449. Toa Payoh Mellben Seafood

My last dinner on a weekday had us feasting at Mellben Seafood Toa Payoh! I have never tried this outlet before so I anticipate how different it will be. The difference with the Ang Mo Kio one is they accept reservations here so 2 hours queue no more :D  It wasn’t very crowded while we were there mainly cos it was a weekday which was good, since we won’t feel pressurised to leave.

Steam Bamboo Clams w Minced Garlic

I don’t think we wanted to order this but the auntie kept recommending the bamboo clams so in the end we gave it a try. The bamboo clams were quite good – sweet & fresh

Broccoli w Beancurd Skin

We ordered broccoli w beancurd skin but this dish felt more like beancurd skin w broccoli. The amount of beancurd skin they gave was really generous. I like the texture of the beancurd skin and the flavours were just right. I thought the broccoli paled in comparison maybe cos the gravy was all absorbed by the beancurd skin

Guinness Stout Pork Ribs

The pork ribs had a (very) faint taste of guinness stout though the meat was cooked really well. I wished I can taste more of the guinness stout to bring out the contrast of the dish

Claypot Crab Vermicelli Soup

One of their signatures that people come down all the way for. The soup was amazing with the crab essence  and the crabs were fresh and sweet

Creamy Butter Crab

Also another must-order. Dipping the mantou with the sauce was just amazing. The creamy butter crab at Mellben is simply one of the better ones around in Singapore

Salted Egg Yolk Crabs

I remembered I didn’t like the one at Ang Mo Kio but this dish redeemed itself this time round. The salted egg yolk was coated well and evenly such that you can taste the saltiness of the salted egg yolk but also the sweetness of the crabs

Chilli Crabs

I still think chilli crabs here paled as compared to other seafood restaurants. The gravy has a rich tomato flavour which I didn’t really like it though towards the end the spiciness came on. I preferred my chilli crab sauce to be more balanced

Mini Mantou

And what’s crabs without mantous. I think the person who invented mantous to go with crabs is the best invention ever. haha

It was amazing how much we can eat. Though I think the crabs here are generally smaller, but the freshness of the crabs makes up for it. And the best deal of the night? We met Ethan Ruan who was dining at Mellben that night, and he was so good looking. haha #starstruck

Toa Payoh Mellben Seafood

211 Toa Payoh Lorong 8

Singapore 310211

448. Noir Art Specialty Coffee

Noir Art Specialty Coffee, is one of those hole-in-a-wall cafe where the place is so tiny it can only seat a few people. It isn’t air conditioned as well, so imagine the heat you get in Singapore’s sunny weather. I like the furniture and tableware though, somehow the uniqueness gave the cafe its own identity.

The menu is simple and so are the cakes on display so you wouldn’t take long to make your choices.

Our coffee & cakes are served!

Flat White

The coffee was forgettable. Though this place roast their own beans, I couldn’t quite taste the uniqueness they hope to offer. It was just a normal white coffee

Mocha

The mocha had a rich chocolate taste to it so for those for prefer your mocha this way, you might enjoy the brew they have here

Classic Cheesecake

The cheesecake was light. It didn’t really have a strong cheesecake taste so for those who prefer your cheesecake creamy, you might find this a little bland. It’s a case of either you like it or, hate it

Pistachio Cake

The pistachio cake tasted very much like carrot cake. The taste of the pistachio was so faint we had trouble identifying it.

Overall, this place is just disappointing. I think it has lots of improvement to work on and with Whale & Cloud just round the corner, it will just play second fiddle to it. It is a good cafe to pop in just so Whale & Cloud happened to be closed and people are lazy to travel far to cafe hop. But then again with so many new cafes in Little India & Farrer Park, this cafe might just be one of those to be forgotten soon.

Noir Art Specialty Coffee

23 Mackenzie Road S(228680)

447. 8 Stanley Street

I don’t think 8 Stanley Street is very new but the inconspicuous cafe along the stretch of soup stalls just don’t stand out. It is good for customers since we don’t have to fight with the lunch crowd. There are always seats there and it just don’t feel as crowded as compared to restaurants elsewhere. Interior of the place is simple and the barista was from Oriole Cafe & Bar so for those who missed his coffee, you can continue enjoying the coffee here now.

