Category: Orchard

Pete’s Place – Serving Authentic Italian Cuisine For 40 Years

By , April 11, 2013

A fellow food blogger said that F&B in Singapore now is all about concept and marketing, not about taste. My reply was, the test of time will tell if the quality of the food is good.

Pete’s Place at Hyatt Hotel is probably one of the few restaurants that have passed this test, having been around since 1973. That is 40 years!

You may have never discovered its existence even if you been to Hyatt, because it is located on the basement with only a staircase leading to the Italian restaurant. The last time I been to Pete’s Place was 5 years ago, and it remains exactly like how I remembered it to be: trattoria-style décor with red-bricked walls, dark wood furniture, checked table cloth and picture frames with black and white photos. (Read: Pete’s Place review written 5 years ago)

Pete’s Place specialises in authentic Italian cuisine from homemade pastas to wood-fired oven pizzas, just like how it started four decades ago. The salad buffet-stylee bar that features a healthy selection of greens is said to be very popular among the ladies.

The restaurant has a current special of Lombardy cuisine till 12 April, helmed by guest chef Loris Pistillo from Spasso of Grand Hyatt Erawan Bangkok. This northern Italian region, which capital is Milan, has a more extravagant style of cuisine which is generally more buttery, creamy and cheesy.

Rice is popular in Lombardy, often found in soups as well as risotti.

It is no coincidence that my personal favourite dish of the lunch was the Pumpkin Risotto, Smoked Duck Ragù and Balsamic Glazed Shallots ($32). This risotto was also named “Best Risotto” at the Eurofood Mediterranean Fair in Bangkok in 2011. It was yellowish creamy – the way I like risotto to be done, yet not overly heavy and rich. Very balanced.

Full Post Pete’s Place – Serving Authentic Italian Cuisine For 40 Years

Pete’s Place
Hyatt Hotel 10-12 Scotts Road Singapore 228211 (Orchard MRT) Tel No: +65 6732 1234
Opening Hours: 12:00 noon – 2:30 pm, 6:00 pm – 10:30 pm

Other Italian Restaurant Entries
il Cielo (Hilton Hotel Singapore)
Caffe B (Marina Bay Sands)
Covelli Italian Bistro & Wine Bar (Orchard Central)
Garibaldi (Purvis Street)
Da Paolo Bistrobar (Rochester Park)

Dolce Tokyo – 313 Somerset Just Got Sweeter With New Japanese Italian Café

By , March 28, 2013

313 Somerset just got sweeter with the opening of Japanese-Italian café Dolce Tokyo. And also more Japanese with surrounding shops like Lowry’s Farm and Uniqlo at Level 3 (which look like where I can get my entire wardrode from). But unlike the fashion stores, Dolce Tokyo is a completely new brand and concept, created due to the void of such cafés in town.

While the 56-seater café looks like a shoebox unit, there is actually a small kitchen behind which can prepare a range of mains and sides for a fuller dining experience. I do notice that more customers come here during off-meal times, perhaps not knowing they serve meals such as All-Day Breakfasts and Japanese casual dishes.

I thought that the strength of its kitchen lies more in the Japanese more than the Western items. Go for the Omu Curry Rice ($19) which has Japanese fried rice wrapped in a gooey bright yellow egg, served with a melt-in-your-mouth pork belly skewer and side accompaniments of salad, baby octopus and jellyfish. My afraid-to-get-fat friend was initially unconvinced of the pork belly, till she took a bite and never looked back.

Full Post Dolce Tokyo – 313 Somerset Just Got Sweeter With New Japanese Italian Café

Dolce Tokyo Cafe
313 Somerset, 313 Orchard Road #03-23 Singapore 238895 (Somerset MRT), Tel: +65 6836 5612
Opening Hours: 11:30am – 10:30pm

Kitakata Rahmen Yamakichi – Authentic Kitakata-Style Ramen Shop Opens At Orchard

By , March 22, 2013

Ramen alert again! Another ramen shop has opened at Orchard Road, and you probably have not heard of it yet. The new Kitakata Rahmen Yamakichi has found a spot at Orchard Plaza, replacing Noodle House Ken at a more dodgy part of Orchard where there are quite a few authentic Japanese food places.

