Tiong Bahru Bakery by Gontran Cherrier
Barely 2 months into opening, Tiong Bahru Bakery by Gontran Cherrier has already generated much hype and waves in the media and blogging world. Touted as one of the best bakeries in Singapore at the moment, the man behind this very successful artisan bakery is none other than one of Paris’s most celebrated bakers- Gontran Cherrier. Situated right next door to The Orange Thimble, this bakery stands humbly and inconspicuously, as it fits right into the neighbourhood with its white-washed walls, light brown wooden frame borders and single swinging entrance door.
Tiong Bahru Bakery is a collaboration with Spa Esprit Group, who currently already have Forty Hands and Open Door Policy under their belt, which are also conveniently just located a few blocks away.
It is said that all the loaves, bakes and especially their signature croissants that have had everyone talking about, are baked on site using traditional French techniques which have been very meticulously adjusted and adapted for the humidity in our country so that Singaporeans are still able to enjoy the freshness and full flavours of all his bakes and pastries despite the weather!
The three of us made our way here for brunch one weekday and were lucky to find seats in the dining area which had a relatively fast turnover rate. The queues were also not as daunting as many people had described and moved along pretty quickly. We were soon back at our table with this white tray of two croissants, two sandwiches and one dessert tart.
Starting with the Plain Croissant at $2.50, the first thing that I was drawn to, was how beautiful and intricate the layers were. Clearly, only true skill and experienced hands in the laminating process could have produced this end result. One bite into this crescent-shaped baked dough and I was sold. It was fluffy and delicious even without a spread of butter. Additional points for the absence of the heavy after-feeling of eating a croissant because this was not oily at all and crisp on the outside without being too flaky. Definitely felt less guilty eating this one!
The Chocolate Croissant $3.20 was up for tasting next. Another work of art and display of skill, this chocolate croissant was not your regular pain au chocolat with its distinct rolled layers and varying shades of brown while maintaining its iconic cuboid shape.
Cutting into this baby and watching as the brown melted chocolate began to stain the butter knife, was a mouth-watering experience. With just the right amount of chocolate added to the viennoiserie while still maintaining its softness and texture, it’s no wonder this chocolate croissant is such a favourite with customers!
The exotic looking Squid Ink Bun with Smoked Salmon and Ham $6.50 is definitely eye-catching with it’s jet-black appearance that one does not usually associate with bread. Stacked high with heaps of fresh greens and slices of smoked salmon and ham, this sandwich roll was very enjoyable. While I could not detect any distinct squid ink flavour, the bread itself was very soft and buttery and I loved the subtle pesto like-spread that tied everything together. Delectable.
Recommended by the server at the counter, the Paprika Bun with Bacon $8.50 also came chock-full with greens, sun-dried tomatoes and fresh onion rings. The grounded Paprika spice was mild in heat and lent a very different flavour to the bun as compared to the Squid Ink earlier.
Ending off with the Chocolate Mendiant with Nuts and Dried Fruit $6.50, I was initially quite hesitant about dried fruits with my chocolate for fears of the overall combination being too sweet but those fears were definitely unfounded. The chocolate disk was so smooth and rich, while the base of dried fruits consisting of almond flakes and orange peel added a real nice crunch to it without being too brittle. My new favourite dessert tart and my perfect end to the meal.
But of course a cuppa of Hot Chocolate $4.80 with such beautiful latte art always makes my day.
It’s great that Gontran Cherrier has chosen Singapore as his first venture outside of France for which we have authentic French loaves and buns at our backyard without having to buy an air ticket. For all Gontran Cherrier fans out there, you will be pleased and excited to know that this talented baker will be opening two more bakeries in Singapore in the very near future- the next being at Raffles City in August. I am so looking forward to visiting his next outlet with hopefully new and different creations offered on the menu.
56 Eng Hoon Street #01-70
Tel: +65 6220 3430
Daily: 8am – 8pm
(Closed on Tue)