Thinking back on this meal, my heart shifts around with the clanking of chain weights following suite.
Who would have known that this would be our last dinner together?
To all those reading the review, don't you worry, I'll write this with the most impartiality I can master. Still, take me with a pinch of salt.
The Boathouse, recently revamped and less than 6 months old; is housed in the standalone building across the road from the Fullerton. Bearing great views of the Marina Bay Area from its al fresco upper deck area, also known as [prel.ude], and donning a rather romantic and intimate ambiance for its diners in the exclusive quarters; I was surprised to see that the boathouse had been rather empty that night. Reservations aside, I was eager to taste the food served up by the kitchen.
We were quick to be seated and attended to upon arrival at the door by a apple-faced, well groomed Chinese lady. That's one tick off the check list for amiable and good-looking staff. After a quick stroll through the menu (to take heed that the menu ain't exactly extensive, so choices can be made simply), we decided to venture off to the wine cellar conveniently located at the corner of the bar area.
Much to our delight, the wine cellar was chock full of hidden treasures. Everything from vintage fine wines from the Bordeaux region to crisp new age wines from the coastal areas of New Zealand. However, stepping into the wine cellar was akin to threading around in murky waters, no doubt the choices of wines were top notch, but unless you had a wallet deep enough to finance your choice, you stood the chance of getting a heart attack upon revealing of the final tab. Worst yet, there were no sommeliers on site to justify our choice as well as the hidden price tag; hence we took the safe option of referring to the less intimidating wine list to choose our poison for the night.
With the passing of the tomato bread and pea soup, which were in my impression, really forgettable; we were served our starters. Well timed I must say. He had the Salad of Asparagus ($16) and I the Scallops($18); we eventually swapped courses in the end because I liked his more though. The asparagus salad was executed perfectly with the crunchy greens providing perfect contrast to the burst of sunshine from the slow poached egg. The Italian Scamorza Italian cow's milk cheese speaking volumes with its creamy contributions of salted lingerings. The scallops, topped with a lime and Mediterranean dressing paled in comparison despite its more gregarious lead character. The winner on the plate would have to be the scattering of toasted pine nuts across the less inspired dish.
The mains arrived soon after the palate cleanser of lemon sorbet was lapped up and cleared by the eager staff. Ever encountered a situation where you try to retain a certain sense of calmness and dignity whilst struggling with getting the food out of its designated container that look like it wasn't designed for it? That's what you get with the lemon sorbet, a bottle necked thin glass and a thick headed spoon. I could not reach the bottom of the vessel, and hell yeh, it sucked.
My main course of Grilled Pork Cheek ($35) was served with a ragout of chestnut, wild mushroom and delicately showered with a truffle emulsion. I was instantly dashed when i got my first bite... nothing compared to the kurobuta pork cheek at Otto Ristorante. Looking at it objectively, the dish was generous in portions, had a fantastic side of chestnut and wild mushroom ragout that almost tasted a bit like the braised mushrooms in dark sauce you get poured over your bak chok mee, don't mean to sound demeaning or anything... The truffle emulsion complimented the pork cheek perfectly and my only qualm was the lack of it that sent me trailing my sliced meat all over the plate in a bid to catch some of the remnant drippings. Pathetic I know.
He had the Angus Beef ($29), a cap of ribeye with sweet carrot puree, onion compote and truffle jus. I don't recall much about this dish but vaguely remembered my partner complimenting the innovative and delicious rendition of mash in the form of sweet carrot puree. Complements to the beautiful plating up of the dish though.
Following the bittersweet courses, we ended on a sweet note. Reaching a decision to meet halfway on the desserts. We shared the "Chocolat" essentially a Valrhona Caraibe chocolate bar with vanilla bean ice cream. The dessert was overall quite a success, and won our hearts over with its crunchy feuilletine base and rich chocolate nuances that danced around in our mouths long after.
On a parting note, the boathouse has disappointed with its mediocre standard of food; however with the earnest contention of Kannan the restaurant manager and the entire team, I'm sure the restaurant will make stark improvements in time to come. Still given its swanky location and dashing layout, this warrants a visit for many couples out to get some peace and quiet, a romantic spot indeed.
The Waterboat House
3 Fullerton Rd #03-01
Tel: (65) 65389038
There are days
when I feel
The best of me
is ready to begin (the end)
Then there's (the) days
when I feel
I'm letting go
and soaring on the wind
'Cause I've learned in laughter or in pain
How to survive!
I get on my knees!
I get on my knees!
