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madamechewy
This is madamechewy .
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madamechewy  Level 4
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Categories : Fujian/Heng Hwa | Chinese | Restaurant | Seafood

For pictures and full review, pls visit:
http://madamechewy.com/2014/05/24/putien-vivocity/
Expanding from a single coffee-shop styled eatery to 9 restaurants , Putien is certainly doing very well. The chain specialises in Heng hwa cuisine, a sub-category of Chinese cuisine with roots linked back to a coastal town located in the Fujian province of China. It’s hard to go wrong where the food philosophy is to serve uncomplicated, quality dishes at reasonable prices. The healthy-tasting, home-cooked fare satisfied our stomachs and touched our hearts.
Generally good vibes at the Vivocity branch-brightly lit, modern, classy decor and warm service.
My passion fruit drink ($4.90) was way too sweet while hubby’s Barley and Winter Melon($3.50) was satisfactory.
On every table, you’ll find a pot of Putien’s homemade chilli. Its prepared daily, hence the freshness is unmistakeable.
We kicked start the dinner with a soup to warm our tummies. Braised Bean Curd with Chinese Cabbage (small $17.50, med $25.90) is a light broth flavoured with seasonal calms, dried shrimps and dried scallops, homemade bean curd and Chinese cabbage. A bowl of rice paired with this lovely, nutritious soup can be a meal in itself.
A snack dating back to the 1920s, Putien Jian Bao ($7.20 for 4 pieces) is a popular order. Pan fried on both sides to a glistening brown, it’s packed with minced pork, radish and mushrooms. Dip them in the specially concocted sauce for maximum flavour.
Deep fried duck with yam (small $16.50, large $31.80). Both fil and I love yam, plus I am a big fan of duck. Duck meat is enveloped with smooth yam paste, followed by a light crispy crust which was not too oily or thick. Because the duck meat was bland, we found ourselves splashing quite a bit of the accompanying sauce to lift the flavour.
Putien Sweet and Sour Pork with Lychees (small $12.50, med $18.50) intrigued me. Lychees? We didn’t regret this order and will eat this again and again. Tender pork wrapped with deep fried batter, coated evenly with familiar sweet and sour sauce lightened by lychees.
I can’t say no to anything crispy, so Deep Fried Squirrel Fish ($38) was another highlight. Live sea bass is deboned, leaving its fillet still attached to its tail. Fried perfectly, it crispy on the outside while remaining soft and flaky on the inside. The dish is enhanced with tangy sweet gravy and garnished with chopped vegetables.
Putien style oyster omelette (small $16.90, med $23.90) was decent, with heaps of oysters.
The last dish to grace our table was Putien Mee Sua (small $8.90, med $17.80, large $26.80) with a milky broth cooked from pork ribs and bones. The Longevity noodles are handmade using traditional methods, which ensures that they don’t turn soggy when cooked.
I was keen to try the Purple Sweet Potato with Pumpkin Cream dessert but was almost at the brink of bursting. It’ll have to wait till next time.
 
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Date of Visit: Feb 06, 2014 

Spending per head: Approximately $40(Dinner)

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Taste
 4  |  
Environment
 4  |  
Service
 3  |  
Clean
 4  |  
Price
 3

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Categories : Teochew | Seafood | Kids-Friendly

