The Loft Cafe

Monday, 29 June 2015

The Loft Cafe
About a few months back, I had visited The Loft Cafe, located in Chinatown, in hopes of having a great meal to brighten my day. It was a sweltering hot day.
I was in the mood for some brunch and my bestie was thinking of having the pasta.

Details
 Area: 
Chinatown / Telok Ayer

Country: 
Singapore

Price: 
$$

Good For: 
Small Groups / Friends / Solo / Takeaway / Family

Accessibility: 
Approx. 3 mins walk from Chinatown MRT Station 

Let's Eat!

Tuscan Baked Eggs ($14.80)
With eggs & Mushrooms baked with parmesan cheese, this dish was really sinful and oily. But oily as it was, they were really generous on the mushrooms and the egg was a lovely sunny side egg with its whites nicely embedded together with the cheese. It also comes with a choice of short stack pancakes or toast.

Since their signature were the pancakes and waffles, I decided to try the pancakes as I'm certain they would be using the same batter for the rest of the pancake dishes. Served with butter and maple syrup on the side, the pancakes were fluffy, but were average tasting. I liked it better when I put some cheesy mushrooms on top of the pancakes to enhance its overall flavour. I also asked them to add an extra side of bacon ($2), but they forgot to serve it.

Lemon Shrimp Pasta ($16.80)
The use of the Angel Hair Pasta actually helped ease the heaviness of the dish a little, as the dish would have really gone over-the-top heavy with other types of pasta. I loved the angel hair pasta, but the sauce was still overwhelmingly creamy. My friend didn't enjoy the taste of the lemon and pasta together.

Natsu Beri Shibuya Toast ($11.40)
Summer berry compote served on top of Japanese styled French toast with vanilla ice cream (supposedly) and whipped cream. They forgot to put include the vanilla ice cream. How could they have forgotten? Sigh. To be honest, I also forgot about the vanilla ice-cream until after we finished the dessert and left. So I won't be commenting on the vanilla ice-cream part but I do think that the Japanese styled french toast was alright, when eaten with the berry compote and whipped cream.

Unfortunately, the day which I had visited wasn't a good day for them as they were shorthanded (even with little patrons). While the staff remained very polite and apologetic about my visit and long wait for the food (the wait was more than 30 minutes), forgetting to put in the vanilla ice cream as one of the main ingredients in their desserts remain the most disappointing.


Low-Down
The best bit: The counter staff's service, and the Tuscan baked eggs.

The worse bit: Like an experience gone wrong, the sad experience outweighed the good. The environment (aircon was down), the forgotten ordered items, the extremely long waiting time despite very little patrons at the cafe.

The Loft Cafe
Location: 268A South Bridge Road (off Smith Street), Singapore 058817



Folks Collective

Sunday, 28 June 2015

Folks Collective

Details
 Area: 
Chinatown / Telok Ayer

Country: 
Singapore

Price: 
$$

Good For: 
Groups / Solos / Friends / Family 

Accessibility: 
Convenient
(Takes about 5 minutes walk from Telok Ayer MRT Station / 10 mins walk from Chinatown MRT Station)

It looks as though you've just stepped into a bar of some sorts. Popular to the working crowd during lunch time, it provides a relaxing environment from start to finish.

Let's Eat!
Lychee Red Curry with Roasted Duck

Lovely lovely curry with the sweet hint of lychee juice which mixes well with the red curry. The curry isn't that hot, I practically drank some of the gravy from my spoon because it was so tasty (and not spicy).
The ingredients, however, I felt could have been more substantial in portion. Even the duck meat were mostly fatty parts and there weren't too much meat in the entire bowl.

Kangkong Stir Fried
Our wait staff said this was spicy... she was wrong. It wasn't spicy to me, thank goodness I didn't order the Kangkong Sambal, which she shared was a less spicy version. It was nice but tasted a little too salty, as per the basil minced pork.

Thai Basil Stir-Fried Pork
I liked this, albeit the lack of basil taste. I don't recommend this if you actually like an overflowing flavour of basil, because that's just almost non-existent in this dish, unless you actually pick out the basil leaves and start chewing on them. The pork, however, was very nicely cooked and has enough sauce to go with the rice.

Red Rubies + Ice Cream Kati 
The red rubies and coconut ice cream had failed to shine. First up, the coconut ice-cream had no taste. The red rubies also lacked crunch. The jackfruit slices, atapchi and peanuts did well to bulk up the dessert and add colour, but if the star of the show is not performing, how much more must the supporting roles perform in order to set the stage right? This dish was a flop for me.

