Category Archives: Marina Bay Area

Covers Raffles City, Marina Square, Suntec City & Millenia Walk

Zambuca, Italian Restaurant & Bar

zambuca2
Zambuca, Italian Restaurant & Bar
Level 3, Pan Pacific Hotel
7 Raffles Boulevard
Tel: (65) 6337 8086
Website: http://www.michelangelos.com.sg/Main/Default.aspx?ContentId=34
Opening Hours: 11.30am to 2.30pm (Weekdays – lunch)
                                  6.30pm to 10.30pm (Daily – Dinner)

Sweet sweet bf brought me here for  my birthday dinner celebration last year.  First impression was wow! this is a classy place and we were so underdressed.

Nevertheless, we were shown a nice table by the window.  Given it was a Saturday night, the crowd was not hopping at this place.  But this was great for us as we prefer to have a quiet dinner than one with all the noise.

The waiter came and gave us the menus and it was hard to decide what food to eat.  But eventually, we ordered:-

  • 2 glasses of Umberto Bortol (S$16 each)
  • 1 Zambuca salad (S$14)
  • 1 Gnocchi (S$28)
  • 1 Lamb Rack (S$42)
  • 1 Tiramisu (S$12)
  • 1 glass of Lemoncello (S$12)

Food was of excellent quality – I find the lamb very pricey as it was 2 small pieces of lamb chops.  But for someone who doesn’t eat lamb coz of the “lamb-y” smell, this lamb rack is excellent! Portions are sufficient for small eaters.  As in all classy dining places, don’t expect huge portions.  You get quality, and not quantity here. 🙂

Being a great tiramisu fan, this tiramisu is fantastic! Out of this world! Worth every cent! If I have to beg the chef for the recipe, I would have. But too bad, I don’t cook. 😛

The glass of lemoncello is not found on the menu but if you are a fan of Italian food (like bf is), you can simply order it to have after your meal.  Limoncello is traditionally served chilled as an after dinner digestivo.  It is made from lemon rinds (traditionally from the Sorrento lemon, though most lemons will produce satisfactory limoncello), alcohol, water and sugar.  It is bright yellow in color, sweet and lemony.  This one tastes a wee bit lemony sourish.

Overall, a fantastic dining experience. We spent a total of S$164.78 (including taxes & charges) for 2 pax; very pricey but worth every single cent. 

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J Co Donuts & Coffee

J Co @ Raffles City Glazzy Doughnuts
J Co Donuts & Coffee
252 North Bridge Road #B1-44M/N
Raffles City Shopping Centre
Singapore 179103
Tel: (65) 6333 4258
Website: http://www.jcodonuts.com/

Finally, I don’t have to go to Batam to purchase these donuts! I love those donuts especially when they are still warm when I buy them.  Oohh…. then I can’t wait to sink my teeth into one of those.  Cost is about S$1 per donut from the branch in Batam.  Be forewarned t.hough – some of the flavors are very sweet (e.g. Green T).  Because I’m not a donut fan, it is difficult to taste all the flavours that they have.  So my advise is to try them all out and see which are your favourites. 

The two-and-a-half-year-old Indonesian brand is known for its light-as-air doughnuts and premium coffee, and has 32 outlets in Indonesia and two in Kuala Lumpur. It was brought in by the BreadTalk Group, which aims to open a second Singapore outlet at Bugis Junction in a couple of months’ time.

At present, the cafe offers 25 types of doughnuts in a variety of flavours and textures, such as the signature Glazzy glazed variety and the Crown series.  The latter features a chewier dough that’s made without yeast, which is great if you prefer your doughnuts with more bite.

The cafe also serves up a range of beverages that includes coffee made from quality Arabica beans.

Note:

Part of the review was extracted from TodayOnline.com and the pictures were extracted from J Co’s website.

The Dessert Symphony

Dessert Symphony
The Dessert Symphony
Level 4, Atrium Lounge
Marina Mandarin Hotel
Tel: 6845 1111
Opening Hours: 8pm to Midnight, every Friday, Saturday and eve of Public Holiday
Website: http://www.marina-mandarin.com.sg/dining/atrium_lounge_senses_patisserie.htm

If you love all things sweet, this should be music to your ears. Marina Mandarin’s Atrium Lounge Dessert Symphony is a premium buffet of desserts featuring delicacies such as Crepes Suzette and Cherry Jubilee in addition to sweets you can drink to — think red-wine popsicles and vodka poached pears.

