Food Hunter

NamNam Noodle Bar @ Wheelock Place


On days when I get a craving for something hot and soupy, I often find myself hankering after a steaming hot bowl of pho. The herbal, meaty broth and flat rice noodles are soothing, homey and not to mention, pretty healthy as well. Authentic Vietnamese food can be a little tricky to find in Singapore, and although NamNam Noodle Bar is opened by the Les Amis group, it serves up a good version of the classic Vietnamese dish.

Sam and I headed down to the Wheelock Place outlet for lunch on a weekday and were pleased to find that they were offering a set lunch consisting of a choice of Chicken or Sliced Beef Steak Pho, a side of Vietnamese Spring Rolls and a choice of a Vietnamese Iced Coffee or Iced Lotus Tea. Naturally, we both picked the beef and iced coffee.


Vietnamese Spring Rolls | Fresh Southern rolls with sweet shrimps, egg and fresh herbs

It could be a matter of personal taste, but I felt that the spring rolls were abit too bland for my liking. The dipping sauce did help to give it a sweet-savoury flavour packed with shallots and garlic – and the sauce eventually did make this a very likable dish- but the spring rolls alone were clean tasting and seemed like it could do with abit of seasoning. Despite that, I must point out that the shrimp was fresh and the amount of fresh herbs, egg and vermicelli wrapped inside made a good combination of natural flavours and textures, making it a great dish for the health conscious.


Pho Beef Steak Slices

The noodles were a joy to eat: smooth, slippery and light, cooked to perfection. They carried the flavour of the broth well, unlike how noodles sometimes don’t soak up the flavours of the soup they swim in. There was a good amount of noodles and a surprisingly large number of beef slices. We had thought that they might stinge on the meat but were proven otherwise. The meat was done medium well, with the centres still a rosy shade of pink. Thinly sliced and tender, we enjoyed every bit of it. The herbal, lightly salted soup was satisfying and light. For those who prefer their soup with a bit more punch, sauces such as fish sauce, hoi sin sauce, chilli sauce and soy sauce are available. Just add them straight to your noodles and slurp up every last bit.

namnam4Assorted sauces

It was a great deal, considering the central location and the fact that the meal filled us up very nicely. When asked about her opinion of NamNam, my Vietnamese friend put it across best. ‘Authentic or not, if it’s good, it’s good. Who cares.’ Well said!

Food Hunter

Krispy Kreme



The highly anticipated first Krispy Kreme outlet has finally hit our shores after all these years of buying these doughnuts back from far flung places like the UK or the US! Evidently, Singaporeans will do anything for these, being the slaves to food that we are. If 13 hour flights and the possibility of these little rings of dough getting crushed won’t stop us, neither will a 30-man deep queue that Sam and I encountered at the newly opened Tangs outlet. Not that we had any intention to queue for them anyway. Thankfully (and yes, this blog is all about being thankful for everything we eat, ain’t it?), my dad had the foresight to buy these back from Jakarta, where apparently people don’t queue feverishly for doughnuts, and where these sweet treats come cheaper. Thanks Dad!


Original Glazed Doughnut


To be honest, I wasn’t terrifically excited to see a box of Krispy Kreme in the kitchen. I’ve never really had a good impression of doughnuts, probably due to the oily, sugary neighbourhood bakery types I got fed as a child – not that every neighbourhood bakery does bad doughnuts, but. Despite my incredulity over these sugared rings of fried dough, I was dead curious: What was the hype all about? Weren’t these just doughnuts? So I decided to heat an Original Glazed Doughnut, Krispy Kreme’s signature, up for breakfast.

A couple of minutes in the toaster and the sugar glaze melted into a happy sticky mess while the doughnut remained soft and fluffy despite being left overnight. What struck me was that there was none of that oily smell that often comes with doughnuts. Not a bad start! One bite into it and all inhibitions were gone. I finally understood the 13 hour flights and the 30 man deep queue. The doughnut was light and not cloyingly sweet. It was barely even oily and the doughnut was deliciously airy. I finished it much faster than expected and found myself wanting another. Do they put some addictive component in those things?


