it has become a place to go to satisfy my sinful cravings. So if you are around Central, give this place a try. Gun Bae!!! Cheers!!!

For the complete Chubby Botak Koala experience, click / copy the following link:
http://www.chubbybotakkoala.com/2014/09/eight-korean-bbq.html
 
 
Recommended Dish(es):  Ginseng Chicken Soup,US Prime Beef Rib Eye,Korean Grill Squid,The 8 Colours Set. (From Left: Red Pepper Miso Curry Herb Garlic Ginseng Original & Wine),Special Steam Egg,The Army Stew
 
Other Ratings:
Taste
 4  |  
Environment
 4  |  
Service
 4  |  
Clean
 4  |  
Price
 4

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The First Expansion Smile Sep 18, 2014   
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Categories : Singaporean | Chinese | Coffeeshop | Chicken Rice

Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice @ Joo Chiat

Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice @ Joo Chiat

 
Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice needs no introduction. Rated as one of the best chicken rice in Singapore, its original shop in Maxwell market drew the crowd like no others. During meal time, expect the queue to stretch around to shop to the open air car park. And that's not all, most of the tourist guide, blogs or other food reference, recommend Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice ('Tian Tian) as a must try in Singapore.

In 2013, when Singtel Invited Michelin Stars Chef Gordon Ramsay for Hawker's Challenge. Representing Singapore National dish, Madam Foo, the owner of Tian Tian, won hands down and send Godron back to UK licking his chops. Prior to that, Anthony Bourdain and other celebrity food host have given their seal of approval to this establishment.
The Steam Chicken and  its new friend

The Steam Chicken and its new friend

 
Since Madam Foo has come to a ripe age, the second generation has come in to continue the business. With that the expansion of Tian Tian begun and this time around we visited the shop in Joo Chiat.

The set up is an upgraded version comparing to Maxwell Market Food Centre. It is air-conditioned with simple and minimalistic furniture. Today we have 3 hungry guys for lunch, we ordered 1/2 steam chicken ($14), 1 portion of giblets and heart ($4), Hainanese Pork Chop ($8) and small baby kailan ($6). Oh not forgetting the Rice ($0.80) per plate.
The Chicken Rice

The Chicken Rice

 
The rice is fragrant, flavourful, plump and fluffy. It does not stick to each other. The chicken is plump, silky and succulent. There is skin and meat does not stick to each other and the breast meat us as succulent as the thigh meat. The same can be said about my favourite part of the chicken as well, the bishop. It is springy and full of flavour. Although it is a bit oily, it's just irresistible. The best part, they remove the smelly part from it.
The Steam Chicken and my Chicken Bishop

The Steam Chicken and my Chicken Bishop

 
The giblets and kidney tasted clean, no gamey smell. I like giblets because of its crisp and chewyness, while the kidney has a velvety texture.
Chicken Giblets & Liver

Chicken Giblets & Liver

 
Hainanese Pork Chop is thick yet tender. However, the meat is not as tasty but it is well fried, coated with panko and not too oily. The traditional tomato sauce, provide the sweet and sour flavour to the dish. The vegetables are fresh, crunchy and tasty, stir fry with garlic.
Hainanese Pork Chop

Hainanese Pork Chop

 
Baby Kailan

Baby Kailan

 
Service is average. As we are seated near the entrance, it is very difficult to get their attention. There is at one point, you can't even see them. Although the set up is minimum, at least it is air-conditioned so you won't sweat too much if you had too much of the chilli.

Overall, it is a good place to have Tian Tian Chicken Rice if you don't want to line up in Maxwell Market. However, I must admit their standard is not as equivalent as their main store. The chicken is missing the X-Factor compare to the one I had in Maxwell. Kind of lost in transition. Cheers!!

