Western

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Ginza Lion (formerly Ginza Lion Beer Hall)

Published October 25, 2016 by piggie

I have walked pass Ginza Lion Beer Hall in Suntec City many times, and everytime I thought it was a place for drinking and perhaps fingers food, much like a pub. Not until one day when I saw them put out a billboard of their lunch time special, that I realised they do serve proper meal! So one fine afternoon, I picked a friend to join me for a quick meal before a show.

Pan Seared Fish, $12++

Pan Seared Fish (with tartar sauce), $12++

We tried out two offer items from their lunch promotion and I had a Pan Seared Fish, served with french fries, broccoli, and carrot. I was also given an option to choose between a Salsa sauce, a Tartar sauce, or a Japanese Shoyu sauce. The fish was rather soft, in fact too soft for my liking, but at least the fries were nice, close to my favourite McDonald’s, but less salty.

Grilled Chicken (Oroshi Ponzu), $12++

Grilled Chicken (Oroshi Ponzu), $12++

My friend had a Grilled Chicken, served with thyme, french fries, broccoli, and carrot. She chose the Oroshi Ponzu sauce out of 4 options (along with Demi Glace, Hot Spicy, Teriyaki). While I didn’t taste obvious citrus from the Ponzu sauce, I have to confess the grilled chicken tasted great, with a thinly crisp skin and tender texture. Guess I will have this if I return.

And perhaps you would like to order a pint of Sapporo beer to go with your meal if you are visiting too!

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Brunches Cafe

Published September 12, 2016 by piggie

brunches_cafe_01

I rarely post a restaurant decor, but I really have to make an exception this time. For, I feel this is a restaurant that deserves a special mentioning. And I believe if you bring along the old folks, they will have a wonderful time here. Those magazines on the shelf are very old magazines, probably older than many reading this post, and maybe published while your parents were still dating.

Mixed Berries

Mixed Berries and Buttery Crumbles Waffle with Vanilla Ice Cream, $10.50++

We only have one order, that is, Mixed Berries and Buttery Crumbles with Vanilla Ice Cream. While the dessert looks presentable, the taste is good too. Personally, I love the crunchy crumbles, which really brings up the ice cream taste up a notch. But if you still have not yet notice, take another look at the plate. Vintage huh?

Yup, right, that’s exactly what the cafe is trying to sell, that vintage feeling. Which is why I deliberately post its decor here. Still not impressed? You’re probably right, I ain’t too, not until you see the pictures below.

brunches_cafe_03

This is a vintage Mini Cooper. Don’t get it wrong, the car is INSIDE the restaurant! And it’s not here to woo babes, it has now become a table, a seat! We were offered this seat upon entering the restaurant, but I don’t really like the limelight. Thanks, but no thanks. Besides, the seats are somewhat compact, both me and my dining companion have long legs, though technically we can still push it back, it used to be a real car, but it’s heavy.

The Mini Cooper seat

The Mini Cooper seat

brunches_cafe_04

This is the seat we eventually chose, converted from oil barrels. Truth be told, it’s a bit low for diners, avoid it if you are having proper meals here. OK, these two seats are the most eye-catching in the restaurant. That’s not all, here’s another one.

brunches_cafe_06

brunches_cafe_07

This restaurant isn’t all about vintage decor and fancy seatings. They have plenty of nostalgic items such as magazines, toys, stationery, and many other collectibles. Most of them are actually for sale! Coming here is very much like taking a walk down memory lane, especially for the older generations. In fact, we were so impressed that we couldn’t help taking pictures all over, disregarding any probing glances from other diners in the cafe.

As for food wise, they do serve main courses, all day breakfast etc. It’s worth a visit, even just for that vintage ambience alone.

Brunches Cafe
96 Rangoon Road
Singapore 218381
Tel: 86858488

Opening Hours:
Weekdays 10:30hr – 21:00hr,
Weedends 09:30hr – 21:00hr

The Burger Bar by fatboy’s concepts

Published January 9, 2015 by piggie

Burger_Bar_DSC00045I got some The Burger Bar vouchers from Marina Square, and happily brought my friend to try it out (at their Marina Square branch of course), and as a summary, this customise burger chain certainly did not disappoint.

