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BAM! Tapas Sake Bar at Tras St, Singapore

By | Food, Fusion | No Comments

It was the husband’s 35th birthday on the 23rd of Sept, and I was stumped about where to go. He’s not exactly fussy, but he has a very discerning palate and his commentary about food can earn him a top food blogger award already, except that… he doesn’t have a food blog. Hahaha.

He LOVES Spanish food – and I don’t mind (although, give me Japanese anytime), so when a friend suggested BAM! Tapas Sake Bar, I thought “Aiyah why not?  Sounds like a perfect marriage – and it’s his night!”. Made a reservation at 6 (that’s when they open) for 730pm, and thank god I did, cos the restaurant was filling up fast right after we were seated!

BAM! Tapas Sake Bar is pretty near one of our favorite dining spots (Teppei Japanese Restaurant) and it wasn’t hard to find – just a little hard to park if you’re in heels and need to park nearer to the restaurant (it’s along a row of shophouses). I was wearing sensible shoes (and always have backups in the car) so we opted to walk from Orchid Hotel, where we parked.

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{ BAM! Tapas Sake Bar }

38 Tras St, Singapore
Tel: 6226 0500 | Website | Facebook | Opening hours & reservations

BAM! has pretty dim lighting, which explains the graininess of the pictures I have for you. Love the simple logo design.

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Menu looks a bit confusing huh? Basically it’s more of X + Y, served with Z. So Calamari + Otah, served with mint something. You can take a look at BAM!’s full and latest ala-carte menu online here.

They also have Omakase ranging from $150 – $190, and set lunches for $38++!

We wanted to get the Suckling Pig served with Paprika & Violet Mustard ($78), and it takes 45 minutes – so if you’re going for this, please order it right after walking in, haha.

BAM actually pairs sake with your food - and for this, they have an excellent selection of sake all housed in this glass cellar which stands out (it's practically placed to make you stare haha) the minute you enter!

BAM actually pairs sake with your food – and for this, they have an excellent selection of sake all housed in this glass cellar which stands out (it’s practically placed to make you stare haha) the minute you enter!

Sorry guys - I'm not a huge drinker, so I went for a very safe mojito

Sorry guys – I’m not a huge drinker, so I went for a very safe mojito

My husband got a very pretty one though (I CANNOT REMEMBER THE NAME I'M SORRY!)

My husband got a very pretty one though (I CANNOT REMEMBER THE NAME I’M SORRY!)

White Button Mushroom Soup, Parmesan, Sake - $9 Served in a cup atop a saucer, looking more like coffee with some serious frothing more than anything else. It was a delicious bowl of soup (much needed for a starving person), albeit intense but I'll definitely order this again!

White Button Mushroom Soup, Parmesan, Sake ($9)
Served in a cup atop a saucer, looking more like coffee with some serious frothing more than anything else. It was a delicious bowl of soup (much needed for a starving person), albeit intense but I’ll definitely order this again!

Prawns, Hummus, Lentils ($15) I love shellfish (except oysters), so this was the first thing on my order list! For $15, you get 4 prawns which was well cooked and went well with the hummus!

Prawns, Hummus, Lentils ($15)
I love shellfish (except oysters), so this was the first thing on my order list! For $15, you get 4 prawns which was well cooked and went well with the hummus!

Calamari, Otah, Mint ($12) My husband was a bit lost when this arrived cos I think he was expecting fried calamari hahahaha. I don't blame him! I love sotong though and this one, stuffed with otah like a Japanese Ikameshi (squid stuffed with rice) was DELISH! Wish they had bigger portions of course, but this was tapas and you aren't expected to be full with just one dish.

Calamari, Otah, Mint ($12)
My husband was a bit lost when this arrived cos I think he was expecting fried calamari hahahaha. I don’t blame him! I love sotong though and this one, stuffed with otah like a Japanese Ikameshi (squid stuffed with rice) was DELISH! Wish they had bigger portions of course, but this was tapas and you aren’t expected to be full with just one dish.

Duck Gyoza, Sherry Beurre Blanc ($17) It looks unassuming. You wouldn't have thought that it would taste THAT GOOD. I will say that this is a must-try in BAM!

Duck Gyoza, Sherry Beurre Blanc ($17)
It looks unassuming. You wouldn’t have thought that it would taste THAT GOOD. I will say that this is a must-try in BAM!

Oh the duck... Gyoza's larger than a normal one - about the size of your palm.

Oh the duck… Gyoza’s larger than a normal one – about the size of your palm.

Cod Fish 'Tripe' Fritters, Iberico XO ($14) The prettiest dish of the night and supposedly a delicacy that's hard to find even in Barcelona, but unfortunately not my cup of tea. It's not bad, but really just not my preference! It's actually the bladder of a fish and tastes chewy. It's also known as the fish maw but the fish maw that we are used to is of a totally different texture.

Cod Fish ‘Tripe’ Fritters, Iberico XO ($14)
The prettiest dish of the night and supposedly a delicacy that’s hard to find even in Barcelona, but unfortunately not my cup of tea. It’s not bad, but really just not my preference! It’s actually the bladder of a fish and tastes chewy. It’s also known as the fish maw but the fish maw that we are used to is of a totally different texture.

Suckling Pig served with Paprika & Violet Mustard ($78) WHOA MAMA. ORDER THIS ONCE YOU WALK THROUGH THE DOOR!!! LOVE how this was cooked. I don't eat much meat but this - if i weren't so full from the earlier dishes, I might have finished everything myself. We ordered only one portion, but it was shared/halved and we got a plate each with a still generous serving of this. It's amazing how little fats this has in it!

