The 1925

Wasabi Fries and a half-pint of Yellow Van
Wasabi Fries and a half-pint of Yellow Van
I have different friends to fulfill different needs.

I’ve got my super intellectual/shopping enabler best friend.

I’ve got my best bro with whom I discuss movies and shit.

I’ve got my soulmates from high school I still Whatsapp and Skype furiously with.

And… I’ve got my gurlfriends.

Chatting about boys, clothes, our careers and gossiping might not feature very prominently on Maslow’s hierarchy of needs but can I just say – talking shit is cathartic.

Which is why when Mel booked a table at The 1925 to get together our group of girly-friends, I was thrilled because I know it meant good times and maybe… good food? Coz I didn’t know shit about The 1925. Nobody I knew had eaten there and all Mel said was that it looked cool and the food looked “tasty.” Sure.

So this 1925 place is fashioned as a brewery slash brunch place. I didn’t know what to expect, especially since most of the restos in Jalan Besar fashion themselves as these industrial-hipster hangouts where people wear lots of hats. I’m not into hats – worn indoors. In Singapore. Because why.

When we arrived Amy was tucking into Wasabi fries (picture above) which was just as you would expect – tangy and the right consistency. Not too crispy and comfortingly dense.

I got the Yellow Van to drink and really enjoyed it (our very helpful waiter advised me to go with that since it was the girliest of the beers they had – not disappointed!) The girls had the darker and more bitter beers and they were, in their own words “bitter.”

Crispy Egg Aglio Olio
Crispy Egg Aglio Olio
Food was a mixed bag, Mel was exited about eating the Aglio Olio with crispy egg, which she thought would be a soft boiled egg that was deep fried. Alas it came with flyaway crispy egg bits and the dish tasted more like not very good mee hoon than aglio olio.

Grilled Teriyaki Chicken
Grilled Teriyaki Chicken
Amy went for the chicken that came with potatoes and ratatouille and said it was passable.

Pan Seared Fish in Pesto
Pan Seared Fish in Pesto
I ate this. I know what you’re thinking, fish fillet? It’s so boring and safe and plain. Well maybe it’s a boring choice but goddamn it was good. Perfectly seared, with perfectly seasoned rice and an accompaniment of ratatouille. I was impressed and happy.

So it just goes to show – the safe choice is probably the best one.

We also had a salad (not on the menu) with a yummy wasabi-balsamic reduction dressing and a Hawaiian pizza (crust deemed too thin).

Overall the beer was good, service was great, food was so-so and the ambience was nice. Would I go back? Probably, just to test out their brunch items and then walk over to Chye Seng Huat Hardware for a coffee.

The 1925
369 Jalan Besar
Singapore 208997
+65 6294 9215

Lime House

Jerk chicken!
Jerk chicken!

What: A Caribbean-style restaurant and bar in the very trendy Keong Saik neighborhood.

Pros: The vibe and decor is great but the real winner is their banana cake dessert with fig ice-cream. I dream about it when I’m alone at night.

Cons: The jerk chicken, AKA the only savory food I ate the night I visited them, was only ok. I thought Caribbean food was supposed to be spicyful and flavorful and I found it spicy-ish and flavorful-ish. And it’s expensive! Ish.

Verdict: Go but for the drinks and vibe. I have a feeling they make mean drinks. And if you don’t like it you can always go to The Cufflink Club – where, apparently, all of Singapore likes to congregate.

Details:
Lime House
2 Jiak Chuan Road
Singapore 089260

It’s like I visited Mongolia or something…

A wider shot than the original - so you can see the BIG BLUE SKY
A wider shot than the original – so you can see the BIG BLUE SKY

As you all know – I went to Mongolia for a vacation, recently, and I took a lot of pretty pictures.

But the thing is I actually took even more than the ones you’ve seen. So voila! Ils sont ici!

This is a photo story combined with random things I think you should know about Mongolia.

