Cafe Hopping (Malaysia & Singapore)

23 . 07 . 2014

Before I departed to Singapore last July, the most “hipster” places to go for brunch dates were mainly located in Publika or around the Bangsar area. Little did I know how much has changed since my last food venture in Mukha, TTDI (great arabic food, by the way). With many conceptualized (or not) cafes emerging in the Malaysian market, we are often spoiled for choices to choose our next cafe spot. To narrow it down for you (and save your petrol, perhaps), I’ll be giving my reviews and brutal honesty on these cafes I went to.
Note: Some pictures from my iPhone 4 might have turned out a lil’ more pixelated than usual. Do accept my apology.

So now the question is, are you gonna have Big Breakfast or Maple Glazed Bacon Pancakes?

First stop,

Jibby & Co

I’ve been seeing quite a few pictures floating around the social medias mainly featuring their Soft Shell Crab Burger. Situated conveniently in Subang Empire, JQ and Gine thought it was a good place for a catch-up. 
Rustic and cozy interior – loved it. 
and Gine!
Rootbeer (RM15), Lychee Mint (RM15) and Iced Chocolate (RM12).

Soft Shell Crab Burger on Brioche (RM32) , Meatball Pasta in Rich Tomato Sauce (RM28) and Chic Brekkie (RM28).

Gine’s Meatball Pasta came in a rather huge portion.

Chic Brekkie – not your classic Salmon Benedict. Layered with hash browns, smoked salmon and poached eggs from bottoms up topped with salmon roes and corns. Priced at a heavy RM28+, this wasn’t exactly the standard I was expecting. The portion was small, hash browns were heavily salted and unevenly fried and smoked salmons were flimsy. Poached eggs were fine, however salmon roes and corns weren’t of help in terms of flavour. 

Soft Shell Crab Burger on Brioche (RM32). Highly raved from what I’ve seen. Had a bite of the soft shell crab and it was cooked nice and crispy. Worth a try 🙂
Verdict: Food were mediocre and staffs there could be a lil’ more friendlier when serving and collecting bills. Loved the ambience nonetheless. Good news: Easy parking in Subang Empire Shopping Mall. 
Food: 2/5
Ambience: 3/5
Customer Service: 2/5
Jibby & Co
GK11, Empire Shopping Gallery, Subang Jaya
Tel: +603 5613 7070

The Grumpy Cyclist
Was looking around for cafes in the neighbourhood and stumbled (grumpily) upon this so Kel, Lisa, Vincent and I decided to give it a try!
Since they’ve went for Pan Mee before this, I was the only glutton eating here by then. Hee, so here goes..
Chocolate Chip Pancakes drizzled in maple syrup and decorated with a strawberry, icing sugar and whipped cream. Next to it we have Lisa’s Cappuccino (RM10).
For a RM12 pancake meal, I wish I had fluffier pancakes or more chocolate chips. Or maybe an extra berry. As for Lisa’s Cappuccino, it was more on the bitter side as she had to add sugar (she doesn’t normally do).
Verdict: The prices were affordable for simple indulgences. Staffs were friendly, interior was cozy – what I really liked about here.

Food: 2/5
Ambience: 3/5
Customer Service: 4/5

36 Jalan Datuk Sulaiman,
Taman Tun Dr Ismail,
60000 Kuala Lumpur,
Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur,
Tel: +6 019 229 1658

Roast FactorGlee
First stop of cafe hopping with the Hamka. Tucked neatly in Village Shops within The Club @ Bukit Utama.
Where’s the missing flowerpot? :B

Quaint and rustic. They sell Fat Baby’s ice cream here too!
Apple Pie camouflaged. 
Baked eggs with 2 organic eggs, dill, smoked back bacon and mini baguette. Hamka said it tasted so so for RM18. 

Boys will always be quick when it comes to brownies, no?
Thank you to the helpful waitress who loved our noise in the cafe. Haha.
When you can’t fit everyone in a picture. Thank you Honners for the awesome idea!
Verdict: I had my first cup of hot chocolate for the day and it tasted piping hot and smooth. Great texture, perfect for a rainy day with your laptop and a pair of earphones. Will definitely visit again when I’m back. 🙂
Food: 3/5
Ambience: 5/5 (LOVE!)
Customer Service: 4/5 

G06, Village Shops, The Club, 
Persiaran Bukit Utama, 
Bandar Utama, 
Petaling Jaya
Tel: +603-7732-2893
Next stop,