Suckling Pig served with Paprika & Violet Mustard ($78)
WHOA MAMA. ORDER THIS ONCE YOU WALK THROUGH THE DOOR!!! LOVE how this was cooked. I don’t eat much meat but this – if i weren’t so full from the earlier dishes, I might have finished everything myself. We ordered only one portion, but it was shared/halved and we got a plate each with a still generous serving of this. It’s amazing how little fats this has in it!

Total bill for the night came up to $200 odd – some people may balk at the price tag, but it’s tapas, and in Barcelona you typically order a few dishes at one go anyway. AND IT’S GOOD! Chef Pepe was fantastic, and had us contemplating coming back for omakase after watching the next table get served one delicious dish after another! Makes me miss Barcelona and Japan at the same time, this place.

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Mummy’s 51st Birthday Celebration at Wan Hao Chinese Restaurant (Marriott Hotel)

By | Birthdays, Chinese, Food, Life | No Comments

It’s hard for me to come to reality with this but my mum just turned 51 in May this year.

FIFTY. ONE.

10 years ago, the 20-year old me very much wanted to just move out and get her out of my hair hahaha. (Don’t we all!)

But fast-foward ten years, after the younger, rebellious me have grown up and gotten married and moved super far away, I wish my parents stayed closer to me (or me to them) so that I could spend more time with them. The weekly dinners we’d have before my brother enlisted in the army have become lesser and lesser, but my heart is always in Eunos Crescent.

I miss my mum’s cooking loads (all mums should cook because there’s no food like home cooked food) but it just isn’t fair to make her slave over the stove on her birthday, so we made plans to head out for a little family dinner with her loved ones, and we chose the famed Wan Hao restaurant in Marriott Hotel, Singapore!

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{ Wan Hao Chinese Restaurant } 
320 Orchard Road | Singapore Marriott Tang Plaza Hotel, Singapore 238865
Website | TripAdvisor | Tel: +65 6831 4605

Wan Hao serves excellent Cantonese cuisine (you know it’s famous when your mum makes a remark about how nice the food is etc etc when you mention that you’ve made a booking at Wan Hao) and has been around since 1995 – that’s 20 years this 2015, and to celebrate their 20th Anniversary, they’ve specially put together a menu featuring the best Signature dishes of all time, with 20 of the most popular and award-winning a la carte dishes from 1995!

We got ourselves a little room so that we could get some privacy!

:D that's part of my chinese name!

:D that’s part of my Chinese name!

寿桃! The folks at Wan Hao realized that it was a birthday celebration and we were all treated to a round of longevity buns!

寿桃!
The kind staff at Wan Hao realized that it was a birthday celebration and we were all treated to a round of longevity buns!

I don’t know about you, but it’s my family thing to make everyone at the table have at least a bite of it for good luck. I love 寿桃s and can finish the entire plate by myself no problem! Hahaha.

The first dish, was Crispy Suckling Pig with Prawn Paste ($30). The sweet sauce dip it came with was perfect pairing with the crispy pig's skin and savoury prawn paste which was cooked as one.

The first proper dish, was Crispy Suckling Pig with Prawn Paste ($30).

One would have thought that this dish of Crispy Suckling Pig would be frightfully oily, but it was not – instead, it was an extremely well balanced dish, with skin and a bit of fat atop prawn paste which was melded together as a bite sized piece.

The sweet sauce dip it came with was perfect pairing with the crispy pig's skin, which was cooked together with the savoury prwan paste.

The sweet sauce dip it came with went absolutely well with it – it was so good, I couldn’t stop popping piece after piece into my mouth!

Then came the Double-boiled Winter Melon Soup with Assorted Seafood, which won compliments from everyone at the table!

Then came the Double-boiled Winter Melon Soup with Assorted Seafood, which won compliments from everyone at the table!

My entire family LOVES soup – every lunch or dinner will definitely have a soup dish and this was hands down the best soup we’ve had in a very long time! The light yet flavourful broth almost had me asking for seconds – the winter melon and seafood were cut up to bite-sized portions (very welcomed as we had a kid in our group) and it was DELICIOUS.

Yum - Pan-Fried Fresh Scallop, Shrimp Paste & Broccoli with Spicy Szechuan Sauce!

Yum – Pan-Fried Fresh Scallop, Shrimp Paste & Broccoli with Spicy
Szechuan Sauce came with huge, WHOLE scallops and was one of the star dishes of the night!

The spicy Szechuan sauce complemented the fresh scallops really well, and the generous portions kept my parents (and I) happy!

Braised Asparagus, Fresh Crab Meat & Crab Roe with Egg White Sauce

Braised Asparagus, Fresh Crab Meat & Crab Roe with Egg White Sauce

If I had a plate of white rice, I would be scooping this onto my plate and finishing every morsel of rice with this! I love crabs, and the accompanying asparagus was the perfect companion to balance out this very savoury mix with crab roe!

This last dish was so adorable that I couldn't stop taking pictures of it!

This last dish was so adorable that I couldn’t stop taking pictures of it!

This beauty that came wrapped in a lotus leaf was none other than the Wok-Fried Lotus Leaf Rice & Waxed Meat!

This beauty that came wrapped in a lotus leaf was none other than the Wok-Fried Lotus Leaf Rice & Waxed Meat!

My aunt was asking me why I chose this dish because we were really full towards the end of the 5-course dinner – but my parents took a bite and no one had questions anymore. Even I was rendered speechless by how good this dish tasted! It’s really just simple fried rice with waxed meat – but the aromatic fragrance emitting from every bite just makes you want to dig in for more. The portion was really just right for us to finish the meal with, and I would really recommend that you try this at least once! It’s really different from all the wok-fried lotus leaf rice I’ve had!