Coffee Kreme Filled Doughnut | Chocolate Kreme Filled White Chocolate Glazed Doughnut

To be honest I’m not too sure what the next two are called because they don’t appear on the Krispy Kreme site. Products do vary from country to country and these may or may not be available in Singapore. When Sam and I checked the local store out, we found a red velvet variation not mentioned on the website!IMG02478-20131019-0716

I highly doubt it would be possible to get doughnuts for breakfast before work in Singapore. Not with the 30-man deep queue! But do try them at least once because you’ll never think of doughnuts the same way ever. Speaking of which, maybe I should join the queue since I’m getting a craving from writing this post…

Food Hunter

The Burger Bar by Fatboy’s Concepts @ Far East Plaza


Think of the word “Burgers” and the immediate place that comes to mind is a fast food joint. However, apart from those, you will find other eateries that serve burgers with so much more variety. One of these is The Burger Bar by Fatboy’s Concepts. This small outlet is a branch from the main Fatboy’s Burger Bar you find in Thomson and Katong.

What makes The Burger Bar by Fat Boy’s Concepts different from other places is that you get to build your own burger. Think of it as an unhealthy version of Subway. It gives you the freedom to choose the type of meat, bun, toppings and sauce. The plus point of being able to customise your burger is that you will never ever get bored of eating from a standard menu since there are somewhat endless choices.



Ordering is done on your own on an iPad which simplifies the ordering process. The basic burger is priced at $6.50 with a choice of meat and given toppings of lettuce, cheddar cheese and tomato slices. The next step is to select any additional toppings or premium sauces (prices range from $0.50 to $3). The final step is a choice to top it up to make it a set meal (an addition of fries and a drink) or to have additional sides.

I got myself a burger consisting of grilled chicken on a wholemeal bun with smoked chipotle sauce and an additional topping of grilled pineapple. The burger came piping hot and it is quite telling from the grill marks on the chicken that it was hot off the grill. Although I had anticipated the burger to be on the smaller side (given its price), I was quite surprised how generous they were in serving up a huge slab of chicken.

Because of its size, handling the burger was a bit cumbersome at first. Once you get past that and you sink your mouth into the burger, the different textures and flavours create such a party in your mouth. There is the juiciness of the chicken, the charred grilled taste of the meat, the crunch from the lettuce and the sweetness of the pineapple. However, my bread turned soggy after awhile due to the amount of juice and sauce and I was left trying to not let it seep through the wrapping paper.



Generally the meat was well cooked over the grill and the burger itself left me very full even without a set meal! Although I did not try the other sides, my friend who ordered the mozzarella sticks found it a bit tough to bite through. However, it was quite fun to watch how far you could stretch the cheese!

The space is quite small but if you prefer something different and away from the hustle and bustle of the Orchard crowd, this may be the place for you. But after eating this, I do think a run was very much needed.

Coffee Connoisseur, Food Hunter

Symmetry @ Jalan Kubor

IMG02299-20131005-1212_editedI’ve realised how many of the cafes we’ve reviewed recently are located in the Kampong Glam area. There’s something about the area that’s quaint. Small surprises lie in every corner – be it in the form of good food or an interesting piece of heritage. And if you’re lucky, these two come hand in hand. Located just beside the old Singapore Metal and Machinery Association, Symmetry is a case in point.


It sits quietly in a corner shop house, its entrance of dark wood and old school style louvre windows almost makes it nondescript. I remember passing by once but giving it a miss as it looked too dark and unremarkable. However, I decided to give it a try after my friend recommended the place for quality food.



My brunch buddy and I headed down on a Saturday for brunch. At 11am, it was already packed to the brim with hungry diners, which is always a good sign. A nifty device placed outside the door reduced the manpower required to seat people – all we had to do was press a couple of buttons on the touch screen indicating the number of seats required, the location of our seats (indoors/outdoors/bar) and to enter a contact number and we would receive a call when our seats were available. It was thoughtful of them to add an extra option for parties requiring a baby seat as this would save parents and wait staff the last minute hassle of creating space in the already packed restaurant upon the arrival of the guests. It took a mere ten minutes before we received a call notifying us that our seats were ready. Efficient!