There I am before the Love
That changes me
See I don't know how
But there's power
When I'm on my knees
I can be
in a crowd
Or by myself
and almost anywhere
When I feel
there's a need
To talk with God
He is Emmanuel
When I close my eyes,
no darkness there
There's only light!
I get on my knees
I get on my knees
There I am before the Love that changes me
See I don't know how, but there's power
In the blue skies, in the midnight
When I'm on my knees
I get on my knees
I get on my knees
There I am before the Love
That changes me
See I don't know how, but there's power
When I'm on my, oh, when I'm on my
When I'm on my knees
For those who don't already, I've pulled the plug on a long standing relationship with my babe; and to all those who already know that bit, I figured that a bit of explanation would be good.
So it took me a dreadfully long three years to realize that as much as I enjoyed our time together, he was not the one that I could see myself spending the rest of my life with. At least not with a little bit of resentment going on. Truthfully, the both of us started off on the wrong foot, mostly on my part as I was extremely sore from a past relationship, and what he had to offer me was a safe haven, far away from from the hurtful past and uncertainties lurking. There, he nursed my wounds, putting a smile to my face when I thought that all was dead; slowly the gaps in my heart closed up an genuine joy creep into my heart every time he is near. Grateful for his tireless efforts, I stuck with him. With that, three years snuck past, and I came to a startling realization that my love for him constituted large amounts of gratitude and guilt. In my heart, I knew that he was giving all he was capable of just to please me whereas I had nothing to give him in return.
Then, it came time for me to pack up and leave for Dubai; as most long distance relationships are, this was not easy. Without counting on his daily efforts to see me everyday, our relationship dwindled to the point where I steered clear of calls and messages from him in my bid for freedom. Clearly I lacked the dedication and commitment to this in contrary to his positive outlook on it in entirety. Then, it came to dawn that I didn't love him as much as he loved me; and I couldn't deal with that. I had to let go of it lest both of us get even more hurt in the end. And that's how the story ends.
To babe, I don't know whether you'll be reading this, but I want to thank you with all the heartfelt gratitude in me for leading me through the storm, for giving till you've got nothing to give. You were never in the wrong, nor can you do anymore to become the one. I'm sorry for hurting you like this, but I don't want you to suffer a larger blow in time to come. Thank you for loving me and teaching me how to love again. May the Lord continue to bless you and guide you as you walk thru life with him on your right side. Be strong.
Tampopo Deli, located in the heart of Liang Court, has been helmed by the Japanese community as a go to place for affordable and authentic japanese cuisine. But what drew me to place in contrary to its savoury cuisine, was its array of fresh cream chiffon cakes sprawled ever so sexily across the refrigerated counter displays.
With so many good reviews of the scoop cake circulating the net, it was my primal instincts for cake sustenance versus my swollen belly resulting from a weekend of non-stop feasting. And obviously the former emerged victorious.
The macha green tea chiffon was a joy to eat. With a incredibly light yet dubiously moist sponge, the buttery nature of the freshly whipped cream was accentuated by the stark grass-like flavor of the chiffon sponge. Lightly sweetened to within the thresholds that separates 'all-goodness' from the 'artificial tasting'. I was hooked on the cream, constantly digging my spoon through the portions without the presence of lingering greens.
The Scoop cake on the other hand had slightly more cream then the macha green tea chiffon; with a medley of fruits arranged within the layers as well as over the top, the result was an even moister dessert with MORE cream to enjoy. Gosh, pardon my tunnel vision, the cream drives me a little around the bend sometimes. By this point, I was riding on cloud nine, and with another dashful of sacharrine madness, my balancing act came crashing down. I began nit-picking on the sweetness of the cream; the fact that I hated apricots in between my cake... So much for fair judgement. *gulps*. All in all, the scoop cake is still a memorable cake, one of the dreamiest short cakes you can get around town without a doubt.
177 River Valley Road
#B1-16 Liang Court Shopping Centre
Tel: +65 6338 7386
Shots, also located in the shadows of the beautiful shophouses lining Ann Siang Hill; does some really tricky business...
directly quoted from their website,
a shot of espresso in the morning,
a quintessential photo shot to frame your day and
a gratifying shot of sake to end your night.
Shots just kills it for me by mingling good coffee with photography; sake (not something that I have a strong affliation to) just adds a cool factor to its integrity. And try as I might to contain my excitement, I was all fired up and jittery, despite the cool and almost imperturbable surroundings that shrouds most art galleries.