For the complete Chubby Botak Koala dining experience, click / copy the link below:
http://www.chubbybotakkoala.com/2014/09/tian-tian-joo-chiat.html
 
 
Recommended Dish(es):  The Chicken Rice,The Steam Chicken and my Chicken Bishop,Chicken Giblets & Liver,Hainanese Pork Chop
 
Spending per head: Approximately $17(Lunch)

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

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The Famous Chicken Feet Smile Sep 16, 2014   
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Categories : Coffeeshop | Noodles

Da Jie Famous Wanton Mee

Da Jie Famous Wanton Mee

 
I got to know this place from the recent Facebook Posting from Singapore Makan Guru KF Seetoh. Looking at the yummylicious chicken feet, I just can't say no.
The Menu

The Menu

 
Decided to drop by for brunch on one nice Saturday morning. Here is the ordering process, you approach the stall, place your order, get yourself a number, find a table and wait for the food. I decided to go for Wanton Mee ($4) and Chicken Feet ($2).
My Order - Wanton Mee & Chicken Feet

My Order - Wanton Mee & Chicken Feet

 
The serving of the noodle is quite generous for my order. The noodle is springy, very qq. Wanton is crispy and the char siew is pretty tender. Although I ask for my noodle without chilli, they forgot about it. At the end, I scrape most of it off; those that remain gave a good heat to the noodle.
Wanton Mee

Wanton Mee

 
Check out the Noodle

Check out the Noodle

 
For the soup base, it is very robust from the long boiling process. However, the star attraction of this place is the braised chicken feet. It is flavourful, tasty and absorb the braising liquid and mushrooms flavour nicely. The skin has the right texture, not soggy. Al dente will be the right terms. The mushrooms are quite huge in size. YumYum!
The Wanton & Soup

The Wanton & Soup

 
The Braised Chicken Feet

The Braised Chicken Feet

 
Service is minimum, but the auntie that delivers my food is very friendly. She did give me a curious look when I took out my camera in the first place. Overall, it is a good place for wanton mee. My suggestion is that you order a wanton mee and a serving of chicken feet on the side. When crowded, expect to wait between 20 to 30 minutes. Ciao!

For the complete Chubby Botak Koala experience, click here:
http://www.chubbybotakkoala.com/2014/09/da-jie-famous-wanton-mee.html
 
Recommended Dish(es):  The Wanton & Soup,Wanton Mee,The Braised Chicken Feet
 
Spending per head: Approximately $6(Breakfast)

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

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Buffet by The Royals OK Sep 12, 2014   
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Categories : Multi-Cuisine | Hotel | Seafood | Halal | Buffet | Kids-Friendly

Carousel

Carousel

 
Known as one of the top buffet restaurant in Singapore, Carousel is a place to try for foodies in Singapore. So when LD suggested this place, I agreed in a heartbeat.

Carousel is only a handful of high end International Buffet Restaurant with Halal certification. They served food ranging from Mediterranean, Asian, Japanese fare, a lavish seafood spread, French Rotisserie, and three dazzling dessert stations.

 
As it was a Friday night, the restaurant is basically pack full of people. If you are trying your luck to dine without reservation, well your chances are very low. We went through lots of 'channels' to get our reservations.
Cold Seafood Selections

Cold Seafood Selections

 
We started our degustation buffet from the seafood selection; which offer lobsters, crayfishes, Alaskan crab legs, spanner crabs, mud crabs, oysters, mussels and prawns. All the seafood are chilled and fresh, especially the lobster and prawns. This is my second encounter with spanner crabs, and I can confirm my dislike for it as the meat is rougher compare to mud crabs or Sri Lakan Crabs. The oyster is good, but not fantastic.
Cold Seafood Selections on the plate

Cold Seafood Selections on the plate

 
Sashimi and Sushi section. The variety of sushi and sushi roll is very extensive and creative with more 10 different types, while the sashimi selection is so limited with salmon, swordfish and yellow tail and the cuts for the sashimi is very small, which is abnormal for a 5-star international buffet restaurant.
Part of Sashimi & Sushi Counter

Part of Sashimi & Sushi Counter

 
Sashimi & Sushi

Sashimi & Sushi

 
Moving to the rotisserie and cooked food selection, the roast beef is quite ordinary and the Yorkshire pudding is just flat. The beef ribs is chewy, while the rest of the international cooked food is so uninspiring. If I ever return, I will just skip the cooked food section and go for the Indian food. They are authentic and so much better compare to the rest. The Briyani rice is fluffy while the tandoori meat is tender and well seasoned.
Roast Beef with Yorkshire Pudding