Happy, fully faces after our meal! I'm so glad that my parents loved the dinner and agreed with my choice of restaurant! It's really hard to impress my dad and thankfully Wan Hao's dishes more than met his standards!

Happy, fully faces after our meal! I’m so glad that my parents loved the dinner and agreed with my choice of restaurant! It’s really hard to impress my dad and thankfully Wan Hao’s dishes more than met his standards!

The 3 generations of ladies in the family! Missing my other 2 baby cousins who had school the next day and had to miss this wonderful meal.

The 3 generations of ladies in the family! Missing my other 2 baby cousins who had school the next day and had to miss this wonderful meal.

LOVE.  Missing my little brother who unfortunately had to fulfil his duty as a soldier.

LOVE.
Missing my little brother who unfortunately had to fulfil his duty as a soldier.

Happy birthday Mummy!!!! We love you!!!

Happy birthday Mummy!!!! We love you!!!

Psst, Wan Hao Chinese Restaurant’s having their 20th Anniversary celebrations till 31st July 2015, and you can still try out the dishes I’ve mentioned in this post! Plus, dine on Mondays and enjoy special prices! Please call Wan Hao at +65 6831 4605 to check for promotions and for reservations! 

Japanese beef with garlic fried rice, $18. Didn't try this but the other couple finished every single morsel of it.

On the first day of Christmas… Japanese food – Takumi & Marusaya!

By | Food, Japanese | No Comments

’twas the night before Christmas when Foodie A asked Foodie B if she’d like to go have Christmas makan, and so they made reservations.

Violet Oon only had buffet at a staggering price of $65 per pax (what?) so it Foodie A had to find another solution.

Me: “How about Japanese food? If they are open, that is.”

Casey “Japanese restaurants don’t close on Christmas!”

*calls restaurant*

“Hello? Hi! Are you open tomorrow (25th)?”

Very Japanese Sounding Man: “Yes we are!”

“Are your lunch sets available?”

VJSM: “Yes!”

“Can I make a reservation please? For 4 pax. My name is Evonne.”

VJSM: “E…”

“E-vonne”

VJSM: “E…bo…”

“EEEEEEE-VON”

VJSM: “Okay, E-BON!”

And that’s how I knew we were definitely in for a good meal. Japanese restaurant + japanese waitstaff = 90% of the time, good food!

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The Very Japanese Sounding Man, who is really Japanese lah.

The Very Japanese Sounding Man, who is really Japanese lah.

{ Takumi Tokyo @ Keppel Bay }

#02-01 Marina @ Keppel Bay
Open Daily, Lunch: 12 – 230pm (last order 2pm) | Dinner: 6 – 1030pm (last order 10pm)
Website | Hungrygowhere | Tripadvisor 

Takumi Tokyo offers robatayaki (炉端焼き, slow grilled over hot charcoal), teppanyaki (鉄板焼き, cooked on an iron griddle) and ala carte menu items.

But the draw for this place, would be the express lunch sets which are super value-for-money, and definitely the reason why we were there.

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Located on the 2nd floor of Marina @ Keppel Bay, it offers a view of the waters and yachts but you'll have to sit pretty near the Teppanyaki area for that.

Located on the 2nd floor of Marina @ Keppel Bay, it offers a view of the waters and yachts but you’ll have to sit pretty near the Teppanyaki area for that.

We were seated in a cozy corner, away from the view and smell of the Teppanyaki. The place is well ventilated and you do not leave with a cooked food scent, which I personally dislike.

We were seated in a cozy corner, away from the view and smell of the Teppanyaki. The place is well ventilated and you do not leave with a cooked food scent, which I personally dislike.

The service was prompt and courteous (very typical Japanese) and most of the patrons and waitstaff were Japanese on the day I visited. Tables were swiftly cleaned and disinfected after the departure of every table.

Their set lunches come with a serving of Chawanmushi for you to start with – it was smooth, not too salty and contained bamboo shoots, chicken, ginko nuts and mushroom!

One of the most value for money sets - the Tempura Soba set gives you a good serving of noodles, tempura and even Inari sushi (rice in beancurd skin)!

One of the most value for money sets – the Tempura Soba set at $18 gives you a good serving of noodles, tempura and even Inari sushi (rice in beancurd skin)! A standard Tempura ala carte would already set you back $28, so yes, this was definitely hands down the best lunch set!

Noodles were cooked just nicely, and springy! The waitress was very nice and offered us 2 more dipping bowls when they realized that we were sharing this. That's so nice of them!

Noodles were cooked just nicely, and springy! The waitress was very nice and offered us 2 more dipping bowls when they realized that we were sharing this. That’s so nice of them!

All sets come with Miso soup as well, which had large pieces of wakame <3

All sets come with Miso soup as well, which had large pieces of wakame <3

Pork with Ginger set, $15  (comes with rice on the side) was one of the dishes I was going for - i LOVE PORK! The pork belly slices wasn't overcooked nor was the ginger taste too strong - and also the serving was pretty huge actually!

Teppanyaki Pork with Ginger set, $15 (comes with rice on the side) was one of the dishes I was going for – i LOVE PORK! The pork belly slices wasn’t overcooked nor was the ginger taste too strong – and also the serving was pretty huge actually!

Japanese beef with garlic fried rice, $18. Didn't try this but the other couple finished every single morsel of it.

Japanese beef with garlic fried rice, $18. Didn’t try this but the other couple finished every single morsel of it.

The other couple. Hahaha.

The other couple. Hahaha.

Japanese Beef Steak set, $48. This one belonged to a different section on the menu - it was in the standard lunch menu list, which saw prices between $35 - $55 instead of the $15 sets.   There was another menu with sashimi as well, but that was $80!  The beef was quite nice and well cooked, although it wasn't melt in your mouth spectacular. Size was good for a lady hahaha and OMG there was a slice of SWEET POTATO!