Entertained by a bunch of photography magazines that we lifted off the racks, we sat and sipped away at our coffees. A cold cappuccino for me and a macchiato for him. Though I do have slight objections to ordering my coffee iced, due to the dissolution of true quality with the melting of the ice, this time round, I made an exception given the intolerably hot weather outside. Yet despite my compromise, the iced cappuccino was spot on. Kudos to the barista.
Verdict: Drop by for a cuppa coffee and a swish of sake if you're around the region. Shots with its impeccable selection of photographs and occasional photo exhibitions provide an inspirational space for quiet thought and many more intimate conversations with your friends.
8 Ann Siang Hill
K-ki and the little dröm store has been the talk of the town amongst many
It was a tremendously hot day, and despite my experience in Dubai, dealing with the humidity was a foreign concept to me thus far and I suffered, prespired and sulked my way thru the entire walk up from the carpark to the lovely alcove of a shop. However, all would be erased once I stepped inside. A lovely array of cakes greeted my sight. The heat lifted. Though small in variety (given that it was a weekend), I was highly confident of its quality, a kind of unspoken and rare assurance that doesn't come by usually. And sure enough, our orders of Cafe Domu($7.50) and Antoinette($8.00) were exemplary. *two thumbs up*
Chocolate coffee mousse check.. crunchy feuilletine base. I adore this one.
The Antoinette (names after the owner of the little dröm store after she fell in love with it at first bite) topped it by a notch with its innovative and delectable pairing of white chocolate mousse and sweet mango puree as a hidden surprise. My favourite.
Still... let's not jump to conclusions regarding our favourites of the lot. Would be biased given the fact that I've not gone thru the entire collection! Any takers for the next trip?
Just a personal note to Kenneth and Delphine, the lovely couple and owners of this establishment, may your love for each other and cakes continue to sustain the growth and flourishment of the shop. That more people get to saveur the beautiful works of your labor. *beams*
now for sneak peak at the neighbour! The little dröm store. Selling a quirky collection of knick knacks and the most random items you can possibly find to whip a sense of nostagia into you. Don't believe me, take a closer look... (btw, i adore that vintage nikon camera bag right in the front... lovely stuff)
No.7 Ann Siang Hill
In the night sky
Are like shooting stars
I could really use a wish right now"
as much I find Ryan's (George Clooney) jetsetting lifestyle potrayed in the movie 'Up in the air' a little disconcerting. I must admit that I do enjoy the frequent air lifts quite a bit. Residing in the fact that it provides me with a certain facade of independence and reclusiveness.
One thing I enjoy the most about taking to the skies alone is pre-flights drinks in solitude. Grabbing a coffee and plonking my arse down at a table, tiny sips of the piping hot adrenaline induced drink, the quick flip of a magazine, inquisitive eyes observing the moving subjects intently. Then with a quick flip of orientation, you come to face the tarmac in their bustle of activity. Then you realise that as much as you think your flight schedule is incredibly tight and rushed; in the grand scheme of things, it is nothing but the flight of a grain of sand as the wind ripples thru the desert floors.
I recall when I was younger, I was terrified as hell of planes. The taking-off and the landing portions as well as the relentless turbulence experienced on long haul flights. In my recollection, I must have barfed on almost every flight we took to the states for our school holiday trips. But as I grew older, a little taller and perhaps a little more tolerant, the flights evolved into a acceptably painful experience (more so for the buttocks and the painful joints resulting from the lack of oxygen in the cabins). However, with the onset of age, the fear of dying on a flight escalated ten fold ( the scene of the airplane exploding in mid air in final destination didn't help either), I would stay awake and pray relentlessly and most fervently each time the plane took a sudden dip in the changing air currents.
Strange enough, I encountered a recent flight where I felt absolute peace in my heart. I may have confused it with a distressing period which resulted in suicidal tendencies but I doubt so. Then, I came to a serene acknowledgement that I could let everything go, that if I were to leave the world at this instant, I would have no regrets whatsoever. And I savoured that fleeting moment. Have you ever felt like that?
Breakfast was at Old Town White Coffee @ the KL airport before my short flight back to Singapore where I spent the better of the trip nodding off my seat in frightening dips, much to the dismay of my poor neighbor. Thick Kaya Toast and a cup of hot Kopi-C. A bite of nostalgia and a sip of fond memories as I did partake in the meal.
There's always something about hot coffee and coconut jam that makes me miss home even more. And as I scribble this post down, miles away from humble abode, it leaves my jumbled thoughts scrambled on a blank slate.
I miss home. I miss you.
Old Town White Coffee
Kuala Lumpur Airport (KLA)
I can't say the same for the many of you late risers out there though...
