Saturday, May 26, 2012

Donq Bakery

Bakeries are one of my weak spots, and I'd love to go crazy in them but I have my waistline and my wallet to think of :) I was REALLY excited when I found out another famous bakery from Japan is opening in Singapore with a similar background as Maison Kaiser, French-Jap!

The store is reallyyyyy small but I sincerely applaud the people who planned the layout of the store as they really made use of every space possible!! Its new for me to see the circle-shaped thing in the middle to showcase the bread, the boards are all curved to fit that thing properly.

The types of bread on offer are mostly very unique, flavours and combinations that you dont find in normal bakeries usually, even the "celebrity" ones too which made me really happy and made me want to try out all the breads!!! But alas, I'm the only bread fan in the family and I can't eat that much bread! 

BUT I'll definitely be going back to try more of their breads 'cos the flavours just beckons me.

And it seems as though many people are caught up in this craze of bread too, not just at the newly opened Tiong Bahru Bakery! No matter WHAT time I went, it was always crowded and had a long queue, but like TBB, the queue always moves v quickly! And you'd better go early 'cos they sell out quite fast! I've heard quite a few customers telling the waitstaff that they came before but the breads were sold out alr.

The many types of bread on offer!

Thought this was quite interesting! Mentaiko France, its like a baguette but with mentaiko paste on it! Totally a French-Jap inspired bread :) Didnt buy this though so no verdict about it!

An Pan

What's special at Donq is that they have two types of an pan. One with the whole red beans like the one I've bought and the other's red bean paste (the usual kind of filling in an pans). Singapore bread lovers will definitely be glad to know that the fluffy fragrant bread enveloping the red bean totally reminds me of neighbourhood savory breads and hits all the right notes. Its pillowy, fragrant and soft, reminds me of my childhood too. The paste with the whole red beans (dont worry they're softened alr so its not like it'll get stuck and be hard to chew) wasn't too sweet but didnt have much aroma of red bean as well, I like that there are still some whole red beans in there albeit softened ones 3.6/5

Walnut Raisin Bread

I ate this few hours after buying it and the dough was kinda hard already, pretty well studded with walnuts and raisins but just an average bread to me. 3/5

Cinnamon Roll

The boy ate this and here are his comments: 'It was soft, with the right amount of raisins (usually there aren't raisins in cinnamon rolls right - that's me talking btw) in each bite. Cinnamon flavour is only strong at the top of the bun, I would give it 2/5"

Apple Sweet Potato Roll

I toasted this and had it for brekkie the next morning, it was crispy and slightly fragrant, small pieces of sweet potato dotting the dough and relatively bigger chunks of apples too. Thought it'd be better if there were more filling! Nonetheless a rather enjoyable bread especially since the combination is something new to me! 3.6/5

Figue and Noix

I LOVED this the most outta all! It was very VERY well studded with figs and specks of walnuts too. If you're a fig lover, I'm sure you'll love this bread! Best fig bread I've had so far :) I toasted it as well for brekkie and it was mmmm, I didnt even care that it was too hot and totally burnt the roof of my mouth whilst eating this haha. 4.6/5

(pic credit: Tanhsuehyun's fb)


My mom gave her verdict on this and said that Tiong Bahru's one was better! Idk if it was 'cos we toasted it the next day but my mom said it was very oily when she picked it up so she didnt like it and she felt that TBB's was more fragrant vs this!

They emphasize quite a lot on cheese with MANY of the mouthwatering buns on sale containing cheese. Like the Dutch Bread (looks like a soft pillowy polo bao with a crusty skin), Spinch and Cheese Cookie that was like a thicker version of the usual flat circle ream cheese buns we get (like those from Barcook), and many other breads with cheese.

They have savory options like Spinach and Sausage, this jap green bean one too and wasabi tuna etc

Sweet breads include things like this sinfully rich choc crumble tart lookalike, chocolate boule, chocolate bread that's apparently v good.