Frisky Goat

To be honest, this is probably my favourite stop in TTDI (despite the 20 minute parking hunt). 5 of us girls shared 3 mains and they were all delicious. From the top, we had Waffles a l’americaine (RM21), Eggs Saumon Royale (RM18.50), Angel Hair Pasta (I forgot the name, sorry 🙁 ) and a bowl of Tomato Soup. Buttermilk waffles were light and crispy, paired with smoked salmon benedict/ice cream, they were both wonderful additions to brunch and dessert menu. As the runny yolk starts soaking in the crispy waffle top, pair it with a square piece of well cooked salmon – heavenly. Pasta was robust in flavour and cooked soft. Tomato soup was.. tomato-like. Jokes, I didn’t get to try. However the other 3 were very palatable 🙂
Verdict: Food waiting time is fine, the only complain I’d have would be the lack of parking space around TTDI, though it’s not the cafe’s fault. Heh.
Food: 4/5
Ambience: 4/5
Customer Service: 4/5

72, Jalan Burhanuddin Helmi, Taman Tun Dr Ismail. 
(Beside Public Bank)

Another cozy dining cafe located in a couple shop lots away from Frisky Goat. No pictures taken here because camera and phone batteries were low 🙁 I tried Almond Granola Milkshake (RM11) – felt like something we could easily whip up at home with just a fraction of the price. Honners did try the Salmon Bagel with Cream Cheese and he said it tasted good with mediocre presentation.
Verdict: Friendly people with an open dry kitchen in the middle 🙂 Very cozy place for a hideout, however might be a little fussy due to the lack of parking spaces (again, not the cafe’s fault, heh). 
Food: 3/5
Ambience: 3/5
Customer Service: 4/5

Quar/Tet TTDI
21, Lorong Datuk Sulaiman 7, 
Taman Tun Dr Ismail, 
Kuala Lumpur. 

Okay I know this is not considered as a proper cafe but to foreigners visiting Malaysia, you gotta try this! This is my first proper banana leaf meal and I’m beyond happy that Alex brought me here without hesitation. Fried squid and papadom had lovely crunch and fragrant to them. Side veges were mediocre, dhal was greatly spiced. 😀

This whole meal cost the both of us RM40+. Standard banana leaf pricing I guess? Medium Fried Sotong was already RM20. Sotong had mild hotness to it, chewy yet it doesn’t feel like rubber with occasional crunch.
Verdict: Place is usually crowded, quite a few smokers outside especially at night. If you’re bothered by that, looking for a seat inside could take long. I’ve heard rumours about their drop in standard, however as a first timer I couldn’t tell nor judge. If what I tasted was a result of standard drop, I’m pretty sure the banana leafs before mine would have tasted x100 better. No regret though! Still good! 🙂
Food: 4/5
Ambience: 3/5
Customer Service: 3/5

43, Jalan Telawi 3,
Bangsar Baru,
59100 Kuala Lumpur,
Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur,
Tel: +603 2287 8445

Sad to say that my cafe hopping attempts in Malaysia have been cut short. More to come the next time I’m back in town 🙂 Moving on to the next country,

Thank God I am finally on a holiday with my beloved best friend. After checking into Chi’s hotel, we went straight into Sephora. After a few tick tocks, it’s dinner time!

Miam Miam

We were both psyched to try this due to the rising fame of Miam Miam in Malaysia and also Singapore. My happiness went up by 200% when I saw Mac & Cheese (S$14.50) on the menu but came down by 300% when I tasted it. Cheese were dry and my Macs refused to be scooped up (in another word, they were kind of hardened). I probably chose the wrong cafe to sample my first ever Mac & Cheese (yes, really). On the other hand, Chi’s Squid Ink Risotto with Omelette tasted fairly burnt to me. The bottom part was practically flooded with oil. First timer for a squid ink dish too. Not sure how it’s supposed to taste like though. Any help here? :B

Onto the super highly raved French Toast, I was disappointed to learn that this is not the best taste or texture you can get for such heavy price (S$9.50). Whipped cream aside, the bread wasn’t thoroughly soaked in egg essence, was fairly cold when served and tasted bland without maple syrup. Nope, not convinced that it’s the best French Toast out there.
Verdict: Too heavy for my pocket, too light for my taste. Service was slow and we only got served after 30 – 40 minutes at 9pm.
Food: 2/5
Ambience: 3/5
Customer Service: 2/5
#02-14, Bugis Junction, 
200 Victoria Street 
Tel: +65 68370301 

Strangers’ Reunion

Next morning, we visited Strangers’ Reunion bright and early.
Chi’s pretty happy with the large bowl of Truffle Fries placed in front of her.

 Chi’s Deep Fried Poached Egg and Magic (S$5.50), Truffle Fries (S$12.90), my Hot Chocolate (S$5.50) and Parma Ham Addict (S$19.90).

