Saturday, 31 March 2018

The Three Peacocks – Open Air BBQ Experience



The Lobsters

The Three Peacocks at Labrador Park is an outdoor dining destination for those charcoal BBQ lovers. My first encounter with this open fire charcoal BBQ is at New Rod Fai Night Market in Bangkok, where they sell the seafood BBQ. At The Three Peacocks ('TTP') the menu goes beyond seafood and they incorporate the flavours of Western, Korean and Thai cuisines.

Part of The Dining Area

TPP is located in the green open area at Labrador Park. It is an open-air barbecued buffet restaurant, where you can enjoy extensive of offerings under the beautiful sky. Once you are seated, the service staff will bring the table BBQ pit, loaded with charcoal and you are ready to proceed with your BBQ. As it is an open-air environment, expect your clothes to be smelly at the end of the dining session here.

Charcoal BBQ

Charcoal BBQ with Mash

Top of the list for BBQ here is their lobster. Each person allowed to claim one each. Bring your payment receipt to the fish tanks area to claim your lobster. The lobster will take a long time to BBQ, and you need to keep an eye on it so it does not get overcooked. It is better that you don't cook them all at once.

Lobsters on Fire

Prawns and Bamboo clams are highly recommended by me. When you put it on the mash, the clams will be the first one to be cooked, following that are the prawns. They both taste springy, juicy and fresh. I ate it without any sauce. There are some dipping sauce you can choose from, but it looks like everyone is going for the homemade chilli sauce.

Prawns

Bamboo Clams

TTP also have crabs, crayfishes, oysters, scallops, salmon fish, stingray and other seafood as well. The offering is very extensive, it just depends on what you like. I personally don't like BBQ oysters, so I go for crayfishes instead.

Crayfishes & Pork Belly

Crayfish Meat

Crabs

For the meat, it is marinated in Korean and Thai flavour. They offer thick cut pork belly, marinated beef short ribs, pork bulgogi, spicy pork. The meat is good to be grilled with direct fire, unfortunately, if you are a clean freak, the black colour mash from extensive BBQing will definitely turn you off. You can get aluminium foil to cover the mash, but it is almost useless as the food easily sticks on it and need to be replaced frequently.

Part Seafood Selections

Two meat items that you must try are the thick cut pork belly and the marinated beef ribs. Both are surprisingly good and the beef short ribs succulent and well marinated. Best if you grilled it on the open fire, on the mash, without the aluminium foil.

For the side dishes, they have choices of crab sticks, fishcakes, balls, mushrooms, corns, onions and crab claws. We BBQ the mushroom on the aluminium foil with lots of margarine on it.

Side Dishes

The cooked food is definitely extensive. It includes braised chicken wings, braised prawns and clams, fried rice, fried chicken wings, spring rolls, beancurd skins, hot dogs in tomato sauce, salad, fried mantou and french loaf.

Cooked Food Part 1

Cooked Food Part 2

Cooked Food Part 3

We top up our buffet with free flow of drinks. It has a very good selection, including coke zero, sarsi, ice cream soda. Although they recommend Thai Milk tea as their signature drink, I don't recommend it. Stick with the bottled drinks.

Overall, if you are someone that enjoys outdoor BBQ, you definitely should give this place a try. Another plus point is that you can stay as long as you want, there is no time limit on the seating even on the weekend. Cheers!!

Food & Drink: 6.75/10
Value: 7.25/10
Service: 7/10
Ambiance: 6,5/10
Budget per Person: $26 - $50.


The Three Peacocks
8 Port Road
Labrador Park
Singapore 117540

T: +65 9851 1802
IG: #Thethreepeacocks
OH: Daily 17.30 – 01.00
Price:
$38+ per pax for Seafood & Meat BBQ Buffet
$3.99+ for Free Flow Drinks (Thai Milk Tea, Soft Drinks and Cordial Drinks)


Tuesday, 20 March 2018

Shimbashi Soba – Soba So Good


Seiro Soba

My encounter with a handmade soba in Singapore is actually at Shimbashi Soba, Paragon outlet. At that outlet, you can actually see the soba master preparing the handmade soba in front of you and it just awes me.

Shimbashi Soba

Soba is a wonderfood, made from buckwheat noodle and known for its low calories. Personally, we like our soba served cold. So our first order is Seiro ($11.80). Chilled soba served with dipping sauce.

Seiro Soba

On the first slurp, you can taste the smoothness of the soba entering your mouth. When you bit into it, you can feel the springiness plus the grit from the buckwheat flour. The soya sauce is very robust and gave the soba the saltiness and flavour to it, while the spring onion enhanced the sauce with a fragrance and slight burst of flavour.

