Without a doubt this is a hidden gem! Located in Basement 2 of Westgate Mall in Jurong East, it’s a simple “basement level” eatery that blends in with all the others. But I am consistently impressed by the fresh grilled taste of their pork belly served over rice. PJ also ordered the kimchi beef which is equally delightful.
What I love is that it’s rarely ever crowded. I’m surprised we always chance upon it as being almost empty. For a good price, you get a good lunch of freshly grilled meat (and the sauce is pretty good that it makes you want to eat more rice). They also have other meats and mushrooms on skewers which you can add onto your dish.
My current living arrangement with my partner is simple. We take turns. Every weekend we alternate between his flat in Tampines and my place in Bukit Merah.
We plan to move in together eventually. But for now, we’re enjoying this arrangement of being able to enjoy two sides of the city.
Somewhere in Tampines West (okay, the address is at the end of this post) is a casual Thai restaurant called Soi Thai Kitchen. We both didn’t know it existed until we were walking and exploring the stores near his HDB block. There are two Thai restaurants at the location but we were intrigued with this one which had a larger crowd.
We ordered the Thai minced meat omelette (told you I’m obsessed with it based off a previous post). Added a large plate of Olive fried rice (I think we’d try Pineapple Fried Rice or Thai fried rice on the next trip). But the highlight for me was the dry tom yum. WOW. Every bit of that tom yum flavour… but imagine it as a sauce you could pour over your steamed rice. It was so good I might have it again next week.
I’ll update this post again when we try the other items on the menu.
Soi Thai Kitchen is located at Tampines Street 81, #01-28 Block 824, Singapore
There are a handful of Thai restaurants in the city and in the heartlands. Luckily here near my block, there’s one that sits right across Tiong Bahru Bakery. Little Elephant Thai Bistro sits in a beautiful spot next to coffee shops and a bus stop.
This is one of my favourites in Tiong Bahru.
I’m recently in love with Thai omelettes. These ‘minced meat’ pancakes could be quite oily at times. But they are also fluffy and filling. Add to that a plate of Thai stir-fried morning glory (a touch of spice) or a pot of green curry. Mmm. You have a Sunday brunch fix. Oh, and don’t forget a glass of Thai milk tea. Why is Thai milk tea so damn good.
Little Elephant really has a bistro setting. You can order beers as well. There’s an assortment of seating. Tall tables, tables for four inside, or even a boat-shaped table (where we normally always sit).
Little Elephant Thai Bistro is located at 57 Eng Hoon St, #01-72, Singapore 160057. Take note that it’s closed on Mondays. Closest MRT: Tiong Bahru (2 bus stops away)
I’m starting to cook something other than pork adobo. Clap! I mentioned in a previous post that my boyfriend and I will cook ‘something new’ every Wednesday and feature it in my blog. Last week we had pork steak. This week we listed down butter garlic shrimps, Filipino-style. Like where I get most of my current instructions… I learned this recipe from the ever-reliable Panlasang Pinoy. ❤
Here’s the finished result:
It’s a very easy dish to make. You buy shrimps and you soak them in lemon soda for about 10 minutes at least. I picked out 7-up.
Then you melt half a cup of butter and heat that up. Pouring in minced garlic (the fresh ones are probably way better, but this one in PJ’s kitchen wasn’t too bad). You wait for the bits to turn golden brown before you pour in the shrimp.
This is one of the fun ones to cook. Waiting for the shrimps to turn orange. Watching them soak up the butter and garlic. Then you sprinkle in two tablespoons of parsley. I’m not going to get the credit for this recipe so I’ll point you again to Panlasang Pinoy this time. What would I do as an OFW without Panlasang Pinoy. ❤
The truth is this. I’m aware of restaurant openings, events, and things to do wherever I go. I have lists of places I want to go to and food I want to try. So when PJ offered to take me out on a date one Friday evening, I let go. I let him surprise me.
And surprised I was.
He took me to an address: 5 Purvis Street. All I know is that it’s on the same street as the Clinton Street Baking Co. and Restaurant. But I was wondering if he was going to surprise me with something else.
At 5 Purvis Street is a French restaurant called Saveur (Suh-VERE) which markets itself as “French for everyone”. We entered the shophouse and it’s a casual setting. Tall white walls all the way in. You can see the whole restaurant from the door. This includes the open kitchen at the other end of the long dining hall.
They have a three-course dinner set. But we felt like exploring and trying out some dishes ala carte and sharing the starters and sides.
Starters are divided into warm and cold or salad. We had the Saveur Pasta (SGD 9.00) which is capellini (thin pasta noodles) with ebi, chives, shallots, and in pork sauce and truffle oil. It was a burst of flavor with the pork sauce and truffle (which is normally really strong tasting, right?). But we loved the saltiness of the ebi (shrimp).
Being a French casual restaurant, I wanted to try the rotisserie chicken for one of the mains. PJ and I ordered the Rotisserie Baby Chicken (SGD 22.00) and Pot-Au-Feu (SGD 24.00).
The roasted chicken was tender and I couldn’t stop dipping it in the sauce. The pork belly, cheek, and rib (Pot-Au-Feu) was in this aromatic broth. The pork belly melts in your mouth. Omg. Like… it just dissolves. Lord.
For sides, we ordered the Mash (SGD 6.00) and Braised Lentil & Bacon (SGD 6.00). This is the only way mashed potato should be enjoyed. REAL. Not like your KFC or Popeyes’ Chicken powered mashed potato. The mash was creamy, buttery, with a hint of truffle oil.