Kitakata ramen? Eaten before or not? (Read Ramen Keisuke Tori King which opened on the same day.)

Singaporeans are definitely fans of tonkotsu ramen styles, but kitakata style noodles remains very unexplored. Kitakata is a city located in Fukushima, in northern Honshū Japan and also mean ‘northern place’.

The city Kitakata is known for its distinctive style of ramen, said to have the highest per-capita number of ramen establishments in Japan. Word has it that ‘soba’ also refers to ramen here because it is just so prominent here. If you want to order soba there, call it ‘nihon soba’ instead.

Kitakata Rahmen Yamakichi already looks promising: A hole in the wall, small-cramped place, evenly packed on a weekday night, Japanese sprouting customers, and with two Japanese chefs (Chef Kita and Chef Hiro) behind the counter. This is as authentic as it can get.

But I did not know what to order.

The majority of the ramen are Shio-based, which has a pale and clear broth made with plenty of salt and vegetable. I don’t know about you, but shio ramen is the last thing I would order compared to the other varieties of shoyu, miso or tonkotsu. And the other is ‘Jito’, which simply means ‘local’. AND, there is NO tamago. Huh, no eggs?

I had the basic Rahmen ($12.00) which arrived with a clear stock with light yellow, slightly thick and curly noodles (which may remind you of instant noodles). Tonkotsu fans who are used to thick, salty and creamy soup bases may get turned off by this version, which is exactly the opposite – thin, simple and plain.

Full Post Kitakata Rahmen Yamakichi – Authentic Kitakata-Style Ramen Shop Opens At Orchard

Kitakata Rahmen Yamakichi
150 Orchard Road #01-18 Orchard Plaza, Singapore 238841

Other Ramen Entries
Ramen Keisuke Tori King (Amara Hotel)
Menya Musashi Kodou
Uma Uma Ramen (Forum Galleria)
Marukin Ramen (Scotts Square)
Sapporo Ramen Miharu (Gallery Hotel)

The Manhattan Pizza Co – Huge XXXL Pizzas Lands In Singapore

By , January 3, 2013

I have never been to Manhattan or the New York to judge their pizzas, but I do know that this Manhattan Pizza Co in Singapore serves HUGE ones. Huge to the extent that the pizza filled the entire square table, huge that each slice is bigger than my hand, huge that 5 of my hungry friends could not finish the whole thing.

20 inches long to be exact.

“Chief” Joey Manoli brought their signature pizza from New York City to Singapore’s Orchard Central. The Napoli style pizza was created by Joey’s ‘Poppi’ (his papa) when their entire uprooted themselves to NYC, and made a good living out of it.

The restaurant is at a difficult-to-find basement location at Orchard Central, already known for its crazy navigation. Fortunately, Manhattan is located right next to Gong Cha which probably brought some customers in.

Initially, I was a little doubting. Red and yellow décor, matched with plastic chairs, and rather loud music screams ‘fast-food restaurant’ – not the kind of place I would enjoy having long chats with good friends over pizza slices and sides.

But, the pizzas are pretty affordable. The classic variety such as Hawaiian and Pepperoni are $38-$39, while the specialty range such as seafood and meat lover are $40-$42. A classic slice with a drink is $5.90.

Joey said that a Singaporean Tan Yi Ling was ‘schmoozing’ over their pizzas at NYC, which motivated him to come over Singapore for a look. (Interesting, I checked HungryGoWhere and there is a Tan Yi Ling giving positive reviews on Manhattan. I wonder if Joey knows.)

Full Post The Manhattan Pizza Co – Huge XXXL Pizzas Lands In Singapore

The Manhattan Pizza Company M.P.C. Singapore
Orchard Central, 181 Orchard Road, B1-01 (next to Gong Cha), Singapore 238896 (Somerset MRT) Tel: 800 852 3887 (toll-free)
Opening Hours: 11am – 10pm (Mon – Thur), 11 am – 10.30 pm (Fri – Sun)

Other Pizza Entries
Spizza (East Coast)
Peperoni Pizzeria (Zion Road)
Da Paolo Bistrobar (Rochester Park)
Verve Pizzeria (One North)
Singapore Sling Chilli Crab Pizza (Clarke Quay)

Family Stove + Family Wok – Yong Tau Foo Sold By A Fashionista

By , December 31, 2012

There behind an inconspicuous stall at the food court is this youngish-looking 30-something, who wears a straw hat, tight purple shirt, silver shoes and accessorized with a self-designed pendent.

