Saturday, February 11, 2012

7 Kickstart Brewiches, Armenian Street

 Just opposite the Substation and Peranakan Museum is this kitschy cafe with an unconventional name. From outside the dark tinted glass doesn't look particularly inviting (and if not for the operating hours written on the door we would not have guessed this place was even open) - but step in and you find yourself in an unexpectedly cosy cafe.

 We came here for lunch and coffee at the recommendation of an SMU student (hi Jastine if you are reading this) and could imagine this place to be very popular amongst the uni student crowd for two reasons - (1) the proximity to campus and (2) the 'hipster-ness' of the cafe interior (as proven by a group of well-heeled students lounging around taking photos of themselves with their expensive cameras) - but who are we to judge? We're here for the food :)

 You place orders at the counter and food is delivered to you. There seems to be a random assortment of seating arrangements. We sat at a regular (?) table.

 Menus are sprawled in writing on various vertical surfaces (most prominent being the blackboard next to the counter) but there is also a printed menu (in a student's file) to look at.

In urgent need of caffeine we started with our fuel for the day. Personally I opted for a classic flat white because I wasn't really convinced of the stranger concoctions. This was smooth and strong, although would be nicer if more aromatic.

{ Flat white }

 If you ever wondered what orange + chocolate + espresso tastes like, look no further! Despite the supposed two shots of espresso, the orange chocolate overpowered the drink so much I had to laugh every time I took a sip (not necessarily in a bad way!). I didn't quite think orange pairs well with coffee, but it definitely pairs well with chocolate so you end up with something like a really prominent orange mocha. If you love orange chocolate, you will love this.

{ Jaffa Latte ($5.70) }
Zesty Orange + Wicked Chocolate + Sexy Expresso x 2

 I had the salad sandwich - expecting a sandwich but what I got was this!

{ Chicken, Turkey Bacon, Cheese and Salad Sandwich ($8.70) }

 What I got instead was a sandwich arranged like a salad + IKEA excalibur on a small pan. Honestly with the messy scattered arrangement and the small non-flat surface to work with, this was a real pain to consume. But setting aside my need for neatness, I diced and mixed everything and ate it like a salad, and it's actually pretty good flavour wise. The BBQ sauce and the pink mayo (more later) goes really well with the juicy chicken and turkey bacon, and in terms of portion it's surprisingly voluminous.

 I opted for the 'pizzette' (as in small - or female? - pizza) with spinach, mushrooms and tomatoes and itty bitty chunks of cheese. It's really just grilled pita bread with a whole slew of toppings thrown on it - toppings that look and tasted suspiciously like ingredients in the sandwich above.

{ Spinach, Shrooms, Tomatoes and Cheese Pizzettes ($8.70) }

 Here the pink mayo features quite prominently, shown below (we tried colour-correcting to the best of our ability!). The mayo is on the sweeter side and can get a bit cloying/overwhelming after the first few bites. Without saltiness to off set it my dish got a bit blah after a while. One other gripe for me is the "spinach" here - this is the Chinese variety (heng cai, lol). Also would have preferred melty cheese, rather than in minuscule chunks. I must say though the mushrooms were really yum: plump, juicy and earthy in flavour.

 I thought the pita bread was way too thick and doughy and it got hard to cut.

The pink mayo, sunflower seeds and cheese seem to be common toppings for both (maybe all) dishes and honestly the mayo overpowers most of the taste so they do all taste similar after a while. In the case of my sandwich there was just too MUCH mayo so while nice become a little too cloying. That said the food is actually decent and quirky, and the coffees are also great (and quirky). Definitely worth a shot.

7 Kickstart Brewiches
50 Armenian Street
#01-02 Wilmer Place (near SMU business school)

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Rating (out of 4) : 

1 comment:

  1. I went there too with a group of friends and sat at a nice cozy corner. Private enough for us to make all the noise we can. I ordered a tall glass of ice lemon tea. Mine oh mine, it is so exceptionally fragrant with lemongrass and tinge of some mystery spices. I think I tasted nutmeg, cinnamon and some other spices. You must absolute try this thirst quencher especially on a hot day. You not live to regret it.


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