Japanese Beef Steak set, $48.
This one belonged to a different section on the menu – it was in the standard lunch menu list, which saw prices between $35 – $55 instead of the $15 sets.
There was another menu with sashimi as well, but that was $80!
The beef was quite nice and well cooked, although it wasn’t melt in your mouth spectacular. Size was good for a lady hahaha and OMG there was a slice of SWEET POTATO!

All lunch sets came with dessert as well - for the express lunch set, it was fruits, but for my standard lunch set, it was the cutest miniature trio of creme brûlée, a tiny slice of sponge cheesecake and a mini scoop of matcha ice cream! And I forgot to snap a pic before I popped the cheesecake into my mouth.

All lunch sets came with dessert as well – for the express lunch set, it was fruits, but for my standard lunch set, it was the cutest miniature trio of creme brûlée, a tiny slice of sponge cheesecake and a mini scoop of matcha ice cream!
And I forgot to snap a pic before I popped the cheesecake into my mouth.

Had a fantastic time at Takumi, and we'll definitely return again!

Had a fantastic time at Takumi, and we’ll definitely return again!

The Marina @ Keppel Bay also had a nice view and nice blue-green waters.

The Marina @ Keppel Bay also had a nice view and nice blue-green waters.

Le husband <3

Le husband <3

And why would I give up a chance to take an OOTD with this amazing backdrop? ; p Thanks Trish!  GAP Shirt, ZARA shorts & Proenza Schouler bag.

And why would I give up a chance to take an OOTD with this amazing backdrop? ; p Thanks Trish!
GAP Shirt, ZARA shorts & Proenza Schouler bag.

We were almost done with lunch when the boys started asking us what’s for dinner -_-|

We decided on Marusaya, a place in Robertson Quay which serves authentic dashi ramen! Yes, japanese again. Can never get sick of Japanese food!

And we knew this place was authentic because like my experience with Takumi, lol the server couldn’t pronounce Casey’s name again while he was making a reservation. He had to pronounce it 3 times like I did, hahaha! I think we all need Japanese names. 

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{ Marusaya }

86 Robertson Quay | Tel: 6732 0383 | Facebook
Opening hours: Weekdays: 5 to 11pm | Weekends: 11.30am to midnight

 

If you like Japanese food, you might have heard “dashi” thrown here and there – but here, I was better educated on what dashi is, and the essence of dashi!

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You see, Marusaya IS an authentic Japanese restaurant, but unlike others, they do not have an existing shop in Japan before they decided to set up store here. Marusaya’s main business is actually in the making and the export of dashi / bonito and they decided to set up store in Singapore because the founder likes Singapore!

They actually set up a stall previously ago at Lau Pa Sat, but it has since closed down and the Robertson Quay store is the only Marusaya store around – it’s about 2 months old, which explains why I didn’t see it around previously!

Marusaya at Robertson Quay  is located 2 doors away from the more famous Toby's Estate and parking is difficult to find (or you have to walk very far). The best recommendation would be to park at either 1) Miramar hotel which is directly opposite it, 2) Martin Road (where Bochinche is), or 3) public parking outside M Hotel which is about 5 mins walk away.

Marusaya at Robertson Quay is located 2 doors away from the more famous Toby’s Estate and parking is difficult to find (or you have to walk very far). The best recommendation would be to park at either 1) Miramar hotel which is directly opposite it, 2) Martin Road (where Bochinche is), or 3) public parking outside M Hotel which is about 5 mins walk away.

They offer both indoor and outdoor seating

They offer both indoor and outdoor seating (if you really want to look at the brown river water…) and about 5 of their staff are Japanese the day I visited! So expect very polite service, and also some Japlish, hehe.

Dashi is typically made of kombu (kelp) and katsuobushi (skipjack tuna), and commonly used as soup stock – over here in Marusaya, they make their food with their very own dashi (not those instant ones!), and noodles are ALL handmade!  What an apt time to be trying Marusaya too, because the hot, MSG-free soup was really welcomed during this cold + rainy season!

They actually slice the bonito into flakes FRESHLY for you - then it is added into your soup after it's been served! Such attention to detail. Only the more traditional and older eateries do this.  Their bonito have been aged for at least 2 years - and they are selling it at $28 for a 3 year old one. Of cos er, you have to purchase the slicer box set for you to actually slice it so thinly. And that costs a whooping $200!

They actually slice the bonito into flakes FRESHLY for you – then it is added into your soup after it’s been served! Such attention to detail. Only the more traditional and older eateries do this.
Their bonito have been aged for at least 2 years – and they are selling it at $28 for a 3 year old one. Of cos er, you have to purchase the slicer box set for you to actually slice it so thinly. And that costs a whooping $200!

Frozen beer for you? The froth is like, always there. XD according to Casey, the texture is interesting!

Frozen beer for you? The froth is like, always there. XD according to Casey, the texture is interesting!

Started with some dashi maki tamago, $12! DA YUMS.

Started with some dashi maki tamago, $12! DA YUMS.

See the bottle on the right? We all thought it was soy sauce. IT ISN'T soya sauce! Okay crap I cannot remember what it is by now (maybe I should take notes next time) but it's also very flavorful and you are supposed to pour this into the daikon (radish), and...

See the bottle on the right? We all thought it was soy sauce. IT ISN’T soya sauce!
Okay crap I cannot remember what it is by now (maybe I should take notes next time) but it’s also very flavorful and you are supposed to pour this into the daikon (radish), and…

eat it like this!  The dashi maki tamago is made with a high concentration of dashi - would have probably been nicer if sweeter, but it tastes really good still!

eat it like this! The dashi maki tamago is made with a high concentration of dashi – would have probably been nicer if sweeter, but it tastes really good still!