Never would you ever imagine that a former artistic director and fashion stylist would switch jobs to sell… yong tau foo! And at all places, a food court within Orchard Towers.

Fashionista Cedric Tan has proclaimed that he has “seen it all” (by mid-30s) and wants to challenge himself to try something different. Having been inspired by little eateries in Japan, he wants to start-up an equally unassuming food business in Singapore.

I do know of many ‘fashionable’ friends who toy with the idea of opening a ‘nice little cafe’, but it’s all up there in the mind. Cedric Tan is really that one guy who shows that you should just do what you want at least once in your life. And he has clearly no qualms about the ‘status’ of the food he is selling.

The homemade Yong Tau Foo offerings are quite affordable, with a minimum order of 6 pieces at $3.80, and additional pieces at 60 cents each. A must-try is the curry version which is light, tasting rather similar to lontong gravy.I was initially worried about the calorie content, but drank it clean because it was just too sumptuous.

Full Post at – Family Stove + Family Wok

Family Stove + Family Wok
1 Claymore Drive, #02-01 Eateries Paradise (above Jasons Supermarket), Orchard Towers, Singapore 229594 (Orchard MRT) Tel:+65 8688 2559
Opening hours: 12:00pm-9:00pm (Mon-Fri)

Other Related Entries
Singapore’s Most Popular Noodle Stalls
Claypot Laksa (Alexandra Village)
Ah Guan Mee Pok (Syed Awi)
Beach Road Scissor Cut Curry Rice (Jalan Besar)
Nam Seng Noodles (Far East Square)

Nassim Hill Bakery Bistro Bar – Breakfast, Brunch, Bakes & Beer All-In-One

By , December 7, 2012

Nassim Hill Bakery Bistro Bar has one of the most interesting concepts – bakery with brunch items in the dawn, bistro in the noon, and transformed to a charming bar by dusk with DJs spinning at the side.

Getting a condominium at Nassim Hill has always been one of my dreams (let that be granted), but I now know I can now indulge nearby in a hearty breakfast of Eggs Benedict ($15 nett) and Country Scrambled Eggs ($16) at an ‘okay-price’ considering this is very prime district.

Nassim Hill Bakery Bistro Bar sits within the iconic Tanglin Post Office building, right opposite Tanglin Mall and near Gleaneagles Hospital. To get here, you have to get to the back of the post office, or climb up a flight of stairs from Swiss Bakery.

If this bar within a post office concept seems familiar to you, it is also done up by Imaginings who is also behind KPO, WALA WALA, Balaclava and 1128. Beer drinkers can rejoice because you can tap your own draught beers at the end of the counter. (I unfortunately, don’t drink beer.)

Considering I am not quite a carb-person, I fell in love with the Grimbergen Ambree bread ($8), a Grimbergen (Belgian abbey beers) infused bread created by Head Baker Audrey from Freshly Baked at Killiney Road. (No wonder the bread and cakes taste so familiar. The KPO probably approached her since they are ‘neighbours’.) The bread is very wholesome, full-bodied and hearty, with a slightly rustic feel to it. Extremely satisfying with the marmalade jam.

That same bread is also used in the Hot Reuben ($16 nett), a sliced corned beef sandwich with melted emmental cheese, sauerkraut (sour cabbage), onions and delicious Russian dressing. Warning: It takes two or more to finish this.