Flat White & Latte

The coffee was smooth and light and had a natural balance

They have lunch sets or you can choose to go ala carte. So we took one lunch set and had an additional order. The lunch set consists of a starter and a main that goes for $14.80 and you can add on a coffee to complete your meal

Smoked Duck Salad (Part of set)

Duck Breast, Romaine Lettuce & Raspberry Vinaigrette

It was very sour, and just strange

Pan Seared Sea Bass (Part of set)

The fish was a little overcooked and the sauce tasted like pasta sauce which we thought it didn’t go very well.

BBQ Pulled Pork w Apple Slaw, Ciabatta Bread & Fries

I topped up $1 for truffle fries, and.. I think we should just stick to normal fries next time. This pulled pork sandwich is one of the better pulled pork I ever had. The pork was very tender and flavourful and I like how it paired with the apple slaw to give different textures

Stanley’s Classic

Espresso Infused Waffle w Walnut Crumble & Vanilla Bean Icecream

They don’t serve waffles during lunch cos the waiting time is too long, but they make an exception for us (HEHE). If you eat the waffles on its own, it is a little dry but when you paired it with the icecream, it is amazing. The waffle had a faint taste of the espresso which was good since too much will be overwhelming. Adding the walnut crumble was smart and I like how the vanilla bean icecream had a very strong vanilla taste

Overall, I think the food here is generally well received and the service was good. I will definitely come back here for the pulled pork sandwich and waffles again

8 Stanley Street, S(082001)

Snaps!

Snaps! Memories from my trusty iphone

Sakae Don from Sakae Sushi

Since I was on a mission to try all the chirashi in Singapore, here’s one from Sakae Sushi. I’m not too sure if it’s cos I always had an expectation that Sakae serves sub standard food, in the end I’m always pleasantly surprised by how delicious their food is at times. This Sakae don had a combination of salmon, spicy salmon and salmon roe. It was not bad at all. You’ll be surprised it is actually better than some of the famous sushi chain restaurants

Chirashi from The Sushi Bar

The Sushi Bar is no stranger to the chirashi scene, often spotting a line out of the restaurants. I must say this place serves one of the better chirashi in town, for the price and quality you get no doubt. It is so fresh, and so generous with their portion though the thickness of the sashimi can be a little scary at times

Just cos we were craving for ramen one day, we headed to Ramen Bar Suzuki located at Telok Ayer. I had the Pure White Tonkotsu ramen w light broth and added toppings. I must say their light is really really light. I like the texture of the char siu here, pretty tender and comes in generous portion though their egg didn’t really make the mark

One of the many times where we had a feast at Paradise Pavilion

Trio of platter (top): Scallop, Prawn in wasabi mayo w watermelon, Foie Gras

Trio of platter (bottom): Scallop on baked pie, Siew Mai, Vegetable Dumpling

(Clockwise) Seafood w fish maw soup, Deep Fried Prawn, Lamp Chop

Tofu w Scallops and Spinach

And not forgetting their famous Peking Duck

The place is probably known for their duck and also quality of food, which makes it a popular choice to have client lunches. But I think their mains here are generally better as compared to their dim sums

 Lunch at Mandarin Oriental

Mushroom salad (The mushrooms are all hidden)

Pan Seared Sea Bass w Asparagus

Chocolate Cake

A 3 course set lunch which kept me full and sinful. One of the better lunches around, the chocolate cake was to die for #theonlyperkofmyjob

Happy Hour at The Secret Mermaid. One of the many hidden bars located in the CBD area

Napoleon Dynamites

Pulled Pork Roll

It’s a very tiny place with limited seats. The bar bites are good, but I wouldn’t say so for their drinks

Very happy when I got my batman. The DC comics ezlink card are super adorable :)