Soba Lifting

Looking for something different, I ordered Duck Tsukemen Seiro ($21.80). The soya sauce soup base is infused with duck breast, mushrooms, fried beancurd, grilled leek and soft boiled egg. The soup is serve warm instead of hot.

 Duck Tsukemen Seiro

Unlike the chilled soba, the soup base in the tsukemen is light with a nice touch of sweetness. The grilled leek added a charred flavour to the broth, while the soft-boil egg, gave a velvety texture to it. I ordered Special Handmade Soba (additional $2) for this. But I can't tell the difference with their regular soba.

 Duck Tsukemen Seiro - Mixed

Apparently, it is advisable that you end your meal with Soba-yu. It is a water used to boiling soba. The milky colour water is basically almost tasteless, but it supposed to contain the vitamins and minerals from the soba.

Soba-Yu

For entrée, we had Tamagoyaki ($7.80). Japanese Omelette. Tasted sweet, tasty and eggy. But it seems to be heated in the microwave as the egg feel hot in the inner core, but warm externally.

Tamagoyaki

The décor of the restaurant is very minimalist and zen. Shimbashi soba in Great World City is part of Shokutsu Ten Japanese Food Street, a brand by RE&S group. Service is friendly and efficient.

Shokutsu Ten Japanese Street Food @ Great World City

Overall, soba at Shimbashi Soba is definitely at a different level compared to the soba that you find in regular Japanese Restaurant. The taste is more refine and exquisite. Absolutely must try. Kanpai!! Cheers!!

Food & Drink: 8/10
Value: 7.5/10
Service: 7.25/10
Ambiance: 7.25/10
Budget per Person: $11 - $25, $26 - $50.

Shimbashi Soba
1 Kim Seng Promenade
#B1-01 Great World City
(with Shokutsu Ten Japanese Food Streeet)
Singapore 237994

T: +65 6835 9052
IG: @Shimbashisoba.sg
OH:
Mon – Fri: 11.30 – 22.00 (LO: 21.30)
Sat, Sun & PH: 11.00 – 22.00 (LO: 21.30)

Other Location
290 Orchard Road
#B1-41, Paragon
Singapore 238859

T: +65 6735 9882
OH:
Sun – Fri: 11.30 – 22.00 (LO: 21.30)
Sat: 10.30 – 22.00 (LO: 21.30)


Thursday, 15 March 2018

8 Eight Korean BBQ – Pork Lovers Heaven




Our pork affair with 8 Eight Korean BBQ ('Eight') started when the first store was open in 2014. We frequented it regularly, till for no reasons, it kinds of drop off our eating radar.

We visited Eight at Shaw Centre for my belated birthday meal. It sure reminds us of what we have been missing for the past few years. Checkout our previous review here for 8 Eight Korean BBQ at Central.

Eight in Print

Located in Shaw Centre, the building itself has become a cluster of yummy food. The décor is basically a carbon copy of their original outlet in Central, chic and industrial are the words.

Part of the Dining Area

We ordered Wine, Original, Garlic and Miso signature Mangalitza pork belly. Each with their own unique marination, but the texture of the Mangalitza pork belly is just sublime. Grilled by the service staff, it is crisp externally, yet tender and juicy internally. Most importantly is that the pork does not have porky smells and even after substantial consumptions of the Oink Oink, you don't feel the 'Jelakness' (overwhelming sensation).

Mangalitza pork belly: Wine, Original, Garlic and Miso

Almost done

While most of the Korean BBQ restaurant will serve their kimchi and bean sprout cold side dishes, Eight served them on the grill plate, so it remains hot. It helps to ease the overwhelming feeling of the fatty pork.

The Kimchi and Bean Sprout Grilled

Big Hog Plate ($45) is a special cut for Mangalitza pork. Lightly seasoned with salt and pepper, it just absolutely gorgeous. With the even spread fats, the meat is just tender and melts in your mouth. It reminds me of most sought-after cut, 'Bu Jian Tian' (Never See the Sky) or meat from the pig armpit. Definitely, a must order.

Big Hog Plate

Big Hog Plate

Pork Jowl ($28) definitely not for the faint-hearted. The fats in this cut are almost the same or even more than the meat. So only for those pork lovers.

Pork Jowl

Pork Jowl

Although Eight specialised in Mangalitza pork, they still offer a very good cut of beef. Ohmi Wagyu Ribeye ($88). The marbling in the cut is something that you will go WOW. Before it even hits the hot place, you can definitely feel the juiciness of the meat. Definitely a #Beefgasm experience. Though the beef is good, it lacks the charred of the good steak that seals the juice inwards. A good steak needs to be cooked at a higher heat that cannot be achieved in Korean BBQ.

Ohmi Wagyu Ribeye

Seafood Pancake ($20). A well cooked Korean pancake with the right portions of the fillings. It is thick and crisp, and good to taste with the dipping sauce.

