Monday, March 31, 2014

Nam Nam Noodle Bar - Vietnamese Fare with No MSG @ Suntec City Mall [Singapore]

Let's cut the story short by jumping straight to the topic today; my review for Nam Nam Noodle Bar, which essentially offers Vietnamese cuisine of which i have minimal exposure to. 

Till now, i have yet to try Vietnam's famous banh mi although i had a fantastic noodle experience at Pho-Stop when i was working for the Agency for Integrated Care; the dry noodles i had then totally changed my negative perception of Vietnamese food! Thanks to my ex manager, Wai Min, for the recommendation! 

Anyway, that new-found affection for Vietnamese cuisine spurred me to agree (almost immediately) when the younger sister suggested bringing my mom to Nam Nam Noodle Bar two Fridays ago.

Ordering steps as above! To summarise - queue for a table, indicate your orders on the sheet, pay at the cashier and then wait for food. Simple? Good. 

Before i start with food, i was dumb-founded to find so many bottles of sauces on the table! Honestly, i didn't use any of them since i am not sure what goes well with what! By the way, Nam Nam doesn't use MSG in that food! Karen Au, this would be the place for us to dine in the future! 

Lotus Tea
My colleague had already warned me this would be tasteless. In a way, i do agree with her even though both sister and i thought it had an aroma similar to water colour; those we used to play with when we were younger! 

Hot Coffee with Condensed Milk
Once again, i came to the conclusion that only local coffee appeals to me. Vietnamese coffee belongs to the Western genre and is way too strong for my palate. 

Chilled 3 Colour Dessert
This was very much like chendol without gula melaka! The usual me would have pushed this away after a few scoops but this was of a different class with a super rich coconuty flavour! To put it in a comparative context, i still prefer my chendol WITH gula melaka. 

Crispy Fried Chicken Wing
I wasn't expecting much from this. However, it impressed us with the layer of honey sweetness coupled with the fried fragrance of appetising sesame oil. 

Crispy Fried Banana
As the name suggested, the exterior was a crunchy affair while the interior was simply put, a hot and creamy heaven! By itself, it would have beaten quite a number of good banana fritter stalls in Singapore. Notice that white sauce by the side? 

Dip the bananas into this special concoction featuring smoked coconut and be prepared to marvel the subtle fragrance that pushes this dessert up another level! 

Lemongrass Pork Noodle
A winner always, whenever crispy pork greaves are generously dispensed. In addition to the sinful lard, i was taken aback by the deliciously marinated pork which frankly, didn't look all that appealing! 

I am 100% thrilled by what i had. With so many ingredients (many of which i didn't attempt to really check out what they were), the combination wasn't overly savoury and maintained an optimal taste balance to warrant a second visit very soon! 


3 Temasek Boulevard,
#B1-131, Suntec City Mall
[Bordering the Fountain]

Opening Hours
8am to 9.30pm daily!


Menu (without pricing)
As above. Check out the website for latest pricing and promotions.

Lotus Tea - S$2.60
Hot Coffee with Condensed Milk - S$2.60
Chilled 3 Colour Dessert - S$3.90
Crispy Fried Chicken Wing - S$4.90
Crispy Fried Banana - S$3.90
Lemongrass Pork Noodle - S$9.90
[Subject to GST only]

Additional Information
You can also get Vietnamese products like candies, coffee and even the special coffee drip brewer!  

Saturday, March 29, 2014

French Loaf (尖頭麵包) with an Southeast Asian Twist [Halal] @ Bread Fresh [Chong Pang Market, Yishun, Singapore]

Back in the days when Delifrance had a branch in Northpoint, i would automatically pinch my nose whenever i walked past the bakery cafe as i could not stand the smell that many find pleasurable.

However, that didn't stop me from buying their signature baguettes (known as French loaf in Singapore or 尖頭麵包 for the local Chinese) whenever mom decides to whip up her delicious pot of chicken curry! 

Today's topic is not on Delifrance as i am short on cash recently and could not afford to dine in restaurants / cafes as often i do. Rather, i would concentrate on the above neighbourhood bakery (with Muis Halal certification) that seems to have changed its name recently to Bread Fresh. 

Don't belittle this bakery as it has a strong following for its french loaves. So much so that we often have to resort to pay first to reserve for the next batch! You can of course buy it plain although in my case, i frequently top up S$1.20 to have it slathered in the middle with Planta margarine and kaya (you can opt for peanut butter as well)! 

Actions as above, thanks to the lady who allowed me to take photographs for the purpose of this post.

Since there is no dine-in service, everything would be placed into a clear plastic bag. Presentation at this point would be non-existent so if you are buying for friends, expect the disappointed look on their faces. 

I know of many neighbourhood bakeries that offer the same arrangement but having tasted a few, this was still the best where the fragrant dough remained fluffy and most importantly, edible even after a day! Having said that, i had to admit that the last i purchased the french loaves, the lady (who appeared to be new to her job) wasn't that generous with the spread of margarine and delicious orange-coloured kaya. 

:( hope it's just her and not the other lady whom i frequently bought from. 


Block 103, Yishun Ring Road,
#01-65 [Chong Pang Neighbourhood]

Plain French Loaf - S$1.30
French Loaf with Spread - S$2.50

Additional Information
As with other traditional neighbourhood bakeries in Singapore, you can find a wide array of breads, cakes and even pastries that would appeal to everyone in your family. 

