Sunday, July 22, 2012

Hot Tomato, Causeway Point

 Dinner time! At Causeway Point too. Where can we bring our bellies?

 After the fascinating movie which is The Dark Knight Rises, we calmed ourselves down by indulging into some food at Hot Tomato. Lots of Hot Tomato joints has been popping up lately, with it's trademark being the $12.90 Steak 'n' Prawns combo.

 There's usually a queue whenever we pass by during dinner time, so was fairly surprised when there was none. We waited just a minute before being sent to a tiny table in the corner. It's one of those no frills, fast turnover places with what seems to be just mediocre western food.

{ Set (+$3.50) }
Garlic Bread, Soup, Drink
 Bread was just alright, very buttery but at room temperature. Soup like a slightly better version of some Campbell derivative. The drink was the main reason we got the set because anyway they charge for tap water. Granted it's only 20c.

 We got a single set top-up to share between the both of us. Generally palatable - it was more of a tummy filler / thirst quencher (lime juice was good and refreshing!) while we discussed the movie, but we didn't have to wait long at all until our mains arrived.

{ Pacific Dory ($8.90) }
Fresh fillet Dory lightly seasoned and grilled to perfection

 Fish for me tonight. This seemed like a really good deal. For under $9, I got two generous slabs of grilled, herbed dory atop several forkfuls of spaghetti and a decent-sized side salad. It came with some kind of tartar sauce which I didn't really touch. The flavours were quite strong by itself, in fact I think they could lose a bit of salt in this one!

{ Steak 'N' Prawn ($12.90) }
Juicy cut sirloin with succulent prawn, lightly seasoned with salt & pepper

 The 'trademark' steak and prawn combo, is honestly cheap for just $12.90. The aglio olio was just ... ok. Slightly overcooked and not much taste in the ways of oil, garlic or chilli. In fact I could barely call it aglio olio =.= Prawns were definitely NOT succulent - unfresh, powdery, hard and dry. Steak however was not too shabby, it is regular cut of sirloin with the regular steak-y taste you can get at Aston's or even a food court. Portion was generous however.

So yea food wasn't terrible but it wasn't great either. Definitely do NOT get the prawns, but the steak is passable for the price. Service wasn't great.

Hot Tomato (Causeway Point branch)
#02-11 Causeway Point

View Larger Map

Main website :
HGW Link (62% recommended at time of writing) :
Rating : 

Friday, July 20, 2012

Spizza, Club Street

 Been a long long week and we needed some wine to wind down the week, and since   was craving Italian we decided to check out Spizza along Club Street which has been sitting in our to-go list for a while now.

We made a reservation for 730, and while the place wasn't packed when we arrived, turnover was pretty quick and the place was continually packed from 8 onwards. Apparently the pizza chefs make each pizza fresh from the oven which is right at the entrance - pretty neat! They even do a Standard Chartered credit card offer for 1-for-1 pizzas.

{ Portobello Salad ($11) }
Grilled Portobello Mushroom, Cherry Tomatoes, Olives and Feta Cheese

 We ordered two pizzas and a salad to share. After taking some photos and dishing out the salad and tossed it a little bit, we were perplexed by the absence of the feta cheese! We very kindly pointed it out to the waitress who returned with our feta cheese supply - unfortunately though the cheese was kinda odd, rock hard and cold which is unlike the room temp, crumbly feta that I'm familiar with. The salad itself was nothing too great - a little too much balsamic though generous with the mushroom.

{ Elisa ($18 for medium) }
Tomato, Mozzarella, Pesto Sauce, Olives, Pine Kernel, Parmesan Cheese

 Pizzas arrived shortly, and at first glance ... we weren't too hyped about it. The ingredients seemed spread a little sparsely! And $18 for a pizza of this size is honestly a little expensive (ignoring the 1-for-1 offer). But after the first slice my opinion quickly changed - the crust was of a perfect thickness and crispiness, just slightly heftier than Skinny Pizza and yet sooo light and crispy! And in comparison, the thickness of the cheese is equivalent to the thickness of the crust, so there was actually A LOT of cheese. My main gripe in many pizza places is that they skimp on the cheese - without a good cheese base you're not gonna get much flavour out of the pizza.

For this pizza itself, again at first glance we thought it could use more pesto, but the pesto was actually really strong so the flavour balance was definitely done well. Could have used a little more olives and still no complaints at all!

{ Ursula ($18 for medium) }
Tomato, Mascarpone, Spinach, Smoked Salmon, Capers

 I wonder if they named this Ursula from the Little Mermaid? As in.. ocean = fish = salmon? Anyway, we really enjoyed this too. Plenty of smoked salmon to go around, and just enough cream cheese for that balanced flavour.

 We declare this is one of the better pizza places we've been to, and this is also very centrally located. It's especially great value if you're a StanChart cardholder.

 Special thanks to Ming Hui for the 1-for-1 voucher!

29 Club Street

View Larger Map

Main website :
Discounts : Standard Chartered - 1-for-1 pizzas or 15% - 20% discount
HGW Link (73% recommended) :
Rating (out of 4) :  

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Ootoya, Orchard Central

 Ootoya can be found (with a bit of difficulty) on the higher floors of the confuddling Orchard Central (is it just me or is the mall layout quite bad?).

There are outlets in Clementi and Suntec as well.

 Pretty lucky to have spotted the 15% off the bill for UOB cardholders!

 I've been wanting to come here ever since hearing that their tonkatsu was pretty good, but I didn't realize they do a lot more than that, and many interesting dons to choose from. I settled for the Rosu set of course!