Full Post Nassim Hill Bakery Bistro Bar – Breakfast, Brunch, Bakes & Beer All-In-One

Nassim Hill Bakery Bistro Bar
56 Tanglin Road #01-03 Tanglin Post Office, Singapore 247964 (15 walk from Orchard MRT), Tel: +65 6835 1128
Opening Hours: 8:00am – 12:00am (Closed Mon), Breakfast & brunch: 8am – 5pm, Lunch: 11am – 5pm, Dinner: 5pm – 10:30pm

Other Related Entries
TAB (Orchard)
Singapore Sling Boutique (Clarke Quay)
Social Haus (Tiong Bahru)
OverTime (Dempsey)
Infusion (Dempsey)

Epilogue Café – When Popular Bookstore Opens a Café

By , December 6, 2012

Popular Bookstore opens a café. Yes, the same Popular Bookstores where hungry, I mean kiasu parents hunt down assessment books and 10-years series for their adolescent to get a head-start of their successful life. Popular was my ‘saviour’ in that way too. (Won’t have cleared my Os and As without you, Popular!)

Epilogue Café within Prologue (at Level 4 Ion) provides a completely different vibe – quiet surroundings, lovely music, view of Orchard Road, artistic lights made of recycled books. Overall, a very cosy corner to read a book, drink a cup of cuppa or have casual business lunches.

In fact when I was there during a public holiday, the directors of Popular were having a lunch meeting there. Talk about working hard.

This new café concept offers not only gourmet coffee and cakes, but a plethora of Italian food selections such as soups, sandwiches and pastas.

Epilogue brings in a slight Asian twist to its special menu. I had a Rendang Chicken Set Meal ($11.90) which is really quite an interesting and workable combination with huge chicken chunks marinated in a sweet spicy rendang sauce topped on spaghetti. Thumbs up for this. The drink is an Iced Singapore Sling sans the alchohol.

Full Post Epilogue Café – When Popular Bookstore Opens a Café

Epilogue Café ION Orchard
2 Orchard Turn, #04-16 ION Orchard, Singapore 238801 (Orchard MRT), Tel:+65 6465 1477
Opens daily: 10:30am – 10:00pm
Branch: #06-01/02/03 Orchard Central

Other Related Entries
Raindrops Café (*Scape)
Charlie Brown Café (Somerset)
7 KICKstart BREWiches (Armenian Place)
Dann’s Daily Pescetarian Café (Eastwood)
Pies & Coffee (Rochester Mall)

Paris Baguette – Korean Bakery Finally Comes to Singapore, But Why Seoul Expensive?

By , December 5, 2012

Paris Baguette is finally here in Singapore! If you are thinking this is some French brand, nope. This chain is actually the top Korean bakery, receiving “constant love” for its freshly baked bread, cakes, sandwiches, desserts and brunch items.

It has over 3500 stores in Korea, US and China. None in France though, go figure. (Wheareas PAUL is really from France.)

Located at Level 2 Wisma Atria, Paris Baguette has replaced Ding Tai Fung (which has upgraded to Food Republic, or should I say downgraded) and attracted throngs of office crowd and the Korean expat community to land their support. Good chance to people-watch and spot a (almost) Girl Generation type customer.

Because it is newly opened, its self-service ordering system, service crunch, and lack of seats due to its popularity may throw you back a little. Customers were looking high and low for the menu sheet, only to find them lying around somewhere. Somewhere.

Indulge in a lazy afternoon with its brunch items, the best seller being the Cheese Omelette With A Difference ($18.00, and what a name). The omelette with spinach, gruyere and feta cheese is quite cheesy and yummy, plain in its own way, and heartily satisfying.

The Scrambled Egg Brioche Brunch ($18.00) is a photogenic dish with chorizo on toasted brioche, and the eggs evenly prepared and cooked. If we were to judge by the eggs alone, yes it is fresh delicious, but somehow lacks a punch. Should throw in a juicy sausage and some sautéed mushrooms.

Full Post Paris Baguette – Korean Bakery Finally Comes to Singapore, But Why Seoul Expensive?