Go down and give 'em a try! If baguette's your thing, I was tempted to buy a whole baguette all for myself because it looks so darn crispy on the outside and soooo fluffy on the inside! Sorry idk how but that was what I pictured in my mind when I saw the baguette. Go try and tell me if it really is :)

Donq Bakery
B2 Takashimaya 
(just walk all the way in till after Cold Storage)

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Akashi Orchard Parade Hotel

This restaurant has been around for a long time and has garnered quite a huge following! My family and I were there on a Saturday night and boy was it bustling with people! There were so many regular customers who knew the chefs and the wait staff very well and many expats too. The table turnaround time was so quick! People left, clean up, and its filled again.

After a meal at this restaurant, I can understand why. If you're looking for a bustling, relatively wallet friendly, good friendly service, and quite yummy food, then this is definitely the place. But if you want a nice quiet cosy place, this is definitely a no-no, especially on weekends!!

Here's what we had: 


Now I'm definitely a fan of this but do yknow how much this costs? $4! And its served to you when you sit down so yes, that's all I have to say.


Now this is also served to you once you sit down, one per pax, and guess how much this is? $5! A mushroom, 2 carrots and a small piece of meat. Marinated in Jap wine I think, its slightly on the sweet side.

Scallop Sashimi

This was quite fresh! And there are many textures to this dish :) The top layer was mmm like the usual scallop kind of texture, but the middle layer (the slightly brownish one) was sooooo soft omg. Wonderful texture! The bottom layer was SO crunchy!!! The different textures made this sashimi a rather enjoyable one 4.5/5


I didnt fancy this at all. Barely any taste, a little too dry for me, meh. 2/5

aka pufferfish

This was nice, one of the better ones I've had. This is reminiscent of bak kwa, but this has a slightly different taste! Savour it slowly in your mouth and you'd find this slight sweetness to it. Its also a bit sticky but that's how it is. 4.4/5

Assorted Sashimi

Now this was the result of my Dad and I going to the sushi counter to see what's available. We didnt really like the selection of fish 'cos we've tried 'em before and are quite normal (salmon, swordfish, aji, kinki, etc) so we just ordered toro, think it was chutoro? Then akagai, geoduck, and this other clam which I'm not sure of. Oh and the uni below!

The toro was quite good, fatty slab that tastes just like mmm rich fish oil in your mouth, no fibres, quite easy to swallow and chew. Akagai wasn't that good, not that sweet/fresh. Geoduck was not bad, crunchy and sweet. The other clam was q ok too. 4/5

Uni Sashimi

Sadly the uni didnt fare as well. Some tasted bad, while some were ok. Think it was more bearable when wrapped w seaweed. This definitely isnt as sweet as some uni I've tasted. 3/5

Assorted tempura

Now this had many diff tempuras! Prawn, sweet potato, mushroom, hugeass onion, salmon (q surprising!), eggplant, not sure if the green one's cucumber or capsicum. But yes quite a variety! The batter was q thin, nicely fried, not bad! 4/5


I LOVED this unagi!!!! Think its one of the best I've eaten so far!! The meat was so soft it just falls of like that and you don't need much chewing and you're done! My mouth is totally watering now as I remember the tastes and the textures of this dish. The sauce isnt too sweet, coats it nicely and well such that each bite is a mixture of the soft slightly sweet-fleshed unagi. We all agreed this was a good dish! I'd say, TRY THIS IF YOU'RE AN UNAGI FAN!! 5/5

Miso eggplant

This was okay, not strong miso taste. Quite hard to dig the eggplant out haha. 3.6/5

Soft shell crab

Mom commented that you cant taste anything except for flour 2/5

Uni Foie Gras sushi

This was uh okay, sounds awesome and yummy but taste-wise doesnt work out. Both have too strong flavours and somehow cancel each other out when it enters the mouth. You can barely discern what you're eating though the texture of the whole sushi is REALLY SOFT. 2/5

Cha soba

aka teapot soup

I've always loved this ever since I first tried it back when I was in primary school at this now-closed Jap restaurant. This one was well simmered, sweet tasting broth with many vegetables and quite a big piece of cod (relative to the size of the teapot) inside! There were small chunks of prawn and chicken too. You pour the soup onto the little "teacup" on top of the teapot in the first pic and that's how you drink it! 4/5