This is how the order is carried out:

  • First, from their iPad order station, select a burger (hamburger, cheeseburger etc)
  • Next, select your choice of bread (honey oak, sesame etc)
  • Then, the meat patty (grilled chicken, pork, beef etc)
  • Subsequently, the range of free and chargable add-on such as lettuce, tomato, various sauces etc
  • Done. Note the order number from the iPad, and inform the counter staff of it. You will then be given an electronic coaster pager which will alert you to collect your order when it’s ready.

The whole procedure are quite self-centered, and no worry, they ain’t charging any service charge.

Hamburger

Hamburger ($6.50)

Their Honey Oak bun is lovely, in my opinion better than those I would normally find at Subway. Right here, I selected grilled chicken patty, with all the free add-on available, which include shredded lettuce, tomato slice, pickles, and mayonnaise. The chicken was grilled to a good degree, giving a great proportion of tenderness and aroma.

Cheese Burger ($7.50)

Cheese Burger ($7.50)

Their cheeseburger cost $1 more. Over here, I had the honey oat bun too, with Monterey Jack cheese, shredded lettuce, tomato slice, pickles, truffle mayonnaise (additional $1), along with a pork patty. However, I have to confess, even with the truffle mayonnaise and extra cheese added, I still find myself preferring their grilled chicken burger upon comparison.

Parmesan Truffle Fries ($5.50)

Parmesan Truffle Fries ($5.50)

Having tried their burgers, I was keen to try out their fries too. Their Parmesan Truffle Fries came in larger size as well as portion in comparison to those from the big three fast food chain here. It was relatively crisp, with a tint of cheesy flavour and a little salty. Note, I didn’t say the fries itself taste better than McDonald’s, I still prefer the later.

Cheese Fries ($4.50)

Cheese Fries ($4.50)

Their Cheese Fries have molten cheese generously coated on top, that ratio makes the fries more tantalising than their cheaper counterparts at other conventional fast food chain, not to mention proportion too!

Before signing this off, I have to warn, don’t over estimate your appetite. Their fries are good enough for two persons if you also order a burger each at the same time. We ended up having to wrap up some fries and smuggled them into the cinema. So, unless you are potential big eater, be warned! 😛

 

Boulangerie Asanoya

Published December 29, 2014 by piggie

Asanoya_DSC00328I wonder how many heard of Boulangerie Asanoya before they launched their first oversea franchise here? I did. And it was back in 2010 when I researched on Karuizawa, Japan. But I did not patronise them while I was there, putting off by their exorbitant pricing amidst an exponentially inflated Japanese Yen exchange rate of ¥100:S$1.50, 2 breads almost equivalent to a bowl of filling ramen.

But my friend has a knack for confectionery, so I decided to bring her here, in part also to make up for that little regret skipping over it during my previous Karuizawa trip.

As expected, the price here ain’t cheap either. We bought 4 breads, and chose to eat on site, they do have tables for patrons along with supplied cutlery and plain water, and they serve salad and meals beside the confectionery too. It was not too crowded over a Sunday afternoon, we didn’t have much problem getting empty seats.

Danish

Peanut Butter Danish with Mixed Nuts ($3.60) & Maple Walnut Pretzel ($3.20), prices included GST

First, the Maple Walnut Pretzel. I am not a fan of pretzel and I was a little bewildered when my friend chose this (She probably did her homework, I didn’t :P). However, I must confess my prejudice was overruled once I took a bite. Missing was the usual stiffness of a typical New York pretzel which I hate to the core, it’s more like a crunchy bread with walnut fragment, and baked with maple cream applied. Though I won’t call it fantastic, but it’s probably the best pretzel I ever tried.

I love their mixed nuts Danish. I’m nut over nuts, and the addition of peanut butter simply made this Danish an absolute joy to try, it certainly didn’t fail to please!

Yuzu Cheesecake ($4.50)

Yuzu Cheesecake ($4.50)

I’m a cheesecake lover, but afraid I couldn’t say so for this Yuzu Cheesecake (or cheese cube whatever). This is the most expensive among my order, and also the most disappointing. I didn’t realise they applied sourcream in it, somehow, I felt the sourness had overpowered the rich cheese taste for a cheesecake. It’s probably more sour than any lemon cheesecake I ever tried (including those I tried in New York City), definitely too sour for a Yuzu in my opinion, I was going after a refreshing taste, and I didn’t expect one more sour than a lemon. Or was it just my personal preference?

