Tag Archives: Hidden Find

Common Chefs Cafe @ 8 Jln Legundi

Sneaking into the local café scene is 6-month old Common Chefs – an unassuming café located right below Victory 8 Condominium along 8 Jalan Lengundi. This hidden gem offers a delectable selection of Western classics ranging from grilled beef burgers to chicken and waffles to make up for that 15-minute walk from Sembawang MRT.

Although the layout and decor of the space is modest, Instagrammers and fellow foodies would be enthralled by the seats near the glass windows for that Instagram-worthy shot amidst the natural lighting. Those simply seeking a cuppa to relax and let loose on the other hand, would prefer to sit beneath the warm downlights to enjoy the cozy atmosphere. We came here twice in a span of two months and got to sample a number of items on their rather concise menu.

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The café’s signature Truffle Tater Tots $12 was certainly a dish to rave about. Crispy potato nuggets deep fried till golden brown before being tossed in fragrant truffle oil and served with generous shavings of aged Parmesan. Despite its slightly greasy appearance, we were centrally charmed by the warm potato puffs encased within its crispy outer shell.

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For something thicker, meatier and juicer, the café has got you covered with an explosive range of flame-grilled burgers! The Boss ($19 for Beef/$18 for Chicken) was literally the big daddy of all their other burgers which showcased a jam-packed layer of flavoursome ingredients – sautéed mushrooms, grilled beef patty, sharp cheddar, fried egg, pickles, bacon and caramelized onions – to create an umami explosion in every bite. The best part was of course the succulent double-layer beef patty packed so snugly between two well-toasted brioche buns.

FORT by Maison Ikkoku @ 5 Cox Terrace

Opened by the same talented and creative mind behind the “no-menu” bespoke bar along Kandahar Street- Maison Ikkoku, FORT by Maison Ikkoku offers a refreshing new concept with culinary delights paired with unique cocktails that are individually concocted and tailored to your preference.

Located at the Singapore Pinacothèque De Paris within Fort Canning Park, this unassuming modest corner restaurant is hardly eye-catching from its exterior and its dimly-lit surroundings sets the tone as an ideal watering hole. The bar counter where all the magic and ingenuity happens, takes centre stage while diners sit all around it. Each seating takes up to 30 pax and FORT has two seatings every night- 6.30pm and 8.30pm.

We came by to try their highly acclaimed 12-course Omakase which costs an affordable $68++. I enjoyed my experience so much that I made a reservation for my best friend’s birthday two weeks later and returned for another meal.

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Cold Braised Radish with Cuttlefish

Our first item of the twelve, was a cold dish that was light, refreshing to the palate with a clean finish. The touch of cuttlefish essence added a nice dimension to this otherwise simple starter.

Man Man Japanese Unagi Restaurant by TEPPEI Group @ 1 Keong Saik Road

The TEPPEI group is no stranger to our Singapore food scene and has made waves for the affordable Omakase sets they offer in their hole-in-the-wall space in Orchid Hotel, which by the way has a three month long waiting list. Apart from that, they are also known for their Chirashi Dons that are brimming with thick slices of fresh raw fish at Hanare, a few doors down.

Fast forward a few years later, Chef Teppei Yamashita will be creating long queues again with his new venture- an Unagi speciality restaurant that will be opening its doors today, 12 Oct 16, along Keong Saik Road, walking distance from the original Teppei Japanese Restaurant in Tanjong Pagar.

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The eel served here is imported directly from Japan, from the Mikawa Isshiki region. They are so fresh that they are still swimming in the makeshift tanks at the corner of the restaurant before being slaughtered live in front of diners who choose to sit at the open concept kitchen. Not for the faint-hearted because it gets bloody, real bloody but no worries about any oil or splatter because there is a glass screen between you and the Chefs. However, I would personally not recommend that you sit there unless you really need to catch some live action and watching your dinner prepared in its rawest form.

The Plain Jane Cafe @ Blk 221 Serangoon Ave 4

Located at the ground floor of a HDB block opposite Serangoon Stadium, is a humble quaint little cafe that specialises in Swiss Rolls, both for dining-in and takeaway. Opened in Dec last year, The Plain Jane is definitely not plain at all with its marbled and wooden accents, pretty accessories and delicate touches that makes this space cozy and ideal for an afternoon tea session with a good friend. Brownie points too for their special attention to the crockery and flowery plates that compliment the old-school feeling of this place.

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Serving up to 7-8 different flavours of Swiss Rolls such as Matcha, Yuzu and Raspberry each day, it is interesting to note the disproportionate ratio of cream to sponge here at The Plain Jane. That said, we were certainly not complaining because the essence of each flavour is most pronounced in the whipped cream that interlace each spiral. Between us two and after much debate, we eventually settled for the Earl Grey Tea, Thai Milk Tea and Nutella Swiss Rolls. Prices are $4.90-$5.90 per individual slice.

Tuk Tuk Cha @ Suntec City Tower 3

It is almost too easy to walk past Tuk Tuk Cha (TTC) and not notice it because that was exactly what happened to us when we went looking for it on Saturday morning. An unassuming takeaway kiosk with less than 10 seats, TTC is by the same people behind Boat Noodle House at Bedok Point and specialises in all things Thai. The kitchen is decidedly modest in size- put 2 people inside and it is already filled. Yet somehow in this cosy space, they are able to churn out one of the best Shibuya toasts in town.

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For starters, get their Thai Milk Tea and Thai Green Milk Tea $2.80/$3.20. Both equally refreshing and great thirst quenchers. We thoroughly enjoyed the full-bodiedness of the tea and the delicate balance between the sweetened condensed milk and the hint of spices. A commendable effort and almost as close as you can get to the real thing in Thailand.