Restaurant Reviews: The Good, The Bad and The Skinny

[Andrew: This entry is almost a month late as I didn’t have time to complete my reviews 🙂 Hope you enjoy it nonetheless!]

Jasmine: By now you should know that Andrew and I love trying out new eateries, often recommended by Andrew from his avid reading of food blogs on the Web. Three new places that we really liked this month:

Skinny Pizza

Andrew: We have come by this area many times, but this was the first we actually went in as we were looking for something healthy and not too filling.

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We really quite liked the decor and atmosphere of the place. Dearie thought that the backdrop provided an interesting contrast to the lines of my shirt. I liked the energy of the place. All the waiters and waitresses were moving around very quickly yet there wasn’t a sense of being rushed. They were prompt in their service and always served with a smile.

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For starts, we had mushroom soup and seared brie cheese. The mushroom soup had lots of mushroom bits, but strangely it was still rather bland. The brie cheese was unusual, but not astounding. The sprinkling of nuts was interesting in terms of providing a contrasting texture, but it didn’t do much for the taste. Brie cheese isn’t really my favourite cheese as it is too mild for me. I’d much prefer cheddar cheese! 🙂

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Jasmine: Andrew and I shared a Swiss Turkey Ham pizza and were surprised by how light and crispy the pizza base and crust was. The ingredients enhanced the thinness of the pizza as they were finely sliced and a minimum of sauce or dressing brought out the natural flavours of the greens. Simply put, the best pizza place we’ve ever tried.

Andrew: I loved the Swiss Turkey Pizza too! It was very satisfying without that stuffed feeling of eating too much pizza dough. The cranberry sauce was delightfully sweet and really complemented the flavour of the turkey ham. Yummy!

Burger Bench

IMG_9721Cans of Heinz chilli on display in the kitchen, resembling a Warhol Pop-art piece  

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Andrew: I don’t normally eat fish burgers and I was rather skeptical because green curry sauce is already rather unusual – and green curry with fish? Not my usual combination. Nonetheless, I was delightfully surprised by this dish. The green curry above and mayo below the fish really helped to enhance the flavours of the fish very well, giving it a very creamy yet sweet and spicy texture. It was perfect with the bed of lettuce below, which gave the whole burger a lovely crunch. I really liked this burger. The added benefit of having a fish burger is that you don’t leave feeling so heavy as you would after eating a beef burger.

It’s not so obvious in the picture, but at Burger Bench, they make their own potato chips fresh everyday. It’s really very, very good!

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Jasmine: I like the bistro’s concept that "fast food doesn’t have to be junk food". I originally ordered one of the Sunday specials, an omelette cheese beef burger, but preferred Andrew’s green curry catfish fillet burger so we swopped burgers halfway through! The green curry and crispy, spicy fillet was unsually light for a burger and had a pleasant zinginess to it. This restaurant is a sister branch of the acclaimed Wild Rocket and Relish, both of which we’ve written about before, but for approximately $8 a burger (with no service charge), which is half the price of a burger at Relish, Burger Bench can’t be beat for quality, freshness and value for money!

Egg3 Cafe

Andrew: We tried coming to this place once before, but we got so lost that we gave up and went elsewhere. We finally made it here this time with more determination and of course, more precise driving notes taken down before making our way down.

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Andrew: When we reached the place, I realised why I had so much difficulty finding it. It was really nestled in one of the small roads away from the main road and it was housed in what looked like an old school building (it probably was!).  

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I must give points to the unique choice of tableware for Egg3cafe. Jasmine had a nice, warm cup of honey lemon in a very huge Che Guevara cup! Their soup bowl for the mushroom soup was in an interesting square shape that made it easy to dip the bread in the soup.

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Andrew: One of their signature dishes was supposed to be their mushroom soup, but I wasn’t amazed by it. It’s better than SkinnyPizza’s one, but still insufficiently chunky and creamy for me. I still love Jasmine’s recipe the best – followed by the one in Soup Spoon!

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Andrew: I ordered the pork Cheese Sausauge bun and the plate was so fun! Instead of the usual big circular plate or a square one, they served it in a rectangular plate as seen above. As you can see, I had a bit of fun spinning it around (it was strictly for photo-taking purposes. Heh.)

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Andrew: I really liked this dish a lot. The pork cheese sauces were cooked to perfection. Juicy on the inside, and slightly charred on the outside to give that wonderful burst of flavour when you bite into it. Yum!

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Jasmine: The fish and chips were supposed to be a star item, but I thought it was just average and paled in comparison to the pork cheese sausage, which at least had the advantage of being more unique. Frankly it’s quite hard to do such a generic and commonplace dish outstandingly.

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Jasmine: I actually tried to dissuade Andrew from ordering this as we were feeling pretty stuffed from the mains but I’m glad he didn’t listen! The molten lava cake was baked just right- the outside was warm and crispy and the molten chocolate inside was gooey and sufficiently rich.

Andrew: I loved this very much! This is another one of their signature dishes and unlike the mushroom soup, this is truly deserving of the title and truly worth the 20 minutes wait. I love chocolate desserts 🙂

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