nando’s, serangoon nex

easy weeknight dinner – nando’s is always an easy-go-to post-work, both here and in london. I like the standard half chicken, the parents like the espetadas (rather impressive hanging skewer of chicken chunks), and we often get a bit of the garlic bread and hummus to share.

I love that they’ve open so close to me now – and this outlet does a roaring business without crazy lines. good, easy stuff.

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so pho, serangoon nex

okay-for-weekday vietnamese food at the ever-crowded nex mall in serangoon. it’s only tuesday – and it already feels like a long week – and this calls for quick, cheap food.

if you’re into that for tonight, this is an okay choice for dinner – it’s something different from the local food you’d usually have on a weekday night for not much more money, and the flavors are adequate. not quite a destination restaurant, however.

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tampopo, ngee ann city

I’ve always been curious about tampopo, given that it was rather popular quite a few years back, and there are healthy queues when I pop by town on the weekend. it’s the first time I’ve been here after walking pass so often, and I’ve got to say I’ve doubts as to whether there’s any point in coming here, since prices are about the same as sushi tei and ichiban boshi, and the flavours are nowhere as good.

it reminds me of watami quite a lot – both are relatively cheap japanese options with huge laminated menus suited for japanese food plebs. I also retract my “nowhere as good” from before, for I think it’s more that the food is rather rough around the edges, and not quite refined, akin to the sort of japanese food you get at a food court stall.

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tung lok seafood, somerset

decent-for-the-price à la carte buffet atop orchard central. this is pretty alright chinese food dished up as much as you like, whenever you like Рand at this meal we went through the entire menu at least once.

nothing really stood out enough for me to recall it to you – but we did have perhaps six or seven servings of the salmon sashimi, which was seafood-fresh and tender – and perhaps the best part of the meal.

the chinese food I would liken to better-than-catering, served hot and quickly (admirable considering the crowds they were serving), and good for crowds (and plenty cheap for a gluttonous sunday lunch).

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porn’s, telok blangah

decent place for an easy thai lunch on the weekdays – not too expensive neither. so I believe the eponymous owner of this place gave rise to its rather audacious name (you must supposed that’s why it was done), but the food is not nearly as startling.

it’s decent thai food – the flavors are there, and I’m not one to argue authenticity – in a cafe setting, ever-so-slightly less commercial-feeling than the larger chains like thai express.

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chewy junior, serangoon

since I’ve never had a piece of this myself, I’m leaving you the words of my rather manic sister (upon finding out that I had bought her a couple) – if it isn’t clear, the words in green are mine:

for the rest of you who aren’t quite in-the-know (so to speak), this chain of bakeries churns out mochi-type-chewy choux puffs stuffed and topped excessively with permutations of cream, custard and various glazes. it looks far too sweet for me – so I suspect it’s going for a younger demographic – but it’s inexpensive, and comes in sufficiently large variety should you wish to give it a try.

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fish & co., tampines

I’ve done fish & co before, and I know people scoff at it – as they do many of the chains – but hey, I like it.

not so much this branch though, and here’s why (hey, a list!):

  1. we were kept waiting in a queue while there were empty tables inside;
  2. numerous staff were walking about looking busy without never actually helping (manager included, and probably doing it best – in that she was worst);
  3. tables were cramped together so you had to hear your neighbor’s conversations (and get dragged into their birthday song-singing). it’s more than enough to make a person more schizophrenic.
  4. and the utensils came sticky (eew). and then they took them away, told us they had to wash the entire basket AND THERE WERE NONE LEFT IN THE STORE FOR US TO USE AT THAT MOMENT, and left us waiting with our rapidly-cooling food on the table.

seriously, what?!

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mos burger (central world), bangkok

it is friday, y’all – so I’m taking it easy on the bloggin’, and so should you. perhaps a snack mid-morning.

I stopped eating fast food (in general – the big M’s hotcakes still slide in) nearly 8 years ago – just sharing, not proselytizing, so all the exposure I get to it now are mostly through the partner (a man’s gotta get his fries, right?)

so we popped by mos burger during a hot afternoon’s break in bangkok, and found out that they actually have a menu option of a fries+onion rings combo! this used to be one of my favorite chains (aeons ago) for the rather high-quality fast food dining experience: you’ve got to wait, but the food comes piping hot and freshly-cooked, their offerings are usually an awesome japanese interpretation that breaks the monotony of burgers-n-chips (rice burgers with shrimp and eel? yes please!), and it’s served to your table in these lovely baskets and gorgeous wrapping.

the fries and rings were crazy hot and well-browned when they arrived at table – but were quite a bit on the greasy side, disappointingly. not that the partner had any problem finishing them off with ketchup and chilli, no no.

it’s a good quick break, and hey – with a glass of cola (deliciously more vanilla-tasting here than in singapore) – sometimes, there’s no better way to escape the heat and while off a bit of time.

do you guys get mos where you are, and do you like it too? have a great weekend!

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chili’s, clarke quay

as-you’d-expect – which is to say, good for simple, filling meals – at this american tex-mex chain outlet at the central in clarke quay. let’s cut to the chase: this isn’t gourmet, and it’s not trying to be. it’s full-on american diner-steakhouse type food served in large portions, and it (almost singlehandedly, actually) fills a niche gap in the singapore dining scene that I think many of us didn’t know existed.

it’s casual dining in a large space with very-american-style diner booth seats, incredibly enthusiastic staff, and a boisterous atmosphere that lends best to loud gatherings (impression fostered also by their myriad alcohol promotions) – but all that aside, this place has a killer bread pudding: one of the best, most satisfying non-chocolate puddings I’ve had in a while.

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yayoiken, tanjong pagar

cheap and quite okay japanese at the 100am mall in tanjong pagar. the first time I came here, we thought the food was impressive: large-ish portions, pleasantly-surprisingly-small prices and a huge menu composed of a clever permutation of a not-so-huge selection of dishes. this decent experience prompted an enthusiastic return, but it proved less sparkling: the food was too salty, the cooking of a lower standard – and the pater didn’t much like it.

which brings me, really, to a less-than-effervescent recommendation than I’d initially thought: this place will do you good for mid-week/office lunches – cheap japanese food with large portions and a big menu for everyone. but if you’re thinking of a sit-down meal with nothing on your mind but the food, it’s not ideal (or close to, in fact).

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