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spherepiece
This is spherepiece living in Jurong West. I am a UndergraduateI like to hang out in Arab Street, Chinatown, City Hall. Vietnamese, Singaporean, Malaysian, Hong Kong/ Cantonese are my favorite cuisines. I also love Restaurant, Café, Rare gems and Sushi/Sashimi, Zi Char, Ramen, Pannacotta, Vietnamese Beef Pho.
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Categories : Italian | Middle Eastern/Mediterranean | European | Seafood

 
'

Soak up the view of the spectacular Marina skyline while tucking into a delicious 3-course Italian meal. Spanning across the 43rd floor at Raffles Place prime estate area, Zafferano is a secret buzz that not just anyone knows about. By Friday, you would be lucky to secure a table in this beautiful restaurant for the weekend! Sunset dining are Zafferano's name for the game, available every weekday from 5.30 - 7.30pm. Punctuality is a must - the sun ain't gonna wait for just anyone.

 

 
Enviable views at the forty-third floor.

 

 
Pick the cocktails, wines, or any beverage of your choice from Zafferano's extensive bar. With a couple of friends, you can sip on it at their gorgeous outdoor terrace with cascading foliage. It is the perfect city getaway. Celebrate Italian Republic Day with June’s cocktail specials - Zafferano's bar team has concocted two specials to tickle your tastebuds. Choose between a refreshing Bellini or a mildly spicy Gingertini.

 
trota – rapanelli – melograno – uova di quaglia – caviale

 
aragostella – arancia – aneto

Choose between two premium seafood starters - the marinated trout or baby lobster bisque. The Norwegian trout cubes of delightfully succulent and fresh quality, alongside red radish, pomegranate, quail eggs, caviar, grilled asparagus. The lobster bisque was savoury, wonderfully thick and generous with lobster meat, with a citrus touch of orange. Dip it with the bread to offset some of the saltiness to enjoy the bisque at its best.

 
cavatelli – frutti di mare

 
manzo – sedano rapa – carciofi

A tough call to make between the homemade ‘cavatelli’, fresh seafood in white wine sauce and tomatoes - pasta made in-house, with perfect al-dente and qq texture that is impossible not to love it! The beef ‘tagliata’ with celery root, sautéed artichokes, and drizzled over with veal jus, on the other hand, is a juicy platter of grilled and carved beef that won over the entire table. I'd say, take both.

 
caramello – frutto della passione – lampone

 
gelati – sorbetti

Dessert is undoubtedly the one that everyone looks forward to, and Zafferano does not disappoint at all! With a lovely caramel and chocolate dome with an incredibly creamy texture, passionfruit jelly and raspberry coulis is not only a visual delight but also appeals to the tastebuds. If you prefer a less heavy dessert, the freshly-made ice-cream and gelato will certainly be your sweet ending to this wonderful dinner.

 
As night falls, the entire restaurant dims into a romantic setting with mahogany hues, with little twinkling lights from the buildings far below you.

Sunset dinners only available on weekdays, 1730 - 1930.

Price: $55++ per person

Reservations are necessary. Book to avoid disappointment.

This post was first posted on the blog: www.amiehu.com

 
 
Table Wait Time: 5 minute(s)


Date of Visit: Apr 02, 2016 

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 5  |  
Environment
 4  |  
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 4  |  
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 4  |  
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 5

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Singapore: Timbre+ OK May 13, 2016   
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Categories : Singaporean Chinese | Food Court | Chinese Noodles | Paella

 
What's all the rage in April? Timbre+. Some people call it the hipster hawker centre - is this where our future is headed - others, the 'new one-north place with containers and stationary food trucks'. You should have seen this plastered all over your social media newsfeed by now, but I'm visiting it only when the hype has died down a bit more. Lucky, because otherwise, it would have probably even a notch more stuffy and crazily warm. The first impression was really: sweat is pouring down me like it just rained. I don't normally sweat a lot and this is really insane humidity. Despite the huge fans installed everywhere, it was still really warm. But after a while, it was slightly better. Well, we are after all in Singapore.