IMG02305-20131005-1215_edited IMG02312-20131005-1240_edited ii

Latte with Gingerbread Snap


The latte was pretty well done, considering how Symmetry seems to be more well-known for food than its coffee. The gingerbread snap was a very nice touch.


Chocolate Banana Milkshake


Flan | Pork cheek confit, sauteed mushrooms, onions, poached egg, cream, parmesan, pommery mustard

IMG02301-20131005-1213_edited ii

The Flan came as a surprise, given the description left most of it to imagination. It came encased in a thin, crispy pastry, layered with creamy sauce below and topped with sauteed mushrooms, a poached egg, the pork cheek confit and a rocket salad with generous amounts of parmesan cheese. The combination of flavours: the rich creamy taste of the sauce, the bitter, nutty flavour of the rocket and the sharpness of the cheese, along with the runny yolk and sweet-savoury marinade of the pork cheek made this a dish replete of flavours. The pork cheek confit was delightfully melt in the mouth and special mention goes to their poached eggs.


Eggs Benedict | Poached Eggs, aged cheddar, smoked bacon, onion hollandaise



As with both the Flan and the Eggs Benedict, the poached eggs were done to an almost soft boiled state. Not your usual poached egg with leathery whites (yikes), these eggs were the epitome of poached eggs with soft feathery whites and runny yolks. All other components of the Eggs Benedict were pretty decent, apart from the stellar eggs and the fact that the (tiny bit of) hollandaise sauce was glazed on top of the eggs. My brunch buddy was left wishing that there was more hollandaise sauce atop the eggs though.



An eclectic mix of art pieces, little trinkets and wall paper amongst other things adorn the small space within the shop, making it a joy to explore each dark corner of the shop space. Speaking of dark, the cafe was poorly lit in some areas. The sunlight streaming through a couple of small windows did little to shed light on the seats not in direct line with the windows. We had been allocated a table at the back of the cafe that was dimly lit, and requested that the spotlights above us be switched on. However, we were told that they would heat up too much – explains why the photos to this review are of a terrible quality (for which I apologise) since dim lighting does nothing for the already finnicky blackberry camera.IMG02342-20131005-1336

Prices at Symmetry are abit on the high side, with the Eggs Benedict going at $20. It is, however, a decent price to pay for quality ingredients and good food. I wouldn’t mind returning to try the dishes off their lunch and dinner menu, but that would take a tad of saving up before I do so. Until then, Symmetry has impressed me with their brunch items and quirky interior. I’ll just be sure to get a brightly-lit seat the next time around!

Food Hunter

구이가 Guiga Korean BBQ Restaurant @ Tanjong Pagar Road


Banchan 반찬 (clockwise from top)

yeongeun jorim | nakji bokkeum | deodeok muchim | sigeumchi namul | gamja saelleodeu| baechu kimchi| kimchi oisobagi


It looked like a scene straight out of a movie: rainwater surging towards us from all directions and, horror of all horrors, we had nowhere to seek refuge.

Caught in an unexpected flash flood, all we wanted was something hot. Something right off the grill. Something… Oh, something like a good ol’ Korean barbecue. We found ourselves stuck along the five foot way of the row of shophouses, trapped between rising water levels along the main road and what other than a homey and inviting looking Korean barbecue restaurant. Of course, we couldn’t resist.

Guiga Korean BBQ Restaurant is the new kid on the block among the row of Korean eateries you find along Tanjong Pagar Road, and we find, being new is not always a bad thing.

We ordered the chicken in soy sauce and were served an array of banchan to kick start the meal.


There is always much anticipation as raw meat hits a hot grill. The sizzle of the meat; the smoky aroma that wafts into your consciousness; the sight of the meat turning from pink to a dark caramel colour, with slightly charred bits at the tips; the heat rising off the grill; the explosion of flavours and textures as you bite into a lettuce-wrapped bite-sized piece. This moment of gratification, knowing that the short wait for the food to cook (certainly felt like an eternity to us) and the sacrifice made to smell exactly like what we just ate was all worth it.