Mango Sticky Rice
Lovely. I must say, the way they did their sticky rice was so flavourful and addictive. On the top, they topped it with fragrant coconut cream. The mango slices were fresh and went well with the sticky rice. This, I give my chop of approval.

Thai Milk Tea
I asked for less ice (to prevent too much water dilution) so I could taste the milk tea better. It was so smooth and nice, the milk tea also did not taste overly sweet. I simply recommend this drink.

Low-Down
Best bit: Lychee Red Curry, thai milk tea and mango sticky rice. 

The worse bit: Red Rubies dessert fits into the worse bit of my meal. The portions are really not all that huge for its price, either.

Folks Collective 
Location: China Square Central, #01-25, 20 Cross St, Singapore 048422




Eggs & Berries [Closed]

Saturday, 27 June 2015

Eggs & Berries [Closed]

Details
  Area: 
Tanah Merah

Country: 
Singapore

Price: 
$$

Good For: 
Groups / Solos / Friends / Family

Accessibility: 
Fastest route: Approx. 2 minutes walk from Expo MRT Station (CG1) from exit B


Very spacious!


Let's Eat!
Yuzu Crab Salad
Good. Delicious. Lovely! Garden greens tossed with crab meat, smoked bacon, tomatoes and egg had gone well hand-in-hand with the Chef's home-made Yuzu Salad dressing. It was certainly lovely and I would come back just for this. 

Eggs Florentine
Served with 2 poached eggs laid on top of muffins, with salmon in the centre, all eyes were on the flowy egg yolk, which once cut, flowed out like an eggy river. 
Let it flow!
Fruitti Di Mare
This was one of my favourite dishes, we not only feasted on the hearty portion of seafood in the pasta, but also visually feasted on this good looker.

Passionfruit and Banana souffle
The souffle was pretty light and fluffy, which I liked, together with the vanilla flavoured ice-cream. I also liked that this dish was made with less sugar, and that reduced my feeling of guilt over eating the dessert!

This is an invited media tasting session.

Eggs & Berries
Location: #01-37/38, Changi City Point 5 Changi Business Park Central 1 486038
Website: https://www.facebook.com/eggsnberries




Oven & Fried Chicken (OFC / Okkudak & Ssaldak 오꾸닭)

Monday, 22 June 2015

Oven & Fried Chicken (OFC / Okkudak & Ssaldak 오꾸닭)
The influx of Korean Fried Chicken continues in Singapore. After trying out a few Korean Fried Chicken contenders, my Korean friend introduced me to this Oven & Fried Chicken (Okkudak) along Telok Ayer Road, which I'm glad I visited.

Details
  Area: 
Telok Ayer / Tanjong Pagar

Country: 
Singapore

Price: 
$$

Good For: 
Groups / Friends / Solo / Takeaway / Family

Accessibility: 
Approx. 2 mins walk from Telok Ayer MRT Station / 5 mins walk from Tanjong Pagar MRT Station

Let's Eat!
I actually came back here twice. Seriously. Once for the fried rice chicken, another time for the roast chicken. Shows how much I thought the first experience was! :)

First up, a 1 pint draft beer. The cup was ginormous. >.<
They served some regular chips to go along with the beer. Time for ChiMaek (Chicken + Maekju aka Beer), a popular way to enjoy fried chicken anytime, because fried chicken is 'heaty' and beer is 'cooling'.
Did you also know that beer is what Asians call the Westerners' cooling tea? :)

If you eat Korean fried chicken alot, you'll definitely get served with this side dish. Do you know how to eat this?
No, you do not just simply pop one into your mouth as an appetiser. Instead, you're supposed to take one, munch on it and eat the chicken at the same time. I don't really know how to describe it, but it was awesome! Try it, if you're not already eating it like that.

Yogurt Salad Chicken 요거닭  셀러드 (Half, $23)
Yogurt with chicken? Yuck! That's the expression I get when I told my friends that I tried this here. Launched as part of their special menu, this is something you definitely have to try!
I was so glad that my Korean friend ordered this, because honestly, I would have never ordered this on my own. When it was served, my friend automatically started mixing it all together. Yes, with the chicken as well. But surprisingly, it tasted delicious and I do recommend you try this.

Fried Rice Chicken 쌀통닭 (Original, half - $18)  
We only got half for this one, which had about 6-8 pieces of chicken. It was alot indeed! According to them, this one is 269kcal! Calories lesser than a plate of hokkien mee, can you believe it?!
The reason why it is called fried rice chicken, is because of the rice flour batter. The chicken was amazingly tender and fried to perfection. It didn't feel too oily.