Cranberry Cheese Campagne ($3.20)

Cranberry Cheese Campagne ($3.20)

I like the blend of cheese and cranberries in this bread. Though in the shadow of the mixed nut danish and pretzel, I found this a little bland in comparison.

I’d say, Asanoya charges a premium price, but my overall experience was quite enjoyable, and I look forward to trying their other confectionery!

The Soup Spoon Union

Published April 28, 2014 by piggie

TSSUNION_MAINMENU_mainI am a little embarrassed to confess that although I had walked pass The Soup Spoon many times, but I never had the idea of patronising them ever. I probably still won’t had I not obtained some of their vouchers on the cheap.

On a Sunday evening, I decided to visit The Soup Spoon Union at Raffles City because it’s probably their biggest outlet, with a fusion of food variety which includes their trademark soup, as well as noodles and burgers.

Despite coming on a bustling Sunday evening, The Soup Spoon Union only had a moderate crowd as compare to many of their other restaurant peers around the vicinity. I thought we could have a seat first and casually browse through the menu, but that wasn’t the case. Patrons have to grab a copy of their menu (prices indicated are already inclusive of GST) at the queue entry and make payment (either by cash or NETS) before seating. That can be quite congested if there are more than 5 parties queuing as their holding area is rather small. After payment, patrons would be given a electronic beeper and free to select any seats inside the restaurant (yes, the waiters won’t be leading you, but you ain’t paying any service charge anyway).

The food was served surprisingly fast, within a couple of minutes upon seating. That only means one thing, they are super efficient, but most significantly, the food were prepared well in advance and merely rinse through with broth (if any) before serving.

Pulled Pork Burger, $10.80

Pulled Pork Burger, $10.80

I had a Pulled Pork Burger from their ala-carte menu, and surprisingly, the pulled pork was very well marinated, probably the best I ever tried, retaining that right balance of sweetness, and topped with lettuce, tomato, and vegetable salad. Though I feel at such price, it seems a little ex, but pulled pork is a lot of work, involving hand-pulled before marinating (probably that’s why they called it Handburger?), and to obtain an optimum taste is not easy, however, they did it.

Tokyo Chicken Stew, $7.50

Tokyo Chicken Stew, $7.50

The bread that came along with this order was very different from that on their menu, which was suppose to be a small French baguette. Instead, we were given a ciabatta, though personally, I would have preferred the later anyway. The actual soup was also looked entirely different as well. It is understood that The Soup Spoon had simmered the marinated chicken into a broth of sake and mirin, and served together with ingredients such as lotus roots, shiitake, enoki mushroom, white radish, and bamboo shoots. The overall flavour was moderate, expected that of the mushrooms and chicken soup, but done with a Japanese touch.

Indonesian Soto Ayam, $10.80

Indonesian Soto Ayam, $10.80

The next order we had was Indonesian Soto Ayam, basically glass noodle with grilled chicken leg, in chicken broth spiced with galanga, lemongrass, candlenuts, egg, served with chili, Indonesian soy sauce, crispy fried shallots, potato crisps, and a slice of lemon. Apparently, the drumstick was pre-grilled, but it made little difference as it was soaked into the broth anyway, the meat was tender nevertheless. The broth tasted light, lacking strong characteristic, at best moderate in my opinion. After all, I got to admit I am never a fan of Mee Soto in the first place.

In general, I had difficulty identifying the genre of the food they serve, I suppose I can call it a fusion, with a trail of all things Asian.

The Soup Spoon Union
Raffles City Shopping Centre
252 North Bridge Road #B1-61
Singapore 179103
Open daily: 10.30am – 10.00pm
Tel: 63343220

Fish & Co

Published July 25, 2013 by piggie

It was a long time since I last visited Fish & Co, and this seems like a refresher course for me. Admittedly, I quite forgotten how I found it few years back 😛 And since I have a few vouchers to spare, I decided to bring my parents for a little food adventure!