Next up on the menu, Gyusuji Dote Ni (japanese braised beef), $18.  It's a really small bowl, but filled with so much meat and Konnyaku bits as well, which I loved!

Next up on the menu, Gyusuji Dote Ni (japanese braised beef), $18.
It’s a really small bowl, but filled with so much meat and Konnyaku bits as well, which I loved!

See how small it is? Hahaha. But the serving size was just nice!

See how small it is? Hahaha. But the serving size was just nice!

Next - Furo Fuki Daikon, $14.  Simmered daikon with minced chicken bits AND some yuzu in the soup.  Did you know that I'm mad about daikon?  I LOVE THIS DISH SO MUCH1

Next – Furo Fuki Daikon, $14.
Simmered daikon with minced chicken bits AND some yuzu in the soup.
Did you know that I’m mad about daikon?
I LOVE THIS DISH SO MUCH!

This is the, uh, Bukkake Udon ($23/$16/$14).  It's grated Yam Root, with half boiled egg and topped off with bonito flakes!

This is the, uh, Bukkake Udon ($23/$16/$14).
It’s grated Yam Root, with half boiled egg and topped off with bonito flakes!

They actually slice the bonito into flakes FRESHLY for you - then it is added into your soup after it's been served! Such attention to detail. Only the more traditional and older eateries do this.  There is a drawer on the bottom, which is where they pull out and serve atop your noodles!

They actually slice the bonito into flakes FRESHLY for you – then it is added into your soup after it’s been served! Such attention to detail. Only the more traditional and older eateries do this.
There is a drawer on the bottom, which is where they pull out and serve atop your noodles!

Tempura Zaru Udon ($28/$20/$17)

Tempura Zaru Udon ($28/$20/$17)

Ramen!

Ramen!

All their noodles come in different sizes – which is great for ladies, isn’t it? Or those who do not want a full lunch!

The menu is still in the midst of fine-tuning, but I did wish that I’d ordered the Pasta instead! That one looks really goooood. I’m definitely going to order that and there will be a next time even though I have to walk quite a bit to get there! (I’m ultimate when it comes to being lazy in walking haha so you know that this is good stuff for me to want to walk there!)

When the tencho (manager!) briefed me about how this store came about and their core business, I was keen to purchase bonito and kelp for making soup – and they do offer that!

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Kombu, Bonito shavings, 4 ingredient powder (kelp, bonito, and I cannot remember what), dashi sauce (for adding flavor to soup, etc). The prices aren’t as incredible as the ones below…

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That, my friend, is the bonito shaving box (box cover, shaving blade, drawer etc) which costs $200. WHAT! In comparison, the bonito is rather reasonable at $28 for a 3-year dried one. *sweatdrops* haha.

The cups in the basket you see – is a set for a Japanese drinking game, as my friend has uncovered!

#BeKuHai – #Japanese #drinking #game. The dice at the bottom dictates which of the cups you drink from. #DrinkingGames #sake #Marusaya

A photo posted by James Tan (@fotomaniac) on

Thank god I found a noodle loving friend, hahahaha!

Thank god I found a noodle loving friend, hahahaha!

Experienced so much good food and good service that it put me in a GREAT mood! And also belly very happy, haha. I’ll definitely be back at these places again, and if you love Japanese food, you really should check these places out! In fact, I’m headed back to Takumi in less than 12 hours at time of writing, with my dad and bro : p

Thank you all for reading, nope this wasn’t a sponsored post and I hope everyone had a great Christmas! <3

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Huatians’ XMAS ’14 dinner at 49 Seats!

By | Food, Fusion, Western | No Comments

I don’t even remember how it started, but a group of me and my husband’s mutual friends are called the “Huatians”, because our group chat is called… “Huat Chat”. I think it was when everyone was still going “Huat ah!” for everything haha.

But anyway, I’ve enjoyed this group’s company even before we got married, and wow, it’s been a good 4-5 years! Christmas gatherings are no exceptions for this group and we crack our heads on where to go because this group is pretty huge. Quite fortunately for us, 49 Seats saved us by offering to host all 12 of us at their newly opened Orchard Central outlet!

(pic by Ron Lee. Thank you!)

(pic by Ron Lee. Thank you!)

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49 Seat’s newest outlet, ironically, is much bigger than their Kreta Ayer one and has a total of 88 seats instead! And with the #08-08 unit number it’s like double the “huat”! But the tables, chairs, and the look from their main outlet has been kept very much the same here!

{ 49 Seats }

Facebook | Instagram | hungrygowhere

49 Seats has been around for some time and I know that the main outlet opens only after 6, but even I was surprised to learn that they open till 430am in the morning on Fri & Sat! That’s like another spot added to the list for people who feel munchy at night or need some place to get nosh post clubbing/pubbing!

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Main Outlet
49 Kreta Ayer Rd
Mon – Thurs 6pm – 1pm
Fri & Sat: 6pm – 4.30am
Tel: 62254332
*closed on sundays*
Orchard Central Outlet
181 Orchard Road, Orchard Central #08-08
Mon – Fri: Lunch: 11.30am – 2.30pm | Dinner: 5.30pm – 10pm
Sat & Sun: 11am – 10pm
Tel: 65095895
Started off with their cheesefries! Shoestring-cut fries with yummy cheese drizzled all over. Carbs always welcomed here!

Started off with their cheesefries! Shoestring-cut fries with yummy cheese drizzled all over. Carbs always welcomed in mah belly!

Most of us had either Pumpkin or Mushroom Soup!

