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Archive for August, 2013

Relational Goods

Due to some licensing issues, Relational Goods is supposedly a “takeaway cafe”. Our delicious sandwiches were served on disposable plates, coffee in disposable cup, but no one said anything about no dining in. Everyone else is doing it anyway haha. Service was awesome here, and though opened by the same owner, I prefer Relational Goods to Group Therapy! Maybe it’s because of the spacious layout, or maybe because it’s not as perpetually packed as Group Therapy, or maybe it’s simply because I was there with the right person… Who knows?

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We claimed this cozy corner as ours, used stools as makeshift tables for our brunch, lazed on the couch watching the rain fall gently outside… And so that’s how we spent a perfect afternoon at Relational Goods : )

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smoked salmon, arugula, avocado on multigrain ($8)

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honey mustard chicken in wholemeal bun ($7.50)

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Relational Goods
29 Everitt Road
6440 4282

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Where to EAT in Bangkok

Hello! I’m excited to share about our eats in the city of angels over the past four days! Of course, being a foodie, I researched and planned all our meals so the risk of eating sucky food was minimal *victory sign*

~

#1: Supanniga Eating Room

Lunch at Supanniga Eating Room was our first meal in Bangkok and I loved it! While everything we ordered was fantastic, from the cha plu sardine salad and spicy crab roe dip to the jumbo prawn gaeng som, the piece de resistance was definitely the “son in law” eggs! Deep fried medium boiled eggs served with “three-flavour sauce” and fried shallots, I’ve never had anything quite like it before. Beautiful.

160/11 Soi Sukhumvit 55 Thonglor

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#2: Maewaree

Maewaree is further down the street from Supanniga Eating Room (see #1 above) and it’s the perfect stop for khao niew moon (THB 100), the quintessential Thai dessert. I’ve never liked rice so K was in charge of finishing the sticky rice while the plump mango was mine, haha. This was the only mango sticky rice we had; for the rest of the trip, I just bought mango slices off the street and those were not any less sweet!

1 Sukhumvit Soi 55 Thonglor

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#3: Nahm

No. 3 restaurant on the list of Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants is Nahm, where we had our best meal in Bangkok in terms of ambience, food and service. It was hard to decide which was the star dish — blue swimmer crab curry? Fresh water crayfish salad? Prawn and coconut wafers? In the end, we agree that it’s the humble bowl of toasted coconut that’s the defining dish at Nahm for us. It may not look like much, but it’s absolutely mind-blowing! So incredibly fragrant that I could eat it forever. THB 1,800++ for four canapés, one soup, four mains and a dessert, this is the most value-for-money set menu ever.

Ground floor, Metropolitan Hotel, 27 South Sathorn Road

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#4: Raan Jay Fai

Dining at Raan Jay Fai was a great experience. We sat along the pavement and paid restaurant-ish prices for the legendary crabmeat omelette (THB 800) and seafood pad kee mao “drunken noodles” (THB 380). The latter had a superb wok hei aroma but the highlight was the omelette! Humongous chunks of crabmeat, barely cooked eggy centre, this was too good to be shared. Next time I’m getting one all for myself! And yes, there will be a next time.

327 Maha Chai Road, Samran Rat, Phra Nakhon

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#5: Leung Pha

A few shops away from Raan Jay Fai (see #4 above) are two famous pad thai eateries: Thip Samai and Leung Pha. Thip Samai looks kind of commercialised so we opted for Leung Pha, the shabbier neighbour. Leung Pha uses shrimp fats in the pad thai (THB 50), resulting in a rich and intense plate of thin noodles, egg, sprouts and vegetables. Oh ya, look out for the man selling coconut ice (THB 25) outside Leung Pha and be sure to get a cup! It’s such a refreshing beverage that we went back for seconds.

315/1 Maha Chai Road, Samran Rat, Phra Nakhon

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#6: Som Tam Nua

After winning CNNGo Best Eats in 2010, every tourist now knows Som Tam Nua. Papaya salad is their claim to fame and I’ll always remember it. Not because it’s famous, but because the Thai mixed papaya salad was so spicy that my tongue hurt. Eating this was too painful… So K dashed out to buy a glass of milk for me from the store selling Hokkaido milk we passed by earlier. And the milk (bought with love haha) worked wonders in battling the heat, so much so that I could enjoy the mango salad and fried fish thereafter : ) Remember to try the fried chicken too! K can vouch for it.

