Sunday, September 21, 2014

#foodporn: Supply and Demand.

I have been cafe hopping so much this year that nowadays when i'm thinking of a place to have my meal, the question i would ask myself would be, "What are the cafes nearby, which cafes have i not visit?" Then again, cafes nowadays offer the same typical menu like Big breakfast set, Eggs Benedict, Pastas etc. Even though i have visited 30 plus cafes in Singapore till date, when people ask me which is the best Egg Benedict i had, or which cafe i would recommend, i cannot really answer because i've tried so many variations that i can't remember which one had the largest impact on my taste buds. They all pretty much taste the same and honestly speaking, i think brunch sets are quite easy to make :|

If you look at "cafe hoppers" IG nowadays, you often spot common (insta-worthy) dishes like truffle fries, eggs Benedict, waffles etc AND most people often upload photos of their food before actually tasting it. People like us who happen to see the uploaded photo probably won't know how good or bad the food is but when more and more people visit the same cafe and take photos of the same kind of food, you probably think it's good and should visit it soon to join in the hype. Half the time you realized the food is just so-so but the place is worth visiting just for that 1 "hit item" or because of the nice ambiance, decor and setting. You probably won't go back the 2nd time though. A good example would be this cafe at Macpherson, not gonna mention which but you prolly go there, have a meal and order that "hit" item, take a photo of your meal, upload it and probably not return again. Sounds familiar? I admit that i'm one of those guilty ones.

Sometimes i feel that whenever i go cafe hopping, it's like paying an "admission fee" into the cafe, paying for average food and to "explore" a new cafe. Normally i spend an average of $25 - $30 a meal which consist of the dish and a drink, sometimes dessert. Come to think of it, not cheap hor? Every week i have brunch about once or twice, so 1 month i spend about $200 on just brunch alone? Anyway, this post technically isn't a cafe post because Supply & Demand is considered more of a restaurant. Other than the newly opened Orchard Central outlet, i heard there's one at Esplanade.
 photo SAM_0198.jpg
Not related to this post but i found this photo in my camera and have no idea what to do with it so might as well just post and share with you guys. I've always been a fan of Churros and when i heard about the newly opened (ok, maybe now it's not so new already) Spanish Doughnut at Orchard central, i decided to drop by to give it a try. Apparently this Spanish Doughnut is famous in Melbourne. Got myself the 'Choco Churritos' ($9.90) which is made to order and it comes in a cone with 3 chocolate dips - Milk chocolate, white chocolate and dark chocolate. Waited about 15 mins for my order and it was really good. The portion is quite A LOT for one so i would recommend for two to share, quite worth it!
 photo supply1.jpg
Decided to visit Supply & Demand after seeing an influx of photos of it on Instagram (See what i meant!) but this time there was really good reviews of the food so i was expecting quite a lot. After all Supply & demand is supposed to be a restaurant rather than a cafe so i expect their food to be much better in terms of quality and taste. Headed down at about 6 plus for dinner but had to be put on waiting list and got the call about 30 mins later. The restaurant was nicely decorated with dimmed lighting. Maybe because it's dinner time thus they have a lighted candle on each table. *wink
 photo supply2.jpg
Looked through the menu and decided on Garlic Truffle Fries to share, super awesome and addictive. Love the cut! Carbonara for Leon and Angie, Salad for Fenny and to top it off, a La Mattina Dopo / The Morning After pizza which consist of tomato sauce, Mozzarella, bacon and mushroom with a soft egg in the center for us to share as well. Pizza was not bad and it's supposed to be the highlight of the meal, but we had it cold because of all the photo taking. #FOL

I ordered a chicken dish for myself. The unique thing about their meat dish is that you only get to choose the meat, that's it. How the chicken is being prepared or the 2 side dishes that comes along will be based on the chef preference. Scary but interesting at the same time. i was praying that i would get something i eat because i'm super picky when it comes to food. Thank god it was greens (not a fan of veggies but hey! at least i eat broccoli) and sauteed potatoes :D
 photo supply3.jpg
Overall it was a pretty good meal, definitely much better quality food (slightly more expensive than cafe hopping) and we agreed that we should come back again for the food. Maybe we should go back during lunch time, maybe the "feel" different,lol. I would want to try the pizza again! This time have it hot upon being served instead of spending time taking photos of it. Super bad habit of waiting for all the dishes to arrive then take an "overall" photo of it. Some people would even spend time editing the photo nice nice, upload it before eating. The food cold until bu ke yi zai cold already. Put the phones away and just enjoy the meal. "People who love to eat are always the best people." Agree.

Then again, it depends on what food also, LOL

Monday, September 15, 2014

D-1: Weekend Road Trip to Malacca! #Julies

If you read my previous post on my trip to Alor Gajah, Melaka, you would have read that a few weekend ago, i visited Malacca and here's a photo travelogue of my trip. This is the probably the only few paragraph of words you are gonna read in this post, lol. Well, if a picture speaks a thousands words, this is gonna be a rather "wordy" post. Ok, not funny.
Anyway, here is a quick summary of my day 1 in case some of you cannot get the flow of the photos even though i think it's quite self explanatory. Early in the morning, met up with the other bloggers at Golden Mile complex to catch our coach for a 4 hour ride to Alor Gajah, which is somewhere near Malacca. Stopped by a rest stop to grab a bite but for most of us, it's to get a 3G SIM card so that we can stay connected over the weekend (and to update our social media..)

