Sunday, January 26, 2014

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The Lunar New Year is approaching in two weeks' time. In the Chinese custom, it is important for families to have reunion dinner on the last day of the lunar year. The reunion dinner this year is on 30 January, 2014, Thursday.

Here are a couple of suggestions for your consideration.

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Enclave in the Terminal 3 area, the Imperial Treasure restaurant resides within the Crowne Plaza Hotel and serves Cantonese cuisine.

Friday, January 24, 2014

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Charcoal fish head steamboat and fish head vermicilli (mee hoon) soup are Xin Yuan Ji's  (新源记) specialties. Enclave in the food paradise around the Bugis area, the restaurant is located at Tan Quee Lan Street and serves various Asian delicacies.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

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Address: 200 Victoria Street, #01-70 Bugis Junction, Singapore 188021
Price: $
Rating: 2.5/5

Every hearty meal should always end with something sweet. For desserts, it would range from ice creams to even desserts. For me, I love sweet desserts. Honeymoon Dessert (满记甜品) is one of the popular dessert joints in Singapore. It has many outlets in various locations like Bugis Junction, Vivio City, etc. 

Each dessert costs less than SGD10.00. Though it may be a little pricey, it has a conducive environment where you can still have a chat with your friends over dessert.


Mango Grass Jelly in Vanilla Sauce (芒果白雪凉粉) was an interesting mix. The mango was a little sweet. It was the first time we ordered this and it tasted normal. (Food rating: 2.5/5)


As what the elders always say, ginger helps you to dispel stomach gas. As I had a little indigestion, I ordered Sweet ball in Sweet Ginger Soup (汤圆姜汤). The ginger soup was very spicy and hot. However, it gave me a kick. The sweet glutinous dumplings and spicy ginger neutralises the dessert. More importantly, the sweetness of the soup was just nice. (Food rating: 3/5)


Mixed fruits sago with Coconut Juice (鲜杂果米露-椰汁) was an interesting dessert. The dessert comprises of longan, mango, banana and many other fruits with 'tadpole eggs' sizzled with coconut juice. The fruits were freshly prepared. The dessert was normal even though I was not very keen with coconut. (Food rating: 2.5/5)

Other outlet evaluation:
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Address: 8 Wilkie Road #01-22/23/24, Wilkie Edge, Singapore 228095
Price: $
Rating: 2.5

If you were studying or working late in the Dhoby Ghaut area and were feeling hungry, there is a restaurant that opens 24/7. You can enjoy food from western food to local delights. Hanis is a Halal certified restaurant that offers almost similar menu under the Han Group.

Most of the food outlets are closed around 10pm. Located at Wilkie Edge, Hanis opens all day-night for people who seeks food late in the night. The restaurant is centrally located between Little India Station and Dhoby Ghaut Station.

We had a super late dinner-cum-supper around 11pm at Hanis and ordered ourselves western food - Chicken Thigh and Chicken Chop. Both include vegetables and french fries.




Compared to the chicken thigh, I love the chicken chop better. The chicken was crispy and lightly charred. The meat was yet tender and juicy. The combination was the right one for me. The gravy was black pepper. It was mildly spicy and delicious. (Food rating: 3/5)


The Chicken Thigh tasted normal. The chicken thigh was nicely cooked but some parts of the meat was a little raw. Apart from that, the entire dish was a mere okay. (Food rating: 2.5/5)
 

Sunday, January 19, 2014

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Address: 68 Orchard Road, #B2-35/36 Plaza Singapura, Singapore 238839
Price: $
Rating: 2.5/5

Wang's Cafe is a combination of Ya Kun Toast Bread and Qiji Restaurant. The F&B food chain serves not only toasted bread with coconut jam and butter and savoury noodles like Mee Siam and Mee Rebus. 