Seafood Pancake

Army Stew ($24). One of the most popular Korean stew where you can basically feed a few army boys at once. The simple combination of instant noodles and luncheon meat will warm up your tummy and your heart. It is more a comfort food.

Army Stew

Army Stew - My Portion

The rest of the Banchan (side dishes) come in a small portion. My personal pick their pickled pink purple radish. My secret weapon, that provide a good acidic balance to combat the “jelakness” from the fatty food. If you are worried that the banchan is not enough, don't be. The service staff will continuously top up the side dishes.

Banchan

Overall, 8 Eight Korean BBQ remains one of my go-to place for #Porkgasm. It is amazingly good and will satisfy your Oink Oink cravings. Mangalitza Pork is truly awesome. Cheers!!

Food & Drink: 8.75/10
Value: 7.5/10
Service: 8/10
Ambiance: 7.5/10
Budget per Person: $26 - $50.

8 Eight Korean BBQ
1 Scotts Road
Shaw Centre #04-20/21
Singapore 228208

T: +65 9018 9212
F: https://www.facebook.com/8koreanbbqshaw/
IG: @8koreanbbq
OH:
Mon – Fri: 11.30 – 14.30, 17.30 – 22.30 (LO 21.30)
Sat & Sun: 11.30 – 22.30 (LO 21.30)


Thursday, 8 March 2018

iSTEAKS Diner – Quality Steak for Every Occassion

NZ Ribeye @ iSTEAKS Diner


There is no price for guessing what is a restaurant called iSTEAKS Diner served or its most recommended dish. Started in a coffee shop environment, iSTEAKS builds its reputation by serving quality steak at a reasonable price.



Currently, iSTEAKS have two outlets in Serangoon Garden and Holland Village. They have significant followers, so seats can be very scarce during peak dining hours.

Display Chiller at Order Counter

LD and I visited them regularly about once a month or more to have a quick meal and satisfy our steak cravings. Three things that always make us return to the branch at MyVillage: consistent quality steak, awesome side dishes and it is nearby our home.

Part of Dining Area - Order Counter, Open Kitchen and Drinks Counter

When you order your steak, the staff will ask you how do you like your steak and type of sauce you want. Mushroom or black pepper. We always like our steak medium rare and we don't like any sauce on our steak. If you ask us to choose, rock salt and a dash of lemon will be good enough for us. So we will ask them to separate the sauce.

Our favourite order here is their NZ Ribeye, 250g cut ($23.50). Cooked to medium rare, the meat just juicy, succulent and melts in your mouth. You can expect a consistent spread of marbling throughout the steak when you bit into it. It is just superb and simply delicious. #Beefgasm

NZ Ribeye, 250g cut. Sides: Mash Potatoes + Spinach & Sesame Salad

NZ Ribeye, 250g cut - Medium Rare

The next favourite is their AU Ribeye 100 days GF ($27.50). It is a good cut and you can expect a juicy and succulent meat with each bite. In comparison, to the NZ Ribeye, the texture is meatier and require a bit more exercise of your jaw. However, you will be rewarded with fuller Australian beef flavour.

I have a few sides that I will normally choose from French Fries, Mash Potatoes, Macaroni & Cheese or Spinach & Sesame salad. LD prefer Baked Potato, Cauliflower Cheese, or French Beans. In total there are 18 sides to choose from and you can choose two sides base on each order of your grill item.

NZ Ribeye, 250g cut. Sides: Baked Potato and Cauliflower Cheese

For those who like cheese, the Macaroni & Cheese and Cauliflower Cheese will be highly recommended. The simple thick cut French Fries will satisfy the junk food crave in all. I like the Spinach & Sesame salad due to the combination between bitter and sweet from the spinach and the dressing.

Of course, this does not mean that other items in the menu are not good. We have tried their AU Lamb Shoulder ($16.50), AU Lamb T-Bone ($26.50) and Fried Fish Fillet ($10). I would recommend the lamb T-bone than the lamb shoulder as the meat is more tender and less gamy. The fried fish is huge in size, but for $10 don't expect any quality fillet in it.

AU Lamb Shoulder. Sides: Baked Potato and French Fries

iSTEAKS does not charge service charge, so they just serve you the no fuss and no frill service like in a coffeeshop. They will deliver your order to your table when the food is ready, following the number given after you ordered. Drinks are self service from the drink counters. Cutlery and other condiments are available from the condiments station. A small warning, they are packed during meal times and weekends.

Drinks - Self Service

Overall, iSTEAKS Diner is definitely a place to go for quality and no fuss steak. We personally recommend that you order the grilled meat from the four-legged animals, compare to the rest. Cheers!!

