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Monthly Archives: April 2013

That’s why they call it Butterfish!

imageAfter pre-dinner drinks at the W Hotel in Seminyak tonight we walked via the beach over to ‘Potato Head’ to get our grub on. The setting was stunning facing the sea in a half circle separated into beach club and restaurant, covered with window shutters from the in- and outside.

I ordered the ‘Pistacchio Crusted Butterfish‘ with arugula, pomelo and a truffle infused vinaigrette. I was surprised that for a place like this the prices for food were very reasonable and for the level of quality even more.

The butterfish, according to it’s name, was super moist and crazy sweet similar to crab meat. The texture was very firm and it fell into big chunks when getting at it with the fish knife. The crust added a nice crispness to the fish but I couldn’t make out that it was pistacchio no matter how hard I tried. The popping pomelo pearls and the bitterness of the arugula worked great with the dish but my favorite combination was just the fish together with the truffle vinaigrette. Simply delicious.

The friendliness of our waiter could have been more welcoming as we arrived 20 minutes before last order and felt like a bit of a bother but put that aside and considering the taste and quality of the food and the fantastic location I’ll be returning to this place when being back on the Islands of the Gods.

http://www.ptthead.com/

Potato Head Beach Club                                                                                                                                 Jalan Petitenget                                                                                                                                        Seminyak                                                                                                                                                              Bali 80361                                                                                                                                                  Indonesia

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Oink Oink!

imageI followed my friends to Bali this week and yesterday we were driving around the island and ended up in Ubud for a late lunch. One of my Indonesian friends really wanted to try out a popular restaurant for ‘Suckling Pig‘, ‘Warung Babi Guling’. Their main branch next to Ubud Palace was already packed so we continued walking a bit further to the ‘Ibu Oka 3’ branch. It was kinda hidden but there was enough signage and people directing us to find it easily and I must say the atmosphere here was even nicer as it was more quiet and overlooking a bit of jungle.

We ordered the ‘Spesial‘ which is a collection of pork meat, crackling (skin), blood sausage, fried pork, potatos and rice. The pork meat was lovely tender and juicy and marinated nicely with Indonesian spices. All greasy fat was removed from the skin and it made awesome cracking sounds and tasted great. Even that I am not a huge fan of blood sausage and black pudding I really liked this one all over, consistency and the well flavored taste. I just left the casing as it didn’t look very appealing and seemed quite tough. The fried meat didn’t taste like much besides the spicy batter and was rather dry. The vegetables were simple potatoes that were slightly spicy but too soft for me but the rice again fitted nicely with its coconut flavor and and tasted delicious in combination with the meats. It all got even better when we asked for their sambal which was chopped and marinated bird chilis and brought fire into the game.

I really liked the food here and for only 30,000 IDR for the ‘Spesial‘ set I now have a new attractive and tasty option when passing through Ubud in the future.

Warung Babi Guling (Ibu Oka 3)                                                                                                                     Jalan Tegal Sari No.2                                                                                                                                       Ubud                                                                                                                                                                      Bali 80571                                                                                                                                                  Indonesia

Who Needs 18 Folds?

imageFinally Chinatown Complex Food Center reopened after a long break for renovation and since the last group of friends visiting Singapore were starving I brought them here hoping my favorite stall for ‘Xiao Long Bao‘ – ‘Hong Guo La Mian Xiao Long Bao’ or ‘China La Mian Steamed Buns’ was still there. And “Thank God” it was. The Chinese couple who ran it for the last couple of years seemed to have teamed up with another couple recently and today the two husband were on shift.

We ordered the ‘Xiao Long Bao‘ (XLB), the ‘Jiao Zi‘ and the ‘Spicy Sichuan Wonton‘. The XLB here maybe don’t have eighteen folds but to my opinion they are still the best hawker version available in Singapore. The dough was very thin so we could make out the soup level inside and the soup itself had a delicious and rich pork taste. Note to myself, “don’t be so greedy otherwise you will burn yourself every time again”, which I do, every time. I especially liked the meat filling as it tasted great, was smaller portioned and minced very fine which also pleased my preference for non-chunky texture. That all together with the smiling faces of the owners and a low price of five dollars for ten XLB makes me come back here again and again. The ‘Jiao Zi‘ were based on the same meat mixture but enhanced with chopped up chives which worked fantastically together. The dough was fried crisp on one side and nicely chewy on the other. The wonton had tiny pork meat pockets with a lot of noodle-like flattened chewy dough around that was soaked in a tangy chili oil. Delicious.

Even that I loved the dumplings as always I was left with a bit of emptiness as it was a Sunday on which they don’t offer their ‘Spicy Sichuan Noodle La Mian‘ but since I come by here quiet frequently I knew I won’t have to wait too long to taste them again.

Zhong Guo La Mian Xiao Long Bao                                                                                                                   335 Smith Street                                                                                                                                               #02-135 Chinatown Complex Food Center                                                                                       Singapore 050335

Angry Chicken For Lunch!

imageAnother day, another lunch. Somehow this week we felt like something new and so again today we tried a place we haven’t been to before  – ‘Nando’s’, a Mozambican-Portuguese franchise restaurant at JCube mall next to Jurong East MRT.