Mee Siam, local dish, was a delicious savoury noodles. I was disappointed by the noodles. The gravy was bland. I was expecting more from Wang's Cafe but the Mee Siam from Qiji's tasted better than the former. (Food rating: 2/5)


Mee Rebus  tasted much better than Mee Siam. It is no necessary to add fried shallots to every dish. I still prefer having the noodles 'plain' to adding shallots to the noodles. (Food rating: 2.5/5)
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Address: Chinatown Complex (U/C), 335 Smith St, #02-131, Singapore 050335 
Price: $
Rating: 4/5

I was recently introduced to Heng Ji Chicken Rice (享記雞飯) by a friend. This stall is easily located by the long queue. Enclave in the Chinatown district, one of the food centres is located at Chinatown Complex. At the food centre, you can find cheap and delicious local food. At Heng Ji, you will get to eat the delicious steamed chicken. It is said that the stall only operates at 4pm in the afternoon and closes at 7pm in the evening. So, if you want to try the chicken rice, do be prepared to queue.




Selling at SGD20.00 for half a chicken, the chicken meat was tender and succulent. The meat was lean and soy sauce sizzled over the meat was savoury. (Food rating: 3.5/5)


Apart from the chicken meat, it is also important that the rice was fragrant and perfectly cooked. I loved the granular fragrant rice made from chicken broth and minced garlic. The chilli sauce was very unique too. It was different from the chicken rice outlets I have eaten islandwide. So, if you happen to eat the chicken rice, why not drop your comments here. 

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At Hankyu Department Store (統一阪急百貨台北店), you will find a nice food court at the basement level. There is a wide variety of food ranging from Chinese, desserts and other food selections.

We ordered a meal set for two that comprise of a half chicken, vegetable and rice. As it was a local brand, we were excited to eat the chicken rice. However, we were disappointed with the quality.

Firstly, the chicken were thin. The rice was less fragrant. (Food rating: 2.5/5)









Address: 統一阪急百貨台北, No. 8號, Section 5, Zhōngxiào East Rd, Xinyi District, Taipei City, Taiwan 110
Price: $
Rating: 2.5/5
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Address: Gourmet Paradise Food Court, 480 Toa Payoh Lorong 6, #B1-25, HDB Hub Toa Payoh, Singapore 310480
Price: $
Rating: 2/5

5 May 2013

Rojak is a local salad made up of mixed vegetables and fruits like cucumbers, bean sprouts, turnips and pineapple, drizzled with a sweet and sour salad sauce of prawn paste, lime and sugar. The final touch was a generous drizzle of ground peanuts to add that extra oomph to the salad.

Nestled in the bustling neighbourhood at HDB Hub Toa Payoh, Soon Heng Rojak is very popular with neverending snake-like queues. It was an interesting phenomenal and I decided to join the 45-min queue to try the popular dish.

Despite of taking huge orders from customers, the line moved relatively fast. There was one customer who bought nine large boxes of rojaks and another six. The 'mixer' was working like a mechanical robot. He did not stop to rest. Another colleague was busily cutting the you tiao (long dough fritters) into smaller pieces. And another was busy taking orders from customers. It was like a production line where each person had a role to play.

Finally it was my turn to make the order. I ordered the large serving of Rojak that cost $5.00. The smallest serving costs $2.50. I immediately opened the box to try the salad. I wanted to know if it was really worth the queue and long waiting time.

Apparently, I was disappointed with the sauce as I expected more. The sauce is crucial for a good salad. First of all, too much sauce had spoiled the entire salad although the youtiao was thoroughly soaked into the sauce. Secondly, the sauce was too sweet. I could taste the sugar granules in the sauce.

To sum up, I think I rather skip this stall and buy from better rojak stalls. I have tried some and believed that there are better ones out there.






19 January 2014

We had dinner at the food court again and saw the long queue at Soon Heng Rojak stall. We still could not fathom the reason of its popularity despite of its super sweet sauce and cold chewy fried fritters.


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We went to Mini Steamboat Delight again as we had cravings for the rich tom yum broth and spicy chilli sauce. Without fail, we ordered a lot of food and found it challenging to finish them. We would be saying 'Wows' and 'delicious' each time we patronise the stall. 

Saturday, January 18, 2014

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It was already late at night but I had a strong craving for braised minced meat rice. Located near our hotel, we found a stall that sells braised minced meat rice. 

