a (da paolo and cedele) christmas

let’s start the year off nicely – with a recap of a great meal last year.

it’s going to be nearly another year before you’ll want to think about christmas again, but I’d like to insert a little brainworm so you remember your options when the time comes to make your orders again.

Continue reading

Advertisements

henri charpentier singapore, dempsey road

it’s nearly the weekend!

a (well, no longer) recent addition to our shores from tokyo, charpentier serves up fancy, expensive desserts in this french-styled japanese-feeling cafe in dempsey. a small space filled with curtains for partitioning, booth and sofa seats, it’s the sort of place you expect a japanese housewife to sit with friends for tea.

it’s rather unique in a time where most places are styled casual or hipster (or both), with a fully suited up japanese man serving as maĆ®tre d’ to the noisy boisterous group of us here for a part 2 after brunch. but the desserts are lovely, theatrical in a very impressionable sort of way, and tasty for all the fanfare.

Continue reading

mad about sucre, outram park

alright, slightly overhyped cake place with not very many cakes.

so this place opened recently in the sort of revitalised-retro part of the outram park area, and I’ve been hearing a slew of compliment-ary reviews across the board – but I’m not sure I was terribly impressed, even if the cakes were decent.

it’s a swanky place with a TINY door (like you-might-not-get-through-if-you-eat-far-too-much-cake kind of small), filled with kitschy, gilded items, (overpriced but very nice) merchandise, and wedding cakes.

note I said wedding cakes, and not wedding cake models – the waiters (is it fair to call them that, because they were rather theatrical, dramatic evangelists of the store) kept assuring us that the cakes were real.

not something I can understand – since the frosting dries up (yes, I know the sign said not to touch), and it seems a waste of food.

the dark chocolate dome was a moussey sort of confection with a square cube of liqueur-containing bonbon, sprinkled with gold dust. sat on a crisp biscuit and filled with banana creme, it was difficult to break the tempered chocolate neatly, and the biscuit also sort of shattered (unneatly, which is irritating to this OCD soul).

we also had a lemon-coconut tart, and I liked the tropical combination, with the barely discernible coconut flakes.

the pastries on offer were rather gorgeous and technically well-executed – I’m not quite sure why I wasn’t more impressed. perhaps you should give it a go, and let me know if you too feel like something’s missing from the experience?

Mad About Sucre
27 Teo Hong Road
Singapore 088334
tel +65 6221 3969
$$.5, also known as not-cheap

cake, to the rescue!

dessert is powerful. but even more so when you get it delivered.

I’m pretty sure I can’t be the only one that forgets an upcoming birthday-or-some-other and panics close to the date, searching for a nearby cakery that fits right into the schedule and sells something appropriate.

so I jumped on the chance to try out foodline, which is an online service that lets you order catering – and now moving into cake and dessert (that’s where all the good people are, seriously).

Continue reading

plain vanilla bakery, tiong bahru


not-bad baked goods from this beautiful whitewashed bakery in tiong bahru. from a yuppie enclave (i.e. katong), to this hipster one (the bicycles say it all) – this popular cupcake place actually also serves up a range of other items (that provide more compelling reason for a visit).

Continue reading

pantler, tanjong pagar

good little cakes and entremets in this newish, tiny cafe in tanjong pagar manned by young folk who seem to know (and enjoy) what they’re doing. a long counter laid out with slightly-over-ten cakes and croissants on the side, this place escapes that now-boring industrial layout of wood and exposed brickwork for a clean, modern, and perfectly enjoyable venue in which to sit down and have some cake.

close in offerings to the now-everywhere antoinette, this place has a little more of what you hipsters would call soul character, provided in most part by the neat rows of sweets and earnest (but not pushy) folks behind the counter.

we ordered nine cakes (possibly more, and not counting double orders), and despite delaying everyone’s caketification (like gratification, but with cake) taking photographs, I’ve only ended up with two that I’m pleased enough to show you.

but let me paint the scene for you – because you come here for my writing, don’t you?

all the cakes were gorgeous: well made and executed, with glossy glazes on the fancy ones, and a pleasing craggliness in the rustic, simpler cakes. my favorite was the yatsura, a dark chocolate (what else?) slice of moussey goodness, but the crumbly cheesecake was very much a favorite (I think we had three orders of those).

we didn’t take his recommended bests, like a tiger-ed sponge roll and creme caramel – so you might want to give those a go yourself, if so inclined.