 Hurray for grinding sesame! Grinding it comes as a second nature by now.

{ Rosu set ($23.50) - 1007 kCal }
Tasty Japan pork loin cutlet coated with fresh bread crumbs
(set includes rice, salad, soup) 

 The complete set looks rather impressive at just $23.50, you get a decent size tonkatsu, along with pickles, green leafy veg (definitely non Japanese but good nonetheless), and your free flow of lettuce, miso soup and rice. While the salad sauce was definitely not as good as Tonkichi or Katsukura, was still nice, citrusy and ponzu-y I think.

 Pork comes from a Japanese breed of pig called Sangen Pig (if you read Japanese you can read it here) but it's basically a cross-breed of 3 breeds to produce a pig which tastes awesome. Well the difference is not that sharp - the meat definitely is more flavourful than regular white pork, but not as distinct as e.g. kurobuta. Crumb crust was pretty nice, but definitely a lot oilier than it should be, which was my only gripe! But for the price, this was really great stuff.

{ Gokoku Mai }
Brown Rice, Barley, White Sesame, Black Sesame, Corn

 It's nice to have the option to have the mixed grain rice instead of white rice within the set, and so we both went for this. I was expecting a lot more fragrance, given the barley and sesame. Could be a bit less mushy as well. Still a good change though, and somewhat healthier!

{ Sumitoridon Set ($14.50) - 820 kCal }
Char grilled chicken thigh marinated with special sauce goes well with fresh, crisp vegetables and seaweed

 Took me a while to decide on this - there is plenty on the menu, and I wish they didn't put down the calorie count (820kCal? D:) I'd say this was pretty good value and tasty too. You get nicely charred chicken and fresh salad on a heaped pile of rice with the special (teriyaki?) sauce all over - plus small side dishes of pickles, cold braised veg and mushrooms and crispy dried seaweed. Not too enthused about the miso soup though - I'd prefer tofu over potatoes in it anyday!

 While I appreciate the charred ness of the chicken, there was a thoroughly blackened/carcinogenic piece that I feared to consume.

 The char-grill Teriyaki style was done really well, nice charred bits for that crispy flavour along the edges, and for the price this too was value for money!

Definitely a good stop for don / soba / udon style of Japanese food, don't go expecting much in the ways of sushi or sashimi though (pretty sure they don't serve it anyway). Great value for money and food's pretty good too! Though the seating and location at this particular branch is definitely strange.

Orchard Central, #08-12

View Larger Map

HGW Link (77% recommended at time of writing) :
Rating (out of 4) : 

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Zero Zero, The Central

The night after indulging in a lovely anniversary dinner at Dozo, I was back in a very familiar territory for yet another multiple-course dinner (!) While my stomach doth protest, I was keen to sample what this new restaurant under the Tao's restaurant group had to offer (and therefore completing the holy trinity :P)

Zero Zero is located on the 4th floor of The Central at Clarke Quay. My family seemed to be the only diners on Saturday night, which made the spacious interior of the restaurant look even bigger. We had a cosy little private dining room to ourselves with nice views of bustling Clarke Quay and the river.

 We all went for the 6-course Signature Set, usually priced at $89.80++ - but there was a 50% discount for UOB cardholders, so it was pretty good value! Along with this promo, we also got glasses of house wine for $10 each.

I thought it was nice that our waitress explained the menu to us using an iPad to show how each dish looks like.

{ Amuse Bouche : Assorted Platter }

 To start off, we had a small shot glass of plum juice (pictured on the far left above, if you can see it) and the amuse bouche of 3 items: wee bit of foie gras on thick toast, potato croquette and scallop on watermelon. Loved the presentation!

{ Cold Dish : Smoked Duck Breast with Apple Slice }

 I chose the smoked duck breast as my starting cold dish. This was pretty good - the duck was soft and went well with apples.

{ Side Dish : Grilled Escargot with Cheese Gratin }

 Couldn't resist the escargot.. I had exactly the same thing at Dozo just the night before! Each grilled snail came atop a small cube of thick toast. Not too chewy and had the right amount of cheese - yum! It paired nicely with the crispy toast.

{ Soup : Cream of Pumpkin }

 Pumpkin soup was sweet and creamy. Would have liked it better if freshly ground black pepper was offered. I didn't ask, and the soup is really nice as it is, but I think that additional depth and aroma of pepper would have made it perfect.

{ Main : Beef Loin on Magnolia Leaf }

 Almost everyone at the table went for the steak. And it was a good choice! The pieces of beef continues to cook as you are eating, and you can decide on the doneness. I think my stone was extraordinarily hot though - it continued sizzling until the magnolia leaf was burnt to a crisp. So my steak was well-done but it was still really good. Beef was tender and lean, and the accompanying mustard sauce (not in picture) along with our glasses of red wine was a wonderful complement. Must say the portion was quite generous too!

{ Dessert : Macerated Pomelo Orange and Mango Pannacotta }

 By now we were stuffed, but happily gobbled down dessert anyway. I loved this panna cotta - it was like a denser and more decadent mango pudding. Also came with bits of orange and pomelo, so there is my fruit/fibre intake for the night :)

ZeroZero has lots of potential, given the success of Tao's and Dozo and also its accessible location. Personally I somehow slightly prefer the food here to Dozo, but the service seems better at Dozo. Still, I highly recommend this place (especially if you're a UOB cardholder until end of July, lol.)

6 Eu Tong Seng Street, #04-86 The Central

View Larger Map

Main website :
HGW Link (77% recommended at time of posting) :
Rating (out of 4) : 
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...