Rocks and sky. There's a story behind this rock. Ask me in person. Used a VSCO filter
Rocks and sky. There’s a story behind this rock. Ask me in person. Used a VSCO filter
Lightly edited shot in the countryside
Lightly edited shot in the countryside
Wide shot of the gyrs we stayed in
Wide shot of the gyrs we stayed in
Shot of the gyr! And my Dad looking badass. Used a VSCO filter
Shot of the gyr! And my Dad looking badass. Used a VSCO filter
That sky!
That sky!
Sky, sky, sky!
Sky, sky, sky!
Me and my father-in-law? I don't know what I'm supposed to call him, but father in Mongolian is "Ow" as in ow!
Me and my father-in-law? I don’t know what I’m supposed to call him, but father in Mongolian is “Ow” as in ow!
I took this shot after a 30 minute solitary hike/walk up a hill in the countryside while listening to 90s tunes. I needed to get away and I got great pictures!
I took this shot after a 30 minute solitary hike/walk up a hill in the countryside while listening to 90s tunes. I needed to get away and I got great pictures!

They are famous for their meat and their dairy. I don’t drink milk, but I did eat a lot of sheep, beef and more sheep. It was delicious. Top three things to eat in Mongolia, horshoo (deep fried meat dumpling), horhog (meat and vegetables cooked in a pressure cooker with the heat from freakishly hot pebbles) and barbecue (you know this). Try and get home-cooked versions of this. Like by making friends with locals.

Mongolian currency is Tugguruk – and it’s about USD1 to MGT1,900. Think about it like Korean won (if you’re familiar) and it’s close. Things in Mongolia aren’t that cheap – you’re looking at pricing similar to Singapore for food and clothing.

Parking lot at the Genghis Khan memorial
Parking lot at the Genghis Khan memorial
Genghis Khan - shot from below
Genghis Khan – shot from below
I don't know what I was trying to show. Maybe that the statue is really big?
I don’t know what I was trying to show. Maybe that the statue is really big?

People are really into Adidas. Like REALLY.

Mongolian sounds like a cross between Korean and Russian. It sounds especially Korean to me because of that one time, I lived in Korea…

The city was modeled after Soviet cities. Whatever that means.

View from the apartment in Ulaanbaatar
View from the apartment in Ulaanbaatar
Streets near the apartment in Ulaanbaatar
Streets near the apartment in Ulaanbaatar
Downtown Ulanbaatar
Downtown Ulanbaatar
Downtown Ulanbaatar
Downtown Ulanbaatar
Sukhbaatar Square in Ulaanbaatar
Sukhbaatar Square in Ulaanbaatar
Sukhbaatar Square - lightly edited
Sukhbaatar Square – lightly edited
Genghis Khan (of course) - processed with a VSCO filter
Genghis Khan (of course) in Sukhbaatar Square – processed with a VSCO filter
Genghis' bodyguards. I used a VSCO filter
Genghis’ bodyguards. I used a VSCO filter
Lightly edited shot from the Sukhbaatar Square. Lot of construction going on in Mongolia
Lightly edited shot from the Sukhbaatar Square. Lot of construction going on in Mongolia

Alcoholism is a problem.

Pick-pockets are everywhere. Keep you money stashed safely on your person and don’t flash your fancy shit around.

Summer doesn’t start till July/August.

Buddha statue and me! I used a VSCO filter
Buddha statue and me! I used a VSCO filter
Soviet WWII War Memorial on what used to be the highest hill in Mongolia. Processed with a VSCO filter
Soviet WWII War Memorial on what used to be the highest hill in Mongolia. Processed with a VSCO filter

The Mongolian alphabet is the Cyrillic alphabet – aka the Russian alphabet.

Good places to eat while in Ulaanbaatar:
Broadway – serves great Western and other food.
Jur Ur – the best chocolate tart I’ve eaten in my life came from this place. There’s either coconut or bits of heaven in the crust.
Korean food is generally great – so you can probably eat that anywhere.

The two best things in Mongolia are it’s BIG BLUE SKY and it’s people. They are straightforward, warm and hospitable.