I wouldn’t say this was the best cake shop, or epiphanic, but it has a quiet charm coupled with perfectly-good-for-teatime cakes – and I enjoyed how much the people behind the counter seemed to enjoy their work. definitely worth a visit, and bring a crowd (despite my reputation for sweets, I did not eat these on my own) so you get to share.

Pantler
198 Telok Ayer Street
Singapore 068637
tel +65 6221 6223
$$: <10 a cake

ps.cafe, orchard paragon

I’m going to cap off this year with what must be my favorite cafe chain in singapore – it’s an oldie, but a goodie. the cakes are consistent, the places are modern-cool and casual, and you never have to deal with too many teenagers at the joints.

last one of the cartoony shots! (until I change my mind, that is).

Continue reading

baker & cook, chip bee gardens

baker and cook is this chain of bakery-cafe that’s been around for ages – my first time finally at one, and I think it’s an easy choice for breakfast or brunch on the weekends, if you’re not into trying too hard. this particular outlet – as would suit the demographic in this locale – is packed with expatriates and their kids, and gets a little manic (service is both harried and difficult to get). but the food is decent, and good for a meal if you can score a seat.

it’s a simple menu of morning goods like scrambled eggs and breakfast meats – bulked up with an array of baked goodies like croissants and bagels (they also bake cakes and breads, if you’re so inclined). it all looks pretty much as-you’d-expect, which is to say it’s appealing in a homey, familiar way – and I expect most of it to be good eating.

my granola was a generous portion served up with a berry compote and greek-ish yogurt, with milk on the side. mashed up and left to sit, it softens into a nice, not-too-sweet bowl of wholesomeness.

the price points are reasonable (though really, this expensive climate means even reasonable is probably too much), and the cafe is casual, comfortable seating. if only it weren’t quite so packed – but then again, that’s the price you pay for good food.

Continue reading

tart blanc, millenia walk

just a quick head’s up this morning that this tiny hole-in-the-wall cafe at millenia walk does a decent set lunch – you get a permutation of one main course with soup and/or drink and dessert for very good prices (getting all four hits you barely twenty) – very good value in an otherwise rather pricey bit of town.

I suspect the cafe’s name comes from its very white walls and the rows of tarts in their counter – it’s quite a small (seats maybe 8), clinical space juxtaposed with cheerfully colorful tarts and cakes. I didn’t know what to expect of its savories – but my sandwich of mushroom and beef was surprisingly filling, with wholemeal bread holding in a rather generous mass of cheese and shroom and meat (I took half of it away).

there’s also a tiny dressed salad on the side, which was a nice touch, and my ice-cold earl grey capped it off nicely. it’s a homely little space, and good for sitting down with a book for lunch (or a friend, if you must).

I’ll be back to try the sweet stuff.

tart blanc
#01-102 Millenia Walk
9 Raffles Boulevard
Singapore 039596
tel +65 6238 6893
$$: 10-20 per person, depending on how greedy your order is

chopsuey cafe, martin road

fantastic, fantastic space, and really good food – chopsuey at martin road is a jewel in the p.s. cafe’s trove of consistent-though-expensive restaurants, and is one of my new favorite restaurants.

the place revolves around a menu that supposedly dishes up the american take on chinese food – and I say supposedly, because while that class of cuisine comes with gloppy sauces, overcooked meats, and rather tastes overwhelmingly of orange and sesame (I admit though, that panda express can be pretty good in the right situation), chopsuey instead serves a refined version without all those rather overwhelming characteristics.

the food is well-executed (chopsuey is like the asian take on the american take on asian, and we are asian, after all), the portions are surprisingly big, and the space lends itself to more than a little bantering with friends. very, very, very well-done.

Continue reading