Those who prefer to go local can try Asian favourites such as apom with pisang mas and coconut sorbet, durian sago melaka and many more.

The Dessert Symphony is available on Fridays, Saturdays and eve of public holidays from 8pm to midnight at S$28++ per person.

Note:

This review was extracted from TodayOnline.com dated 23 February 2008.  Ok, we were so excited about having a dessert buffet (our first time).  We were literally salivating already when we reached the Atrium Lounge.  I mean it’s already 8pm and we haven’t had our dinner.

BUT what a disappointment when we saw the spread!  At a glance, you can see a “variety” of 12 desserts at most.  Most of them were in bite size forms or in the soup spoons.  True, they were laid out beautifully on a single table.  And they did promise fresh crepes made on the spot.  I spotted macarons and some other bite sized cakes.

We did an about turn and got the hell out of there.  We were certainly not going to be paying the princely sum of S$32 for a spread that I can easily get at any hotel buffet which serves main courses and appetisers with desserts.

Well, if you don’t mind paying for quality, I suppose yes, you can drop by the Atrium Lounge and have a go at the buffet.  But I for sure will not be stepping in unless they give me more variety.

 

Inle Myanmar Restaurant

Inle Myanmar Restaurant Pickled Tea Leaves Salad Golden Century Egg Salad
Inle Myanmar Restaurant
#B1-07B Peninsular Plaza
Tel: 6333 5438
Website: http://www.inlemyanmar.com.sg/
Opening Hours: 11am to 10pm, daily

Peninsula Plaza, fondly hailed as Singapore’s ‘Burmese Mall’, houses not only little Myanmar stores but hides a serene Myanmar restaurant in its basement. Away from the prying eyes and heavy traffic of North Bridge Road, Inle Myanmar Restaurant is a 4-years old haven for the sizeable Myanmar community who misses home. From the ambience to the menu, Inle moulds a miniature Myanmar right in the heart of Singapore.

An appetiser of Pickled Tea Leaves Salad ($4) (see picture above) and hot Myanmar tea ($0.50) will be an excellent foray into Myanmar cuisine – a scintillating blend of sweet, sour and spicy. Myanmar tea leaves are preserved in oil and served with savoury nuts, white sesame seeds, dried shrimp, tomato slices, cabbage shreds, fresh Thai chilli and a special dressing in a salad that bursts forth with distinctively strong flavours. Pickled tea leaves are overwhelmingly salty at first taste, but become interestingly, tasty and addictive when paired with extremely crunchy nuts. The fragrance of tea leaves and sesame lingers on in your mouth until you take a draught from the steaming cup of hot Myanmar tea. Made from tea leaves roasted with rice, this drink imparts a light aroma of glutinous rice and cleanses your tongue of the salad’s taste, preparing it for the next mouthful of pickled tea leaves.

As savoury as the pickled tea leaves salad may be, you will do better with Inle’s signature Golden Century Egg Salad ($4.50) (see picture above) if you fancy sour dressings. Instead of the usual ominously black eggs we see in Chinese cuisine, Myanmar’s version surprises with a resplendent golden hue. Served with a surprisingly sour and spicy dressing, the golden century egg tastes less pungent than its ebony comrade. Wash down the starters with a glass of Inle’s fresh Tamarind Juice ($2.50), a mildly sweet drink that hides an underlying sour tinge – a guaranteed thirst quencher.

One should not miss the Moun Hin Ga ($5.50). This traditional Myanmar dish of rice noodles in fish gravy is as representative of Myanmar cuisine as laksa is of Singapore fare. Featuring the peculiar banana tree stem, this dish includes boiling tough banana tree stems slices for a full hour till it is soft and textured to the tongue. Rice noodles are heavy-laden with the goodness of the fish gravy that looks spicier than it really is, and reminiscent of Penang laksa . Inle recommends a side of Fried Gourd ($4.50) to further savour the tantalising fish gravy. Golden fried fritters hide a refreshing, green strip of marrow-long gourd, more commonly known as bu gyaw in Myanmar, complementing the fish gravy well.