Most of us had either Pumpkin or Mushroom Soup! It’s served with toasted bread.

Fish dips with Alscampi sauce

Fish dips, which was served with a bowl of Alscampi sauce on the side!

Prawn fritters, which also comes with Alscampi sauce .

Prawn fritters!

The Alscampi sauce is the star of the day! Actually its why I love 49 Seats - the sauce is so good, it goes with just about EVERYTHING.

The Alscampi sauce is like, the 招牌 sauce of the restaurant! Actually, its why I visit 49 Seats for – the sauce is so good, it goes with just about EVERYTHING.

See this bowl of escargots? Yep it was dipped in too. And the fries as well. And the onion rings.

See this bowl of escargots? Yep it was dipped in and devoured with the alscampi sauce too. And the fries as well. And the onion rings. EVERYTHING.

The Alscampi sauce (which was gone in a FLASH) contains seasfood - two whole shrimps, clams, and a mussel! DA YUM.

The Alscampi sauce (which was gone in a FLASH) contains seasfood – two whole shrimps, clams, and a mussel! DA YUM. It’s served piping hot but it has a nicer and clingier texture after it’s cooled down and tastes much better when it’s much more viscous (cooled down) too!

Chicken Chop with Black Pepper Sauce for the meat lovers

Chicken Chop with Black Pepper Sauce for the meat lovers

Chicken Chop with Mushroom sauce was what I ordered, and I LOVE IT! Super yummy and the pasta went nicely with it too (I need carbs. CARBS)

I don’t usually eat chicken, but some how I felt like I could do with some chicken that day and I got the Chicken Chop with Mushroom sauce – I LOVED IT! Chicken was tender, the sauce was really good, and it was served with a serving of pasta at the side (yes yes me love carbs!).

Fish and chips... with ALSCAMPI SAUCE!!!  One of the most sought after main dishes in here!

Fish and chips… with ALSCAMPI SAUCE!!!
One of the most sought after main dishes in here!

Pan Fried Fish with Alscampi sauce! The healthier alternative to fish and chips. But of course cheat a little with alscampi sauce to complete everything lah ; p

Pan Fried Fish with Alscampi sauce! The healthier alternative to fish and chips. But of course, cheat a little with alscampi sauce to complete everything lah ; p

What would a Huat Gathering be without our very first Huat Baby, Ardan Xu?

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He’s such a sweet tempered baby and allows everyone to carry him…. and he has such a nonchalant look on his face too. I sure hope he stays this way till he’s older XD

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Every year we also do a secret santa gift exchange and it is quite possibly the most fun part of the christmas gathering > : D BECAUSE WE GET TO TROLL ON OTHERS. (Basically, secret santa means that whoever you’re buying for dont know that you’re his santa).

We gathered the gifts with name tags and… threw them into a garbage bag on the floor LOL. Damn winner, I know!

THIS IS ONE FINE TROLL GIFT. hahhahaa! Chat contents too explicit to share but it was really funny (for all of us!)

THIS IS ONE FINE TROLL GIFT. hahhahaa! Chat contents too explicit to share but it was really funny (for all of us!)

I mean, just check out everyone’s expressions while opening their gift, hoping that they wouldn’t get the best gift of the year – Han’s naked photo, all prettily decorated in a frame. D:

*drumrolls*

*drumrolls*

SHE GOT THE NAKED PHOTO!!!!

SHE GOT THE NAKED PHOTO!!!!

The photo was passed around the table and oh god, the looks we got from the entire restaurant... (I later zoomed in on my snaps and checked out people's expressions and eyes on the photo LOL)

The photo was passed around the table for everyone to scrutinize the good PS job (of course it’s not a real naked selfie!) and oh god, the looks we got from the entire restaurant… (I later zoomed in on my snaps and checked out people’s expressions and eyes on the photo LOL)

Tadah - a Heineken beer tree! XD  My gift to everyone was a can of beer! with a personalized tag, LOL. Since we couldn't find a hotel to hold it in time, why not let them enjoy it at the comfort of their own home? Haha. BTW, 49 Seats serves beer, and at really great prices too! You need to head to their FB to check out the promotions!

Tadah – a Heineken beer tree! XD
My gift to everyone was a can of beer! with a personalized tag, LOL. Since we couldn’t find a hotel to hold it in time, why not let them enjoy it at the comfort of their own home? Haha. BTW, 49 Seats serves beer, and at really great prices too! You need to head to their FB to check out the promotions!

And thus concludes the dinner with my favorite company! <3 I love you all and I wouldn't trade the world for a better group chat than you guys. The shit we say... I should compile it into a series of posts or comics, hahahaha!

And thus concludes the dinner with my favorite company!

Disclaimer & Notice:

The dinner was sponsored thanks to the generous folks at 49 Seats (Thank you!), and we definitely could afford to pay for our dinner (it was our intention to, but things just fell into place).

A thought crept into my mind and you know what, it’s Christmas, I think I kena gongtao by the spirit of giving. haha. And that’s how I went around collecting money from everyone, and we decided to donate the lump sum to a beneficiary 49 Seats picks!

We raised a total of $310 SGD. : ) 

I’m super proud of the giving spirit from the Huatians! And 49Seats picked the Make-A-Wish foundation!

huatchat-donation-to-makeawish

Make-A-Wish is a global foundation with affiliates in many countries, and grants wishes to kids with life-threatening medical conditions between the age of 3 – 18. For the past 11 years, Make-A-Wish Singapore has granted over 1000 wishes, and they believe that it takes away the family and child’s pain temporarily and helps them to look forward to an exciting venture in their life.