Braised minced meat rice is one of my favourite Taiwanese dishes. At this stall, the rice was disappointing. The braised minced meat lacked fragrant.  (Food rating: 2/5)

 
The Braised Minced Meat Vermicelli with bean sprouts was a very simple dish. However, the noodles was very normal. It lacked aroma and fragrance. (Food rating: 2/5)




Address: 漢中街34-2號 , Wanhua District, Taipei City, Taiwan 108
Price: $
Rating: 2/5
Stuffness Level (How full you are): 4/5

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Taipei 101 has the largest and finest food court in Taipei. Located at basement level 1, the foodcourt offers a wide variety of cuisines, ranging from Chinese, Korean, Hong Kong and even fast food. This is indeed a gem to try out great foods. 

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Address: No. 11, Sōnggāo Rd, Eslite, Xinyi District, Taipei City, Taiwan 110
Price: $
Rating: 2.5/5

The Agnès b. CAFÉ L.P.G. was a self-service or grab-to-go coffee corner that offers a wide variety of French snacks. These include baguette sandwich, salad, patisserie and cookies, all in French traditional way and delicious taste. 

Located within the Eslite Mall at Xinyi District, the cafe offers a relaxed space for busy people. The cafe creates an ideal space for customers to enjoy and relax during delightful shopping spree.

The total dining experience cost TWD 485, which was equivalent to SGD21.00.






Hot chocolate drink (熱巧克力) was rich in chocolate. It warmed my body on a cold winter night. (Food rating: 2.5/5) 


Chicken and Onion White Baguette (烤雞法國堡) was served with salad on the side. The white baguette was hot but the chicken and onion between the baguette was cold. The baguette was disappointing. (Food rating: 2/5) 


The Vanille (胡桃香草酥派) made from Mille-feuille and vanilla custard topped with walnuts. The Mille-feuille was great. However, the vanilla custard was a little coarse in texture. Combined, the patisserie was acceptable. With TWD200, you can order a set of a patisserie and a beverage. (Food rating: 2.5/5)

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

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Chen San Ding's black sugar "frog" fresh milk drink (陈三鼎黑糖青蛙鲜奶创始店) is one of the famous stalls in the Gongguan area. If you think that you will be drinking frog eggs, you are wrong. The "frog" was just tapioca flour balls soaked in thick black sugar, making it look frog eggs.

Monday, January 13, 2014

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臺一牛奶大王 is one of the popular dessert joints for young and old. 臺一牛奶大王 (Tai Yi Niu Nai Da Wang) translates as Taiwan's best Milk King. It sells both hot and cold winter desserts that has many customers queuing. 

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If you are looking for a place to eat that covers some of the Taipei specialties, try Wan Nian Shang Ye Da Sha (萬年商業大樓). Located at the basement of the shopping mall, there are many food outlets such the Pork Rib over rice (排骨饭), beef noodles, hot pot and many more. 

A hidden treasure in the shopping mall, Kingwueng Pork (金园排骨) started its business in 1973 and is still going strong. It is one of my favourite food places whenever I am in Taipei.

I fell in love with the food since I was recommended by a close friend seven years ago. Since then, it was a permanent pit stop whenever I was in the country. The fried chicken thigh and fried pork ribs were the juiciest and succulent meats I have ever eaten in Taipei. Not only the fried meats were heavenly, the restaurant offered a scrumptious meal that was value-for-money. Each meal always comes with a bowl of rice, plate of meat and a bowl of hot soup.

The dining experience cost us TWD320 (SGD13.50) for two person.


Fried Tofu (炸豆腐) is a must-have. For the first time, we ordered side dishes at Kingwueng. The tofu was amazingly delicious. The cubes were crispy in the outside and very soft in the inside. They were then topped with spicy fermented soy bean, which was neither too salty nor too spicy. The tofu was divine. (Price - TWD30/ SGD1.30) (Food rating: 4.5/5)

Fried Pork Ribs (炸排骨) was simply heavenly. The meat was tender and juicy even though it was fried. The marinating sauce was unique with a dash to black pepper. The pork rib was chopped into smaller pieces for customers' convenience. Even so, the meat was so tender that it was easy to bite and tear. (Price - TWD110/ SGD4.80)(Food rating: 4.5/5)

On top of the Pork Ribs, we also ordered Fried Chicken Thigh (炸鸡腿) rice. The chicken meat was super tender and the skin was very crispy. The marinade was both fragrant and delicious that it was very addictive. You would simply want to order another one. (Price - TWD120/ SGD5.25)(Food rating: 4.5/5)