For pictures and full review, pls visit:
http://madamechewy.com/2014/05/17/chui-huay-lim/
Teochew cuisine sets itself apart from most other Chinese cuisines by being light-handed on flavourings, salt and oil. Commonly regarded as being very healthy, cooking methods often involve poaching, steaming and braising, depending much on the freshness and quality of ingredients for taste and flavour. FIL is a Teochew and Chui Huay Lim is currently our go-to-place for authentic and classic Teochew dishes.
Located at the Chui Huay Lim clubhouse, the 4000 square foot restaurant prepares delicate and heart-warming dishes. You do not need to be a club member to dine here. Enjoy discounts if you are a Jumbo member as Chui Huay Lim is part of the Jumbo Group. The restaurant itself is tastefully decorated with oriental influences; nice place to have family celebrations/gatherings/dinners. Reservations recommended as its packed most of the time.
To be honest, the food is good, but not mind-blowing. Plus prices are on the steep side. Service is similar with most other popular Chinese restaurants, efficient but rushed and soulless.
Pretty strong Gongfu Tea to cleanse the palate. This was our first visit, we were unsure of what to order, hence we picked a set meal the staff recommended ($368++ for 4 pax). I will be doing another post on our ala carte dinner visit soon which features the classic steamed pomfret.
Duo of chilled Lobster and Cold Crab Platter. Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication. Freshness allowed the sweet succulent meat of the crustaceans to shine. And my oh my, look at the crab roe! Pair it with Teochew chilli, garlic and vinegar dipping sauce for the extra oomph!
I don’t eat shark’s fin, but for those who are keen, here are the pictures of the Double-boiled Superior Shark’s Fin Soup which is part of the set meal.
A winning combo of braised whole abalone and fish maw with oyster sauce. The 10 head abalone were huge, hence it was quite difficult to pick a piece up with chopsticks. Despite using a spoon at the same time, I found it arduous manoeuvring it so that I could take a bite (imagine if it dropped and bounced onto the floor, crys). A fork and knife would have come into handy to cut it into small pieces so that diners can savour the delicacy slowly. Same goes for the large silky and chewy mushrooms lying underneath.
Tender and flavorsome Teochew Braised Duck, slices of warm comfort lying atop silky tofu. We devoured it in 2 blinks. Blink blink…gone!
TeoChew Seafood Fried Mee Sua had a generous portion of seafood (you can tell they didn’t skimp at all) and is not too oily. Love the “wok hei” flavor of this dish.
Despite my exploding tummy, I couldn’t resist the Sweet Yam Paste with Hashima dessert.
 
 
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Date of Visit: Jan 25, 2014 

Celebration:  生日 

Spending per head: Approximately $107(Lunch)

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

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Categories : Italian | Restaurant | Pasta | Steaks and Grills

For pictures and full review, pls visit:
http://madamechewy.com/2014/05/08/mad-for-garlic/
A couple of months back, Hubby and I checked out Mad for Garlic at Clarke Quay. Hubby is a fan of garlic and when I noticed the Groupon deal, I bought it in a snap ($17.50 for $40 worth of food).
Originating from Korea, Mad for Garlic is a garlic-themed restaurant dishing out Italian fare. The Clarke Quay branch also boasts a full service bar and an extensive selection of wines. Apart from the restaurant, you can choose to dine alfresco too.
I have an unabashed love affair for mussels, especially when they are doused in tomato-based sauce. My eye zoomed at the Sautéed Fresh Mussels in chunky tomato sauce and coarsely chopped garlic ($32.40). Alternatively, you can have it cooked in garlic cream sauce.
It was yummy and certainly very fresh, but could have been better if some chilli was included to add another dimension to the flavour. I ordered white bread ($3) to mop up every single drop of the delicious garlic tomato sauce. Dracula will not stand a chance with my breath, haha!
Hubby’s Clam and Seafood Pasta ($23.50) with white wine sauce. It comes with prawns but because Hubby has prawn allergy, we requested for clams and squid instead. While the springy pasta was commendable, the broth was mediocre- garlic and white wine flavours were not prominent enough.
Would have love to try their signature Garlic Berry and Ice cream, but alas we ran out of time. What a pity.
 
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Date of Visit: Feb 12, 2014 

Spending per head: Approximately $37(Lunch)

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

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Thumbs up for Brunch! Smile May 07, 2014   
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Categories : American | Café