The chicken was tender and well seasoned with soy sauce. Every bite delivered a combination of the juiciness of the meat with a hint of the charred grilled flavour. Eaten dipped in a little tangy and savoury dipping sauce, wrapped in a lettuce leaf, every lettuce wrap we had was a parcel of crunchy, meaty textures. As is the Korean custom, the helpful service staff laid out the meat on the grill for us although we could have very much done it on our own. This gesture is what good service is about, since customers definitely wouldn’t want their hands dirtied with raw food.



Guiga is definitely worth a visit for some good quality Korean barbecue in a homey, family business setting. If you are a night owl looking for food, this place is open till 6 am! What we appreciated most was that the banchan were considered as ‘service’ and we did not have to pay for them as a result. Of course, you could always say that the cost was accounted for in the price of the food, but it always helps to think of the cup as half full, no?

Food Hunter

Sushi Express @ Citylink Mall




Looking at the meals I’ve had recently, it seems like Japanese food is a popular choice. My friend brought me to try Sushi Express which serves conveyor belt sushi at $1.50++ per plate! The same goes for their desserts and drinks.

It’s no wonder that people flock there since the price of the sushi is affordable. One of the most value-for-money items there was the salmon don, which had a generous serving of sashimi slices with corn, seasoned seaweed and rice. The salmon was fresh and there was a nice combination of flavours from the sweetness of the corn with the seaweed. It is always the one that is snapped up the fastest! Just imagine having 10 plates of that – it would amount to eating a full meal!

sushi4Free flow green tea ((:



The variety of sushi was a little different from those I have seen in other Japanese places. Some of them looked quite foreign and I wish there had been a menu to explain what it was. It was quite a risk to try something foreign and not knowing what it was made of. One of them which I tried was the boiled octopus with seaweed that tasted light on the mouth.

Overall, I think that the sushi is good but the variety got a little similar after a while. I was told that there were many others but they probably ran out. However, there was one thing that I was so happy to see, and that was the free flow of green tea teabags! How generous of them!

Food Hunter

Sun with Moon @ Wheelock Place

sunwithmoon6Salmon Chirashi Don


sunwithmoon8Seafood Kimuchi Nabe and Saba Shioyaki

Sun with Moon is a restaurant cum café that serves a wide range of Japanese food and even modern dishes. From sashimi, sushi and rice bentos, to steak and foie gras. Their speciality is the kamameshi, which is rice placed on a hot stove. A special soup which is given is then poured on the remaining leftover rice.

Upon arriving, my colleagues and I were surprised that our pre-ordered food for our team lunch had already been laid out. The food comes in a bento set with fruits and if you have a big stomach, you can even top it up with chawanmushi (steamed egg) or sashimi!

I had ordered the salmon chirashi don ($23.80) which comprises of salmon sashimi, roe and grilled fillet. To top it off, the set also came with salmon cheek soup, fruits and jelly. I was literally getting an Omega 3 boost from the food! The best part was that the sashimi that was really fresh but there were a tad too few pieces of grilled salmon. However, by the time I tried to finish the soup,  it was “salmon overkill”.



Sun with Moon does their food with an eye for detail. Each bento is plated beautifully with dainty cutlery and their desserts are no exception! The highlight for me was really the tofu cheesecake ($6.50). Made with bean curd, it came with a bird cage structure. The texture of the cheesecake was so smooth and silky, but their biscuit base was a little on the hard side. Still, I was all smiles after getting to try this.

Although you might need to pay more than $23 for majority of their food choices, it is still value for money considering that you get a set meal and drink. Don’t forget to try their desserts. Even their matcha (green tea) ice cream was a sweet treat!

sunwithmoon4 Sun’s tofu cheesecake


sunwithmoon3Hokkaido mill crepe (soft crepe layered with chocolate milk cream)