As we sped to the airport my brother yelled, "Take a picture - that's UB!" This is that picture.
As we sped to the airport my brother yelled, “Take a picture – that’s UB!” This is that picture.

Real Food

Reading whlle brunching
Reading whlle brunching

What: A super healthy cafe, with NO MEAT and NO FAT and NO BAD THINGS.

Pros: The food is simple, the staff are sincere and there’s plenty of space to stretch out and get your Sunday on.

Cons: The food is really simple – like the only thing I could say after I ate it was – “Man, this does taste like real food.”

Verdict: I like it, but just keep in mind that you could probably make whatever they serve you at home. And try not to feel resentful about it.

Details:
Real Food – I went to the outlet in Central:
6 Eu Tong Sen St
The Central #B1-52/53
Singapore 059817
62244492

Weekend Meal Prep YOUCANDO

Prepping for prep
Prepping for prep

Every weekend I set aside about two to three hours, to plan how I’m going to take over the world.

No seriously, because the only way that I can take over the world is if I eat well-balanced, nutritious food that will then give me enough energy to take over the world. Right?

But more seriously this is my post about meal prepping on weekends. I got into meal prepping for two simple reasons 1) Shutterbean and 2) IHAVENOTIME.

Let me explain.

1) Shutterbean is this fantastic blog written by Tracy who cooks these wonderfully healthy and varied meals not just for her blog, but also for her family (her husband and son). And she achieves this by being organized and prepping the ingredients and pre-cooking certain items on the weekend. Check out her awe/jealousy-inspiring meal prep grams here, here and here.

2) IHAVENOTIME. I know, I have a choice in life, I can stop saying I’m so busy and sit down and smell the roses… but guess what? I don’t want to do that. I want to run and go to yoga and hang out with my friends and go to work and read and do my laundry and read a book and get 8 hours of sleep AND eat somewhat healthily. SO. That means being a little organized and getting some stuff prepped over the weekend.

I don’t prep like Tracy, since I don’t have a family, but what I do is that I have a simple rule. I try not to eat more than one meal out a day, so if I’m eating dinner out I’ll pack a lunch for work, if not I’ll eat the dinner for the week.

I hard-boil 5 eggs for breakfast and make either a muesli or granola every two weeks which I enjoy with greek yogurt. That is my breakfast all week – minus the one day I get my chocolate almond croissant from Tiong Bahru Bakery.

I prep a salad for the week by buying spinach leaves or romaine (they keep fresh for about three days), grill vegetables (usually a combo of carrots, beets, peppers, etc), grill chicken, make a salad dressing (loving this one right now) and cook 1/2 cup of dried quinoa (about 5 meals worth for me). That lasts me for about five meals and mid-week I usually re-do the whole process.

This takes me about 2 to 3 hours, with plenty of time in between to dance around my apartment or do more laundry.

Totally doable right? And I’m not advocating an oat and salad filled existence.

Make whatever the hell you want.

Mel, my apartment mate, preps awesome tofu-veggie pasta salads every weekend.

Another good friend puts together protein and fish and fruit every night for her BYOL.

Just think about eating and living intentionally. Because – it’s kind of awesome.

Joo Bar

Yucha maekgolli slush
Yucha makgeolli slush

I am a GREAT friend.

When Alex was visiting from Kabul and I couldn’t make his birthday party I decided I would be super selfless and take him to a restaurant that we would both totally enjoy that I’ve been wanting to go to for ages.

BESTFRIENDEVER.

It’s Korean. It’s hip. And I wanted to go.

The bar itself is in Bugis and sits at the end of Tan Quee Lan street past all the legit Korean BBQ places, as this cool-ish, industrial-ish, Korean-ish bar.

There’s a table hanging from the ceiling outside and the color palette is grey, black and white. It’s borderline depressing BUT they have funny comics on the wall inside.

Once there, I ordered makgeolli, a rice alcohol beverage that is native to Korea. Or at least that is what Wikipedia told me.