So back to breakfast,I had to try out wild honey after hearing all the cheers and praises shrouding this all-day breakfast place located at the mandarin gallery. Armed with personal recommendations and no reservations for a weekday morning, I was surprised to find the place relatively packed with the usual business partners at one corner, a threesome family affair on another and a trigger happy couple on the other complete with a few lonely but contented caucasian diners on the side.
Almost immediately as I plopped down on the comfy couch placed strangely in the center of the dining area, I fell in love with its outlandish style. Mismatched floral prints complete with smooth wooden floors, chalkboards mounted on the walls and a gorgeous countertop segregating the ordering counters from the seating area.
Food wise, I had the european breakfast ($18) complete with a cappuccino to wash it down. The former was excellent by my standards, featuring beautifully poached eggs wrapped in Italian proscuitto and served on thick brioche complete with sauteed field mushrooms. Hefty in portions, this was sufficient to keep me fuelled the entire day!
Peeping over at my fellow accomplices' plate, he had the Belgium breakfast consisting of fluffy waffles sandwiched with grilled mango. With toasted coconut strewned all over the plate and the waffles, I was sold upon my first bite. But he claims that it was a tad disappointing. *shuffles feet* My advice, stick with the savoury sets.
So would I visit Wild Honey again? Yes I would, considering the fact that it reminds me of brunch in Melbourne on a gloomy grey sky morning. Lovely... You would probably consider this place as well should you need a refuelling session before heading for shopping spree nearby.
333A Orchard Road
#03-02 Mandarin Gallery
Tel: +65 6235 3900
Essentially soft-boiled eggs done japanese style. These beauties are thrown into a malted vinegar ice bath after a hot tub session to aid the albumen in the egg whites to set gently whilst the yolk remains runny. Then later, they are placed gently into the marinade composed of a mixture of mirin and japanese soya sauce, where their prolonged immersion resulted in a lovely caramel colored coating.
Upon hearing that Santouka Ramen @ Central served up these amazing eggs alongside one of the best ramens as proclaimed by many die hard ramen fans. My tongue tingled for a bit of the action. At Santouka ramen, the sight of queue at 9 15 pm reaffirmed the notion that this dish was good, drawing in the crowds even at such an odd hour. I happily tucked into Pork Cheek Ramen Set w Miso Soup,and in the midst of all the soul churning, nodded in unison with all the other agreeable diners. I indulged myself in the lavishness of the rich pork broth combined with the lethal combination of braised pork cheek silvers that yielded to the heat of my tongue in a slow dissolution. Amazing.
My only qualm... the hefty price tag. But still... amazing pork cheek in exchange.. that's a no-brainer.
Open 11am to 9.30pm daily
and sure enough, we got that and more! Let's see... snare remarks at our poor ability to recognise fishes and vegetables; requests for photographs from the enthusiastic Indian community; a box of donut peaches; persimmons and nectarines and not to mention, seafood in the form of crabs and fleshy pomfrets.
photos from our excursion...
Imagine having a fish shoved at you as an Indian fishmonger insists that you take a photos of the rather grotesque looking specimen. I love their enthusiasm though.
My favourite shot by far. A lonely old man just sitting and watching as the whole world passes him by. If I had the liberty of using a tripod, I would have possibly slowed down the shutter speed for a blurred effect of the moving crowds.
This little man over came up to me as we were unloading our wheel-barrow (yes, you can get the indians to push your purchases around the market after you) of goodies into the car and asked for a photo. After I nodded my head in agreement, he clambered into his barrow and posed. Imagine my stunned expression, masked by the camera, you could sense a burst of laughter on the verge of exploding off my chest. Even more so after he requested for my number and yet refused to pay my stated price of one fish.. *shrugs*
Most of know that white chocolate does not equate brownies. After all, that only accounts as cocoa butter. So what are these exactly? Recieving the curious stares of an onlooker upon my claim that these were in fact white chocolate brownies isn't exactly very welcoming. Neh... I proclaim them to be white chocolate cake instead!
Crisp on the outside with the signature rippling of its surface skin (almost like a real brownie) yet chewy and fragrantly sweet on the inside. These were good, but nothing extraordinary. Given that fact, I could still have managed to pop a few in one sitting. Now I heavily regret baking it in the wilton brownie pan that warrant 'dainty' portions with a not so dainty temptation factor. ARGH. Well at least I skipped the meringue topping, that ought to dodge a few extra calories won't it?
Thank you Marthe from Culinary Delights for choosing this weeks' recipe.
Please visit the link for the recipe!
Next week, tender shortcakes!!!