Wednesday, May 12, 2021

Barcelona’s Tapas 24 Has Opened in Singapore

Pescadito Frito and Avocado con Pesto

Yay, the folks at L'Angelus have brought in Tapas 24 from Barcelona (60 Robertson Quay #01-04, 6513-6810). The menu here doesn't have the sea urchin and artichokes that I liked so much from them, but it still featured decent quality ingredients and care here. More importantly, the damage to my wallet wasn't as high as I thought it would be. But it's still not something that I can afford to eat at regularly.

Sunday, May 09, 2021

Hui Wei Chilli Ban Mian in Geylang Bahru, Singapore

Signature Chilli Ban Mian

I'm surprised that this stall (69 Geylang Bahru #01-58) hasn't gotten more attention for that bowl of chilli pan mee above, as it was impressively spicy. Maybe it's because it gets lost among the bazillion other items that they were selling; I wonder if they would give me some of that chili oil on the side if I ordered something else.

Trying out Gogiyo’s “Korean” Food Stalls

Army Stew

Not to be confused with Gogyo, Gogiyo is a small chain of "affordable premium Korean food" stalls that a local celebrity started up recently. One of the main items that they pitch is budaejjigae, but it kinda reminded me of that Seoul Yummy place, which is not a good thing.

They also make a big deal out of their "waterfall BBQ," which is a bit of a gimmick. It isn't much more than just things like bulgogi placed onto the center of a mookata platter so that you can pour broth over the meat and let it flow down to the lower ring (there is even Thai chili sauce at your disposal).

Lastly, they serve single-serving bowls of rice topped with proteins of your choice, but the pork belly that we got was so tough that it was hardly edible. No, I don't need to go back here, as I'd rather go to one of the many shops in Tanjong Pagar (or even a cheap mookata place) instead.

Wednesday, May 05, 2021

Japan's Sen-Ryo at ION Orchard, Singapore

Sen-Ryo Sushi

For some reason, most of the online chatter about this chain from Japan and Hong Kong is about how affordable it is (2 Orchard Turn #03-14, 6974-6782). I found it rather pricey though, like a single piece of their namesake sushi above going for S$8.80 (US$6.60). Sure, it features a piece of uni on there, but if I ordered what I really wanted, I would've easily blown past triple digits.

Fortunately, I came at lunch time, and was able to order their special bento for S$29.50 (US$22.90). It featured nine different items, all beautifully arranged, and all featuring quality produce. But it was hard to get excited about it, espeically with the heavily vinegared bowl of rice that they gave. I'd rather go to Numazu Uogashizushi, Ikeikemaru, or even Tomi Sushi, as they don't try so hard to make themselves look so upscale.

Tuesday, May 04, 2021

The Low Carb Gyudon from Japan’s Sukiya

Low Carb Gyudon

I haven't had the best experiences at Sukiya (i.e., the gyudon chain from Japan, not the local shabu shabu chain Suki-ya). But the prices at their Singapore outlet are impressively low, and I happened to be at Suntec this afternoon anyway, so I stopped by for a bite on my way home (3 Temasek Boulevard #01-647).

To my surprise, there was a low-carb option on the menu, where the rice is substituted with not just lettuce, but also a big block of tofu underneath (I also chose an okra topping for that bowl above). It's too bad then that the tofu was drenched in a sweet sesame dressing, which means that I won't order it again. Instead, I should get the "XM" extra meat version, which comes with 165% more meat but only 75% of the rice of the medium gyudon.

Oh, and I need to remember not to order the side of "green veggies" in the background, as it was loaded with tons of garlic. Instead, get the French green beans, which were basically ganbian sijidou, and decently spicy at that. And while the yakitori here is tender and smoky, it's also swimming in their sweet tare sauce.

IPPUDO SG x Growthwell’s Plant-based Akamaru 1.0



I'm not sure how close this is to the plant-based bowls that IPPUDO did in Japan earlier this year, but their Singapore stores started selling this "Akamaru 1.0" today, featuring egg-free noodles and a soy-based chashu from local plant-based meat company Growthwell. The broth and noodles were better than I thought they would be, with a good amount of salt and oil. But the chashu was spongy and sweet. Unlike Impossible and TiNDLE, there was no fooling the palate on this one, as it tasted like mock meat. I'd much rather go for their veggie dashi bowl instead.