Green tea ice cream (Matcha)

This was not too sweet, luckily! Milky definitely and matcha taste was quite rich. Alright choice if you're green tea fan! 4/5


This was tart and sour, nice end off to a meal!! 4.5/5

Peach (Momo)

This tastes totallyyyyyy like Qoo Peach!!! If you're a fan of that, pls go ahead and order this! Q fragrant :) 4/5

Goma/Black sesame ice cream

Fans of black sesame ice cream take note!! This is one good scoop! Full of yummy black sesame goodness, true true taste and rich, totally my kind of ice cream :) 4.5/5

I'd say Akashi appeals to people because of the wonderful friendly service, and that most, if not all, speak Chinese there! The food is definitely quite good and prices are reasonable as well. Its certainly not a posh, chi-chi Jap place run by Japanese, speaking mainly Jap, so I guess that appeals to the wider audience too?

Not sure if the other branches are as good, but apparently, this is the best out of all the other branches!

Total spent: $620 something, cant remember the exact price! But do note this is mainly cos of the sashimi which was alr 200 odd!

Akashi Japanese Restaurant
Orchard Parade Hotel

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Covelli III

Hello! Went back with my friend to Covelli for her to try their squid ink pasta 'cos they didnt have it during Restaurant Week when we went!

I read one review on HGW saying that the squid ink pasta isn't nice but decided to just go ahead and try it, maybe it wont be that bad! But sadly, the standard has dropped quite a lot. I no longer like it anymore!!! Hope Michelangelo's still has theirs down to a pat.

Squid ink seafood linguine

This was how it looked THIS time, and the bottom pic shows how it looks like LAST time. Now what's the big difference that makes me so disappointed?

The sauce.

1) Its too diluted now, ok granted its salty, but its just watery-ish and like oily?
2) No seafood infused taste, no mmmm once you slurp the sauce?

And next some of the seafood was disappointing. The mussels were too hard, overly cooked or not fresh idk, then scallops were like just a round white thing, no bite to it no nth. The half crayfish/lobster (they say its lobster but I think more like crayfish) was ok prawns were good too. Scattered pieces of squid around. 

Next, the pasta. This time the pasta wasn't fragrant at all! It was like idk, they put the sauce on top right before serving to us or sth cos really, the pasta was SO bland, I had to eat it w a whole spoonful of sauce (which wasnt tasty in itself) to be able to eat the pasta. 

What a huge difference from the one I first ate and fell in love with when they first opened :( Guess I'd have to go back to Michelangelo to see if their standard dropped too.

Anyhow, Covelli, you won't be seeing me for some time.

FYI, I did tell my comments to a waitress (who is v friendly and nice) and did write in the feedback form.

Orchard Central

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Centre PS

After Tiong Bahru Bakery, we were otw home when I remembered that Centre PS was just nearby and that I wanted to try out their cakes + macarons! So the boy stopped outside their shop and I went in to get some stuff :)

They had like about 4 choices of sliced cakes that all sounded really nice and q a wide variety of macaron flavours to choose from!

Hot pink packaging!

Bought 2 cakes in the end!

Matcha green tea and 70% dark chocolate sachertorte with Japanese black bean
$7 nett

Frankly, the chocolate was barely there! Green tea taste was much stronger though not very fragrant. You can certainly feel the husks of the beans in your mouth but there isnt a strong black bean taste so no worries about that. All soft mousse layers in this cake, not a top fav of mine though. 3.2/5

Douce Fraise
Ivory chocolate with Earl Grey, Strawberry Compote and Hazelnut Genoise
$7 nett

This was a much nicer cake! Light light layers of earl grey and sourish hints of strawberry, hazelnut wasnt really there but well, this was more of a joy to eat vs the top one! The lady behind the counter also said that this was her fav cake. 3.7/5 

Assorted Macarons
Box of 5 - $11
(box of 2 - $5, box of 10 - $20)

This was a mix of, from Left to Right: Lychee, Passionfruit Peach, Champagne, Coffee and Black Sesame

To sum up their macarons - chewy shell, terribly sweet :/

Champagne - the white one. This tasted a little like champagne, pity it was wayyyy too sweet! 2/5

Black Sesame

Tastes only faintly like black sesame 2/5

Passionfruit Peach

No peach taste but yes definitely passionfruit! More of it in the shells though. The ganache was uh too sweet that I cant tell what its supposed to be. 2.6/5


This had liquor in it so it was better and lychee taste was much stronger! But still sweet. 3/5

On the whole, I'd probably won't be back to Centre PS, macarons are too sweet for me! The best ones for me are still from ET Artisan Sweets :) 

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Tiong Bahru Bakery

Hello everyone!