 
I like the concept of it, it's generally really new-age, funky... there's character in it, and I like how its entry into the food scene makes it more vibrant. There are many stalls in Timbre+, you're bound to find something you like. Not everything is on the premium end like Dancing Crab, there are many usual type of hawker stalls selling your ban mian, chicken rice, fishball noodles and nasi padang too. I don't think it's my last time here, I'll definitely be back to check out how it looks like when there's music bands playing in here. But here goes my first time in Timbre+:

 

 
From the corner, there's Portico Platos where we got a plate of chicken paella for 6 bucks (not including additional 1 dollar for the tray - their idea of making people return trays). Plating and color presentation wise, pretty fantastic but its taste falters, which was quite disappointing. We were really late to be part of the lunch crowd at 2pm, but the dry and cold rice and chicken could hardly pass the mark. Granted the chicken was tender and generally flavourful, we both agreed it was average.

 
The fruit juice stall must be really popular in this oven, I got a green apple and yakult drink for $2.50. They have thirst-quenchers going at $1.50-2.50, with plenty of fruit juice combinations.

 

 
We also got the salted egg fries from Kushi at $8.50 which was pretty expensive in hindsight for what it is, essentially just fries with a salted egg sauce dip. Then again, we could sit there for ages and have finger food while chatting which is a major plus for us.

I obviously haven't tried a lot of the food at Timbre+ yet. Based on the choices I made, it has yet to impress me. It is a cool concept for sure, very different and interesting to be in, but the food really has to make up for the stuffiness in order to keep people coming. I would go back and try Fishball Story and a couple of other stalls for a second chance though, since I haven't had the full experience of Timbre+ yet.

For the full review: www.amiehu.com

 
 
Table Wait Time: 5 minute(s)


Date of Visit: May 11, 2016 

Other Ratings:
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 3  |  
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 3  |  
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 3  |  
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 4  |  
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 3

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Categories : Café

 
Dapper Coffee with Sugar for you? Nope not the condiment, but the app!

I probably would never have found Dapper without Sugar because it is set in the downtown hipster wonderland that I've just discovered (loving this better than Duxton now), the Amoy Street/ Ann Siang Hill/ Boon Tat Street area. It's also home to an impressive row of cafes, bars and restaurants like FYR, My Awesome Cafe, and more. But today, I'll be introducing to you Dapper, a true hidden find on the second floor. Most people might pass by it without batting an eyelid despite the signs outside - it's that elusive.

 
Dapper Coffee collaborated with Sugar to create a series of Premium deals - one of which is the lunch set which is a pesto vegetarian pasta with iced tea. The idea of trying out somewhere new and a hipster café that I haven't heard of made me tap into this.

Just realized I got to earn Usage Rewards too for opening the app! Cool beans.

Upon entering, the lady at front of house welcomed me and cheerfully told me "free seating". I shuffled into a seat near the window because sunlight is enough reason. They have a pretty cool menu, even with a 'secret menu' page - heh guess it isn't thaat secretive if it's already on the menu right. I was there for a purpose and so I used my Sugar premium voucher ($14) when ordering.

 
They seemed experienced enough and transaction went on smoothly. Within 5 minutes, my iced fruit fusion tea came and it is so delicately pretty, I was sold instantly. A deep shade of fuschia and floral fragments dusted atop? Yes this is the sort of thing I love! The iced tea is rather light, very refreshing but I do wished it tasted stronger. A case of looks prettier than it tastes but I guess I still like it considering its presentation.

 
Then came the vegetarian nori cashew pesto pasta with a runny egg on top. The pasta is al dente, though done with extremely generous sprinkles of black pepper and herbs. They definitely can go easy on the black pepper. The egg helped to ease the black pepper, and overall it was quite delicious.

 
All in all, Dapper Coffee is quite a cool place to hang out - office-goers huddle in groups for engaging conversations over lunch and girlfriends having a laugh.. It felt like you can truly let your hair down at this cafe which disconnect with the rest of the world.

