Archive for January, 2016

Pepenero – Great Italian food in the CBD

I love it when I am able to find restaurants helmed by passionate chefs and Italian restaurant Pepenero was one such gem I discovered. Born in Rome, Chef Daniel Singleton serves up classic Italian dishes with Roman flavours (as opposed to say Tuscan or Neapolitan). As I have never been to Italy, my unrefined palate isn’t able to detect the nuances of Tuscan vs Roman, but for those of you who have the skill or yearn for traditional Roman Italian dishes in Singapore, Pepenero is the place to go. Be sure to tell the wait staff up front that you want the full unadulterated version!

I’ll start off by blogging about the desserts because the desserts served at Pepereno are just so pretty and delicious!

Pepenero - Traditional pannacotta with mix berry $12 (2)

Traditional pannacotta with mix berry $12

It was a choice between the molten chocolate lava cake or the Pannacotta and in the end I ordered the Pannacotta because I wanted something creamy tasting. Pepenero’s version is pretty mild, I wouldn’t mind something sweeter and creamier tasting, but I loved the softness and wobble as the spoon sliced through the dessert.

Pepenero - Semifreddo (Forzen zabaglione souffle served with amaretto sauce) $14 (2)

 Semifreddo (Frozen zabaglione souffle served with amaretto sauce) $14

The Partner had the Semifreddo, which is kind of like an ice cream cake. This ice cream cake packed a punch thanks to the generous dose of alcohol in the amaretto sauce.

Pepenero - Vanilla ice cream

We both loved this homemade vanilla ice cream. We hadn’t ordered this originally, but the chef told us that we simply had to try it, and he was right. One of the creamiest, most vanilla tasting vanilla ice creams I have eaten! He should make tons of this and sell it by the box!

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Hotel Jen Tanglin–Staycation!

Last month, I had the opportunity to enjoy a staycation just before Christmas with the Partner at the recently refurbished Hotel Jan Tanglin (used to be Traders Hotel). It’s been such a long time since I had a staycation in Singapore and I was really looking forward to the short break, even if the hotel is but a 1 minute drive from my office! I don’t know about you, but I love having staycations.

I’d love a vacation overseas any day of course, but I still love staycations because there’s just no hassle to it, and I have the entire time to fully enjoy the hotel facilities without having to worry about any household chores or cleaning up after that! I’ve stayed in some beautiful hotels around the world, but never got the chance to fully bask in it all because of the need to balance the sight seeing schedule. Being right in the heart of town is another great plus point for me too, I can stay out late and just simply walk back to the hotel without worrying about transport!

Hotel Jen Tanglin - Club Room (11)

Check out this stylishly appointed club room we got to enjoy at Hotel Jen. It has quite a character of its own don’t you think? Love the drawings on the walls, different rooms have different ones. It may not be a very big room compared to other newer hotels, but at 25 sqm, we both felt it was still a comfortable size, and most importantly, very cosy.

Hotel Jen Tanglin - Club Room (12)

I love the decor of every part of the room, the colours and materials chosen are just so soothing to the eye. The little study desk and chair makes me want to type away at my laptop all day and push out 5 blog posts at once! There’s free wifi in the room and around the hotel, as well as ample electrical sockets, some with international configuration so you don’t even have to bring adaptors.

Hotel Jen Tanglin - Club Room (9)

Who doesn’t love an alcove to snuggle into? The Partner wasted no time in plopping himself on the cushy sofa and tried to spy on the people swimming at the pool below. Ask for the pool view if you can, then you can have unblocked views of half of Singapore including the Singapore Botanic Gardens right in front. I was surprised to see that there were very few lights at night coming from the houses.

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Assembly Coffee 2016–Closed

It’s been 2 years since Assembly Coffee opened at Evans Road. How time flies! I remember I was so happy to have a 3rd wave cafe opening near my work place, and since then, Singapore has been inundated, with cafes galore. What a difference 2 years makes.

Despite my love for coffee, I’m not one of those who needs a fix every day. I don’t get a buzz from drinking coffee, and I can have it even at night. It’s more of the idea of relaxing over a cup of beverage that perks me up, so I’ve only visited Assembly Coffee once in a while, when my colleagues have time during lunch to sit down for a cuppa, which is not all that often. I actually dislike doing takeaways as it just defeats the purpose for me.

