marmalade pantry, town

good, better-than-average bistro food at this branch of the yummy-mummy chain in the ion shopping mall. this is a long post, because I came here twice in barely a week – and I’ll tell you why: the food is pretty decent, the prices competitive for the area, and there aren’t much better options around for a place to sit down and have some cake and tea.

it’s pretty flabbergasting to realize that though the orchard road precinct is hangout-de-rigueur for most people on the weekends, and so ought to (and does) have a slew of eateries, there really isn’t much to eat around there, just a whole lot of overly expensive sit-down places or trendy takeaway options. this place remains my fall-back option when I’m out with the girlfriends, and has been since I first visited their palais renaissance outlet nearly five years ago.

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the food may not be spectacularly surprising, but it is reliable and very enjoyable. the menu runs the gamut of european-fusion-ish bistro dishes: easy brunch food, salads and sandwiches, proper entrées and pud. I tend to come here for brunch or tea, and so the menu does me well – don’t come expecting a formal dinner service here, it ain’t that sort place.

I liked the chicken and avocado salad: a rather large portion of suitably ripe avocado and quite a bit of chicken topped with a poached egg –  the spicy oriental beef salad was a little less substantial, though still quite tasty.


I managed to try their cashew hummus with tomato focaccia, and this was a let-down. the bread was very good, airy and tasty in the best sort of way, but the hummus: there were chopped cashews atop the rather measly portion, but it really didn’t taste like anything. I think it could be an issue of underseasoning, but it’s rather astounding how ingredients can be worked into having no flavour at all – especially unforgiveable when the hummus is the eponymous star of the dish; skip this.


truth be told though,  my constant visits are for their sweets. they have the same sort of style as the p.s. cafe chain (and both do a mean sticky date pudding). the granny smith and stem ginger pudding – really a rift on the standard toffee pud formula, is a slightly gingery sponge and salted caramel drizzled atop really good vanilla ice cream (they use a very creamy and delicious one), with cooked apples – still a little sour, almost pickle-like. I think the apples were the weakest component, but the other bits fantastic. the massive slab of carrot cake was also pretty good – the cake layers might have been a little dry, but still very tasty, and there was quite a bit of frosting – if that’s your sort of thing.

on the second visit, I got to try something new: their caramelized pear and salted caramel bread pudding. doesn’t that sound fantastic! and it really was quite intriguing – two rectangular slabs of bread pudding are wrapped with filo, baked to a pale golden, and topped with another scoop of that delicious vanilla ice cream. the filo was a little floury – I think it could have been baked a little longer, or brushed with an egg wash – but I’m quibbling: that bare drizzle of salted caramel on the plate was just the right accent to the pud – it was a great way to finish the meal.

Marmalade Pantry City
ION Orchard #03-22
2 Orchard Turn
Singapore 238801
tel +65 6734 2700

p.s. I had a disappointing visit to another café this weekend (cough: jones the grocer) which reminded me of why I really like the marmalade pantry and ps cafe: I may have to wait a little longer for my puds, but they never come microwaved. microwaving cake and bread completely ruins the texture – the outside gets distinctively dried out and tough, and the food cools down way too fast. but that’s a story for another post!

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8 thoughts on “marmalade pantry, town

    • the pudding is fantastic! and yes, the carrot cake was satisfyingly huge – so much better than those puny pieces you get at many cafes these days.

      thanks for stopping by!

    • both were good (which did you like?)! though I might have frightened the sensibilities of my french friend when I started going at my caesar salad with loads of ketchup. thanks for dropping by!

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