I know 49 Seats could have picked any other charity, but this one struck home, because I’m witnessing the pain my dear friend, Anne, has gone through for the past year after her baby was diagnosed with a heart condition since birth, and not just one that could be fixed by surgery (how we wished it was that simple). Guiltily, I haven’t visited much – I am so sorry, AnneAnne! Noah is now ONE, and I hope one day his wish can be fulfilled by the Make-A-Wish foundation too! GO, NOAH!

Please donate or volunteer your time to the Make-A-Wish Singapore foundation if you’d like to this Christmas, and hopefully together, we can put smiles on more children’s faces!

Thank you, 49 Seats and my dearest Huatians for making this
Christmas a fulfilling one (both tummy and heart).

Please do check out 49 Seats’ facebook page to keep yourself updated with their fabulous promos and deals, especially this one for the 24th and 31st december! I hope everyone will have a Merry Christmas!!! <3

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Brunch at On The Table Singapore, aka Lola’s Sister Cafe!

By | Brunch, Food, Life | One Comment

{ On The Table }

118 Pasir Panjang Road, Singapore 118541
Tel: 9780 8094 | Facebook Page | Instagram | email them at onthetablesg@gmail.com
Open from 11am – 10pm (Tues – Fri) and 10am -10pm (Weekends). Closed on Mondays. Last order at 9pm / 930pm respectively.

Cafes in the west are always welcomed – especially ones with good food! *cheers* After the success of Lola, which is located in Kovan, the owners decided to open another cafe when they came across a space which carried the vibe they wanted for a cafe!

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And this outlet is just that – like Lola, the shop space is decked out in industrial chic – pretty hanging lights, metal chairs, concrete walls and floorings and plenty of wooden elements in the form of crates, tables and even pallets stacked as tables! After spending an afternoon (3.5 hours to be exact) there, I’ve realized that the place is incredibly photogenic even in the afternoon – the darker ambiance of the place somehow lets you get beautiful bokeh if your camera is capable of shallow depth of field imaging.

It is located along Pasir Panjang, just next to Fat Boys, and if you’re driving – simply turn left into Pepys Road and there’s public parking available – limited lots though! Popped by on a Sunday morning at about 11 – On The Table is about 6 months old (they opened in May!), and business’ reallyyyy good!

For the caffeine addicts - OTT serves coffee from Dutch Colony and Jewel Coffee!

For the caffeine addicts – OTT serves coffee from Dutch Colony and Jewel Coffee!

I’m not coffee connoisseur (I don’t do coffee!), but my kopi addict friends found it pretty pleasant!

Water is free as long as you self-serve!

Water is free as long as you self-serve!

The staff were friendly, smiley and unobtrusive - I had to get sharing plates myself / ask for it, but I didn't mind that.

The staff were friendly, smiley and unobtrusive – I had to get sharing plates myself / ask for it, but I didn’t mind that.

They don't have service charge in the bill, so we gave tips for being so friendly and tolerant with my group! ; )

They don’t have service charge in the bill, so we gave tips for being so friendly with my group! ; )

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They menu had a small selection of food, similar to Lola’s but I think it was enough! There were plenty of hits on the list – you can view their current menu on their facebook page here (food) and here (drinks/desserts).

First up... HONEY GLAZED WINGS!

First up… HONEY GLAZED WINGS!

I haven’t enjoyed wings this much in a long while! I’m no food blogger ah, but oh my god this was delicious, especially with the honey over it! The wings and drumlets were not too greasy and it tasted really nice. I’m super loving it and I’ll be back for just this and the waffles, hahaha.

A couple of our friends were late so 3 of us ordered this to share - Chicken wings, Fries with Truffle Mayo dip, and Bangers & Mash!

A couple of our friends were late so 3 of us ordered this to share – Chicken wings, Fries with Truffle Mayo dip, and Bangers & Mash!

When I uploaded a picture of #OTT onto my Instagram  I was told by a former chef to try their Bangers & Mash - and they were really really good! Both my husband and Ron loved it and they almost finish the entire plate if not for the fact that they had to save some stomach space for later.

When I uploaded a picture of #OTT onto my Instagram I was told by a former chef to try their Bangers & Mash – and they were really really good! Both my husband and Ron loved it and they almost finish the entire plate if not for the fact that they had to save some stomach space for later.

The fries were firm and thick cut - I prefer mine shoestring, but this was delicious! I like that the truffle wasn't on the fries because not everyone liked truffle - instead it was in the mayo dip *eyes with hearts* They were actually sold out on this at night!

The fries were firm and thick cut – I prefer mine shoestring, but this was delicious! I like that the truffle wasn’t on the fries because not everyone liked truffle – instead it was in the mayo dip *eyes with hearts* They were actually sold out on this at night!

Washed my wings down with the Organic Pear & Apple Juice, $6.

Washed the wings down with the Organic Pear & Apple Juice, $6.

And since we were still waiting for our friends, I took more pictures hahaha. I think this was like the best seat in the house - it seats 6 comfortably, and what a great view from across! With the hanging lights it makes for a great photo (you'll see that later!) *eyes with hearts again*

And since we were still waiting for our friends, I took more pictures hahaha. I think this was like the best seat in the house – it seats 6 comfortably, and what a great view from across! With the hanging lights it makes for a great photo (you’ll see that later!) *eyes with hearts again*

A rare picture of Yang and I that's not a selfie. Heng ah got Ron Lee to help us take photos! Eh, this was not staged ok! That's why smile until cannot see my eyes.

A rare picture of Yang and I (ok, mainly me) that’s not a selfie. Heng ah got Ron Lee to help us take photos! Eh, this was not staged ok! That’s why smile until cannot see my eyes.