Roast Beef with Yorkshire Pudding

 
Chicken Shawarma & Indian Station

Chicken Shawarma & Indian Station

 
Nasi Briyani

Nasi Briyani

 
For the live station of Teppanyaki and Pasta, I only manage to try the Lobster Risotto from the pasta section. To save time, the risotto are pre-cooked to half done. Upon order, they will re-cook and add the lobster and the rest of the ingredients. Unfortunately, for my serving the risotto is under cook. Way below the al-dente level and lacks of punch.
Lobster Risotto

Lobster Risotto

 
For desserts, they have three type of fondue to indulge you. Chocolate, Strawberry and Green Tea. Although it is nice to the eyes, stick with the chocolate. The taste of the strawberry and green tea are very artificial. While I tried other bite sized of the cakes, nothing really catch my eyes except for the bread & butter pudding and chocolate cake which are delicious with the custard sauce.
Strawberry, Chocolate & Green Tea Fondue

Strawberry, Chocolate & Green Tea Fondue

 
Bread & Butter Pudding

Bread & Butter Pudding

 
Desserts Selection and Fondue

Desserts Selection and Fondue

 
I decided to skip the bread station, salad bar, HK roast station and dim sum station. When our friends told us the HK roast station and dim sum station is very ordinary, I decided not to waste my stomach space.
Bread Station and Cooked Food Station

Bread Station and Cooked Food Station

 
Service on Friday night definitely need to improve. It is very difficult to get the attention of the service staff, either to top up our drinks or clear the dirty plates. The one that horrified me the most is when I ask one of the Chef, where does your roast beef come from, he replied “Fresh from the Market”. OMG, I'm just floored by the answer. I can confirm, guarantee and chop that no restaurant in Singapore will use beef fresh from the market for their roast.

Atmosphere is very good. The decoration is very simple and modern. There are good spaces between tables for you to walk around without accidentally bumping to other diners. For those celebrating your birthday, you will get birthday cupcakes and entertained with the performance of the chefs and service staff.
Birthday Performance by the Chefs and Service Staff

Birthday Performance by the Chefs and Service Staff

 
Overall, I cannot understand what the rave is all about for Carousel. For the price that I am paying, I have to say I expect more. Although the varieties are extensive, the quality and the overall standard of the food and services are really not worth paying for. Hopefully they can improve on their quality and consistency, and who knows, Chubby Botak Koala might drop by again. Cheers!!!

For the complete Chubby Botak Koala experiece, click / copy the link
to your browser: http://www.chubbybotakkoala.com/2014/09/carousel.html

 
Recommended Dish(es):  Nasi Briyani,Bread & Butter Pudding,Strawberry Chocolate & Green Tea Fondue,Cold Seafood Selections,Sashimi & Sushi
 
Other Ratings:
Taste
 3  |  
Environment
 4  |  
Service
 2  |  
Clean
 3  |  
Price
 3

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Not Three but Five Little Piggies Smile Sep 10, 2014   
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Categories : American | Fusion | Restaurant | Steaks and Grills

Wolf

Wolf

 
To name a restaurant WOLF is just a catchy genius. Opened by The Privé group, WOLF is a pork centric restaurant and focus on the nose to tail dining experience.

While you might be familiar with Kurobuta and Iberico pork, you will soon be intimate with Mangalica, Nagano and Duroc-Landrace type of porks as well. These are the Five Little Piggies that made up the Pork Chop selections for WOLF. For those non Moo Moo eater, WOLF is a definitely a new dining destination for you.
Dining Area

Dining Area

 
The restaurant is decorated to pay homage to the adult version of Three Little Pigs and the Big Bad Wolf. There is an engraved picture of the Wolf, along with the three little pigs are well-decorated on the walls the restaurants. For night dining, the restaurant is dimly lit and the setting is very comfortable. Looking for a place for romantic dinner, this is it. The music playing on the background is funky R&B genre. Great environment, but a real challenge for a blogger like me to take natural shot in this environment.
Three Adult Pigs