Alternatively, the Fried Myanmar Tofu ($4.50) is ideal for an oily indulgence. Served with a tamarind dipping, the fried tofu triangles must be savoured hot to taste the contrast between the lightly fried skin and the creamy tofu goodness on the inside. Once you leave them to cool off, the tofu tastes bland and rather akin to sodden cotton wool. The world of difference in taste is determined within minutes, so this side should be more suited for a larger gathering (4 to 6 persons) where the otherwise delicious tofu triangles can be snapped up in a flash.

If you are someone who abhor anything fishy, the fish gravy is likely out of question for you, but settle for the Oun Nau Khau Hswe ($5.50), Inle’s curry noodles with chicken, which strangely tasted like a typical local curry chicken noodle. The yellow noodles are well-flavoured with the thick, aromatic curry gravy that tastes slightly sweet with only the slightest hint of spiciness. The chicken was, however, disappointingly drier than expected.

Forgo the chicken and enjoy the full curry goodness with Inle’s Myanmar Style Curry Pork ($5.50). Chunks of luscious pork, lined with fatty bits, are served in a dry curry that is made without the sinful coconut milk. As fat as the pork may be, the meat is well stewed and carries a full-bodied spice aroma of this lip-smacking curry.

A typical meal at Inle can be very filling but one must not leave without tasting the Hpa Lu Da . Seek solace in the comfort of vanilla ice cream, grass jelly, agar agar, sago, atap seeds, nata de coco and egg pudding in this all-time favourite Myanmar dessert. Inle hand-makes their egg pudding, a highly popular item on their menu, which carries custard-like taste with a firm texture.

Their full menu can be seen from their website.

  • If you pay using UOB Credit Card, with a minimum spending of S$30, you get 10% off your food bill.  AND if it’s your birthday month, present your I/C and get a complimentary dessert on the house.
Note: This review was extracted from StreetDirectory.com.
Post-Makan Note:

I visited this place with my family on 6 Dec 2007.  We ordered various dishes and mango salad was one of them.  If you’re really fond of Thai mango salad like we do, don’t ever order this dish as the Myanmar’s version is made up of soft mango instead of the crunchy ones we’re used to in Thai mango salad.

The curry chicken set was interesting. The curry is more like our rendang instead of the local curry dish that we’re used to. This dish is also much oilier than our rendang.

A set meal consisting of curry chicken, rice, a small bowl of soup costs less than S$7.  Add another S$1.50 if you’re ordering the set for a drink, else it’ll cost something like S$3.

They also have a dessert resembling our chendol except that it doesn’t have gula melaka and comes with 4 tiny pieces of bread.

Overall, food was nice; except that it’s oilier and dessert is sweeter than what I would like it to be.

Gluten-Free Tiramisu Log Cake

Gluten-Free Tiramisu Log Cake
Cedele Depot
Website: http://www.cedeledepot.com/home/xmas07.asp

Great news for those who are intolerant to gluten and have to avoid the delicious log cakes every year! Cedele is proud to introduce the limited edition gluten-free Tiramisu Log Cake this year. Savour the smooth gluten free log cake with satiny mascarpone cheese and pistachios. Made with Belgian couverture chocolate and an indulgent thick layer of chocolate truffle in the middle, anyone can enjoy this log cake, including those who are not gluten intolerant. Always thinking for the customers, Cedele makes this cake with no trans fat and only using organic unrefined sugar so it is not so sweet.

This cake costs S$65 for 1.1kg.

Fancy Delight

Fancy Delight Egg Tarts
Fancy Delight
Outlet 1:
1 Tanjong Pagar Plaza #01-04
Tel: 6323 0913
Opening Hours: 8am-7pm (Mon-Fri), 8am-5pm (Sat), closed on Sundays and Public holidays
Outlet 2:
#01-K05, IMM Jurong East
Tel: 6469 4606
Opening Hours: 10am to 10pm daily
Outlet 3:
#01-140F Suntec City Mall (Tower 3)
Website: http://www.fancydelight.com.sg/ (Under Construction)

This shop is famous for its egg tarts. 

They turned up in cute little cup-shaped pastry shells. It is filled with Hong Kong and Portuguese-style egg custard fillings. Each stood about 6 cm-tall and 4 cm-wide. The pastry was, as Mr Ewe said it should be, ‘crumbly and crispy’.