Fresh combination of prosciutto, parma ham and poached egg with aubergine sauce at the side. Something fairly new to my palate, but not something I’ll have again another time. I think I’m too accustomed to having smoked salmon for brunch, hehe. On another note, Hot Chocolate was priced reasonably. I ordered extra Chocolate and the taste was just nice, smooth and not too heavy (with milk). Doesn’t feel grainy or dry. Sweetness was on point and not overpowering. 
Verdict: They weren’t many choices for brunches by the time we got there due to heavy early traffic. Would love to try Smashed Avocado on Focaccia the next time round, with another cuppa pipping Hot Chocolate for my next trip. Staffs were on the younger side and friendly too.
Food: 3/5
Ambience: 4/5
Customer Service: 4/5

37 Kampong Bahru Rd, 169356
Tel:+656222 4869

Waffle Slayer

Time to slay some waffles! With the two cafes connected to each other, I don’t see why not 😉

Passionfruit White Chocolate Waffles on the left, Red Velvet Waffles on the right. Both served with Vanilla Ice Creams and different flavoured sauces. $14.90 each.

The texture in Red Velvet Buttermilk Waffles was denser compared to other. Mandarin oranges oozes citrus goodness and brought the overall flavour up a notch. Otherwise, it felt like your typical Chocolate Waffles with Vanilla Ice Cream.

My Passionfruit White Chocolate Buttermilk Waffles, without passionfruit and white chocolate. 🙁 Sliding my knife through it gave me spine-tingling excitement. As I took my first bite, I was on Cloud 9… The buttermilk waffles were so fragrant. Just the right amount of crisp on the outside and fluff on the inside. As I dug deeper into my waffles, I realized there were no passionfruit seeds, nor were they white chocolate sauce drizzled all over. Quite a disappointment for the lack of attention they gave to my waffle toppings, but the buttermilk waffles were definitely good to eat with just vanilla ice cream and strawberry slices. 🙂
Verdict: Will definitely come back to try the other flavours. To me, the taste and texture did justify the price nicely. Staffs were friendly too so that’s a plus. 
Food: 4/5
Ambience: 3/5
Customer Service: 3/5

37 Kampong Bahru Rd, 169356
Tel:+656222 4869

Supply & Demand

Supply and Demand!

So I kept my promise and came back for their Spicy Chicken Arabbiata. Kept my hopes high, and it was good as usual 🙂 If you love spicy food, this is the pasta for you.

Chi’s Seafood Pasta with Infused Wine.
If you haven’t read my first review on Supply and Demand, click me!
Verdict: Thank you for keeping your standards up. Will be back for more and more pasta! Pizza’s on my to-eat list next 🙂
Food: 4/5
Ambience: 5/5
Customer Service: 3/5
#02-13/14, Orchard Gateway,
277 Orchard Road

Wheeler’s Yard

You have not been to Wheeler’s Yard if you hadn’t taken a shot in front of the eye catching blue gate. Love the colour, love the vibe. 

Smoked Salmon and Scrambled Eggs (S$16.90) and Hot Chocolate (S$6) for me, Big Breakfast (S$14.90) and Orange Juice (S$4) for Chi. 
Alen was attempting a butterfly chocolate art and was so stressed out before 2 pairs of eyes staring so closely at him. Haha. Give this talented man a follow @the_coffee_maker 🙂

I have to be honest- I came here with little hopes for the food since I heard more bad than good reviews for them. To my surprise, it turned out better than I hope it’d be. Though the omelette in my platter could use less processed cheese squares, Chi’s orange juice could use fresher (not carton) ingredients and mushrooms could use less cooking time on the stove. Other than that they were good, not decent.
Verdict: In here you pick up your own food from the counter. However the servers were kind enough to ask me if I needed assistance which demonstrated good customer service.
Food: 3/5
Ambience: 4/5
Customer Service: 4/5

28 Lorong Ampas, 328781
Tel:+656254 9128

Common Man Coffee Roasters

Thanks to Wy and Yen, I discovered this wonderful coffee roasters a couple months ago and was more than happy to bring Chi here for a second visit. Absolutely adore their interior setting.
From my past visit with Wy and Yen, I ordered their pancakes which were deeeelicious. I’ve never had any other pancakes quite like this before, and the toppings were spot on to satisfy sweet tooth like mine.  Pancakes (S$19) were huge (almost 5 inch in diameter) and fluffy. Topped with caramelized bananas, nutty crumble and berry coulis, what’s not to love? It’s also a good option to have this as a dessert for two.
By the time you reach this part of the post, you’ll probably know that I’m not a coffee person. Hot Chocolate (S$6) all the way, and this was lovely 🙂 Milk frothed smoothly and felt like silk in my mouth. I’m in love.
This time, we came back for a little change.