Grilled Salmon Cajun Fingerlings ($10.95++)

Grilled Salmon Cajun Fingerlings ($10.95++)

The old folks always seem to have synchronisation issue, somehow, dad already had his lunch before we came here for lunch, so he settled for the fingerlings portion of Grilled Salmon Cajun. Dad was offered one side, he chosen Chips, which would have otherwise cost $2.95. According to the menu, sashimi-grade salmon was grilled with unique blend of Cajun spice and topped with lemon butter sauce. The fries tasted quite normal though, nothing sensational. It lacked the crispiness of McDonald’s fries, but good thing it wasn’t too salty. I didn’t try the salmon, can’t comment on that.

Seafood for 1 Platter ($20.95++)

Seafood for 1 Platter ($20.95++)

I love seafood! I thought it’s time to pamper myself a little by indulging in a platter, which apparently, was dominated by the prawns. Grilled prawns, white fish, and grilled calamari was served with paella rice and chips in this platter. There’s nothing much to talk about the fries really, and the white fish was actually lightly grilled cod fish. While the taste of the fish was nothing exceptional, I appreciate they kept it light for a healthy flavour, though not so for the calamari, which really had to be well grilled to bring out the taste. The prawns were fresh, butter-grilled, and obviously the star of the dish. Not to forget the paella rice, which was cooked with raisins, offered a sweet taste and served as a good compliment to the seafood. For this order, I was not asked for any side, it came as offered. And as can be seen, the quantity of the grilled items was abundance enough to cover the paella rice with a great help from the chips, imagine how filling can it be! And indeed, after finishing the paella rice, it’s like taken two meals for me. The portion was so generous that for once, I almost thought I was back in Europe or States.

Grilled Peri-Peri Chicken with Scallops ($18.95)

Grilled Peri-Peri Chicken with Scallops ($18.95++)

Mum ordered the Grilled Peri-Peri Chicken with Scallops, she had the paella rice and homemade coleslaw as sides (otherwise $2.95 each), but I guess she probably regret having the rice, because she found the rice too oily, with the oil dripped from the Peri-Peri Chicken apparently. While there was nothing worth mentioning about the coleslaw, the chicken was tastefully done, the thick gravy indeed spiced it up, and if you asked for some garlic chili which they kept inside a closet, you’d probably find the taste up another level like we did. The scallops were tastefully coated with cheese, much to my delight, that really compliment the chicken well. This would be a dish I’d love to try on my subsequent visit, but I won’t take the paella 😛

***************************************

On 26 Jan 2014, I re-visited Fish & Co, this time their Vivocity outlet, and again, with my parents. I read that not all Fish & Co are equal, especially their Ang Mo Kio outlet, notorious for their service standard, but at least for Vivocity, they are earning rave reviews.

Sneak Preview, $16.95

Sneak Preview ($16.95++)

The old folks were rather flicker-minded over their selection, but eventually decided to try different order from the menu from what we had at their 313@Somerset branch. Mum ordered this, but when this platter was served, for a moment, we thought they had served us a wrong order. It was quite a large serving for $16.95, certainly in contrary to its name Sneak Preview, which I expected to be of finger portion. As it turned out, it was big enough for two person. This order comprises nachos, fried calamari, fish nuggets, and prawn fritters. While there was nothing worth mentioning about the nachos, we absolutely love the calamari, which didn’t give us the usual rubber-liked texture we’d tried elsewhere. For the prawn, they had crusted it with just the right amount of coating, retaining the freshness of the prawns as the main draw without over emphasising on the flour. Overall, this will be a good order for sharing!

Soft Shell Crab Salad ($11.95++)

Soft Shell Crab Salad ($11.95++)

Dad ordered this Soft Shell Crab Salad, which looked petite, but he doesn’t eat much usually. In any case, we shared all our orders, and good thing this one ain’t that filling, or else we would have struggled with the Sneak Preview. The green’s definitely the mainstay of this order, but I was surprise salad sauce was not given separately. Their soft shell crab is nice, but I would not want to brag excessively beyond that.