The Braised Minced Meat Rice (卤肉饭) came with the set. Though the bowl looked small, it was deep. The rice was topped with braised minced meat, gluten, braised vegetables and bamboo shoots. There was a nice fragrance from the braised minced meat. The braised vegetables (cabbage) was very soft. Note that the toppings, besides the braised minced meat, might change from time to time. (Food rating: 4/5)

Finally, we were served with a bowl of seaweed soup. There was a generous serving of seaweed and the soup was sweet. I don't think they added any MSG in the soup. (Food rating: 3.5/5)

Directions to Kingwueng Pork:

1. Go to Xining Road and look for the shopping mall - Wan Nian Shang Ye Da Sha (萬年商業大樓)

(Source: Wikipedia)
 2. Entrance to Wan Nian Shang Ye Da Sha (萬年商業大樓)


3. Head to the basement to the food restaurants

4. Kingwueng Pork (金园排骨) Branch at Ximending





Address: 臺北市 萬華區 西寧南路70號 B1-11 (萬年商業大樓); No. 70 Xining South Road, Wanhua District, Wan Nian Da Sha, Wanhua District, Taipei, Taiwan 108
Price: $
Rating: 4.5/5
Stuffness Level (How full you are): 4/5
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Hakka cuisine is usually simple, salty, oily and savoury. For instance, additional oil was added to restore physical energy required to perform strenuous labour work.

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Upon our arrival in Taipei, our first pit stop was Ximending - the place where you'll find great food, celebrities and fashion altogether.

Before we had great food, we had a feast for the eyes. Taiwanese Celebrity Star, Lan Cheng Long (藍正龍) was having a publicity event for the drama series titled Chocolat (流氓蛋糕店). Lan looked exactly the same as he was on TV.  Of course, I did not shout his name. I merely shouted in my heart.

After that, we searched for the highly recommended restaurant, Jin Man Yuan Pai Gu Mei Shi (金满园排骨美食). The restaurant, located at the junction of Wuchang Street (武昌路) and E-mei Street (峨嵋路), was easy to find, especially with a eye-catching banner stating its long history. It was believed to have more than 40 years history. Its specialty was the pork rib rice. We ordered two rice dishes and a couple of sides to try.

Whilst waiting for the food, diners were constantly walking into the restaurant. But the food was forgettable. The bad dining experience cost us around TWD310, which was equivalent to SGD 13. I do not recommend this place if I were to visit Taipei for the first time.


The Pork Ribs Rice (豬排飯) was supposedly their specialty, but it was very disappointing. The pork ribs were served cold. The meat was bland due to poor marinade. The meat was not tender and the pickled cucumbers were not refreshing. (Food rating: 2/5)



The Chicken Thigh  rice (鸡腿饭) was slightly better than the pork ribs rice. The chicken were moist in the inside and crispy in the outside. The set came with a bowl of soup. However, the chicken was covered with a thick layout of flour and the marinade was merely so-so. It was not fragrant as what we expected, especially when it was highly recommended by a friend. (Food rating: 3/5)


The Pig Trotters (猪脚) were very well stewed. The meat was so tender - that it disintegrated using a fork. The meat was savoury. (Food rating: 3/5)

The braised eggs (五香卤蛋) tasted normal like any plain hard boiled eggs. We suspected that these eggs were not in the sauce for very long (say, 1-2 hours), before they were served. Though these eggs were well cooked, they lack taste. (Food rating: 2/5)


I always love Egg Flower Soup (蛋花汤). I went hysterical when I saw it in the menu on the wall. The soup, when served, was bland. The egg were a huge lump. It was as if they took a bowl of hot soup  and then broke the egg into the soup without stirring. (Food rating: 2/5)




Lastly, we ordered Spring Rolls (春卷). Interestingly, the spring rolls were wrapped with a thick layer of flour. The insides were a generous portion of spring onions and oil was seeping out from the rolls. These were too much for me. (Food rating: 2/5)








 
 The kitchen
(Seated) Taiwanese Celebrity Lan Cheng Long signing autographs for his fans.


View Larger Map
Address: 台北市萬華區武昌街二段82巷3弄1號 (誠品武昌對面巷內), Wanhua District, Taipei, Taiwan 108
Price: $
Rating: 2/5
Stuffness Level (How full you are): 4/5

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