Paris Baguette Singapore (Wisma Atria)
435 Orchard Road, #02-48 to 53 Wisma Atria, Singapore 239977 (Orchard MRT), Tel:+ 65 6836 2010, +65 6836 3010

Other Related Entries
PAUL Bakery (Ngee Ann City)
Maison Kayser (Scotts Square)
Brunetti (Tanglin Mall)
Delicious (Scotts Square)
Eggs & Berries (Changi City Point)

Min Jiang – The Hairy Crabs Season Is Finally Back

By , December 3, 2012

Dear hairy crabs, I have waited for you for a year to be back. There are some things that I would have to wait for 300 days before I can savour again. One of which are the hairy crabs. These Chinese mitten crabs, which are Shanghai’s prized delicacy, only come during the days of Autumn.

Over at Min Jiang at Goodwood Park and One North, these hair crab creations are available from now till 30 November, not too long a period before they disappear back to the Yang Cheng Lake.

Min Jiang offers two special six-course set menus at $98++ and $118++ per person, for a minimum of two diners. If you have not tried these palm-sized creatures before, and am wondering “Why so expensive”, the Chinese can spend hundred of yuan just to have them. There are crabs, and there are craps – people would spend more to get their money’s worth for good quality ones.

My favourite version prepared by Master Chef Chan Hwee Kee is the Steamed Hairy Crab with Glutinous Rice Served in Lotus Leaves ($68++ each). For me, steaming works best for hairy crabs where the tastes and juices remain locked in, and the meat remains fresh and sweet. Imagine when some of the flavours of the crab meat flows and get absorbed by the glutinous rice.

Look at the rich bright orange roe – easily my favourite part in the entire crab. Do not remind me of the cholesterol level though. Just allow it to linger in your tongue while you relish the thick thick roe, a taste almost quite unforgettable. (I would best describe it as a texture similar to a creamy form of salted ice yolk but 10 times more delicate.)

The manager in charge Wai See was also skillful in cutting up the crustacean so you can eat it almost mess free. When I asked how long she trained for, she said “Ten years”.

The Baked Hair Crab Wrapped in Lotus Leaves is also a popular choice, while I did think that the smell of the leaves overpowered the true natural flavours of the crab at times.

Full Post Min Jiang – The Hairy Crabs Season Is Finally Back

Min Jiang
Goodwood Park Hotel, 22 Scotts Road, Singapore 228221, Tel: +65 6730 1704
Or Min Jiang at One North, No 5 Rochester Park
Opening Hours: 11am – 2:30pm (Lunch), 6pm – 10:30pm (Dinner)

Other Crab Entries
Peach Blossom (Marina Mandarin)
Putien (City Square Mall)
Mellben (Pasir Ris)

Uma Uma Ramen – Top Restaurant Iggy’s Opens a Ramen Shop

By , November 9, 2012

Another ramen shop with an impressive CV opens in Singapore – famous Fukuoka ramen chain, 59 years of history, helmed by Ignatius Chan, owned by Iggy’s the top restaurant in Singapore. He is also behind the high-end Kaiseki restaurant Yoshiyuki downstairs.

Looks like there is another reason to go to the rather Forum the Shopping Mall at Orchard now, other than Toys “R” Us and California Pizza Kitchen.

There isn’t very much to choose from as there are only two types of ramen – Uma Uma Ramen ($14) and Spicy Chasiu Ramen ($16).

The former is a spicy miso base, with Hakata-style noodles, and toppings such as charsiu, spring onions and black fungus. The later, is a spicier version at $2 extra, and there really isn’t too much of a difference. Extra tamago at $1.50.

If you like your noodles thin, non-curly and springy (like mee kia, similar to Ippudo’s version), chances are you will enjoy Uma Uma a lot. Not for the Sapporo ramen fans though (ie Ramen Santouka’s version).

Full Post Uma Uma Ramen – Top Restaurant Iggy’s Opens a Ramen Shop

Uma Uma Ramen
583 Orchard Road, #01-41/42/43 Forum The Shopping Mall, Singapore 238884 (10 mins walk from Orchard MRT), Tel: +65 6235 0855 Opening Hours: 11.30am – 3.30pm, 6.30pm – 10pm (Mon – Sat); 11.30am – sold out (Sun)

Other Ramen Entries
Menya Musashi Kodou
Keisuke Tonkotsu King (Orchid Hotel)
Marukin Ramen (Scotts Square)
Marutama Ra-Men (Liang Court)
Ippudo Tao (UE Square)

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