For pictures and full review, pls visit:
http://madamechewy.com/2014/05/07/five-dime/
G had cravings for brunch so we decided upon Five & Dime, located on a quiet stretch along River Valley Road. With a white minimalist exterior, this cafe stands out from the colourful buildings beside it. Step inside and soak in the New York vibes.
Five & Dime pride themselves for serving unpretentious, quality food. Prices are reasonable and I can see myself revisiting if Hubby’s is free. With the nearest MRT (Somerset) 10-15 mins walk away, it’s certainly not the most accessible cafe around. More convenient to drive here; free parking is available behind. There is a bus stop a few steps away but unfortunately for me, none of the buses stop near where I live.
Ah, I notice Hot Chocolate ($6, additional $1 for iced) on the menu. I have a thing for hot chocolate and I am glad to report that this is decent. For those worried about your calorie count, skimmed milk is available on request. Brownie point for the nostalgic gem biscuits instead of the typical cookie.
The simplicity of an egg poached to perfection, on warm brioche, is the ultimate comfort food. Here, we have Eggs Benny ($16) served with bacon, mesclun greens, breakfast potatoes and fruit salad.
Egg Mayo and Bacon Panini ($12) was equally good. The seasoning is spot on and the crispy bacon added just the right amount of saltiness to the egg mayo. You can’t see much on the bacon from the front view so I took another picture of the back to show the portion of bacon in the sandwich, which was just right. I didn’t feel guilty after devouring this so I ordered dessert.
I was quite miffed with the Truff’s Earl Grey Chocolate Tart ($9). For one, I expected more for something close to $10. While the chocolate rich and decadant, the earl grey flavour was too subtle and didn’t quite get off the ground. Also, a scoop of vanilla ice cream or passion fruit sorbet could have come in handy to tone down the cloying richness of the chocolate.
Another brownie point for the friendly service; all smiles and efficient. The staff who took our picture was patient; she suggested taking from this angle when the previous pictures didn’t turn out nicely.
 
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Date of Visit: Apr 02, 2014 

Spending per head: Approximately $32(Lunch)

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

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Categories : Italian | Middle Eastern/Mediterranean | Pasta

For pictures and full review, pls visit:
http://madamechewy.com/2014/05/05/platypus-kitchen/
Fresh pasta, premium ingredients, wallet-friendly prices, spacious seating, convenient location. You really can’t ask for anything more, can you? Fresh handmade pasta prepared every morning is the pride of Platypus Kitchen and the folks here believe in gourmet dining at everyday prices.
Here, one can find the largest selection of pasta in Asia. Those who need help in deciding on that to order will find this algorithm useful.
I visited 3 times, twice for set lunch and once for dinner. Set lunch is very value for money; pasta and risotto sets from $12.90 includes a choice of soup or side salad, a cold beverage and pasta. For pastas with premium ingredients eg crabs, prawns, scallops and truffle, an add-on of $0.90-$1.90 is required. Service was attentive and efficient. Food-wise, hits and misses. I don’t see myself coming here regularly in the near future for the pasta but the mains, sides and risottos look tempting.
Healthy-tasting Elderflower Iced Tea and velvety Mushroom Soup.
Pumpkin soup was smooth and flavoursome, with just the right amount of cream. Love the sour crunch from the seeds in this Iced Passion Fruit Tea.
Lemon Prawn Parppadelle (add $0.90). Doesn’t look like a lot on the plate, but you’ll be surprised how filling it is. The combination of flavours and texture is marvellous. Pleasantly tart zesty lemon pomodoro sauce, sweet tomatoes, grilled prawns, chewy pasta and thinly sliced garlic which added another flavour dimension and delightful crunch.
Spicy Diablo Crab and Prawn (add $1.90) looks impressive. But looks can be deceiving. While I must commend on the generous portion of succulent crab claw meat and fresh prawns, the spicy egg sauce in addition to the chilli strands was overwhelming. I was startled by the spiciness and immediately regretted mixing in the chilli strands into the pasta.
Mushroom Aglio Olio ($13.50) was a disaster. Imagine my dismay when a plate of soggy pasta arrived in front of me. I even questioned the waiter if the pasta was meant to be sitting in a puddle of oily water. Ah boy gave a sheepish smile and nodded. Garlic flavour was severely lacking too.
Sea salt caramel ($6.90) was passable, although I could not detect much saltiness. Apart from being moist, the cake itself was mediocre. The unique part was the popping candy- quite fun to have the crystals sizzling in the mouth. The chopped peanuts married well with the chocolate sauce.
 
 
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Date of Visit: Mar 05, 2014 

Spending per head: Approximately $17(Lunch)

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

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