Thursday, November 27, 2014

Ah Bong's Italian in Tiong Bahru

It's no secret that I love food and friends can testify how I can just go on and on for hours talking about it. So, it is also not a big surprise whenever acquaintances would ask me what my favorite food is or where do I normally go to when I want a surefire delicious meal. The funny thing is, I would sometimes end up a bit stumped on what the right answer should be. I guess it's because I've dined at more a thousand restaurants all over the region and this encompasses a wide range of cuisines too. One time, I really took a few minutes to think about it and the answer simple.

I love pasta.

There, I said it. If there's one thing that I love to eat in this world, it would definitely be a plate of pasta preferably cooked in an oil-based sauce with mushrooms, cheese, a simple choice of meat and spices. At the end of the day, I realized, nothing beats going back to basic. Pasta, to me, is the kind of dish that I would have whenever I had a long day at work. It's a pick-me-upper that never fails to put a smile on my face when something just went oddly wrong during the day. Colleagues here in the Lion City can also attest how I could go on the entire week having pasta every single day.

ah bong's sg 5
When I first heard about Ah Bong's Italian, a hawker stall that sells fresh pasta dishes for only a few hours per day, I knew I have to go and try it soon. Ah Bong is actually owned by Chef Chris Ng who specializes in classical western (Italian) cuisine with a bit of Oriental touch. He named the restaurant after his daughter. This pasta stall shares the same store front with 3 other hawker vendors -- one was selling Yong Tau Foo, another selling Assam Laksa and a drinks stall.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Common Man Coffee Roasters at Martin Road, Singapore

I know Singapore is a small country with a total land area of a little more than 700km which makes it just a bit bigger than Metro Manila's 600km2. Add to the fact that commuting around is so easy and convenient yet I haven't really been around that much. Oh, what have I been doing this past year and a half?

common man 1
Take for example Robertson Quay. It's one of those must-visit places as it's filled with 3rd wave coffee shops and it's said to also be a great place to hang out in or to jog around too. I've been meaning to visit this place but laziness normally strikes the moment the weekend rolls in. I'm glad my good friend Gelats was in town and despite our crazy schedules, we agreed to meet up for a quick coffee chat. She asked me to choose the place and I went for Common Man Coffee Roasters which has been one of the top coffee places to go to this year.

common man 2
Finding it was quite easy with the help of our GPS, I enjoyed walking across the colorful graffiti covered Alkaff Bridge which was painted by Filipino artist Pacita Abad. Common Man Coffee Roasters is about 3 blocks past the bridge. Just walk down Martin Road and you'll surely find the busy coffee shop.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Pie Face in 313 Somerset, Singapore

No. I wasn't hallucinating.
I swear my Chunky Steak Pie was giving me a weird quizzical look. Don't believe me?

Here's the proof:

pie face singapore 3
My Chunky Steak Pie got attitude! 

Friday, November 21, 2014

Three Cups Coffee Co. in One Raffles Place

I'm totally loving the 3rd wave coffee trend!

Imagine, 5 years back, it was just the Green Siren and a few other big coffee shop chains dominating the coffee-drinking world. Today, we're seeing the rise of more coffee aficionados showing us that there's more to life than a cup of brewed coffee with sugar and cream. I'm glad though that the 3rd wave coffee is totally booming here in Singapore as well as in Manila so wherever I go, I have the privilege of trying out one coffee shop after the other.

three cups coffee 5
So, after my back-to-back gym classes last week which felt oh-so-gooood, I treated myself to a light but delicious coffee break at Three Cups Coffee Co. at the 4th level of One Raffles Place. I went on a Saturday and the entire mall, which caters mostly to the CBD office crowd, was so quiet and calm. The shops were empty and even Three Cups Coffee Co. was also having a slow slow slow day. A bit too slow though that I can't help but get turned off by the guy manning the counter who can't seem to stop playing on his mobile. He could barely answer my questions properly as he had his eyes on his phone most of the time. Seriously?!

three cups coffee 1
Thankfully, another guy who happened to be the barista was more knowledgeable and helped me made my choice on which coffee blend to go for. The choice was either a Tanzania Blackburn or the Project Y Blend. Basically, the Tanzania Blackburn has a more chocolate-y taste while the Project Y Blend is their in-house mix of various beans such as Brazilian and Sumatran blends. I wasn't in the mood to experiment so I got a Flat White (S$5) coffee with Tanzania Blackburn beans.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Good Friends Restaurant in Genting Highlands, Kuala Lumpur

If there's one thing that I was truly thankful for about our trip to Kuala Lumpur, it would definitely be the fact that cousin J thought of renting a car. It just made moving around so much easier and safer too. For as long as I'm with Paul or with a more experienced left-hand driver, I'll make sure to rent a car next time I'm traveling too.

good friends malaysia 3
So, on our 1st day in KL, we decided to head up to Genting Highlands which is a quick 1-hour drive from the city center. Paul and I have never been to Genting Highlands so we really didn't know what to expect. All we heard was the famous theme park as well as the big Resorts World casinos. The drive up reminded us of our Baguio trips only it has less dangerous curves and the road was filled with directional signages and speed humps. Finally, we reached Genting Highlands and it was a good thing that cousin B reminded us to bring our jacket as it was cold and very windy! 

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Back at Novotel Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

When we were sort of planning for our weekend trip to Kuala Lumpur, I'm glad that we had cousin J with us as he took care not only of booking our flights, but he went ahead and handled the booking of our hotel and he even rented a car too! He was so organized that I swear, this was the only trip where I happily tagged along without minding that we didn't had any proper itinerary and I know that we will still have a great time. Cousin J is the best travel companion, I tell you.

novotel KL 2
So, when I casually asked him where we're staying in KL, he told me that he booked us all at Novotel Kuala Lumpur. Yay! If you remember, four year ago, this was also where Paul and I stayed for our honeymoon and save for the drilling and mysterious water sound, we loved the hotel's close proximity to the major shopping malls and the beautiful view of the Petronas Towers too. 

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Nando's Peri-Peri Chicken in KLCC, Malaysia

A month ago, Paul and I flew to Kuala Lumpur for a quick weekend getaway to celebrate his birthday with his cousins. Luckily, Kuala Lumpur (KL) is a fast 55 minute flight away from Singapore making it such an ideal place to go to when we just need a vacation but barely have any work leave credits to use up. We flew out after work on a Friday and was back on Sunday night.

Being a city girl, there are only two things that I love to do in Kuala Lumpur -- to shop and to eat. Of course, there's gawking at the beautiful Petronas Towers in the process too. I'm not really fond of hiking up any mountain, nor coming face to face with monkey or birds so as I was planning for our weekend trip, I've basically scrap all those out from the list. It worked out well for us though as we just wanted to have a relaxing weekend anyway.

nando's 1
So, on our last day in KL, cousin B requested if we can have lunch at Nando's. She loves the Chicken Liver very much and after hearing her raves about it, I was excited to try it out myself. We have Nando's Chicken here in the Lion City too but I heard from friends that the chicken quality in KL is much better compared to what we have here. We started our meal with the Peri-Peri Hummus with Pita Bread (RM8.50). I love how creamy the hummus was and it had a slight spicy kick which was probably due to the peri-peri sauce added in it. It was yummy and definitely made a great appetizer.

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