The braised lentil and bacon is a strong-tasting side. At least, in that first bite! I was like, WHAT… an assault on the palate. But after a few bites, I couldn’t help myself. It’s a distinct taste from the mains. Loved it.
We didn’t order desserts at Saveur since I was thinking of taking PJ for Korean bingsu around the corner.
Would I recommend Saveur? YES. It’s French casual and the starters, mains, and sides we tried each stood out from each other. We noticed that the restaurant attracts a sizable crowd. PJ was sweet to make reservations for us.
Location:Saveur is on 5 Purvis Street in Singapore. The closest MRT stations are Bugis and Cityhall. Learn more on their website here. It’s located near the National Library and also near Leslie’s.
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One of my new favorite malls to visit. Why? Though it sits next to Fort Canning MRT station on the Downtown Line, it doesn’t have the stressful crowds of MRT stations you’d find in Ang Mo Kio, Cityhall or Tiong Bahru. Liang Court is an old mall filled with Japanese stores and restaurants. It seems to attract a crowd that stays in the nearby condos. It’s laid back.
It also happens to be a major transit point getting from my office (Marina Bay Financial Centre next to Downtown MRT) to my house in Bukit Merah. Bus 195 is a convenient ‘feeder’ bus that takes me from MRT station to my block on a 15-minute ride.
Enough about that. I’ve done some little exploring of this pocket-sized mall and I’ve discovered a restaurant in the basement that specializes in Okinawan cuisine. I’ll write about that next time. Today, I got my ramen fix from Tonkotsu Kazan Ramen. It’s located right across from Starbucks and Subway on the ground level.
Click the images to make them bigger.
Tonkotsu Kazan Ramen is a colourful sight at Liang Court.
Tonkotsu Kazan Ramen at Liang Court.
The table setting.
Help yourself to boiled eggs.
The table setting.
Tonkotsu Shio (Salt) Ramen with a piece of cha shu.
It specializes in “kazan ramen” which is ramen served in a very hot stone bowl with a conical lid cover. But for my first trip here in weeks, I went for the classic tonkotsu ramen with a piece of cha shu.
For about SGD 12-15 (standard price for ramen in Singapore), it’s not too bad. Given you can enjoy free boiled eggs.
It’s good for a quick fix. But my favorite ramen places are still in the Tanjong Pagar area near Orchid Hotel. I want to try the kazan ramen next time and I’ll write an updated review about that here.
Location: Tonkotsu Kazan Ramen, Liang Court (177 River Valley Road). Nearest MRT Station: Fort Canning (Downtown Line).
When the app said that the next Bus 195 to pass by Fort Canning will take 22 minutes (yes, THAT long of an interval), I asked PJ if he wanted to grab a drink at Clarke Quay. Clarke Quay is just a minute away from the bus stop we were at.
A-ha! We should try HEYTEA which serves alcoholic milk tea (how appropriate for the tourist-driven watering hole). Or maybe we could just enjoy brown sugar milk tea.
We walk over to Block A and enter HEYTEA. It’s an Insta-worthy bubble tea establishment that’s brightly lit and has funky tables in the middle. It’s a contrast to the numerous pubs and bars all around which are dimly-lit.
PJ and I couldn’t really decide between the other exotic flavors available. We ended up getting the EXACT SAME Brown Sugar Bobo Bubble Tea. Bobo, by the way, means dumb in Tagalog. But who cares. We’re here for the SUGAR RUSH. No kidding my songkran diet is completed f already.
You can find HEYTEA at Block A in Clarke Quay. Here’s a map for you.
Don’t you love the sound of sizzling meat and vegetables? Teppanyaki is about the experience of having it cooked right in front of you. It makes me smile haha.
Happy to discover a teppanyaki place that isn’t far from my house in Bukit Merah! PJ and I usually go to Orchard for our teppanyaki fix (this is the one at the food court of Wisma Atria).
Location. You can find Express Teppanyaki at Food Republic, VivoCity. If you don’t know where Food Republic is, it’s near the Sentosa Express. Within the food court, Express Teppanyaki is on the left side as you enter.
Price. We spent about SGD 12-16 each here. I think it’s a little cheaper than the one at Wisma Atria. The offerings are the teppanyaki basics you’d find like sliced beef, prawn, and a few other set meals that are bundled in different ways.
Taste. It’s your food court-style teppanyaki so it’s best to manage expectations. Is it good? I’ll say yes. It’s a teppanyaki quick fix. I liked the sliced beef with garlic and chilli bits. This has generous amounts of brown sauce. PJ ordered the king prawn set and I love that more.
Before I talk about Korean food… I’m at 59.6kg! I’ve reduced my carbs intake and I try to exercise at least three times a week. I’ve noticed my tummy area reduced. I’ve also noticed a more prominent jawline.
Earlier, PJ and I met up at Kim Dae Bun in Concord Shopping Center (Orchard Road) to try the Korean food. I wanted something budget (by budget I mean $10 or below, certainly aware budget truly means $5 and below).
I ordered the tender beef set which comes with rice, soup, and a kimchi pairing. Okay, it wasn’t that impressive. Cheap and fills the tummy. But it isn’t out-of-this-world like at a Korean stall inside NEX shopping centre in Serangoon or a Koufu food court in rural Yew Tee.
PJ tried the kim chi soup which was barely spicy (barely mild too). The tofu managed to absorb the soup a bit which was its only highlight.
I don’t know. Two nights of food disappointments. Last night we were at Leslie’s to try the most bland bulalo ever. My review here.