The Best Fish & Chips in Town! ($15.95++)

The Best Fish & Chips in Town! ($15.95++)

Fish & Co must be very proud of this order from how they named it huh (or was it their gimmick??)? I like Fish & Chips, and Fish & Co has quite a number of different styles over how it’s made, from New York, to London, to our sunny Singapore, wonder what they would come out next? The cod fish fillet was tender and juicy, but I guess the magic must be on the sauce, or rather the cheese spread over the fillet. Overall, it was tasty, but I certainly won’t claim it to be the best I ever tried. Fries were well fried, though anytime I’d still prefer those from McDonald’s.

All in all, we were very pleased with Fish & Co’s service at Vivocity. The quality of the food was good, and the serving time reasonable, despite almost a full house on a Sunday evening.

I’ll be visiting again, though not sure which outlet 😛

Kenny Rogers Roasters

Published July 14, 2013 by piggie

Call this my tribute to Kenny Rogers Roasters, after many years of patronising them, the feeling they give me is still as great as the first time I stepped into their restaurant, I still remember they were playing some of Kenny Rogers’ favourite songs then, though I admit I wasn’t really one of his fans but the music was quite soothing nevertheless.

On a quiet Thursday noon, I walked into Kenny Rogers Roasters at 313@Somerset, intending to order their trademark ¼ Roast Chicken but changed my mind upon seeing they also have this promotion on Chicken Pot Pie. Since I had tasted their Roast Chicken several times before, I thought why not gave their Pot Pie a try?

Chicken Pot Pie ($15.90++)

Chicken Pot Pie ($15.90++)

Their weekday promotion (available for ¼ Roast Chicken too) was that a free drink is bundled together with the Pot Pie and two side orders, which I chosen Mashed Potato & Gravy and Macaroni & Cheese. However, when the Pot Pie was served, I had a tint of regret… probably should have stuck with ¼ Roast Chicken instead. Make no mistake, not that it tasted terrible, just that the portion of the pot pie far exceeded my expectation. With this bread-based pot pie and the size of it, I could probably skipped dinner altogether! Which was relatively proven true afterward. Yeah, I could have left the bread untouched, but I wasn’t one who waste food.

The pot pie contained chicken, carrots, and potatoes amidst pepper gravy, it was warm when served, though I can’t say remained so throughout. Afterall, it took me about 45 minutes to finish it 😛 But one aspect I was quite impressed was that the bread was surprisingly crisp when it was served, and I ain’t referring to its crust! Overall, it really tasted great.

As always, Kenny Rogers butter corn muffin was sensational, the smell of the sweet corn was tastefully melted into the butter muffin, and I have never tasted better elsewhere. They claimed their muffins were homemade, but I don’t buy that 😛 Self-made perhaps, but seriously, how do they define ‘home’?

Of the two side orders, Mashed Potato was my all time favourite (particularly at KFC, and especially Popeye’s), but I found their version rather hard or compact, I would have preferred a little softer and with more gravy. As for the macaroni, it’s truly meant for cheese lover, fortunately I’m one! The thick and creamy cheese thoroughly turned on the macaroni, and offered a diversed taste from the chicken pot pie gravy, simply enjoyable!

For the drink, I was allowed to choose any soft drink or ice tea, which I selected the later. It just wasn’t the usual Seasons Ice Lemon tea, I love the rich tea taste with a slice of lemon to freshen it.

All in all, this was one set meal which I couldn’t find a single compromisation on any single component. I won’t called it exceptional, but so far, Kenny Rogers NEVER fail to appease me with their quality.

Quarter Chicken Set ($15.90)

¼ Roast Chicken Set ($15.90++)

Perhaps I said it a little too haste. On my subsequent visit to their 313@Somerset outlet in as many weeks, I had the opportunity to try out their ¼ Roast Chicken set, which also came with two sides but not the drink (the free drink offer is valid only over weekday afternoon). I selected Mashed Potato & Gravy again, plus Garden Pasta Salad. My friend had Sweet Corn and Macaroni & Cheese. Somehow, we felt the muffin was not as good as before, and so was the roast chicken. It seem the chicken could do with more pepper but most significantly, we both felt the chicken shrunk in side in contrast to our previous respective visit (from other branches). Or maybe the ¼ portion with wing looked smaller? Hmm…