392/14 Soi Siam Square 5, Rama 1 Road

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#7: Chatuchak Market

Coconut ice cream is a must at Chatuchak Market! Many stalls sell it, but make a note to go to Maprao Hawm, the most popular one with hanging coconuts between Sections 1 and 2 near the entrance of Kamphaenpetch MRT station. One scoop of homemade coconut ice cream in a coconut husk, two toppings of corn and roasted peanuts (there’s also nata de coco and sticky rice, I think), free flow coconut water… This was heaven in hot Chatuchak. Other nice eats here include Thai red ruby and orange juice freshly squeezed at Louk Som.

Maprao Hawm, Soi 36, Section 1
Louk Som, Room 079-080, Soi 38/2, Section 2

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#8: A&W

K had a massive craving for root beer float so A&W made it onto our itinerary. Can’t go wrong with vanilla ice cream and root beer, but you can go very wrong with the curly fries and waffles. The former was ridiculously salty, and the latter was just a piece of ready-made chewy dough, bleah. No wonder it closed down in Singapore, oops. That said, no regrets coming here since A&W brought back many fond childhood memories!

Union Mall, Level 2, Room No. 10 – 05, 54

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#9: Fuji Japanese Restaurant

It’s got to happen. Shopping on this trip was my top priority so food had to take the backseat some days. Such as “Platinum Day”, when we spent the whole day at the huge mall after a morning spin at Pratunam market opposite. It was either the food court or Fuji Japanese Restaurant, Bangkok’s version of Sushi Tei. Quite a no-brainer, wasn’t it! My selection of aburi nigiri was as awesome as it looked, soft shell crab maki and tamago were delicious, and K’s beef set ain’t half bad as well. Japanese food FTW!

Platinum Mall, Level 6, 222 Petchaburi Road, Ratchathevee

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#10: Vanilla Brasserie

Another Hound by Greyhound was my first choice but it was closed for renovations. Settled on Vanilla Brasserie for our last lunch in Bangkok and it was fab! K had the special lasagne crepe, mine was the curry crab crepe, and we loved our food! Extremely thin and crispy, generous fillings, I can’t remember having a crepe this good in a long long time.

Ground Floor, Siam Paragon

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#11: Street Food

Though street food is synonymous with Bangkok, we didn’t eat much off the streets. To be honest, the savoury food displayed in a haphazard manner didn’t appeal to me. The fruits, drinks and kueh kueh did, however. Fresh mango, coconut wafers, cha yen (Thai iced tea), chocolate banana pancakes… Bangkok, I like you!

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My limited encounters with Russian cuisine were during the days when I was in Moscow… Classic Café Pushkin and the cute My-My chain are my favourite places for borscht, kasha, pelmeni and so much more! Since I won’t be heading back there any time soon, I’m glad there’s Buyan Russian Restaurant and Bar in Singapore. I’m not qualified to judge the authenticity but if you want to try something interestingly different, I think Buyan is a safe bet! The savoury dishes are competently done, and the highlights are definitely the desserts!

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Khachapuri ($12++)
hot georgian flat bread with haloumi and mozzarella cheese

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Mimosa Salad ($12++)
pink salmon under layers of eggs, carrot, white onion, cheese and homemade mayo

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Chicken Kiev ($26++)
rolled chicken breast stuffed with clarified butter and served with mushroom sauce

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Salmon with Carrot and Nut Sauce ($24++)

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Honey Cake ($10++)
layered shortbread cake with cooked condensed milk based cream

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Baked Apple ($8++)

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Buyan Russian Restaurant and Bar
9 Duxton Hill
6223 7008

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Maple & Market

There’s absolutely no view to speak of in my neighbourhood but who cares?

At least calories-worthy cakes at Maple & Market are a mere block away.

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The cakes are not mind-blowing-wow-I’ve-never-tasted-something-so-freaking-good-before. Neither will they induce instant foodgasm. But they sure look pretty and approachable.

My favourite is the tofu cheesecake and I’m no cheese lover. Which means that it’s not cheesy at all haha. Cheap and softer than a baby’s butt, I like!

1919 is appealing since I’m currently going through a crazy-about-gula melaka/coconut phase. It’s somewhat coarse and rustic, and not insanely sweet despite the use of brown sugar.

Mixed berry tart is the most boring out of all; still a long way from being as awesome as Drips Bakery imo. Just stick to the cakes!

