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Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Tamaya Dining

Headed up to the 2nd level and was quite exited when we was told that it was tatami dining. It has been long since I last experienced Japanese Cuisine in an authentic environment like this with Japanese servers around.

Forget about the bustling orchard because when you come to their 2nd floor, the environment was calm and relaxing. Such peaceful and quiet environment is definitely a plus point to the dining experience.

Tatami Dining
While waiting for the orders, we were each served with Hijiki Seaweed Salad! I was very please as I enjoyed the sweet combination of the seaweed with soy beans as well as some mock meats.

Appetizers / Otoshi - $3 each
Weekend was relaxing and we decided to ordered a mug of Sapporo Beer and cool ourselves down on a hot day.

Sapporo Draft Beer - $33 / Jug
We had the buck wheat soba to fill some part of the stomach while waiting for the main courses. Soba is cold with scallions and wasabi.

Zaru Soba - $8.50 (Cold)
Besides that, Edame was ordered too. These boiled green soybeans can be served either hot or cold.

Edame - $6.20
It is served with 5 sticks of Kushiyaki, Quail egg, chicken gizzard, chicken skin, chicken soft bone and chicken leg meat. Tare sauce which consist of mirin, sake, soy sauce and sugar is applied to the skewered meat and they are grilled until delicately cooked before serving to us.

Yakitori Moriwase - $13.50
We waited an hour almost for a pot of pork bone soup base with shabu shabu meat. Stack of vegetables with scallions, cabbages, carrots as well as tofu were served.

Vegetables with Tofu
The server helped us to pour the plate of vegetables into the Tonkotsu Broth.

Stock with Vegetables
And here comes the moment where every one of us dipped these thinly sliced meat into the pot and enjoy our dinner.

Shabu Shabu Meat - $40 per pax 
It was an enjoyable session in a relaxing place. The crew explained that there were manpower shortage due to the weekend crowd and apologized for the long wait as we exited the place.

Rating: 3 / 5

Tamaya Dining Bar
Location: Cuppage Terrace, 19 Cuppage Road Singapore 229450

Monday, August 22, 2016

Crown Bakery & Cafe

Our gathering was planned at Evans Lodge but we ended up in Crown Bakery instead due to unforeseen circumstances that the place we initially thought was still operating was no where in our sight. Crown Bakery is located in an old school building, Crown Plaza which is about 8 minutes walk from Botanic Garden. I like the contrast between this modern looking bakery and the rundown building.

Crown Bakery & Cafe
Interior of the bakery looks modern and just by one look at its facade, you can tell that they are selling artisan breads.

Crown Bakery Interior
Coming here for Brunch, Crown recommends the Crown Breakfast. The price might seem abit step for a brunch but portion is good for 2 pax. Look at the centre of the wooden board! The Crown Puff Pastry was the total scene stealer. They recommend to break the edge of the pastry and dip it into the sunny side up's egg yolk!  Served along with the centrepiece crown pastry are,  red wine-braised oxtail, chicken cheese sausage, Canadian back bacon, sauteed mushrooms, baked tomato & mesclun salad as its side.

Crown Breakfast - $29
Since the Crown is for the King, why not try a dish for the queen, the Eggs Benedict. Though the poached egg might be slightly overcooked, I'm still in love with the combination where poached eggs were served with shaved honey baked ham, both sitting on the Crown's fluffy Sourdough English Muffin, coupled with Hollandaise sauce and mesclun Salad as its side. You can choose to have sourdough muffin or multigrain but the former is definitely recommended.

The Queen's Eggs Ben - $15
We had something new from the menu and that would be their Steak Sandwich serving with Mesclun Salad as their side too. Ciabatta was Crown's handcrafted and toasted. What I like best was its mouth watering sirloin steak grilled to medium well perfection, stacked with layers of lettuce, tomatoes and drizzled with onion marmalade and topped with gherkin. Recommended!

Steak Sandwich - $18
What a satisfying branch I had! Having visiting Crown Bakery randomly, its definitely worth going back once more for their branch and sandwiches.

Rating: 4 / 5

Crown Bakery & Cafe
Location: 557 Bukit Timah Road Crown Centre, #01-03 (Near Coronation Plaza) Singapore 269694

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Boon Tong Kee Kway Chap

Heading to Zion Riverside Food Centre, we decided to give the usual Char Kway Teow Stall a miss and go for something different. Reading the Signboard twice to confirm what I had misread during my first glimpse as I had associated the name with Boon Tiong Kee, the famous chicken rice restaurant. There is a few Kway Chap stall but being the typical Singaporean, we joined the stall with the queue as compare to the other which had none.