#justgirlsandmirrors

Went for a friend’s hens night party so we were just entertaining ourselves

ootd: Top from ASOS <3

The Entourage, where we stopped in front of Suntec City and the whole world stared at us (with cameras armed and everything) #imnotdoingthisnexttime

ootd: Crochet maxi dress from River Island

Went to watch Cavalia. It was spectacular. The horses were beautiful and simply adorable

Cos I wasn’t able to take one with the real deal, here’s the soft toy version :D

Went to the Singapore Teochew Festival. It was insanely crowded. I think the whole Teochew community must be there

My first ever run, which was really not a run. Overcoming 12 obstacles in the Wet n Wild Run at Sentosa was just simply tiring

Thai Milk Tea from Nam’s. It’s probably one of the closest Thai Milk Tea you can get in Singapore. The tea was so flavourful and fragrant

Shibuya Toast from Nam’s as well. So sinful, so sweet & so delicious #yumyum

Espresso Infused Waffle w Vanila Bean Icecream from 8 Stanley Street. Not your usual waffle on the list

Stay close for the review!

446. Ujong @ Raffles Hotel

Ujong @ Raffles Hotel was helmed by Chef Shen Tan, who made a name for her famous nasi lemak back at Wok & Barrels. Though by the time you read this, she had already left Ujong (boohoo). The resturant now is being overseen by Chef Mark Richards, who is the Group Executive Chef for Caerus Holding. Anyways we held a birthday dinner there where we had some seemingly normal but delicious modern local cuisine. The place was quiet on a weekday night with probably 2 or 3 tables filling the room so we had the attention of the servers in a pretty big place

Set like a kopitiam kind of style to suit the theme for the food being served. Very apt indeed

We went for the Kampung Feast @ $149 cos we thought it will probably be more worthwhile which includes the following:

1) 1 Meat Curry Dish

2) 1 Vegetable Dish

3) 2 Pasta Dish

4) 2 Nasi Lemak Dish

5) 2 Desserts

and a top up of $48 for a bottle of Prosecco (it really felt like a feast haha)

Prawn Crackers (Complimentary)

Honestly, it’s just prawn crackers but I don’t know if they were so delicious or we were too hungry, the crackers were gone in minutes

Meat Curry: Beef Rendang

We went for the signature beef rendang and it was delicious. The beef was very tender and the rendang just hit all the right spot

Vegetable Dish: Sayur Lodeh

Best Sayur Lodeh ever. Even though it’s just curry vegetables to put it plainly, you can taste the fragrance and the smoothness of the coconut. The friends enjoyed it so much there was not a single drop of sauce left

Bak Chor Mee Pasta

I’m abit shocked that our bak chor mee pasta turned out different from the pictures. Isn’t it supposed to be five spiced pork (in bigger chunks)? Anyway I didn’t really enjoy the pasta cos I thought the fusion did not go very well

Prawn Flavoured Noodles tossed with Kicap Manis, Onion & Garlic w Crispy Chicken

We were not very impressed with the presentation. It felt like a ball of noodles being chucked on the plate and dumped with onions and garlic. I can’t taste the kicap manis and the crispy chicken wasn’t impressive (at all)

Nasi Lemak w Crispy Pork

The Nasi Lemak was a show stopper. The rice was perfect from the hours of steaming and the ikan billis was amazing. The acar really got our appetite and the sambal was geared more towards the sweet side. Seasoning on the crispy pork was different with a little sweet & sour combination

Nasi Lemak w Otah

Nasi Lemak never tasted this delicious. And we love the otah, which I think could be spicier

Shendol Delights

Coconut Panna Cotta served with Red Bean Icecream & Gula Melaka Syrup

Puloh Hitam Stick Pudding served with Gula Melaka Butterscotch and Coconut Icecream

Both desserts were just as amazing as they blow our minds away. It was a very traditional dessert that we always have, being elevated to restaurant quality dishes. We were very impressed though presentation on the pulom hitam can be a little better

The staff surprised the birthday girl with a complimentary cake which was just cream and oreo