Friday, March 28, 2014

Miam Miam Cafe Kitchen - Famous French Toast & Vanilla Soufflé @ Westgate [Singapore]

It was only after a chill-out session with a group of NUS colleagues at Starbucks that we happened to walk past a pretty lil cafe known as Miam Miam. We couldn't stomach another drink / cake although i made a mental note to visit it soon for their Famous French Toast; a tagline proudly displayed on the menu! 

Didn't take me long this time! I was supposed to catch a movie at Westgate but missed the timing. Given my plan to cut down on dinner, i figured it would make better sense to have desserts instead. By the way, sacrificing wholesome meal for sweet thing is another weird trait of mine.

So here we were; seated on cushy colourful armchairs amid a basic classiness that surprisingly blended quite splendidly in the untrained eyes of mine. Oh well, food is more important anyway. 

Famous French Toast
Said to be an absolute must-have on the menu, i can see why there was a serving of French toast on practically every table! 

Don't be deceived by that ball of ice cream like thing topping the cut up toasts or you would be in for a great disappointment. THAT white stuff tasted more just like whipped cream! 

Notice the tiny bottle that contained a golden liquid in the first picture for french toast? That's the maple syrup; the essence that has the magical ability to make tasteless stuff, well, tastier! 

On the whole, we quite enjoyed this dessert, especially the dough which had a pillow-soft bite yet with a texture that was much denser. However, i would much prefer the oilier Hong Kong style french toast from Kim Gary! On an additional note, the ultimate (and most expensive) french toast i ever had was from the now-defunct Octa Hotel

Vanilla Soufflé
Despite not being a fan of souffle, i was so glad when Alex decided to go ahead with this order. Before i start with the review, do note that this was scalding hot so don't be too anxious to stick that entire spoon of souffle down your throat! 

The top puff tasted amazingly like caramelised sugar (it's meringue) but nothing really quite prepared me for the gooey custard 'filling'. It had an intensive flavour that screamed of egg, egg and more egg!! You would have expected it to be exceptionally sweet right? It wasn't and there was even a light buttery fragrance at the end of every bite!


3, Gateway Drive,
#01-21/22, Westgate 

For operation hours and locations of their branches, please check out

Famous French Toast - S$9.80
Vanilla Soufflé - S$9.80
[Subject to Service Charge and GST]

Menu (without pricing)
As above. Crossed out items mean they are unavailable.

Additional Information
By the way, the wait for the desserts can take as long as 30 minutes as the kitchen would only start to prepare your desserts upon your order. 

Water is available at 50 cents a person. Are you irritated when you request for warm water and the waiter keeps refilling it with cold water? Solution is to use different coloured glass! In Miam Miam, blue stands for cold water while orange is for only warm water! 

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Old Changi Hospital - On the Way to Shedding its Haunted Hospital Image!

Sometimes, i really hate procrastination. 

I have been reminding myself again and again that i should pay Old Changi Hospital a visit before another consortium seals the deal to revamp and develop what's arguably Singapore's most spooky site!

Well, this is the right time i should kick myself in my butt for letting go the many chances for an exploration which never comes to fruition. For those who are still unaware, the above building that is about to complete its renovation was the same, scary looking shack at the start of Hendon Road.

Again, i hope someone could enlighten me on the actual buildings that were supposed to be part of the old Changi hospital's premises. Are those' blocks' flanking both sides of Hendon Road part of the hospital before it shut down for good in 1997? 

This was the building at the end of Hendon Road which i assumed to be the main administrative block for the hospital. I tried to search for a location map for Old Changi Hospital online but so far, i have been unsuccessful. 

As expected with many vacant public buildings in Singapore, CCTV cameras were installed and given the marvellous technology we have nowadays; why play with fire when you know you are going to be burnt? 

If you are really interested to check out the premise beyond the locked gate guarded by hundreds of cameras, give Singapore Land Authority (SLA) a call and pray to secure the approval. A production film did just that and shot a movie known simply as "Haunted Changi". Check out their website here!

I managed to take a few photographs.

However, most of them turned out to have portions dominated by barbed wires and such; you can't blame me given i am not tall even by Asian standards! And to think i drink so much milk when i was younger!

Thank god this was free for all to access. Nothing much inside and i suspected it was built after the hospital was abandoned, maybe as a security post to deter thrill seekers and thieves. 

Less than a hundred meters away was another sizable heritage building that seemed halfway through the renovation works, leaving only the bare bones.

We figured it would not harm to take a closer look although you must note that there were only me and my younger sister! She would likely have to protect me since she is taekwondo-belted. 

The magnificent tree that towered over my Toyota Vios. Hope the new owner of this area would keep the greenery intact! Honestly, Singapore is really not Singapore without an excessive display of greenery. 

Safety comes first! Hence, exploration shall wait until i can amass more people to join me!

Hopefully i would be able to organise it before procrastination sets in once again. And before the place is spruced up nicely coupled with gates that allow only authorised entry.


Along Hendon Road
[Near Changi Village]

Additional Information
A section, comprising of quite a number of buildings, has already completed renovation and from my understanding, is already "operational" as the campus for BNP Paribas training centre