For more reviews and fun reads: www.amiehu.com
 
Table Wait Time: 5 minute(s)


Date of Visit: May 09, 2016 

Other Ratings:
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 3  |  
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 5  |  
Service
 5  |  
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 5  |  
Price
 4

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Categories : Cantonese/Hong Kong | Dim Sum | Seafood

 
Mother's Day falls on 8 May this year, and what are your plans for this special day to celebrate the most important women in your life? There is a dim sum restaurant in Singapore that I always go to (at least five times that I can remember), and this place always live up to my expectations every single time. It is located in Chinatown and Changi. Its name is super easy to remember: it is Yum Cha Restaurant 飲茶酒樓. This Mother's Day, the chefs at this wonderful restaurant are launching three new creations that will only be available from 1 to 14 May. Find out what these are - and more on Yum Cha's best staples:

 
I cannot be happier to be back at my most trusted dim sum restaurant for a tasting.

For a regular dim sum meal, I would simply order the 'safe classics' (har gow, siew mai, and assorted dumplings).This time I will get to try the Mother's Day menu and some of their bests. Their new menu draws inspiration from traditional and nostalgic tastes of Chinese dishes that your mums and grandmums would remember.

 
Braised Pork with preserved vegetables bun 梅菜扣肉包 (SGD$2/ pc)

This humble looking bun packs a delicious punch in its fluffy-soft sweet white bun exterior, juicy and quality tender pork belly with a secret sauce made in-house. The sauce's recipe is kept a mystery, but it definitely got us talking on how well it went with the braised pork! This used to be a convenient and yummy snack to be eaten when our ancestors were fleeing the war in China before settling down in different parts of Asia.

 
Pan-fried Salted Fish Bun 香煎咸鱼包 (SGD$5/ 3pcs)

This was served in a rather plain manner; after slicing it in half, it still didn't look photogenic to the camera, but you know food is meant to be eaten... so we took a bite, wondering what it will taste like. We were told that this dish originates from Guangdong province, which used to be Emperor Kang Xi's favourite food. It is understandable why. The salted fish paste was savoury and appetizing, mixed with minced meat with a lot of different layers of flavours and seasoning, which had this down-to-earth feel to this dim sum choice. The taste definitely exceeds its unassuming looks by miles though it still need some tweaks. We thought that there could be more filling with more sauce, for a more substantial bite (yes we want more) - I think when they launch it officially on 1 May, there would be an increased ratio of the fillings in this bun. This is a rare dish to be found on Chinese menus, so it would be a great chance to try it here.

 

 
Almond Tarts 杏仁挞 (SGD$3.20/ 3pcs)

Here comes my favourite part of the new items... I love this so much, I really wish they can make this a selection on their permanent menu. First, these almond tarts beats any egg tart I've ever eaten. I never knew I needed this in my life until I ate it. Second, it has the soft, flaky, eggy fragance of the egg tart crust pastry that already won me over but... the most memorable thing: the sweet almond filling inside is just amazing. I swept three tarts in a row even after trying out other mains and was already quite full at that point in time. Served warm and absolutely tempting, I will definitely say that these almond tarts are a must-try.

Disclaimer: you have to love the taste of almond first.

That's all for the Mother's Day specials, but hold up - you're not going to come to Yum Cha and just try these because no way are you going off without some of their delicious main dishes. I know I am going to say I love nearly every single dish around Yum Cha, but really because I have great faith in the consistency of their dim sum. As I said - every single time I leave Yum Cha with a satisfied tummy. These are the dishes that were recommended to us as their signature and must-try:

 

 
The fish maw with shrimp paste is interesting, fantastic to start off the meal. Their prawn and mango fritters are very well-done. I love how not overly-oily it is, maintaining a light yet nicely crisp on the outside with fresh prawns and mango in there.This was served with a dish of mayonnaise, though I find that it is already perfectly delicious on its own. In general the prawns used at Yum Cha are carefully chosen, fresh and plump in all their dim sum, so I shan't repeat myself too much smile Just enjoy yourselves feasting all the seafood selections here.

 

 
The scallop pea-shoot dumplings were really pretty and indulgent. A fat juicy scallop at the top with a fresh fat prawn underneath it as I bit into it, and I knew... this will be considered one of my 'classics' that I will order next time without... ...