I ordered the most non-alcohol tasting version that included shaved ice and yucha, which is really just yuzu. It tasted of happiness and made me feel like a princess. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.

Spring onion chicken bites?
Spring onion chicken bites?
Alex and I seriously got down to business and decided that we needed this chicken. I can’t remember the actual name of these babies but to be honest, they were only ok. Next time I would opt for their wings.

Tofu kimchi nachos
Tofu kimchi nachos
While we looked forward to this dish the most, it was really very lacklustre. The tofu was cold and the kimchi lacked kick. The spam was great because I love spam. Don’t judge me.

Japchae
Japchae
The humble japchae was honestly the best thing we had. Alex consumed huge amounts of it. Ok, honestly, he had like two servings because the guy cannot eat. But it was filling, flavorful and goooood.

Pulled pork burgers with gochujang
Pulled pork burgers with gochujang
I loved these sliders which honestly just tasted like Alabama style ribs in a bun. Very sweet but again, goooood.

My verdict is that this place doesn’t actually live up to the hype. The food really did lack that Korean punch, and no matter what all the other reviews say, that is a problem.

Too bad because I liked that yummy rice alcohol slush.

Joo Bar
5 Tan Quee Lan Street
188094

P.S. Cafe at Harding Road

P.S. Cafe is one of those places that you’re supposed to hate.

It’s pretentious, it’s expensive, it’s full of expatriates and you always feel slightly uncool when you’re there.

But the thing is – I don’t hate it.

In fact I kinda love it.

Why? Because the food is good, you always feel like it’s a special experience when you’re there and the cakes.

P.S. Cafe at Harding Road is arguable the P.S. Cafe. Forget Ann Siang, forget the teeny-tiny Paragon branch and puhlease, those P.S. Petit branches seriously don’t count. Harding Road is where it’s at.

This is because this branch sits in the cocooned enclave of Dempsey chi-chi/atas restaurants. Where wearing billowy chic caftans and acting super casual about paying SGD8 for a coffee is necessary to fit in.

So obviously when I visited I was totally at home in my New Look distressed jeans and flea market black t-shirt. TOTES.

I visited P.S. Cafe on a bustling Wednesday for lunch. It was PACKED. Don’t people have jobs?

Onto the food.

The first thing they tell you to order at P.S. Cafe are the truffle fries. So of course my table ordered truffle fries.

Famed truffle fries
Famed truffle fries

I don’t even like thin fries but these are great. The truffle scent was aromatic and yummy and the parmesan shavings just amp the whole experience up. Definitely order the truffle fries.

Spicy King Prawn Aglio Olio
Spicy King Prawn Aglio Olio

For the main course my boss and I shared the Spicy King Prawn Aglio Olio and the Chargrilled Portobello Salad (not pictured). The salad was dense and interesting, a sweeter dressing than I usually like but it worked. The Pasta was classic fusion – mamak mee/pad thai pretending to be fancy – but who cares when it’s actually good?

Chocolate blackout cake and carrot cake
Chocolate blackout cake (can’t actually remember the name) and carrot cake

And then the cakes… oh the cakes. Please excuse how hideous the picture is above. But that cake, oh god that blackout cake. You eat it and it hits you and then you just keep going. It’s intense. The carrot cake and key lime pie (not pictured) were good but that chocolate cake was something else. It’s like a high class version of the Celine from Nickels (Canada shoutout, skip if you’ve never been there).

Sticky date pudding with ice-cream
Sticky date pudding with ice-cream

But, but, but the best was the pudding we ordered right at the very end. The sticky date pudding was ooey, gooey and three shades shy of being an Indian dessert. It was basically perfect. Mmm.

The seven of us paid SGD470. Like I said, it’s expensive but we ate well and I’m pretty sure all of us loved it.

Stop hating and embrace the atas-ness. It’s delicious.

P.S. Cafe at Harding Road
28b Harding Road
Singapore 249549
+65 9070 8782