March 17, 2011

The Pancake War: TCC

If you haven't visited TCC recently, here's a fun fact for you: the coffee chain has strangely been changed from The Coffee Connoisseur to The Connoisseur Concerto. Like several other coffee chains, TCC offers a range of breakfast items to start off your day, including scrambled egg croissants and American breakfast sets.
Yes, raisins are a rich source of iron but I would recommend ignoring the questionable health claims scattered all over the menu. Castle in the Clouds ($9.50++) was overloaded with so many raisins, they must have made up half the volume of the pancake batter! On their own, the pancakes were fluffy but overly sweet and crumbly, so much so that I started wondering if I was eating 马拉糕 (a traditional Chinese steamed sponge cake) instead. While the generous portion of glazed apples stuffed between the layers were nicely crunchy, they rendered this dish even sweeter. In contrast, the dollop of cinnamon cream was insufficient for the stack.
My favorite component of this dish were actually the sweet berries on the side. Perhaps I should have gone for the organic pancakes instead, but again, I'd rather have Hotcakes at McDonald's.

Outlets islandwide, including Citylink Mall

March 3, 2011

Chikuwa Tei

I've heard a lot about Chikuwa Tei, a new venture by the infamous Nazi chef of the now-defunct Wasabi Tei at Far East Plaza. It's a pity that I've not had the opportunity to dine at Chef Peter's former restaurant, but I certainly don't mind paying a bit more for a spacious dining area and friendly service.
A crunchy braised renkon otoshi entertained our tastebuds as our orders were prepared.

Every spoonful of the smooth chawanmushi ($5++) was chockful of ingredients, ranging from pieces to chicken to strands of chewy Korean noodles and shimeji mushrooms.

The restaurant's signature chirashi featured fresh cuts of hirame, kajiki, kanpachi, salmon and tuna, as well as a dollop of buttery uni and a piece of tamagoyaki on a bed of well-seasoned sushi rice. Along with the above-mentioned starter, the chirashi set ($25++) also includes a bowl of fruits, miso soup and pickles. Particularly worthy of mention was the oily salmon sashimi, as well as the generous slices of fish which were certainly the thickest I've ever had!

The relatively quiet weekday lunch crowd and decent food- in terms of both price and taste- made for an ideal location for catching up with friends (over many refills of green tea). I'll love to try Chikuwa Tei's famed cod fish hotpot sometime!

Chikuwa Tei
9 Mohamed Sultan Road #01-01
Opening hours: 11.30am-3pm, 6pm-10pm daily