PasarBella Singapore : A Farmer's Market

People often ask Paul and I how we're doing in the Lion City. The truth is... we're having a BALL! While others might find Singapore a bit too boring given the size of the place thus the lack of quick weekend getaway options or "happening" places around, I always say that Singapore perfectly suits our personality and lifestyle. Readers probably can see by now that Paul and I are pretty much the laid back kind of couple. We're really happy just spending our weekend at home, hanging out by the pool, meeting up with friends, going to the mall or watching a movie. Of course, there's got to be a lot of eating happening in between.

Anyway, so when I heard that there's this nice gourmet market called PasarBella that recently opened a few months back, I've quickly included that in my list of places to visit. After so many failed attempts, we finally were able to visit PasarBella right during Pan's weekend stay. Hooray!

Getting there can be quite a challenge as PasarBella is located inside Turf Club so it's not directly accessible by any form of public transportation. The best way is to take the MRT/bus to the Botanic Gardens MRT and wait for the shuttle bus that comes by the hour. However, since we missed the bus by a few minutes and didn't want to wait so long, we took the cab which costs us around S$6. Not bad right?

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PasarBella is an everyday gourmet market that's open from 930AM to 7PM. It's adjacent to the Grandstand Mall where the famous Omakase Burger can be found. I really like the European feel of the market. It's covered, air-conditioned and definitely well-ventilated. Therefore, you don't have to worry about leaving smelling like your lunch and sweaty too.

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We got there right before lunch so we did a quick tour around before finally choosing what to eat. I did my research prior to the trip, of course, so I pretty much know what to focus on. First stop was at Le Patio for their famous paella (pronounced as: pa-eh-ya). Being early birds means getting the first batch of paella (S$13.50) and so we got a box to share among the 3 of us. It was pretty filling, believe me. Pan and Paul were so sweet to give me the one piece of prawn that came with it while they took care of the chicken and mussels.

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Just an hour after, we saw the guys at Le Patio preparing the second batch. It's actually my first time to see paella being cooked on the spot so it was quite fascinating (and definitely mouthwatering) to me.

Moving on, we spotted a stall with a growing crowd in front. It's Keith Crackling Roast and they specialized in Deep-Fried Pork Belly a.k.a. Lechon Macau. Served with apple sauce and mustard, this was so good that a Double serving (S$15) was good for the 3 of us already.

So that was what we had for far. Our plan was to eat in small portions then to keep on eating as we go along. Smart plan?

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PasarBella has a mix of start-up and more established stalls. Since we were there to look for new finds, we somehow skipped the ones that we've seen outside such as SaladStop, Da Paolo Gastronomia, Charly T's and Shiraz to name a few. How I wish that more home bakers and home chefs would join the market next time.

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Speaking of home bakers, here's one that I highly recommend: Nuts about Biscotti. This nice lady makes homemade biscotti and boy were they delicious! I was able to try almost all flavors and I personally love the Cranberry Pistachio. Maybe I'm biased as I love anything with fruits and nuts but you just have to try it to see for yourself. She told me that her biscotti goes well with coffee but I think I'd be able to consume my bag by just sitting in front of the TV. It's not your usual biscotti which comes in a stick-form but instead, she made it into bite-sized chips for better consumption.

Our friends O, C and I tried the Russian Cakes from Laman's Delight and they really liked it. I tried a small piece and found it a bit too sweet for me though.

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Moving further in, we saw Oceans of Seafood which is a huge Japanese-themed section selling fresh seafoods. So fresh that Pan and I saw lobsters and crabs still moving. How you go about this area is to choose your seafood and indicate how you want it cooked. It's similar to the many dampa places we have in Manila. Price was quite pricey but hey it's seafood so if you're dining with a big group, this might be worth the experience.

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After all, how can you resist these huge lobsters that would definitely go well with some garlic and loads of butter? :)

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What I've been excited about was The Cheese Ark. Our friend I, Pan and myself are huge cheese fans so we were so happy to be able to check the wide variety of unique cheeses available and to be able to try them out too.

It was perfect timing that they have a new batch of Truffle Cheese that weekend and biting into the sample reminded me of the yummy cold cuts and cheeses that my former colleague T would bring to the office back then. Sadly, since we're heading somewhere after our PasarBella visit, we were not able to bring home a slice or two as it might just spoil.

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PasarBella also has a lot of stalls selling alcohol and non-alcoholic drinks. Here's one that's selling all kinds of beer. Oh, my Papa would have so much fun here.

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As for Pan and I, we gave in to our coffee craving and headed to Dutch Colony Coffee Co. for a cup of Cappuccino (S$4.50) for her and Flat White (S$4.50) for me. I've visited a number of coffee shops here in Singapore and I have to say that this one has one of the best tasting Flat White that I've ever had. The coffee's aroma was just so amazingly good and it was so smooth to the palate. Pan even did her usual cappuccino-spoon-balancing test and it passed with flying colors. They also have one of the cheapest drinks that I've came across so far. I'm definitely going back for this.

There you have it, our happy visit to PasarBella. Looks like I'll be spending a lot of Saturdays or Sundays hanging out here. Here's to leave you with some words of wisdom....

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PasarBella is located at 200 Turf Club Road, Singapore 287994. Here's how to get there.

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