Saturday, May 01, 2021

Tianfu Paofan Paomian Wang at ARC 360 on Jalan Besar

Yuan Yang King Pao Fan

After that meal at Bếp Huế, I nearly thought about grabbing a bowl from San Pin to top it all off. I'm glad that I didn't though, because I stumbled next door to the Bgain @ Lavender food court at ARC 380 (380 Jalan Besar #01-16) and noticed that they also had a paofan stall, this one being one that I'd never seen before.

And it was arguably better than San Pin, particularly because of how finely they made that shredded fried egg stuff, not to mention giving a generous portion of crispy rice to make things fun. The broth was savory, and I liked how they kept it borderline greasy enough to be sinful..

The only thing lacking was the cilantro, which means that Chao Ting is still king for me. But maybe I'll bring my own cilantro next time I'm here. Side note: this stall is just two days old, but these guys told me that they've had several outlets around the island for many years now. I can't seem to find much info about them though.

Bếp Huế at the Hoa Nam Building off Jalan Besar

Bún Hến

I'm not sure how long this stall has been around, but right next to San Pin Paofan at the 51 Kopitiam is this lady from Huế selling dishes from her hometown (27 Foch Road #01-02, 8909-5808). Sure, she had bún bò Huế and bánh mì, but the thing that caught my eye was this "clam noodle" dish. And it was awesome, especially with all of those refreshing herbs and a stanky spicy shrimp sauce that one carefully scooped into it, slurping it down with peanuts and those little yellow baby pea-sized clams in the foreground.

Best of all, the portion was super small, which left me room for other things, like the bánh nậm rice cakes, which were steamed in green leaves and whose minced pork filing featured a mildly peppery kick. i also got to try the bánh bột lọc gói lá, which were also steamed in those leaves, but used tapioca instead of rice to bind it together. That meant that it was chewy like boba balls, but in a long cigar-like shape and with a savory shrimp and pork filling inside. Big thumbs up; I'm coming back.

Friday, April 30, 2021

SCALED by Ah Hua Kelong (In Person This Time)

Roasted Prawn

I was feeling greedy tonight for more shellfish and booze. So I thought of going to SCALED, which I got a taste of just after the circuit breaker lockdown, and was curious to see what it was like in person. I ended up getting the same things, like those prawns above, which were still lip-smackingly tasty, even if a couple of them were (surprisingly) not as fresh as I'd thought they'd be.

The smoked seabass pâté was my favorite by far, and was even better than I remembered it, as it was extra smoky, going wonderfully with the extra buttery yet crispy bread, occasionally chased down with a pickled garlic shoot. Delicious! I'd be happy ordering nothing else from these guys, although I am also curious to try their "KFC" Kelong Fried Collar, which requires an advance booking (note to self: call ahead next time!).

So was it better in person? Yes, for the friendly and energetic atmosphere, counter seating and view of the kitchen, and food being served at the right temperature. One big letdown though was that the beverage selection was very limited, which means that Humpback and the Naked Finn have a big advantage. But at least my wallet is much happier after leaving here.

Humpback on Bukit Pasoh Road, Singapore



I had been to Humpback maybe four years ago, but just for quick happy hour drinks and oysters, so I didn't really think much of it at the time (18 Bukit Pasoh Road, 9772-9896). Still, the thought of some light shellfish and booze sounded good after work today, and now I wish I'd come here more frequently. The happy hour drinks and small plates hit the spot, including that mentaiko dip with emping chips above. I won't order the charred cabbage again though; it tasted fine, but was a ripoff at S$17 (US$13) for two skimpy one inch thick slices.

Thursday, April 29, 2021

The Gyudon from YAYOI Singapore

Gyudon

YAYOI's new menu features gyudon. The meat was tougher than Yoshinoya's, and it didn't come with much of that mirin-based sauce either. But the meat itself was a bit tastier at least.

Monday, April 26, 2021

Musashi x Niku Niku Do at Bugis Junction

Gyu Katsu

Earlier this month, the Musashi outlet at Bugis Junction rebranded itself with an emphasis on gyukatsu (200 Victoria Street #B1-07, 6884-6454). I went in with very low expectations given not only how spotty Musashi has gotten over the years, but also since my experiences with gyukatsu haven't been optimal either. The good thing then is that it turned out better than I thought it would be, even if the meat quality still wasn't anything to get that excited about. I ate most of this, to my surprise.