Reached Julie's factory in the noon which i blogged about in my previous post. The Julie's staff brought us to have authentic Peranakan meal for dinner (and chendol for dessert!) We then headed over to the famous Jonker Street night market which i never had the chance to experience during my previous trips. I think i have been to Malacca twice during my poly days like 5 years ago? Checked in to our apartment at One Residence (1 huge bungalow for a group of 3 or 4s, so we took up like 5 bungalows in a row, LOL) and that pretty much sums up my Day 1. Now that you get the flow, enjoy!
 photo 1-3.jpg
In case you missed my previous post, read about my visit to Julie's factory at this LINK!
 photo 2-3.jpg
 photo 3-3.jpg
Not sure about you guys enjoyed looking at the photos without words but i love doing up photo travelogues like this. The flow of the photos is somewhat able to convey a story of its own, sometimes or should i say most of the time better than typing a whole chunk of words which might bore some people. Photo credits goes to William (onlywilliam) for the group shot taken at Julie's and Don (donnlicious) for those paparazzi shots taken at Jonker Street! Till the next post

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

#Julies Factory visit at Alor Gajah, Melaka!

Couple of weekend ago, i was invited by Julie's (also known as Perfect Food Manufacturing) to go on a weekend road trip to Melaka along with other bloggers to visit their biscuit making factory located at Alor Gajah, Melaka. When i first received the invitation, I was really excited as i was a huge fan of their peanut butter sandwich biscuit and to be able to see the whole process of how it's being made seem like a really rare opportunity! It's like getting a golden ticket to visit Willy Wonka' chocolate factory if you get what i meant. LOLOLOL Anyway, I will be doing a photo post of my 2D1N trip to Malacca after this post shortly, but this blog post mainly summarizes my afternoon visit to Julie's Factory! Before i go on sharing about my experience, here's a mandatory group photo of all the bloggers and the friendly staffs of Julie's! :D
 photo IMG_2306.jpg
Welcome lunch where everyone introduced ourselves. Motherhood statement, "Hi, my name is Andy and i'm a lifestyle blogger." Basically if you don't blog just a specific topic like mainly food, or mainly travel but you blog about everything else or "everything under the sun", you fall under the "lifestyle" category. Yes, the term is being abused, i know right...
 photo lunch.jpg
Had a really sumptuous Nasi lemak lunch and there were a couple of highlight dishes or should i say desserts as well. One was this glutinous rice wrapped in (lotus?) leaves, and the desserts were made using Julie's biscuit! One is the Kek Batik, which tasted somewhat like Brownie and the other is what you see in the above photo. It's something like canapé with fruits on their biscuit and decorated with chocolate sauce. Interesting way of using their biscuit to create desserts!
 photo working.jpg
After lunch, we went up to their meeting room where a presentation was given to share with us more on Julie's. Things like their mission and vision, how they started and how much they have grown throughout the years. One of the more significant things i remembered was when Mr. Martin Ang (director of Julie's) shared on how their biscuit are baked with love and they serve only what they eat. Everyone has the perception that strawberry cream is pink in color but in actual fact, it's white. What you see out there is pink color because of the coloring added, which Julie's do not practice.

The staffs also shared on the campaigns that Julies embarked on. Like giving back to the community, appreciating the unsung heroes and their latest, #Bestofyou social movement which is currently running in Singapore. (Anyone spotted their Ads on buses or MRT stations lately?) The moment encourages one to take a moment to appreciate the people and experiences by asking yourself, "Who is the best of you?" Take some time and recognize the small actions and achievements one often neglect. There will be a "Best of you" exhibition at the central atrium of Marina Square from 22 to 26 October (11am to 9pm daily) which showcases the public submissions and artwork established for the movement
 photo uniform.jpg
Next up is the moment that most of us are waiting for, the factory visit! Due to hygiene purposes, we had to donned their factory coat, put on the hair net, wear a face mask as well as put covers over our shoes (not forgetting to wash our hands thoroughly before entering!). All of us looked like surgeons getting ready for a surgery, LOL Being bloggers, everyone was camwhore-ing in our new "outfit" and taking selfies/ group photos, took awhile for us to be "ready". LOL
 photo process.jpg
These are the official photos from Julie's as we were not allowed to take any photos inside the factory. I was really quite impressed and amazed by the machinery and the amount of biscuit produced at any one time. I watched how the dough was being flattened and mold into individual "coin", after which go through the oven for baking then oiled to give it a nice golden glaze, cooled down before being sent for manual packing. I also saw how the cheese cream or peanut butter cream were inserted between 2 pieces of biscuit! Other than the packing, it's done via their awesome machines!
 photo QualityControl.jpg
Quality check was also done frequently to ensure standards. At the packing station, they gave us each a freshly packed peanut butter sandwich cookie and it was HEAVENLY!!! It was still straight out from the oven, still warm and nice, oh my tians. Unless you try it at the factory, you can never get this warm delicious feeling anywhere else. *drools all over
 photo IMG_2318.jpg
Ended the factory visit with Mr Martin giving us a big bag of Julie's biscuit each (enough to last a few months!) and also their latest #Line oat cookies! Julie's was having a FB/ Instagram contest recently where you have to take a creative photo with both their Brown (chocolate) and Cony (strawberry) Line cookies and stand to win Line plushies. I joined the contest after i returned to SG and guess what, I'M ONE OF THE CONSOLATION PRIZE WINNERS!!!! Thanks for picking me!
 photo SAM_0380.jpg
Thanks for the invitation Julie's! I really enjoyed myself
 photo SAM_0556.jpg
Some of the goodies in the big bag of biscuit given. My favorite is definitely the Cheese sandwich and the peanut butter sandwich cookies! The PR is probably reading this as well so thanks Ellice for hosting us and making us feel comfortable. Before i end this post, have you guys ever thought of "who is the best of you"? I shall leave it to you guys to ponder :)

Baked with love,