I enjoy what Ujong offers, though one may argue such plain old local food you can get them anywhere cheaper. But I thought it’s worth trying for the quality they serve. It takes on a modern twist of what we are familiar with and presents dishes in a different light though after this meal you probably had to spend hours at the gym. You can’t find a healthy dish in here as they all are high in coconut and sugar content so just eat and be happy :)

Ujong @ Raffles Hotel

1 Beach Road S(189673)

445. Platypus Lobster Shack

This place has probably opened for some time before the lobster roll bandwagon came rolling along and everyone else jumped onboard. It probably wasn’t that difficult to get a reservation few months back as compared now where a visible line streams out of the restaurant every night. Platypus Lobster Shack is located behind the Great Eastern building and it was very, very packed when we were there with each table having their lobster rolls. So like their name suggests, their menu has everything lobster-related and since being part of the Platypus Group, I wanted to see how different it is.

A very compact indoor seating

Caviar & Uni Bruschetta

It felt like eating salted bread with uni creme. The portion of the caviar was definitely generous but it also gave a very salty flavour to the dish. The bread could be warmer and I think the proportion of the uni creme could be more

Urchin & Lobster Bisque

Very heavy on the flavours with both urchin & lobster combined but honestly speaking, I can’t really taste any urchin in the bisque. The taste of the lobster was much more evident.

Crustacean Bowl

Uni Creme, Butter Poached Lobster, Japonica Rice, Honey Ponzu, Caviar, Char-Grilled Cheddar Cheese, Sesame & Chervil

A hell lot of ingredients but a very awesome dish. The fragrance hit us when the plate landed and the flavours are explosive in your mouth. It’s probably the best dish of the night

The Traditional

And now the highlight – lobster roll. The bread was buttery, soft & warm but the lobsters were disappointing. I didn’t like the texture nor the seasoning. It felt like the roll was missing something. Though $20 for a roll might be value for money but this was average at best

Spicy Roasted Garlic w Double Lobster Meat

The friend only had 2 words the entire meal – very spicy

Caramel Croissant Pudding

Vanilla Custard, Organic Eggs, Croissant & Vanilla Bean Cream

The croissant pudding was pretty good especially with the vanilla bean cream though it’s more like a soften croissant than a pudding

Platypus Lobster Shack seems more like a hype than anything. Lobster rolls? I think Pince and Pints had aced it better. Even though the prices may seem more affordable here, but a visit once is enough.

Platypus Lobster Shack

3 Pickering Street

Nankin Row #01-31 S(048660)

444. Old Hen Coffee Bar

Old Hen Coffee Bar is one of the newer faces to the cafe scenes located at Rangoon road. The cafe is operated by 3 brothers though I don’t know how the name relates to them. It’s a cute name though (pok pok keh) okay nevermind I digress. Interior of the cafe is clean and simple. Tables are wooden (yay), decorated with a simple bottle of flowers and sunlight fills the place up. One thing to note the ventilation is quite bad, you’ll leave the place stinking of the breakfast smell.

More breakfast choices. But I didn’t have the stomach cos I was cafe hopping that morning

I think the sign was supposed to be outside the shop but the owners didn’t have time to bring it out cos they opened late that day

White Coffee (3oz)

Waited quite long for the coffee cos the machine ran into problems. The owners were apologetic and even offered another drink. Thumbs up for the service. The coffee menu here is simple. Black, white or cold brew. The coffee they served was strong, a little acidic but easy to drink. Will definitely give the cold brew a try the next time round

Buttermilk Waffles w Berries & Greek Yoghurt

I honestly think yoghurt and waffles just don’t go together. The waffles here are decent but could have been better, fluffier and with different toppings

Life’s simple pleasures. Just a cup of coffee and waffles to enjoy the weekend away

I think Rangoon road is bursting with cafes. Sitting right next to Old Hen is La’Coffee Cafe that opened few weeks ago. With the number of cafes opening there, I think the area might just become the next Jalan Besar

Old Hen Coffee Bar

88 Rangoon Road, #01-03 S(218374)