The filling isn’t as smooth as Tong Heng’s and is egg-ier to the bite, but ‘it suits this pastry and, very importantly, it is not as sweet as theirs’, said Mr Ewe, referring to the well-known Chinatown egg tarts.

Using a lot less sugar for the local palate was a main chapter of reference in his own makan sutra. It did very well.

The dainty laptop-toting office crowd around the Shenton Way area were buying in bulk for their in-house motivational talks at tea break (the motivation cost just $1.20 per tart).

The observant innovator, flushed with confidence from the response, began whipping up even more fashionable versions, like chocolate chip, banana, strawberry, chicken mushroom and even pepper chicken.

Now, sales of these tarts have overtaken Mr Ewe’s cookie sales and have become ‘our rice bowl’.

Today, a little over a year into business, he already has two outlets. It’s not difficult to realise why when the tarts are so easy to eat.

The crispy, crumbly pastry doesn’t fall apart when you chomp in. The various types of fillings have a firmer but still comfortable bite.

And it feels so cute between your fingers and tastes more like a quiche, especially the chicken and mushroom version.

Now, to keep at bay the soaring demand from these handmade tarts, Mr Ewe has a sign in the shop above the warm glass display shelf that says ‘due to overwhelming response, we are unable to take any pre-orders for this month’. It doesn’t say which month.

It’s timeless, and I hope Mr Ewe’s creations do not go the way of the roti boys, floss breads, bubble tea and soon, the psychedelic doughnuts.

Please click here for Fancy Delight’s menu (Fancy Delights Tarts).

Note: This review was extracted from The New Paper dated 1 October 2007.
Post-Makan Note:

This store is located directly behind NTUC Fairprice.  I was here on 24 November 2007.

This egg tart is different from the one from Tong Heng.  The crust here is more like a biscuit crust whereas Tong Heng is more flaky and pastry-like. The egg tart filling is less sweet and has more egg-y taste compared to Tong Heng.

I like the innovative tastes that are available at this store, e.g. blueberry, mushroom, melted chocolate etc. At S$1.20 per piece, go for it!

The Soup Spoon

Soup Spoon Soup Spoon’s Sandwiches
The Soup Spoon
Website: http://www.thesoupspoon.com/aboutus_where.asp

They have 4 outlets located in Raffles City Shopping Centre, Paragon Shopping Centre, Raffles Xchange & Market Street Carpark.  Different outlets have different opening hours, so check their website for details.

What I love about this place is that they have all sorts of soup! With a name like Soup Spoon, what else do you expect! The soup menu has the regular soups and the weekly soups.  Regular soup costs S$4.90 to S$6.10 and grande soup (large portion) costs S$6.00 to S$7.20.  Price difference is due to the different kind of soups.

You can also opt for the combo set which includes your favourite soup (regular or grande size), choice of either a half of salad or a half of sandwich/wrap AND choice of either a pack of chips or apple OR a glass of ice-lemon tea.

There are also sandwiches and wraps and salads if you are not into soup or you’re just looking for something to fill your stomach on top of your soup dish.  Check the website for menu details.

Post-Makan Note:

I visited their outlet at Raffles City on 4 Nov 2007 and another outlet at Raffles Xchange on 6 Nov 2007.

I tried their tangy tomato soup and Velvety Mushroom Stroganoff.  I find the tomato soup a bit spicy and I was unable to taste the basil in the soup.  The mushroom soup is not that bad, not too creamy, but a little bit peppery.

Each bowl of soup comes with a small bun.  Both times, I tried the Spinach, Avocado & Pint Nut wrapI loved this wrap very much.  If you dine in, they’ll give you 3 tiny bowls of spreads like basil, mint with mayo and 1 other which I’m unable to identify and also 2 small tablespoons of coleslaw.

Overall, it’s really very ordinary soup; nothing out of the ordinary.  But it’s one of those items that it’s great to have when you’re in a hurry (they simply scoop the soup into the bowl when you order) or when the weather is cold.

They also have the soup pre-packed so you can simply heat up the soup whenever you feel like having it.  Costs range from S$6.40 to S$7.10 and can last up to 2 weeks if you keep them in the fridge.