Boon Tong Kee Kway Chap
A good wait for about 20 minutes in the queue before we got our set of Kway Chap for 2 pax at $10. Portion of the set looks appetizing with big bowls of Kway in brown soup and ingredients being stacked up nicely with 2 kinds of chilli provided. Portion was worth $10 indeed.

Kway Chap Set for 2 - $10
No pork belly and no skin in the platter and in fact the interesting find in the platter was pork trotter meat which was so tender and served in smashed form among the savoury sweet braised sauce. Braised eggs, tender duck meat, intestines and Tau Gua was provided. I would say that I'm rather impress by the stack of food which was neatly placed in a sequence besides having a well prepared portion of innards without leaving any trace of smell.

Kway Chap Ingredients
I love the Kway for its soup has a slight taste of the herbs and not salty. Portion is definitely not for baby's stomach :).

Kway in Herbal Soup
It will be good to drop by again and have a taste of its competing stall right on the left side.

Rating: 3.25 / 5

Boon Tong Kee Kway Chap
Location: Zion Riverside Food Centre, 70 Zion Road #01-24, Singapore 247792

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Chir Chir

Chir Chir has been the talk of the town among my instagram posts sometimes back with all the delicious looking fried chicken originated from Seoul. Abit of their background: Besides its origin, they are the largest chain of restaurant known for its freshly-cooked Korean chicken dishes.

Chir Chir
Chir Chir Menu

Paper Placemat
Big Plush Toy
A half an hour wait for our dish to be served. Well, since it was our first try at Chir Chir, the first impression of it was not bad. This Crispy boneless fried chicken chunks were tender and crispy, totally a different style from the usual Korean Chicken we had from the other fast food chains. The set is good for 2, coupled with fried potato wedges and rice cakes which were tossed with honey butter sauce and seasoning.

Honey Butter Chicken - $28
Fried items arrived piping hot and surprisingly these fried chicken was still very succulent on the inside despite the dry look on the outside. Once you bite on it, you will feel that the meat was coated with sweet layer of honey but as your teeth sink deeper, you can taste the marinate of the chicken.

Fried Chicken
The combination of dried cranberries with almond flakes never fail to impress me.

Hot Wedges
Giving so many fried chicken outlets in Singapore, I still feel that Chir Chir will be able to stand out among the competition.

Rating: 3.5 / 5

Chir Chir
Location: 50 Jurong Gateway Road,  #04-13/14 Singapore 608549

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Penang Seafood Restaurant

Did a last minute check with the buddy who stays in the area as our "dictionary" for food is running out of ideas as we were quite limited to the usual Beef Kway Teow and Frog Porridge in Geylang for dinner. She recommended Penang Seafood Restaurant which is just a stone throw away from Ajunied Station.

Penang Seafood Restaurant
The Penang Restaurant which is also serving Cze Char is bustling with people. Not to worry about the seats as the turn over rate there is rather high. Servers are rather polite and quick to attend to our orders.

The environment gave a feel that we are in Malaysia and even the variety of drinks they served is so closed to what the usual coffeeshops in Malaysia offers, Ice Jelly, Herbal Tea and even Lime juice with sour plum.

Lime Juice - $2 Each

The safest choice to order if you are lost among the dishes in the extensive menu. If you have heard of Penang Cuisine, Assam Laksa is one of their staple dishes. This signature dish of theirs is sour by default with Tamarind (Asam). Look around the tables, I bet you will see majority ordering this. And if you like sour and sweet food, this is a perfect choice as the bowl is filled with ingredients like shredded cucumbers, onions, chillis, pineapple, lettuce and mackerel fish. The level of sourness is very well executed and appetizing. Better than average and its addictive.

Penang Assam Laksa - $4.80 (Small)
Ingredients and Noodles Revealed
Penang style of Char Kway Teow is usually not of my preference as I prefer the Singaporean style that is usually coated with the sweet black sauce. Surprisingly, these plate of flat rice noodles was remarkable with its "Wok Hei" taste coupled with ingredients like bean sprouts, cockles, chinese sausage, prawn, guchai and egg. Its aromatic but just too bad, the man insisted that he prefers our local style.