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See the rest of it here: http://www.amiehu.com/2016/04/yum-cha-singapore-2016-mothers-day-menu.html
 
Table Wait Time: 5 minute(s)


Date of Visit: Apr 18, 2016 

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

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Categories : Cantonese/Hong Kong | Chinese | Hotel | Dim Sum | Seafood

 
Royal China at Raffles Hotel is one of the dim-sum places I've always wanted to go and saving it up for a good occasion. My family and I had Sunday brunch here for father's birthday and my advanced birthday celebration (two weeks apart) much to my delight. Other than being set in the gorgeous colonial Raffles Hotel, Royal China itself is dripped in a pretty shade of tiffany blue all around, and the playlist is filled with covers of original contemporary mandopop songs from Jay Chou and Voice of China. Can I say it completely fits my taste?

 

 
Some visuals on what the place looks like.

 

 

 
The dimsum came one after another soon enough, with the Phoenix claws (SGD4.80) setting a very memorable start with its juicy and fat tender meat of braised chicken feet in sweet sauce. Usually this is difficult to manage and you don't get much to eat, but Royal China has got really substantial stuff to enjoy, especially the soft cartilage and and delicious skin all around. Prawn dumplings, or hargow, (SGD5.80/ 3pc), mushroom dumplings (SGD5.60/ 3pc) and Siew mai (SGD5.80/ 3pc) were up next, dim sum staples they are, but done to a standard that pales many other dimsum establishments in comparison. For one, their siew mai spares no effort in stuffing mushrooms in there, giving it an oomph and umami taste, with the freshest pork and wonton skin used.

 
One of the service staff of Royal China came around introducing their weekend specials - Baked buns (SGD5.60/ 3pc), delicious sweet bbq pork (char siew) buns with a crusty and flaking exterior.

 

 

 
Some other items we had were the XO carrot cake (SGD8.80) which was a tad too spicy for comfort, though it is true that the spiciness kick made it especially appetizing. The carrot cake was soft and fragrant to have, and so was the chee cheong fun (SGD5.80) of three flavours - scallop, prawn and char siew which I found to be a more enjoyable way of presenting it as everyone can try whichever they would like. The yam puffs (SGD5.60) were topped with a juicy scallop that nobody can resist and filled with soft sweet yam filling and a crunchy exterior like the classic fried yam rings.

 

 

 
Similar to phoenix claws, the spare ribs (SGD4.80) were quite impressive in that they were picked to have very little bone, so all you have to do is to pop the whole thing into your mouth and feel the juicy and chewy burst of succulent pork. I was nearly conceding by the time the salted egg buns (SGD4.80/ 3pcs) because I was so so so full, but I can't resist going for it and trying these golden treasures. Their salted egg is not overly buttery which I liked, and of a very rich consistency (I had to give up half of it sadly to my second brother-in-law because I was at my limit...)

Not only is the great majority of the dishes served wonderful, the bill for 7 pax came up to $130 ($18.60/pax). It's not cheap either but I always imagined Royal China to be exceedingly expensive than other places. Gosh, what have I been doing elsewhere? This is about the same price as most average dimsum places out there - I usually spend an average of $15/pax, but the quality here is way better, not to mention their service and ambience. Reservations are necessary to ensure you have a table.

There have been plenty of bad reviews on their service, but I don't think there's any issue with it when I went. They weren't especially warm and welcoming considering the weekend crowd, but they weren't rude either. Serving of the dishes were prompt and well-timed, and we weren't chased out even though we exceeded our allocated time slot. Tea was refilled by ourselves most of the time.
A little gripe was that for a birthday celebration, they didn't present the cake with lit candles but instead took out the candles before us. As usual, Chinese restaurants are quite poor at doing 'surprise' birthday celebrations. But at least they didn't simply plop the cake with the original bag on the table like how Asia Grand did and already placed it on a platter.
 
Table Wait Time: 10 minute(s)


Date of Visit: Apr 10, 2016 

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

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