Three Adult Pigs

 
While waiting for QC to arrive, we decided to place the order for starters to share. Pan Roasted Duck Liver ($32), Grilled Ox Tongue ($38) and one of our daring dish to try Grilled Beef Hearts ($22). Duck Liver is supposed to be the cheaper 'cousin' compare to goose liver. However, cooked it properly and combined it with port wine poached figs and aged balsamic vinegar, you can't tell the difference. It tasted velvety and melts in your mouth. Yum Yum.
Pan Roasted Duck Liver

Pan Roasted Duck Liver

 
The grill ox tongue is just tender and lightly seasoned. There is no fat in the tongue and it works well with the lentils. The most challenging dish is the Grilled Beef Hearts. The texture is springy texture and gamey as well. Yes, gamey is a nice word for strong foul smell, We do not recommend this dish for the weak stomach and sensitive palates. We definitely won't order it next time as well. The greens, walnuts, grapes and dressing actually work well as warm salad without the beef heart.
Grilled Ox Tongue

Grilled Ox Tongue

 
Grilled Beef Hearts

Grilled Beef Hearts

 
Our Mains basically Pork Centric, we had Nagano Pork Chop ($40), Mangalica Pork Chop ($42) and Grilled Duroc Pork Collar ($30). As recommended by our service staff, we have ordered our pork chop medium rare because it is direct comparison on how we take our steak. This is the way to taste the tenderness and juicyness of the pork.

Nagano Pork Chop originated from Japan but breed in Canada. The texture of the meat are superior marbling, pinker meat, and the taste comparable to aged wagyu beef.
Nagano Pork Chop

Nagano Pork Chop

 
Cooked Medium Rare, like beef steak. Check out the pink colour in the centre

Cooked Medium Rare, like beef steak. Check out the pink colour in the centre

 
Mangalica Pork has the highest percentage of fats among the pork, resulting the meat that just melts in your mouth. It is flavourful, tender and succulent. For the Duroc Pork Collar, the meat is so tender comparable to any of the pork chops. Pork collar has a lower fat content and the combination with chimichurri tomatoes is just amazing. All the meats are well seasoned, the sauces seems to be well suited for decoration only. Amazingly delicious.
Mangalica Pork Chop

Mangalica Pork Chop

 
Duroc Pork Collar

Duroc Pork Collar

 
For desserts, we decided to order Eton Mess ($13) and Chocolate Stout Cake ($14). The later has a dense texture with a rich chocolate flavour. The berry reduction helps to balance richness, but it is just too heavy to end the night. Eton Mess on the other hand is just perfect. Everything are thrown in together to create different texture with tantalising taste. The balsamic syrup works well to bind and balance all the ingredients for perfect ending to erase the overwhelming sensation from the pork.
Chocolate Stout Cake

Chocolate Stout Cake

 
Eton Mess

Eton Mess

 
Service is impeccable. They know everything about the menu and patiently explain to us about the different taste of the pork chop. We were actually quite surprise that with the quality of the food, no other customer was there. Almost looks like we booked the whole restaurant.

If you ever dine in Privé group outlets, they always give something for the diners to bring back with them. For Wolf, you get pork crackling to bring home. Unfortunately it was just too tempting, it did not even pass the front door before it goes Poof!!
Pork Crackling

Pork Crackling

 
Overall, I did not know that Pork Chop can be so good. After this experience, I will have think twice on what to order next time I choose between Pork Chop and Steak. For a truly wonderful dining experience, Wolf got two thumbs up by Chubby Botak Koala. Cheers!!

For the complete Chubby Botak Koala dining experiece, click here:
http://www.chubbybotakkoala.com/2014/09/Wolf.html

 
Recommended Dish(es):  Duroc Pork Collar,Mangalica Pork Chop,Nagano Pork Chop,Chocolate Stout Cake,Eton Mess,Pan Roasted Duck Liver,Grilled Ox Tongue,Pork Crackling
 
Spending per head: Approximately $97(Dinner)

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

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