Andrew: In case you get the impression from the previous post that Jasmine and I often seek out ‘affordable’ good restaurants during our dates, I assure you that it’s not true!
We did do a post last year on the places we usually fall back on on days when we just don’t have enough energy to be ‘innovative’ and fun. However, we’ve recently become bored with those places as well and we’ve explored a few new options that fall into the same price range (under $20/ pax) with a few hits and misses.
Andrew: Jasmine was the one who first saw this fastfood place at Vivocity, and I happened to read a local food magazine and realised that Superdog was actually the first local fast food chain to be so successful – so we made our way down to check out what the craze was all about.
I had the Spicy Italian (the one at the bottom of the picture, $6.00) and Jasmine had the Chili Dog ($4.00). The Spicy Italian sausage had a real kick and it was rather shiok eating it with the mustard and the cabbage. However, my major gripe with Superdog is its price. This hot-dog costs $6 on its own, with $2 top-up for meal, and it barely made me 50% full. It’s not value for money at all.
Jasmine: My sausage tasted flat, with none of the juiciness or "bite" that I expect from hotdogs. I’ve bought better ones from QB (a massive megamart for frozen food) before.
Our rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars
Soup Broth Asia
Lotus Root with Pork Rib Soup (left) and Salted Vegetable with Duck Soup
Accompanying side-dishes (top up 4.80 for 2 dishes)
Andrew: It’s ironic that although it was Dearie who first introduced me to Soup Spoon, I’m now the one who drags us to Soup Spoon. (Jasmine: The situation has gotten so extreme that in order to accommodate Andrew’s soup spoon HABIT, we’ll sometimes split our dinner over two places so each of us gets what we want.)The mushroom soup always makes me happy!
Soup Spoon’s Asian companion, Soup Broth Asia, isn’t too bad as well.
The photos above do not do justice to the amount of ingredients that were in the soup. The lotus root soup had a very generous portion of 4-5 meaty pieces of pork ribs, dried cuttlefish, lotus root slices, carrots, red dates and peanuts. The soup had a very full-bodied taste, much unlike the rather watery ones that we sometimes get at food court stalls serving herbal soups. Jasmine’s salted-duck soup came with an equally generous portion of duck too.
The accompanying side-dishes were decent enough. All soup comes with a bowl of rice and is guaranteed to make you full for a reasonable price of $13 (if you order the set). In fact, I think the set’s not necessary as the soup itself is rich with ingredients.
Our rating: 3.75 stars
Andrew: We walked by Hand-Burger many times ever since Jasmine began her scrapbooking obsession, oops I meant hobby. (Jasmine: Okay Andrew Chong, you and I are going to have a little talk later.) It’s always relatively crowded, so we thought we’d give it a try.
The Handburger Original
I ordered the Handburger Original as I wasn’t in the mood for anything too huge like ‘The Works Burger’ and also wanted to see how their freshly ground beef patty compared to others like Relish or Fatboys Burger, which we tried a week earlier. The patty was rather average, but I did like the sweet onion jam which complemented the meaty patty very well. One good thing about HandBurger is its sauces. They served a home-made tomato sauce with our onion rings and we really loved the sauce a lot! Unfortunately, The burger was too small and I finished it feeling rather unsatisfied! (Jasmine: Yes, and sadly, the tomato sauce was the best thing on the menu.)
Duck Confit Burger with handmade orange sauce and mandarin oranges
Andrew: This burger didn’t quite work for me. I felt the boneless duck leg confit was too plain on its own and didn’t have that meaty shiokness that a beef patty had. This was probably more of personal taste than anything. The orange sauce didn’t really add to the taste of the duck – it seemed like two separate flavours that didn’t go well together at all.
Jasmine: Duck confit is one of my favourite French dishes so I had expected the duck meat in this burger to be grilled to crispy perfection, with a satisfying crunch. However, this burger was rather underwhelming: the meat was not particularly tender and took ages to chew down. Stack a couple of burger buns on top and it’s a recipe for bloatedness.
In addition, I had tried a Mos burger a few days back that had also used the combination of duck and orange sauce. The Mos burger won hands down.
We weren’t too impressed overall by HandBurger, but I wonder if it was because of what we ordered. While we were there, we saw many ordering the Battered Dory Burger which looked formidable with two huge, golden-brown slices of Dory and The Works burger, which looked filling indeed. We might give it a try again someday.
Our rating: 3 stars