And the friends arrived! First, the baby. I mean, my friends and their baby. The baby is the most important cos I have a need to molest him weekly. HAHA

And the friends arrived! First, the baby. I mean, my friends and their baby. The baby is the most important cos I have a need to molest him weekly. HAHA

The bff who's also here to molest the baby before she jets off to Norway and take on -15deg weather for 3 whole months while chasing the prettiest sights on earth.

The bff who’s also here to molest the baby before she jets off to Norway and take on -15deg weather for 3 whole months while chasing one of the prettiest sights on earth.

While waiting for the food. Just one week and his expressions have morphed from bewildered to frowny!

While waiting for the food. Just one week and his expressions have morphed from bewildered to frowny! So I frown with him lor haha.

And then the food came! Yes there was a second round for the Honey Glazed Wings : x

And then the food came! Yes there was a second round for the Honey Glazed Wings : x

The Big One, $18 Pork sausage, honey glazed bacon, baked portobello, mixed salad, sunny side eggs!

The Big One, $18
Pork sausage, honey glazed bacon, baked portobello, mixed salad, sunny side eggs!

Ultimate Croissant, $14 Butter Croissant, honey glazed bacon, mayo, honey, scrambed eggs, cheddar cheese, served with salad.

Ultimate Croissant, $14
Butter Croissant, honey glazed bacon, mayo, honey, scrambed eggs, cheddar cheese, served with salad.

Tomato Swimmer Crab Linguine, $16 Garlic, Crabmet, Tomato, Rocket, Tomato Cream Sauce & Linguine

Tomato Swimmer Crab Linguine, $16
Garlic, Crabmet, Tomato, Rocket, Tomato Cream Sauce & Linguine

Prawn Aglio Olio, $18 Jumbo prawns, garlic, chilli, linguine

Prawn Aglio Olio, $18
Jumbo prawns, garlic, chilli, linguine

The food was reasonably priced AND without GST or Service Charge – the Butter Croissant at $14 was super huge and filling! I saw one on every table and on our table itself there were 3 orders for it! It is one of the most popular items at Lola and they’ve brought it over. My Prawn Aglio Olio was a little oily but otherwise it was not too bad – would prefer the Tomato Swimmer Crab pasta though!

Did I already mention that... they serve waffles too?!?!?!

Did I already mention that… they serve waffles too?!?!?!

With ice cream made in-house, too! Without stabilizers and just as creamy as others - I loved their ice cream!

With ice cream made in-house, too! Without stabilizers and just as creamy as others – I loved their ice cream!

While waiting for our order to come we had another round of playing with the baby hehehe.

Caught Big Hero 6 on Saturday and got a plushie too! Thank you, Disney! I brought Baymax out to meet Ardan and it kept him amused for quite a while because my plush could talk!

Caught Big Hero 6 on Saturday and got a plushie too! Thank you, Disney! I brought Baymax out to meet Ardan and it kept him amused for quite a while because my plush could talk!

And if you prefer natural lighting, just sit nearer to the doors - I love this shot Ron took for me with my Olympus EPL7. It was perfect and check out the baby boy's big eyes! *melts*

And if you prefer natural lighting, just sit nearer to the doors – I love this shot Ron took for me with my Olympus EPL7. It was perfect and check out the baby boy’s big eyes! *melts*

Then my waffle arrived after about 10 minutes and I promptly passed him over to Veronica, aka 怪阿姨 number 2 hahaha.

Big boss pose!

Big boss pose!

THE. WAFFLE. IS. SO. GOOD! I don't know about others - some people found that it wasn't buttery or sweet enough but the waffle to me, was just nice - crispy on the outside and soft on the inside - it wasn't too sweet and that meant it didn't overpower the ice cream's taste!  I picked Bailey's Brownie (one of the more popular flavors) and Cookies & Cream to share with Veronica and we practically polished off the entire thing.  This Waffles + double scoop ice cream will set you back just $10. *eyes with hearts again*

THE. WAFFLE. IS. SO. GOOD!
I don’t know about others – some people found that it wasn’t buttery or sweet enough but the waffle to me, was just nice – crispy on the outside and soft on the inside – it wasn’t too sweet and that meant it didn’t overpower the ice cream’s taste!
I picked Bailey’s Brownie (one of the more popular flavors) and Cookies & Cream to share with Veronica and we practically polished off the entire thing.
This Waffles + double scoop ice cream will set you back just $10. *eyes with hearts again*

You know what else OTT has? THIS EGG SHAPED STRING CHAIR which was a perfect photography accessory for a toddler or a baby! In fact, founder June told me that it's commonly used for baby photo opps!

You know what else OTT has? THIS EGG SHAPED STRING CHAIR near the entrance which was a perfect photography accessory for a toddler or a baby! In fact, founder June told me that it’s commonly used for baby photo opps! Ardan totally looking #likeaboss in this one hehehe.

And then somewhere near when we were about to leave, Ardan was falling asleep in Veronica's arms... and Veronica, in her own words, "was reduced to a puddle of goo". I think there were 2 puddles there. *melts too*

And then somewhere near when we were about to leave, Ardan was falling asleep in Veronica’s arms… and Veronica, in her own words, “was reduced to a puddle of goo”. I think there were 2 puddles there. *melts too*

The Westies of Huatchat (erm, just people from my chatgroup who stay in the west) with a thorn from Seng Kang (have to give her credit for coming all the way down) haha.

The Westies of Huatchat (erm, just people from my chatgroup who stay in the west) with a thorn from Seng Kang (have to give her credit for coming all the way down) haha.

And us again, with June, one of the founders of the cafe! Thank you for having us over, On The Table!

And us again, with June, one of the founders of the cafe! Thank you for having us over, #onthetablesg!

Till the next molest session, Ardan!

Till the next molest session, Ardan!

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