29 May, 2012

Restaurant Review: Weekend Brunch at Cocotte

HFB has a love-hate relationship with Sunday Brunch. You see, he loves the idea of having brunch on a weekend – just idling the day away with a glass of OJ and enjoying his eggs and toasts – but he really hates waking up early just so he could enjoy it. But when Cocotte came knocking on him to sample and review their new a la carte weekend brunch menu with a French twist, he couldn’t say no to it.

His Food Blog Weekend Brunch at Cocotte

Sunday Brunch at Cocotte got off to a really brilliant start with their Mixed Baskets consisting Croissants and Pain Au Chocolat ($12), which came with exquisite artisanal jams from Alain Milliat. Head Chef, Chef Anthony Yeoh explained that they brought in their bread from France, a tad costlier, but definitely much better in taste compared to the local ones due to the French butter they incorporated within. The croissants HFB tasted were really awesome and it was light and flaky at the same time. What a big difference it made!

His Food Blog Weekend Brunch at Cocotte (1)

It’s always nice to start a meal with fruits and Cocotte’s Fresh Fruit Salad ($14) came with a mixture of Fresh Fruits & Summer Berries tossed in Honey-chardonnay dressing and served with Crème Fraiche. One can also opt to up a notch in the fruity section by washing down with Cocotte’s refreshing Summer Punch ($20 serves 4) of mixed fresh fruits with ginger ale and ginger beer. An excellent thirst quencher in our hot summer climate!

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Customers can be delighted with their choice of eggs ($5) in any of the following cooking methods – scrambled, poached, French omelette or fried, and pair it with their sides, which by the way HFB really enjoyed every one of them!

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Texture-wise, the Roast Herb Potatoes ($6) were roasted perfectly, and it was wonderfully flavoured by the herbs. And look at those gorgeous Slow Roasted Vine Tomatoes ($6). They were so succulent and busting with juicy-goodness with every bite. But nothing beats the good o’ Streaky Bacon ($6) that were not greasy and tasted really savoury!

His Food Blog Weekend Brunch at Cocotte (4)

Sink your teeth into the Croque Monsieur ($16) and savour the perfect combination of Brioche, Béchamel, Dijon Mustard, Ham and Gruyere. Topped that up with a fried egg that enveloped the whole sandwich to make it a Madame (add $2) and what’s not to love about this dish?!?

His Food Blog Weekend Brunch at Cocotte (5)

Crepes are a must have in a typical French brunch. And one should not miss out on Cocotte’s savoury crepe of Creamed Leeks and Scallops ($22). While HFB enjoyed his leeks to be slightly crunchy and firm, he fully appreciated Cocotte’s style of cooking it down till really soft and aromatic, which tasted really appetising when consumed. Although Scallops were seared nicely, it was without much fanfare.

His Food Blog Weekend Brunch at Cocotte (6)

Disclaimer: No ratings would be given, as this is an invited media tasting. HFB would also like to take this opportunity to thank Cocotte for their hospitality.

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25 May, 2012

Resturant Promotion: Jiang-Nan Chun Dragon Boat Festival Celebration

His Food Blog Jiang Nan Chun Dragon Boat Festival

HFB loves his rice dumplings and he is pretty certain this restaurant promotion at Jiang-Nan Chun will satisfy his cravings as much as it will satisfy yours.

In commemoration of the Dragon Boat Festival, home‐made dumplings generously filled with savoury and sweet ingredients debut at Jiang-Nan Chun, June 1 till 23, 2012.

Guests may choose to order a single dumpling or a selection to be enjoyed with their dining companions. Served piping hot, the steamed glutinous dumpling filled with mushrooms, conpoy, lotus seeds and chicken ushers in the meal on a savoury note.

For a taste of Chef Alan Chan’s signature X.O. sauce, the steamed dumpling featuring dried shrimps prepared in this sauce will satisfy palates relishing a hint of spice.

A nourishing addition to the menu is the steamed dumpling filled with bird’s nest, while those who prefer a sweet option will favour the steamed dumpling filled with red bean paste.

Just as highly starred on the menu is the steamed dumpling stuffed with snow lotus, conpoy, pork, salted egg yolk, mushrooms, lotus seeds, green beans and chestnuts.

In addition to the a la carte menu of steamed dumplings, diners may gather over a five‐course set lunch menu priced from $58 per person. At dinner time, a six‐course menu highlighting deep‐fried soft shell crab, sautéed lobster with egg white and crispy conpoy, and braised chicken with abalone and black mushrooms; to name a few, is priced from $88 per person.

All prices are subject to 10 percent service charge and prevailing taxes.