I gotta apologise for the lack of posts! I went away for a holiday and only came back recently, so :) As I was catching up with the latest food scene happenings in Singapore, I realized that my dear garden city really evolves and changes super quickly! In just 12 days that I've been gone, there are SO many new places that I wanna try!!! Oh gosh, no WONDER my list is never-ending!

After lunch on Saturday, I dragged the super full boy to Tiong Bahru Bakery 'cos I wanted to try out their breads + pastries! Simply can't resist that combination ;)

Here's the entrance! Its just a few doors down from Orange Thimble.

Coffee machine once you enter

And then you start queueing. But no worries, the queue moves q quickly! Seats are almost always taken on weekends but people dont really take that long to eat bread/sandwich and pastries so you shld get a table q quickly! :)

Their croissants seemed to be the hot seller 'cos trays and trays and TRAYS of 'em just kept coming outta the kitchen!


Pastries on offer!

Pineapple, Mango & Passionfruit Tart

How could I resist such a nice sounding tart? Haha and it was not bad! Mainly taste the pineapple though, ok you can see passionfruit bits but cant taste them and the mango taste is just... not there. The tart base was ok, a little too hard, slightly flakier would be better! 3.6/5

Chocolate Tart?

Not sure what this was called haha 'cos once I saw a tray of this coming outta the kitchen, I quickly told the super friendly waitress behind the counter that I wanted one and she got it for me! I thought it was totally choc but instead, its a layer of choc ganache then a layer of nuts then layer of dried fruits! Its not bad, the choc was dark and sexy, nuts gave a slight crunch and fruits added that little bit of sweetness, not bad combi. But well, overall, rather average to me? 3.6/5

From our table

 The baker!

Squid ink bun

This was actually sold out! But LUCKILY while we sat there eating our pastries, a tray of it appeared from the kitchen! And once again, I quicklyyyyyy went to the cashier and told the super friendly cashier that I wanted one and he happily got one for me :) I ate it this morning and well, it was sorta a letdown? It smells great no doubt, but it just tastes salty? Not the squid ink that I'm familiar w in pastas haha. I reckon it'd be great for sandwiches. I was v excited about squid ink bread, but well, guess this isn't my cup of tea! 3.2/5

Well, though my experience there wasn't that great, I won't be striking it off my list yet 'cos since its a BAKERY, I've to try more of their breads to decide! I'll definitely be going back, but on a weekday when their breads are not mostly sold out. The wait staff there are all SUPERDUPERRRRRR friendly and smiley!!! Really! Always smiling, always ready to help and are so friendly! Esp the male cashier and the ppl behind the counters getting your bread for you. 

Oh and dont worry if the bread/pastry you want it sold out, either wait patiently till it comes outta the kitchen or sth else comes out OR ask the cashier to check if they're baking anymore currently! The replenishment of bread is quite fast so it shld be ok! 

Singaporeans really do love bread huh, and love the name of a Parisian baker, and the novelty of a new bakery haha it was reallyyy crowded ytd and from what I know, today was v crowded too! 

Oh yes, they're opened by the Spa Esprit group who also owns 40 Hands, Open Door Policy, House, Tippling Club, Skinny Pizza.... WOW.

Oh and, my parents tried the croissant and choc croissant, will ask them for opinion then get back to y'all! :)

Croissant: My mom says its vvvvv buttery and fragrant! So she loves it 'cos she's an ardent butter fan :) Have yet to ask my Dad abt choc croissant!

Tiong Bahru Bakery
56 Eng Hoon St
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