Sauced Rice Chicken 쌀통닭 양념 (Original, Half - $20) 
Also known as Yangnyeom (sweet spicy marinate), this chicken is bathed in the mentioned sauce with their fried rice chicken.
Unfortunately, this is not one of my favourites as it was still too spicy though we chose to have it cooked mild. The spiciness totally covered the sweetness, which I thought was quite a fail for me.

Other than fried chicken, the South Korean eatery also offers roasted chicken. Which was what we tried for lunch on my second visit!

Oven Baked Chicken a.k.a Healthy Grill-Roasted Chicken 로스트  그릴드 (Half, $18)
This wasn't crispy, for sure. But it was indeed very tender, and it's meat looks a little pink. Don't worry, it is cooked and there's a reason for this.

When the chicken has more 'exercise' running around, it causes its muscles to look pink, increasing myoglobin (which includes iron), that's why after cooking, it is still a little pinkish (explanation credits: Okkudak).


It is 150kcal per portion only!

I won't be going into the details for the sauce dips (which you can choose 2 dips among their 6 choices upon ordering of their half chicken.

The 6 dip choices are:
1. Honey Mustard
2. Seet Chilli
3, Mild Sauce
4. Spicy Sauce
5. Soy Sauce
6. Jambalaya

I just went with my favourites: Honey Mustard and Soy Sauce. Don't be mistaken, the soy sauce here isn't the super salty, chinese type. It's a thicker dip, and it isn't too salty!

Low-Down
The best bit: The fried rice chicken.

The worse bit: I would say... the Sauced Rice (YangNyeom) chicken. It's not that bad, but if you compare the taste of the Yangnyeom and the fried + oven baked original chicken, the sauced sibling probably won't be your best choice here.


Oven & Fried Chicken (OFC / Okkudak & Ssaldak)
Location: 182 Telok Ayer St, Singapore 068630
Tel: 6222 5959



Part-time job opportunities: Reliable ones, please! x Stroff.com

Sunday, 21 June 2015

Part-time job opportunities: Reliable ones, please! x Stroff.com

Credits: Quick Meme.com

I remember those days when I was having school holidays and looking for part time jobs – It was an uphill task because it simply isn’t easy as how it is today with the internet. Most part time jobs were out there, and we had to go out and look for it, or depend on our contacts for it.

I remember when I was working as a waitress, and it was a tough job. All of us part-timers  were assigned duties by the manager / in-charge of a restaurant on the first day we arrived, usually not to our best abilities but rather based on connections. The managers had their own connections coming in as staff, and the better jobs were usually assigned to them.

I wanted to work at the drink counter, and no matter how hard I tried, the opportunity was left to others instead: Those who partied with the higher-ups. I can’t say I didn’t learn anything from the experience, but rather, I regret I didn’t get a chance to learn more. 

Anyway, while I was in it for the cash, I really hoped to have been given a chance to get more out of the job. Who knows, I could have become a barista today, instead of slogging away on a work desk.

There was once I was also, unfortunately, tricked to having gone to attend an interview workshop by a multi-level marketing (MLM) firm that sells products (shall not divulge the kind of products here) – promising good rewards and commissions at the end of the day. But after attending an entire 3-day workshop with them, they shared that there was no basic pay, and only commissions to live by. If you don’t meet your target, you can’t get any money. Also, I was told to invest my money into the products first as a commitment to the business.

Well, I was just a young lass then, how would I know to handle the situation? It was very stressful and I regretted being lured by such attractive career baits. Not all mlm businesses are bad – but I guess I just got into a bad one.

So how do you even protect yourself from all this?

It is important to search in reliable portals that cater to your career interests. Even when you do a simple internet search of the keywords part time jobs Singapore or part time jobs for students, these reliable portals tend to feature better and more reliable part-time job opportunities, ensuring that you enter the job knowing exactly what is expected of you.

To close, my advice for those looking for part time jobs in Singapore would be to research what you want to do, properly, and when you get it, remember to be enthusiastic, proactive and eager to learn, so that you’ll take home great values that will help in your future career!

This post was brought to you by Stroff.com.

Instant Chocolate Drinks from England's Waitrose Supermarket

Instant Chocolate Drinks from England's Waitrose Supermarket
Supermarkets are one of the best ways to understand the tastebuds of a country, to a certain extent, and hence, it is also a great place to experience their foods!

During one of my supermarket shopping in the UK (I went to Waitrose to get these but I guess it's pretty much available anywhere too), I saw these few instant chocolate drink packets and decided to try them out!


Here goes:

Cadbury Milk Chocolate Drink
It is only 38 kcal and tastes not overpowering, for those having a craving for a chocolate drink and don't want to bust your diet budget. Each packet can make about 200 ml of the drink, so it's good to stave any cravings.