We all decided for a variation of the ‘Angry Mango Chicken‘; Wrap, Pita and my choice, the burger with their signature ‘Extra Hot Peri Peri Sauce‘. As my two sides I had the ‘Coleslaw‘ and the ‘3 Bean Salad‘ which both were more boring than anything. The coleslaw was slouchy and missing crunch and both salads lacked a good pinch of salt which might have saved them from falling under the ‘lame’ category. The chicken was not so much a burger as a sandwich. The bread was more baguette like but very soft and as they meant good with the sauce also completely soaked. The chicken itself was quiet nicely grilled, not particularly moist but tasty nevertheless. Together with the greens and the peri peri sauce it made quiet a good combination, just the mango wasn’t really that present. The sauce tricked me at first as it appeared tangy yet not biting which changed like three quarters through the sandwich when I started sweating and had to breath with open mouth. Tasty though.

Even that this is not the place I would go the extra mile for it sure is a decent place for a lunch change once in a while. And next time I might try the pita version as that actually looked really toasty.

http://www.nandos.com.sg/

Nando’s                                                                                                                                                                     2 Jurong East Central 1                                                                                                                                    #03-07/19 JCube                                                                                                                                    Singapore 609731

It’s Udon Week Folks!

imageI seem to be having a run on udon noodles recently and so again today. One of my colleagues mentioned this place many times before and since he had the car we united the lunch crew and head for Sunset Way to eat at ‘Megumi Japanese Restaurant’. In the spirit of whole complex it’s in the place doesn’t look too exciting at first, just a small tidy restaurant with a small sushi bar.

Following my colleague’s recommendation I ordered the ‘Gyu Udon‘ (beef). This was a huge portion but well trained as I am I still finished it up in no time. The soup was your typical udon broth but infused entirely with beefy flavor. It wasn’t cleared so there were clouds of protein and meat fibre floating on the surface but that added extra aroma and so was no show stopper. The noodles were plenty but just cooked a minute too long so I missed the usual udon chewiness. The beef was super lean and tasted great and beefy just the texture was quiet soft which made me wonder if they tenderized it before. The last component was a spinach like green which fitted the bowl nicely and added another texture to the pond.

I’m pretty glad we finally made it out here, another satisfying lunch option found, and so I am looking forward to when my colleague gets the car again next time.

http://megumijapanese.com.sg/

Megumi Japanese Restaurant                                                                                                                        Block 106 Clementi Street 12                                                                                                                         #01-64                                                                                                                                                       Singapore 120106         

More Parma Please!

imageThis place is just around the corner from my work and today my colleague had her birthday and wished to have her birthday lunch over there.

The few times I came here I always ordered the ‘BLT‘ so for a change I went with their ‘Parma Ham Sandwich‘ today. The first great thing about this sandwich was the toasted Turkish bread which was crispy on the outside and soft but tasty on the inside. Second great thing was the actual parma ham with it’s intense and typical nutty flavor. I only wished they would have been a bit more generous with the parma as more than two thin slices would have been nice. I’m not too sure what cheese they used  but it’s light smokey aroma together with the bitter rocket rounded the whole sandwich up just nicely.

I thought that was a really decent sandwich and might pop by here for lunch now more often hoping they’ll stack it up with more of that tasty ham eventually but I don’t hold my breath.

http://www.vivavox.com.sg/

VivaVox Cafe                                                                                                                                                          3A International Business Park                                                                                                                       #01-10 Icon@IBP                                                                                                                                    Singapore 609935

Dig In…With Your Hands!

imageA good old friend is back in town and he wanted to go back to his favorite Indian place in Singapore ‘The Banana Leaf Apolo’ on Racecourse Road in Little India.

As an appetizer we ordered the ‘Fish Cutlets‘ which had a nice soft, completely unfishy texture with only a hint of fish taste to them that was accompanied by a nice herb & spice mix as well as whole bay leaves. All served cold with a green tangy mint gravy. My favorite, the  ‘Fish Tikka‘, is marinated in a delicious red gravy and was grilled perfectly sealing all the juices within each tikka cube. It tasted very light and fell apart easily so I didn’t really need to chew. Another meat dish we ordered was the ‘Chicken Korma‘ which was heavily rich and creamy. Not being an expert in Indian cooking, I believe that korma is usually cooked with yoghurt and cream but here the gravy also had a light coconut taste to it. It was good but I felt heavier with every bite. Lastly a vegetarian ‘Gobi‘ (cauliflower) dish with onions which was the only really spicy food we had but unfortunately there were rather few gobis and much more onions in it.

Some people might say that the Apolo is a place for tourists but it is still my go to place for Northern Indian food. The choice is huge and the dishes taste great and the only reason I don’t come here more often is that I’m scared I would soon roll my way around.

Use your hands peeps!

http://www.thebananaleafapolo.com/

The Banana Leaf Apolo                                                                                                                                        54 Race Course Road                                                                                                                             Singapore 218564