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Mixed Berry Tart ($5)

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Tofu Cheesecake ($3)

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1919 ($5.50)

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Maple & Market
#01-82, 34 Cassia Crescent
6348 8068

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Penny University

Penny University is better than I expected. Despite the raves about the café on the blogosphere, I thought it’s going to be “just another café”. Okie in a way, it is, but somehow I like it more than the others! Maybe because it’s so lively (read: noisy in an un-annoying way) all the time.

Oh yeah, and they serve great food! The turkish eggs were gorgeously simple yet 100% satisfying. Poached eggs with yogurt and smoked salmon, that’s a wonderfully weird combination! Get this only if you like Middle Eastern-ish food; otherwise, it’s going to be an acquired taste. K’s Christmas-y turkey-brie-cranberry sandwich was plain but good, so much so that he has already declared this a “must return” place!

The only misfortune at brunch was the black sesame chiffon cake. As I’m a sucker for anything black sesame, this naturally was my choice for dessert. Not. It was so… meh-er than meh. And grossly overpriced at $5 apiece, unjustifiably expensive for the mediocrity. Good news is that Penny University will be axing it off the menu, yay!

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Turkish Eggs ($8)
poached eggs, lightly whipped yogurt, homemade spicy morrocan harissa sauce, sourdough bread, smoked salmon (additional $3)

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Turkey Sandwich ($8)
brie, cranberry sauce, sourdough toast, smoked chicken (additional $1), poached egg (additional $1.50)

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Black Sesame Chiffon Cake ($5)

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Penny University
402 East Coast Road
9008 9314

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When I first received the invitation for a “Media Mooncake Dinner“, my first instinct was “okie, time to say ‘thanks but no thanks’ and delete the email” since I don’t fancy mooncakes at all. So I very honestly replied “I don’t think I’m suitable for this dinner: I don’t like mooncakes : x ” (still have the email as proof haha) and the lovely folks from Sheraton Hotel were totally cool with that. In the end, I was convinced to drop by for dinner nonetheless (just have to meet the lady (hi Tracy!) who is as into Japanese food as me!) and boy, no regrets at all!

The team put together such a fabulous tasting menu that my dinner at Li Bai Cantonese Restaurant was excellent! From start to end, I felt so pampered. Scallop with truffles, meaty crab claw, bird’s nest soup, more scallops and asparagus (impressed to find fresh lily bulbs!), baked cod (sooooooo good), and extravagantly healthy steamed garlicky lobsters… It was a most luxurious meal! Fresh ingredients and top-notch quality; I have nothing but praises. Plus, the pre-meal nibbles of candied cashews were addictive to the max! Love.

And those mooncakes? Heh, of course I didn’t touch them so no comments. Still, if you are keen, check out the selection of handcrafted mooncakes here.

P.S. We saw Joanne Peh and Qi Yuwu having dinner at the restaurant too! Heard that the actor is a regular at Li Bai so if you are one of his fans, keep a lookout for him if you are there!

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Deluxe Combination: Scallop and Crab

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Braised Thick Soup of Bird’s Nest with Homemade “Pi Pa” Beancurd

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Baked Fillets of Scallops in Capsicum

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Baked Canadian Cod with Ophiopogon Root and Honey

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Steamed Lobster with Garlic

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Snow Skin Mooncakes

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My special thanks to Tracy, Zareen and Cheryl for inviting and hosting such a wonderful dinner!

Li Bai Cantonese Restaurant
Level 1, Sheraton Towers Hotel
39 Scotts Road
6839 5623

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Real Food

Whenever the healthy mood strikes, there’s a few standard places we will turn to. Cedele (been there countless times and I always order the same thing), thunder tea rice (K is not a fan so I don’t get to eat this as often as I like, sigh), Veganburg (loveeeee the mushroom burger!), and then there’s Real Food too!

We’ve been to the outlets at Central and Square 2, and can vouch for the consistency. The food has been enjoyable so far (skip the overpriced avocado coconut smoothie — about 150ml for $7.80, crazy), from chickpea sweet potato cake ($13.80) and organic pizza ($13.80) to spicy mushroom aglio olio ($7.80) and mushroom bruschetta ($7.80), yums. Once, they even invited some Japanese chef (don’t know who) to whip up some specials and though my macrobiotic meal was filling, it didn’t put me to zzz after lunch…

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Real Food
#B1-52/53 The Central
6 Eu Tong Sen St
6224 4492

#B1-105/106/129, Square 2
10 Sinaran Drive
6397 2289

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