27 April 2014

Smoulder Softcore Bakers

I think Smoulder has the biggest variety of lava cakes I've ever seen. Apart from the standard chocolate lava cake, they have pistachio, Black Forest, milk chocolate banana, raspberry, matcha. *blink blink blink at the matcha!!* Full menu available at their website here.

The lava cakes are bite-sized versions so that one doesn't get sick from eating it.  Or is it Smoulder's strategy to let one feel less guilty eating more than one lava cake?

Baby Lava Cakes
These small sinful cakes are meant to be consumed at room temperature. I reheated them as I ate them the next day. Reheating instructions are available on the box or on their website too. I think I reheat for too long. My raspberry lava cake erupted in my toaster oven. Boo..

Dark Chocolate: 
The signature dark chocolate was amazing. One of the best chocolate lava cakes I've ever eaten. The warm molten chocolate oozed out of the soft moist spongy crust, and the rich and robust chocolate was like doing a dance in the mouth. Although it's name is dark chocolate, it's not bitter at all. 

At that moment, I regretted I only bought one. 4.75/5

White Chocolate Matcha:
Being seriously biased towards all things matcha, the white chocolate matcha was no doubt my most favorite. This is the first time I come across a matcha lava cake. The intense slight bitterness of the matcha was unmistakable and when matched with sweetness of the white chocolate, it was pure heaven! If there was ever a matcha volcano, I would gladly live in it. 5/5 (warning: Non matcha lovers should take note this rating could be biased.)

White Chocolate Raspberry:
A pity the raspberry cake "erupted" in my oven. There was still some molten raspberry in it though. The raspberry lava is strictly for the sweet and sour tooth. With raspberry fruity bits in the lava, one can't help but feel blissful devouring it. 4/5

At $2.80 per piece, I find it ridiculously expensive for its small size. But if quality is what you are looking for, look no further. Smoulder has some of the best lava cakes I've ever eaten. They also take special orders for parties or baby showers too. Maybe it might be cheaper if buy in bulk.

NYC 3 Star Michelin chef Jean Georges is the inventor of the molten chocolate cake in 1987, but French chef Jacques Torres disputed that the dessert already existed in France. Jacques Torres supposedly took out a cake which was not fully baked from his oven and found that the centre was runny. Regardless of who invented the lava cake, I am the biggest winner Mwahhahaha... So blessed to be born in this century to eat it!

Raffles City B1-68 
Takashimaya Basement Food Hall

23 April 2014

Oriole Coffee Roasters

I didn't know that this place was owned by a former National barista champion until after I visited it and was trying to research about it. 

Hmmm on second thoughts, I should have ordered the coffee instead of the the fizzy Bandung then. But then my friends ordered the cappuccino and latte which were ok.. No wows from them. My fizzy Bandung was pretty to see, sweet and refreshing to drink. It's like drinking sparkling water plus Bandung. 3/5

The food menu doesn't seem to offer a lot of choices. We all went for Pandan Kaya Butter Toast. I am very particular about my bread. I don't eat dry bread and hence I appreciated the moisture contributed by the layers of Pandan kaya and butter that were spread in between the lightly toasted bread. It was average and ok, nothing to shout about and pretty nice for a tea break.  3.5/5

We were there on a Saturday afternoon and the small place (probably can accommodate only 20 people?) was kinda filled up. We shared the common table with another group of people. It can get a bit rowdy. I love the nostalgic vibe that this place gives, from the old chinese shophouse setting to the intrinsic details such as the tingkat decorations. Service was not exactly memorable. One of the staff kept banging the poor coffee machine until everybody were shocked and kept quiet. 

Address: 10/10A Jiak Chuan Road Singapore 089264

20 April 2014


We had trekked to Bacchanalia in our tired-looking flats from City Hall MRT station. When we saw the luxurious cars (an Audi, a Merc, and a BMW) parked outside Bacchanalia, we were like, "Oops are we under-dressed?" Luckily the Maître d, who was a white lady, smiled sweetly at us with a "welcome" and granted us access. 

Upon entering, we were greeted by a posh setting. The place was dim and had a soft-light ambience. The chairs looked so comfortable to lounge in. And I loved those bubble lights that gave the place an out-of-the-world feel. 

They are not ghosts. It's the lousy camera's fault.
We were here for the Restaurant Week dinner menu, comprising of a starter, main and dessert at $55++. 

The bread was tasty and served as a great appetizer and answer to our hunger pangs and while anticipating for the food. We heard great stories about Bacchanalia.

Cauliflower gratin (below) - deep fried cauliflower florets, white truffle and cheese foam, gremolata

Fans of Bacchanolia would not be unfamiliar with this signature dish. I never thought cauliflowers would taste that good! Deep fried, its texture was that of minced meat balls that were crunchy. The cauliflower balls were enveloped in the creamy broth which was bursting with the fragrance of pungent truffles. I don't usually like truffles but this dish amazingly made truffles taste so good. The cauliflowers brought out the best in truffles. A very unique dish that was the highlight of the night for me. 4.5/5

Our friendly waiter informed us that the chef was feeling great that day and hence decided to give us a complimentary French onion soup (below). According to the server, the onion soup was prepared by caramelizing onions for 3 days. Until every drop of the broth was infused with the sweet essence of onion. And the crispy cheddar nuggets and rye bread of which their existence served to soak up the broth and made this dish an unforgettable one. 4.5/5

We were given a choice to choose between two mains available - chicken risotto or Tahitian vanilla confit salmon.

Chicken risotto (below) - Confit leg of chicken, keluak nut, aged carnaroli rice, rum raisins, pickled lemon & cranberries

My friend had the chicken risotto which she loved it more than the salmon. Hmmm unfortunately none of the ingredients were exactly my favorite. I took a try and didn't feel any love. A classic example of love cannot be forced?

Tahitian vanilla confit salmon (below) - Lightly cooked sashimi grade salmon, roasted garlic puree, shaved fennel, honey emulsion

Our waiter came with a surprise - complimentary caviar to accompany the salmon! The answer to a perfect way to start the weekend. I think something good happened to the chef that day. Or that it was a Friday night so happiness indexes are usually higher. The smooth salmon was so soft that it melted in the mouth. Coupled with the sweet honey emulsion and caviar, the experience was augmented. And the accompanying aromatic shaved fennel balanced the flavors and textures of this dish. 4.5/5

Caramel poached apple, white chocolate cinnamon ganache, vanilla ice cream

Save room for the dessert. The succulent poached apple, topped by pieces of white chocolate cinnamon ganache, served as a simple good end to a great meal. Loved the refreshing vanilla ice-cream. 3.5/5

Overall, I think it was a great idea to go to Bacchanalia for Restaurant Week. I went to peek at the menu online and the cauliflower gratin already costs $17, the onion soup costs $20, Tahitian salmon with caviar supplement costs like $50. And we paid just $55++ for this meal! Like oh my goodness?! Totally worth it. And a generous chef and friendly waiters made the whole experience even more satisfying. The waiters were knowledgeable about the food and attentive to our wants. Given its cosy and posh decor, this is definitely a place to be seen at. 

23A Coleman St, 179806
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