For reservations, please contact Jiang‐Nan Chun:
Tel: (65) 6831 7220 or email jnc.sin@fourseasons.com

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21 May, 2012

Sneak Peek of Beerfest Asia 2012

Beer, despite its bad reputation, actually has a number of natural antioxidants and vitamins that can help prevent heart diseases. The only problem nowadays is the sad fact that irresponsible people (Ferrari drivers or not) drink more than they should, and sobriety becomes non-existence. Thus being responsible by leaving your cars at home is always the key to having fun with friends while enjoying a nice chilled glass of beer.

And what better justification to drink responsibly and have fun with friends when Singapore’s premier beer festival, Beerfest Asia 2012, takes place from June 7 to 10 at the Marina Promenade (F1 tracks behind Singapore Flyer). Appreciate the more than 50 new beers on show at Beerfest Asia 2012, hailing from powerhouse brands in Belgium, Germany and the United States, as well as emerging brands from Asian countries like Indonesia, Japan, Taiwan and even Singapore!!!

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HFB was invited to sample some of these beers he had never come across and he was really curious to find out the taste profiles of them.

Taiwan’s best-selling Gold Medal Taiwan Beer (5% ABV), is an amber lager beer with a distinct taste produced by the addition of native “Ponlai Rice” (Formosa rice) during the brewing process. HFB thought the body of the beer was rather light on the malting and hopping, and provided a light refreshing finish – an easy beer to consume for a start.

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Hawthorn Pale Ale (4.7% ABV) hails from Australia and is a Pale Ale that represents a rich and complex malt character derived from a bold blend of five different types of grain. Lightly kilned, the use of specialty malts gives this beer a light copper colour. This beer also happens to be the winner of Australia International Beer Awards 2010 & 2011 – Silver Medal. HFB nosed a pleasant combination of citrus fruits and florals initially, although a light hoppy bitterness rolls in on the aftertaste.

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The Bali Hai Premium (4.7% ABV) produced from Indonesia is a well balanced tropical lager with pleasant bitterness offering a clean finish palate. Comes with a thin head and offers good carbonation, it feels light in the mouth and goes down very easily. HFB felt this was probably a good Bali hot weather brew but nothing to shout about – although a perfect concoction to combat the current local heat waves.

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Fashioned in New Zealand, Monteith’s Original Ale (4.0% ABV) comes with strong notes of caramel, burnt sugars and a hint of blackberry originating from the female flowers of the Pacific Gem Hops, this indulgent pale ale delivers a full, round and complete beer flavour. For HFB, he really enjoyed the unique caramel tang!

Beerfest Asia 2012

Deriving from one of the powerhouse countries of Germany, Schneider Weisse Kristall (5.3% ABV) comes with a delightful tingle light golden yet crystal clear wheat beer without yeast. Strong fruity banana fragrance complemented by spices, it is sparkling and refreshing with plenty of carbonation. This is recommended as the ideal companion for light fish dishes and a great aperitif. HFB was pretty blown away by this; everyone should definitely give this a try!

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How about having a stout from our very own local boy? Jungle Beer Kiasu Stout (7% ABV) (how more local can it gets) is a really rich and full-bodied imperial stout with extra complexity from unrefined cane sugar. A sip of it and receive an instant boost of masculinity – not that HFB needed more. Not recommended for the wimpy kid next door.

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So what are you waiting for? Raise your mugs, drink to it and gather your drinking buddies and purchase tickets from S$15 onwards from SISTIC now!!!

Disclaimer: Beers were consumed over a period of days. HFB do not advocate binge drinking. Don’t drive to drink!

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15 May, 2012

Health Promotion Board (HPB) Healthier Hawker Programme

Well known by food lovers for their scrumptious Malay fare, selected hawker centres at Geylang Serai, Eunos Crescent and Haig Road will now be celebrated for something else – offering healthier food choices without compromising on taste, price or enjoyment.

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This is right after Yuhua Market and Hawker Centre became Health Promotion Board (HPB) first healthier hawker centre.

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As part of HPB’s Healthier Hawker Programme initiative, a launch event took place at Eunos Crescent Hawker Centre.

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The aim of this launch is to offer intervention solutions in the area of healthy eating targeted at traditional Malay cuisine, due to their casual relation with obesity, high cholesterol and high blood pressure among the Malay community.

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Patrons can look out for various Healthier Choice symbols, logos or stickers to enjoy traditional Malay cuisine such as Nasi Lemak that are prepared with healthier oil and less coconut fat, which means reduced saturated fat.

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Mee Rebus and Mee Siam, along with other Chinese delights such as Yong Tau Foo and Fishball Noodles are also prepared using whole-grain noodles and brown rice bee hoon.

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Beyond that, Geylang Serai has also become the first Healthier Hawker Centres to go smoke-free, in support of HPB’s Blue Ribbon smoke-free movement.

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