Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Brunch at Da Paolo BistroBar, Rochester Park

The wife loves weekend brunches. Some weeks we go for brunches together, on other weeks, she meets up with her other friends from secondary school, her Bible Study girls, etc. They leave their husbands and boyfriends at home so that they have their own personal time. Sometimes to compare how *ahem* their partners are, sometimes to complain how horrible they are.

We used to complain that some friends after getting attached totally forget about their old friends. So we still meet up with old friends. Don't you all have friends that don't meet up after being attached?

This was an invited lunch. A lunch where we were left on ourselves to enjoy the brunch, but the tab picked up by the restaurant.

Da Paolo Bistro Bar @ Rochester Park

It was a nice cool Sunday the week we had the brunch. We finished church and off we went to have brunch.

Da Paolo Bistro Bar @ Rochester Park

Chef Andrea Scarpa's Da Paolo BistroBar is now offering Sunday Brunch from 11 AM to 3 PM every Sunday (but of course!).

The wife and I remembered that I nearly choked Chef Andrea with sugar in the Bosch Dream Kitchen Episode 4 that I participated a few months ago. Chef Andrea was not around that Sunday we were there though.

Da Paolo Bistro Bar @ Rochester Park
(you can click on the photo to view a bigger version of it)

So how does it work? The menu above, pick any options the SIMPLY BREAKFAST or MAINS section and you get to enjoy two hours of free flow champagne (Loius Roederer Premiere Brut Reims) for $70 or prosecco (Tenuta Setten DOC Treviso) for $40 and a complimentary coffee, tea or soft drink.

Da Paolo Bistro Bar @ Rochester Park

This was the Prosecco that we had.

Da Paolo Bistro Bar @ Rochester Park

Oh.. what a coincidence that we met MissTamChiak there with her partner.
We decided to double date and both sat on the same table.

Da Paolo Bistro Bar @ Rochester Park
Persimmon Salad ($24)

We thought we will share a salad so that we won't be too full to eat our mains.
Quite an interesting mix of greens, blanched baby leeks, manchego cheese, persimmons, pine nuts and San Daniele Parma Ham.

The wife has more ideas for her salads. She will add persimmons to her salads next time.

From the MAINS section, we had:

Da Paolo Bistro Bar @ Rochester Park
Grilled Wagyu Beef Burger ($31)

Da Paolo Bistro Bar @ Rochester Park

It's Wagyu Beef Patty that's being wrapped around by Parma Ham with Porcini Mayo, Caramelised Onions and Brie in a Foccacia Bun. I like!

Da Paolo Bistro Bar @ Rochester Park

Wagyu would be wasted if you cook it more than this.

Da Paolo Bistro Bar @ Rochester Park

These potato wedges were so crispy and addictive.

Da Paolo Bistro Bar @ Rochester Park
Crab Tagliatelle ($28)

If you like some homemade tagliatelle, this version  is with crab meat and tomato cream sauce with some thyme. The thing about home made pasta is that it absorbs the taste better.

How clever of them to put the crab shell on top. Looks pretty doesn't it?

From the SIMPLY BREAKFAST section, we had: 

Da Paolo Bistro Bar @ Rochester Park
Baked Gorgonzola Eggs ($26)

As they serve you, a small whiff of truffle oil lingers into your nose. For some it's heaven, I know someone who absolutely love truffle oil. Presented like a flower that's blomming, it does look impressive visually.

Da Paolo Bistro Bar @ Rochester Park

Inside the blooming flower made of Ham are organic eggs and gorgonzola cheese above a bed of baby spinach. Topped with black truffle and dash of truffle oil.

Break the poached egg and the orange yolk goes well with the grilled bread.

Da Paolo Bistro Bar @ Rochester Park
Bistro Breakfast ($32)

For those who loves a hearty breakfast. Everything you wanted in a big breakfast, you have it here. I think they should put a calorie counter on the menu! Most people will ignore and calories and just go ahead and eat it!

Da Paolo Bistro Bar @ Rochester Park

It consists of mixed mushrooms, crispy potato stuffed with white beans, 2 poached organic eggs, pork sausages, bacon and some greens.

Da Paolo Bistro Bar @ Rochester Park

This was the area we were sitting. Open air area that's shaded. Behind us was lush greens.

Da Paolo Bistro Bar @ Rochester Park

In front of us was the main building that you see in the first photo above.
Love these old black and white houses.