It is smooth, but I do think that the chocolatey taste pales in comparison with the rest. This is, of course, no complete replacement for chocolate, but it'll do, especially on a cold and rainy day.

Maltesers Malty Chocolate Drink
I love maltesers. I love their chocolate and when I saw this, I just grabbed it off the shelves!
The drink boosts a dark brown colour, and I'm already getting good vibes seeing it.
The smooth concoction really reminds me of malteser chocolates, but in an extremely liquid form. It is also of course lighter than the original chocolate.

Options' Belgian Chocolate, Belgian Chocolate Mint and Chocolate Sweet Popcorn


You know Cadbury, you know Maltesers, but do you know Options? Here, I tried 3 options (lame pun intended) - Belgian Chocolate, Belgian Chocolate Mint and Sweet Popcorn flavour!

Once I put water into the sweet popcorn flavour, a super super sweet scent hit me immediately. The thick mix, to my surprise, didn't taste super sweet, but rather, the smell was sweet than its taste. Which was good for me, because I didn't like to feel that I was drinking sugar. The taste of chocolate was also quite apparent, which I did like! But there was no flavour of popcorn, and I'd say it doesn't really live up to its name.

The Belgian chocolate flavour was really chocolatey and somewhat thick. I did like the first few sips, and felt it was just nice for it to be 200ml, or maybe slightly a little more, depending on your taste buds.

Belgian Chocolate Mint however, was just like the Belgian chocolate, but with a hint of mint in it. I do like this one as the mint taste gives the drink an interesting, and somewhat, delicious twist.

For me, out of these 3 brands, my favourite is... *drum roll*

*drum still rolling*

The Maltesers! Because it is smooth, and light, and totally satisfies all craving for chocolate, yet not overpowering, like how I like my chocolates. It is my best companion for a rainy day, or a harsh air-conditioned office environment. 

Those who likes a creamier taste, remember to add milk instead of water!

Milkcow Singapore 밀크카우

Friday, 19 June 2015

Milkcow Singapore 밀크카우
Milkcow 밀크카우 has arrived and I have managed to gather my experiences on its various flavours after trying different toppings. The softserve uses 100% organic milk as the main ingredient, and is one of the handmade softserves which has won my favour. 


Details
  Area: 
Buona Vista / Tampines (Branches visited)

Country: 
Singapore

Price: 
$

Good For: 
Takeaway

Accessibility: 
Approx. 2 minutes walk from Buona Vista MRT Station / Tampines MRT Station

Let's Eat!
Milky Honey with Honey cube topping ($5.50, additional $1.50 for the topping)
I've added in the honey cube as an additional topping actually. My favourite of what I've tried. The organic honey and the softserve is really the same as its competitors, but I do like that the softserve was made very milky, and the combination was a lovely one.
The honey cube, well, was just another waxy material, it kind of distracted me from thoroughly enjoying the liquid honey drizzle, so in future I will not be topping it up with the cubes.

Snow Drop ($5.90)
To be honest, I didn't think this was nice at all. The cotton candy marred the entire eating experience of this. The cotton candy was making it very messy, making my hands and clothes sticky and I was tired handling it by the time I got to the softserve.
There was also a choice for you to put either jelly beans or M&Ms at the bottom of the soft serve, wrong move. It wasn't a nice combination at all and I didn't appreciate this entire creation, other than the fact is was somewhat instagrammable.

SamSam ($5.50)
Interesting. An acquired taste for most, because they use alot of almond flakes as topping, plus a thick drizzle of ginseng sauce. I'm pretty sure this flavour will find a good amount of target audience in South Korea.
I'm not too sure about here though. People who like ginseng will find that the ginseng is too little, and the almond flakes are too much, and I'm one of them.
Ginseng and milk softserve is pretty interesting to me, and I like interesting. Hence, this is one of the soft serves which has made an impression on me. I think I will most likely have it again, but I will ask them to go easy on the almond flakes for my cup.

Overall, my heart goes to Milkcow's softserve, because it is so smooth and super super milky, which sets them apart from the rest. If you don't like the milky flavour, though, you may or may not find this an enjoyment, depending on your preference for a milky taste, but thank goodness, I do. :)

Low-Down
The best bit: The softserve itself.

The worst bit: The messy snowdrop creation.


Milkcow Singapore 밀크카우
Location: 1 Vista Exchange Green, The Star Vista, #B1-06, Singapore, 138617
Website: https://www.facebook.com/MilkCow.Sg

Other locations include: 
- The Cathay #01-03, 
- Velocity Novena #01-19, 
The Star Vista #B1-06, 
Bugis Juntion #B1-K3, 
Tampines 1 #B1-K17