Penang Char Kway Teow - $5 (Small)
With Salted Egg Yolk trend still in the hype, they have kept their food menu up to date! With this being the chef recommended dish, I had expected more with something outstanding. No doubt the sauce is creamy and yummy, the dish still lacked the fragrant as well as the Wow factor.

Fried Sotong with Salted Egg - $13 (Small)
Beware of the steaming hot plate below the bloated aluminum pack. Loving the way how this dish is prepared in the aluminum pack and slit open in front of us when being served on our table. Herbal taste is evidently packed with an alcohol infused whiff from the Chinese wine. Steamy herbal soup is sweetened with the use of sweet dates and wolf berries. Beside that, ginger strips and mushrooms were also part of their ingredient. All was good except that I'm not too keen with chicken with bones bits in it.

Hot Plate Wine Chicken - $16 (Small)
Penang Seafood Restaurant offers a decent fare of Cze Char dishes and since there are many other signature dishes like LaLa and Hokkien Mee that we have yet to try out. I don't mind coming back again.

Rating: 3 / 5

Penang Seafood Restaurant
Location: 76 Geylang Lorong 25A Singapore 388258

Friday, August 12, 2016

Hup Choon Eating House

To decide on what to have for dinner is always a question for us and although it may be a simple thing, it often took us quite sometime to settle for a venue. As we were driving along Upper Bukit Timah Road, we had kind of decided to have pizza but ended up visiting the Cze Char Stall by the side of it.

Not every Cze Char Stall can prepare the standard items like "Yee Mee" well but I'm rather please that Hup Choon's is above average. Yee Mee had the "Wok Hei" smell, however they do have a strong lard smell which was not to my liking.

Yee Mee - $4.50
Xing Zhou Bee Hoon portion was generous with crab meat, bean sprouts, vegetables and eggs as the ingredients. The part we like about ordering standard items is simply because of the "Wok Hei" flavours.

Xing Zhou Bee Hoon - $4.50
Simply loves the home style "Cai Po" (Preserved Vegetables) Egg! It was fluffy and tasty. Best is that I can actually eat them alone without being worried that the "Cai Po" will be salty. This is something that I usually crave for as our household stove usually could not achieve such standard as we do not have strong flames in the kitchen.

Cai Po Egg - $5
Tasty and light on the appetite with ingredients like slice fishes, carrots, lettuce, sweet corns, tomatoes in it. If you like having soup in your meal, this would probably be good.

Fish Soup - $4
Overall, we concluded that the Cze Char Stall is another place that we will visit again for other Cze Char dishes.

Rating: 3.25 / 5

Hup Choon Eating House
Location: 1 Binjai Park Singapore 589818

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Amari Hua Hin

Driving about 3 hours plus from Bangkok Airport, we finally reached our accommodation. Amari Hua Hin is located about 10 minutes drive from its City and is ideal for a resort holiday if you want to stay away from the bustling city lives.

Hotel Lobby
Pool View
Open Area
The Deluxe Double Room with pool facing is tastefully furnished with contemporary decorations. Room is well furnished with Air-conditioned environment and an en suite bathroom. Rooms is basically equipped with the basic necessities of what you will expect in resort. They have a flat screen satellite TV, a minibar and a safety box. Free toiletries, hairdryer and bathrobe are included too. Private balcony which is facing the pool makes up of the 38 square meter room.

Deluxe Double Room
Deluxe Double Room
En-Suite Toilet
Hospitably services is commendable as we were greeted with all smiles from entering to exiting the hotel throughout our stay in Hua Hin. I'm impressed by their service from the beginning as the Hotel Staff brought us around introducing corners of the hotel to us even into our rooms, they highlighted that items like basket and poncho are readily provided if we are heading to the beach which is about 400m away.

Safe and Beach Basket
Wifi is available throughout the Hotel Compound but is only limited to 3 devices per room. Breakfast at Mosaic has a wide spread of food and I guaranteed you that you won't go hungry leaving the hotel.

Since we are driving, I noticed that security there are pretty tight as the guard will cordon off the entrance of the carpark. Other than that, parking lots are ample despite having one of the days coincide with one of a major IT security event in the Hotel.

Entrance to Hotel Lobby

Amari Hua Hin
Location: 117/74 Takiab Road, Nongkae, Hua Hin