I went for Grapefruit Orange Juice (S$8) to rejuvenate after a sugar rush from Wheeler’s Yard. Tangy and refreshing with the right amount of fruit pulp, I had no idea grapefruit juices could taste so good.

Chi’s Iced Coffee (S$7.50) on the top, and the Churros
One of the best I’ve ever tasted!
Common Man never fails me. Oh man. I wish I could’ve taken a picture of it’s crispy golden brown outer layer and tender soft inner layer. Dipped in melted dark chocolate sauce – wow. Wowza. Me gusta. :B I wouldn’t have it any other way but I must say – the price was on the heavier side. S$12. Would you?
Verdict: Not very pocket friendly at the moment, but I’m glad the taste make up for it. Also props to the staffs for going the extra mile to help me charge my phone 🙂
Food: 5/5
Ambience: 5/5
Customer Service: 5/5 

22 Martin Road #01-00, 239058
Tel:+656836 4695

Walked down to Robertson Quay, and look where we are! 
Being on the top of LadyIronChef’s to-go list, I regretted to not have came here with an empty stomach.
To not waste our trip here, we ordered…

Exotic Fruits. Hahaha. Loved the alfresco dining with natural light. Makes everything look so much nicer and vibrant 🙂

Walked past a few tables nom-ing on their orders and the food looked great. I can’t wait for my next visit already!

Verdict: I’ll save it for next time. 😉

#01-01, Robertson Blue, 
86 Robertson Quay

Strictly Pancakes

Never say no to pancakes! Hehe. My first time trying such peculiar flavoured pancakes- Garlic Buttered Prawns (S$14) as savoury and What-a-Spread (S$11) as dessert pancake, alongwith a hearty blend of Nutella Milkshake.
You may think that Garlic Buttered Prawns only exist in Chinese zhi char hawker centres, but when paired with 3 fluffy buttermilk pancakes, these were phenomenal. Every bite felt like I was having the best of both world. Definitely a fav! 
On the other hand, What-a-Spread were too sweet for our liking. Butterscotch overload hey. Peanut butter pancakes had nice soft texture and you can really taste the peanut butter, which I find many pancakes out there lacked. Nutella milkshake was blended perfectly smooth and flavourful – not too heavy with an occasional crunch from crushed Oreos. Talk about guilty pleasure 🙂
Verdict: They have so many options I can’t wait to try them all! Will opt for savoury instead of dessert pancakes next time round. Though the place isn’t exactly huge, customers were considerate enough to keep their volume down. Staffs were fine. 
Food: 4/5
Ambience: 3/5
Customer Service: 3/5

 44A Prinsep St, 
Prinsep Place, 
Singapore 188674
Tel:+656333 4202

Black Bird

I’m sorry, I told you I loved Hot Chocolate and Salmon Benedict. Yet another typical Calista type of brunch in Black Bird. Loved how the interior felt like – quaint and minimalistic. Looks like a great place to read and have a cuppa. 
Except my cuppa wasn’t as nice. Hot Chocolate was too milky and sweet. It reminded me of Meiji Chocolate Milk so.. no.

I was quite pleased at the Salmon Benedict. It was pleasantly cooked – poached eggs were perfect, hollandaise sauce had nice smooth consistency to it. However the rosti were almost drenched in oil. I hope it’ll turn out a little drier next time!
Verdict: Small crowd, but service was on the slower side. The staffs were pleasant and always had a smile on their faces 🙂
Food: 3/5
Ambience: 5/5
Customer Service: 3/5

  • 6 Handy Road
  • Singapore 229234
  • Tel: +65 6337 3448
Paris Baguette

I’d be honest again – I actually came here for their Wi-Fi while waiting for my sister to finish work. Hee. No regrets nevertheless. Ordered their Berries Tart (S$3.90) and Hot Chocolate (S$8) and it was a great tea session for one.

This is my first time pouring melted chocolate into frothed milk by myself so I was quite excited. Though the excitement has cost me S$8. Uh oh. I didn’t see that coming.
Good but not great. I guess “free” Wi-Fi comes with price tags too. 😛

Verdict: Would love to try other pastries when I have the chance (or money for Wi-Fi) to. Drinks were fine but slightly pricey for the same quality I can get elsewhere. Staffs show a lil’ impatience sometimes even though the crowd wasn’t heavy. Lovely place and setting though, at least their cushions were comfy!

Food: 3/5
Ambience: 4/5
Customer Service: 2/5
#B1-01, One Raffles Place, 
1 Raffles Place
Phew! I hope I didn’t scare you with my obsession with Hot Chocolate and Smoked Salmons. Hope to cafe hop again sometime soon! Also, I would love suggestions on where to go next. Who’s with me? 🙂
Time (for me) to detox,



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