Da Paolo Bistro Bar @ Rochester Park

There's also an area where you can just have drinks and chill during Brunch or on selected weekday evenings. Three new permanent resident DJs, Stephen Day, Aveneesh and Debbie Chia will entertain you.

Da Paolo Bistro Bar @ Rochester Park

A nice place with lots of greens behind!

Da Paolo Bistro Bar @ Rochester Park

The kitchen that all the food was prepared in a next building we could see where we were sitting.

Service was good when we arrive at around noon. As more people started streaming in, it was a tad slower in the kitchen side. It took more than half hour before our mains were served. Service staff was good though. Nowadays with the labour crunch, we got to bear with it. (or just come earlier!)

Da Paolo BistroBar
3 Rochester Park
Singapore 139214

Tel: +65 6774 5537

Monday to Saturday, 11.30am – 2.30pm (Lunch), 5.30pm – 10.30pm (Dinner)
Sunday and Public Holidays, 11am to 3pm (Brunch), 5pm – 10pm (Dinner)

Bar Lounge Hours:
Monday to Friday: 5.30pm – 11.30pm
Saturday, Sunday, Public Holidays: 2pm – 11.30pm

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Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Ju Shin Jung @ West Coast Highway

This was a lunch outing with colleagues at Ju Shin Jung along West Coast Highway. Someone in our lunch group wanted to have Korean. That someone was actually thinking of Banchans rather than having the main meals.

We somehow thought of Ju Shin Jung that we all have not gone together as a group for some time. We all hop into a colleague's MPV and off we went for lunch.

Ju Shin Jung @ West Coast Highway

The moment all the banchans came out, all of us, (especially the guy who was thinking of banchans) was so happy!

Ju Shin Jung @ West Coast Highway

We were also served some pumpkin paste/mousse that was quite sweet tasting.

Ju Shin Jung @ West Coast Highway

All of us settled for our own portions of the set lunch that's quite affordable.

Everyone thought we wanted some extra meat, so we ordered a spicy chicken on hot plate. It's spicy but very shiok to eat! What was interesting is that they had raisins on the chicken.

Ju Shin Jung @ West Coast Highway

A few of us had the Saba Fish set.
Crispy fish on a bed of shredded cabbage. I could eat up everything because it was nice and crispy.

Ju Shin Jung @ West Coast Highway

If you have been colleague for so long, you can actually guess what others will be eating. We all guess the Short Rib Beef Soup for 'old cat'. We were right. He ordered this and he says it used to be better but it's still good.

Ju Shin Jung @ West Coast Highway

A few colleagues also had the dolsot bibimbap.
Prepare to sweat it out, because as you eat, you feel the heat from the stone. Our colleague eating this was sweating!

Ju Shin Jung @ West Coast Highway

Don't put all the chilli paste in if you don't want to suffer the consequences of spiciness. It would be double heat. From the chilli paste and the hot stone.

Ju Shin Jung @ West Coast Highway

The soup for those who did not order soup dishes. We did not like it. We prefer the beef rib soup that we 'helped ourselves' from 'old cat'. LOL

Ju Shin Jung @ West Coast Highway

When we are with colleagues, we always behave like kids. We love to play with this.
The expandable hand tower. Add some water and it expands. The middle one had a few drops of water and it expanded.

Yup, parents with kids will save theirs to bring back and amuse their kids. I am sure we all have loving parents as colleagues who have to think of ways to entertain their kids 24x7!

Ju Shin Jung @ West Coast Highway

Our meal ended with heart-shape watermelons.
It was a nice re-visit to Ju Shin Jung during lunch time.

The food's still good, service during lunch time was good too, still adequately staffed so you don't need to wait long for someone to get to you. Most of all, the lunch pricing of set meals less than $15 is still making us happy.

Ju Shin Jung Korean Charcoal BBQ
27 West Coast Highway
Singapore 117867

Tel: 6464 0872

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Monday, February 25, 2013

MAD (Modern Asian Diner) @ The Grandstand

What a name! MAD which stands for Modern Asian Diner is a collaboration between TungLok Group, Bar Stories and Dick Lee. I am guessing the name must have been suggested by Dick Lee, the flamboyant Singapore performer, composer and playwright.