Food & Drink: 8/10
Value: 8/10
Service: N/A (Self Service)
Ambiance: 7.25/10
Budget per Person: $11- $25, $26 - $50.

iSTEAKS Diner
1 Maju Avenue
#02-03/04/05/06 MyVillage at Serangoon Garden
Singapore 556679

T: +65 6285 8839
IG: @isteakdiner
OH:
Sun – Thu & PH: 11.00 – 23.00
Fri, Sat & Eve of PH: 11.00 – Midnight
Menu available online.

Other Outlet:
17A Lor Liput
Holland Village
Singapore 277731

T: +65 6463 3165
OH:
Sun – Thu & PH: 11.00 – 23.00
Fri, Sat & Eve of PH: 11.00 – Midnight

Saturday, 3 March 2018

Talay Kata – Shabu-Shabu and Mookata [MEDIA INVITE]

Shabu-Shabu 

Talay Kata is a Mookata restaurant under the umbrella of Jus Delish Group. The holding company and its creative team that founded Gin Khao and Som Tam.

Talay Kata

Talay Kata opened in September 2016, at Level 8 of Orchard Central. The restaurant can comfortably seat 160 pax at one time. Talay Kata started with the concept of Mookata, and at the start of this year, they introduced the concept of Shabu-Shabu buffet to go with the Mookata buffet.

The Price

Check out the clip for Talay Kata buffet spread.



At the start, you will be provided with set ingredients. Lobster (1 for each person only), mussels, prawns, duck breast, meatballs and pork lard. For Shabu-Shabu, you will get a hot plate skillet, plus shabu-shabu pot in the middle. The best part of this is that you can still enjoy the best of both. I personally prefer this, as I prefer my soup broth to remain clean and not oily. For Mookata, it is inevitable that the broth will become greasy.

Grilling the Lobster

The lobster is prepared to half-cooked by the chef behind, so we can easily complete the cooking on the table either to bbq or shabu-shabu. The meat is fresh, as you will notice this if you suck the juice from the head. The same can be said about their prawns.

Part of Meat Selections

For the meat selections, you have the beef, pork belly, bacon, smoked duck and garlic chicken. The garlic chicken, smoked duck and bacon are good for bbq, while the pork belly and fatty beef are good for both. My suggestion is not to use the pork lard in shabu-shabu grill pan, as the coating is new and the fats from the meat are sufficient plus it won't stick.

The Cooked Food

Seafood selections offered mussels, clams, prawns, sliced fishes, and sishamo. The mussels and clams are good to go with their bonito broth soup base. For the sliced fish, we bbq it and it is decent enough. We tried the prawns both ways, the freshness of it really stood out.

Part of Seafood Selection

Not to be missed is their balls. There are fishballs, otah balls, cuttlefish balls, mushroom balls, chicken balls and beef balls. My personal pick is their mushroom balls, cuttlefish balls and beef balls. Kind of reminds me of a regular steamboat. To go with the balls, I definitely can't miss the Mama instant noodles. Somehow it just clicks together.

Condiment Station

While waiting for your ingredients to cook, you can enjoy some cooked food such as tom yum wings, fried otah and fishcakes, and also some curries. You can also do your own Somtam at the somtam station.

Cooked Food & Curry

For desserts, there is DIY waffle if you are up to the challenge. The first time I see this in a buffet line up. They also have regular and soft serve ice cream to enjoy on its own or together with the waffle. Drinks are free flow as well, so basically you get everything with one payment.

The décor of the restaurant is bright and modern. On each table, they incorporate the Korean style exhaust pipe to suck up smoke that will not stink your clothes. The space between tables is very spacious, so you will have no problem walking around to get your ingredients.

The Restaurant Decor

Overall, I like the addition of shabu-shabu option in Talay Kata. It sure gives a non-Mookata lover like myself to enjoy the offerings here. Definitely a place for everyone. Cheers!!

Food & Drink: 7/10
Value: 7.25/10
Service: N/A (Media Invite)
Ambiance: 7.25/10
Budget per Person: $11- $25, $26 - $50.

Talay Kata
181 Orchard Road
#08-04/05 Orchard Central
Singapore 238896

T: +65 6634 0551
IG: @Talaykata
OH:
Mon – Fri: 11.30 – 15.00, 18.00 – 22.00
Sat, Sun, Eve of PH & PH: 11.30 – 17.00, 18.00 – 22.00

Buffet Price:
Weekday Lunch: Adult $19.80++, Child $9.40++
Weekday Dinner: Adult $29.80++, Child $14.40++
Sat, Sun, Eve of PH & PH Lunch: Adult $29.80++, Child $14.40++
Sat, Sun, Eve of PH & PH Dinner: Adult $35.80++, Child $16.90++



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