Anyway, last weekend I was back in the office to do some clearing up and decided to indulge a bit by getting their waffles. Assembly Coffee is not just known for its coffee, they do a mean waffle too. There are currently 5 waffle options on the menu and the 3 of us decided to share the mixed berry compote with vanilla ice cream one.

Mixed Berry Compote Buttermilk Waffles (1)

Mixed Berry Compote Buttermilk Waffles $12.50

I must say the 3 of us unanimously agreed that the waffle was fantastic. The waffle was crispy on the outside, but still fluffy on the inside. We don’t really like waffles that are just crispy throughout, then it feels like we’re just eating crust or something. The generous dollop of vanilla ice cream and mixed berries went really well with the waffle, softening the crispy exterior. Being the sweet toothed me, I wouldn’t mind if it were just a little bit sweeter though. Even the taste of the waffle itself was slightly different from the more one dimensional versions that you get from average cafes. I guess it’s the buttermilk at work.

Mixed Berry Compote Buttermilk Waffles (2)

Another waffle picture just for the fun of it. Scroll down if you want to see Assembly Coffee’s 2016 menu.

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PasarBella Suntec City – What to eat?

Although PasarBella touts itself as a farmer’s market, I don’t really view them as such, as there’s hardly any local produce being sold and it’s mostly eateries instead of a good mix of retail and food. But whatever the name, it’s quite enjoyable going to the PasarBella outlet at The Grand Stand (former Turf City). Guess what, they’ve now opened another outlet at Suntec City so it’s much easier for those without private transportation to get a taste of what PasarBella is like.

Pasar Bella (3)

PasarBella is located at the ground floor of Tower 1

If you’re familiar with PasarBella at The Grandstand, PasarBella at Suntec City isn’t exactly the same. The PasarBella at Suntec City is much smaller, think 1/3 the size? Also, out of the 13 stalls there, 12 are eateries. In fact, PasarBella at Suntec City strikes me more as a grungy and urban foodcourt with an overdose of graffiti laden walls and neon coloured lighting. Order from any stall that you please, collect your food and sit where you will. It’s a pricey food court though, let’s be upfront with that, be prepared to spend at least $10 for lunch there. And there’s no ubiquitous drinks stall selling canned drinks or mineral water, so that’s another $4 or so for a cup of coffee or $6 for juice.

Pasar Bella (1)

Still, I’m sure it must be packed on weekdays with office workers looking to have something different to eat, minus the fuss of deciding on a specific restaurant to go to. The food that we tried was quite good (not thinking about the price), and I would definitely like to go back again to sample more stalls.

Pasar Bella Wolf Burger

Wolf Burgers – The Wolf

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Raffles Hotel Tiffin Room–Delicious Indian Buffet

I have stepped into Raffles Arcade countless times, but not so the actual interiors of the illustrious Raffles Hotel. So it was without hesitation that I accepted an invitation to check out the Tiffin Room at Raffles Hotel. The Tiffin Room serves a North Indian buffet, including vegetarian curries for non-meat eaters. Interestingly, Raffles Hotel’s afternoon tea service is also served at the Tiffin Room and not somewhere else.  Did you know that Raffle’s Hotel Tiffin Room was officially named so way back in 1976?

I’d been to Tiffin Room once with my parents, many years ago, could probably have been a decade ago! I remembered it to be a posh place with lots of delicious curries to choose from and I found it difficult to try every single curry because everything was so delicious and there was just no more space in the stomach! Well, nothing much has changed a decade later, it’s like stepping back in time when I revisited the Tiffin Room a few weeks ago.

Tiffin Room

Curries and other Indian dishes are still the stronghold here, and aside from the salad and cheese bar, don’t be expecting other types of cuisine here. That’s not a problem for me because I love Indian food, but if you don’t, I’d say go with an open mind and you might just be delighted.

Tiffin Room -Kalmi Kebab (Tandoor Baked Boneless Chicken Flavored with Cinnamon Stick and Bay Leaf)

Kalmi Kebab (Tandoor Baked Boneless Chicken Flavored with Cinnamon Stick and Bay Leaf)

One of my favourite dishes of the evening as the chicken drumsticks were succulent and really tender with just a bit of charred taste.

Tiffin Room - Murg Makhanwala (Butter Chicken in Smooth Tomato Sauce)

Murg Makhanwala (Butter Chicken in Smooth Tomato Sauce)

I must say all the curries I tasted were fantastic. Even if you just had the curry itself without the ingredients, I could have finished half a plate of rice just with that.

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