This was an invited review to see what MAD has to offer and it was it is quite an interesting concept. I would not have worded it any nicer sounding than this press release by them:

"The split-levelled MAD features a bar, manned by famed mixologist Kino from Bar Stories; a charcoal-powered Josper Oven to enhance the flavour profile of meats and seafood; a specially fitted and designed Omakase-style tapas counter; and a wine cellar and tasting room by Top Wines, which boasts one of the most extensive wine lists in Singapore; and a bakery and bread boutique by Bakerzin which will serve freshly baked artisan breads."


During the day, this place is a bakery, cafe and dim sum place.
During the night, it transform into a restaurant and cocktail bar.

I heard that during the day, Dim Sum Trolleys will be going around serving Dim Sums here. For those who are nostalgic. Bring your parents or grandparents! 


MAD occupies two levels. On the first level has a bakery and a cafe seating area.

(Residents of Bukit Timah on the way home at night, drop by for some bread near their closing time. I think it was 50% off. I bought some after dinner.)


As you have probably experience it, with the recent labour restrictions, more and more restaurants are deploying tablets to take over what humans can do. Everything you want to order can be done through this iPad.


Oh yes, you can preview your bill at anytime too!

(Now, they should have an app to rearrange the bill according to the diners ya? As an IT guy, I know it can be done!)

>> The Bar


During the night, you have the Bar that's manned by famed mixologist Kino from Bar Stories. They specialise in tea and coffee based cocktails. Talk to them, let the mixologist come up with something, either alcoholic or non-alcoholic that suits your 'mood' at the moment.

Here's some photo of the beautiful creations. These were what we had:





I did not note down the name of the drinks. It was just so beautiful. This last one was the cutest with a little rubber duckie on it!

>> The Restaurant


Artisanal Bread from bakery.

MAD Baby Ribs with Homemade Barbeque Sauce


You can mark this place as one of the places for delicious ribs. Well marinated and done really well. Tender meat, wonder their charcoal oven had an special powers.

I like how it was served in a wooden board. So rustic and the presentation already makes you hungry by looking at it.

Foie Gras Terrine


The terrine goes well with the bread that they serve. If you order this, don't finish up the bread when they are served. Save them for the terrine. It had a nice texture and less oily too. I know some of you only prefer your Foie Gras pan seared.

Teriyaki Glazed Mushrooms with Cuttlefish Tagliatelle

Other than the ribs, this was also my favourites for the night. That's not green pasta but cuttlefish! It's not tough cuttlefish either. It's something you will probably order seconds.

I read from Bibik Gourmand's blog that portobello mushroom has been sous-vide. No wonder they taste just nice. (now to find out the ideal temp to sous vide portobello!)

Mushroom Risotto with Poached Egg.

Beautifully done. It's tedious cooking this. It reminds me of the 'cooking' competition that I was preparing risotto everyday to perfect it and on time too.

The mushroom flavour was not too overpowering and they added a poached egg. It seems they know that many people are obsessed with poached eggs!


For the tasting portion, they poached mini quail eggs for us too! So cute eh!

Rum and Banana Tatin with Vanilla Ice Cream.

They have a dessert menu and you can satisfy your sweet tooth by ordering through the iPad. ;-)
I liked the caramelized banana with the ice cream.


For those with kids and your kids can't get enough of macarons. Order them!


The kitchen is helmed by Chef Roberto Hernandez Sevillano.
He's previously from the Esmirada Group's Tapas Bar. 


If you prefer, you can dine at the Omasake-style Tapas Bar too.

>> The Retail Gallery


Other than eating, people in Singapore love to shop.
They have added a retail gallery to make some of our better halves happy.


It sells lots of quirky things that even I was tempted to buy.
I heard all of it has been selected by Dick Lee himself.

While dining, I thought the music sounds familiar and some of it seems to be from Dick Lee's musicals. I asked them who selects the songs and was told Dick Lee has selected the songs for all 365 days to be played here!


Oh snowy from Tin Tin Comics is available for sale here too!

>> The Wine Cellar


There's also the cellar and wine tasting room here by Top Wines.

It's quite an interesting concept here. First in Singapore to combine a 5-in-1.
Thanks to the PR folks of MAD for the invite.

MAD (Modern Asian Diner)
200 Turf Club Road
#01-20/21, The Grandstand
Singapore 287994

Tel: +65 64663303
Hours:  Sun to Thu – 10.00am to 10.30pm / Fri to Sat – 9.00am to 12 midnight


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