J65 @ Hotel Jen Tanglin

Just last week, I gushed over my weekend at Hotel Jen Tanglin Singapore (HJTS), and promised to share more about J65 – HJTS’ very own F&B outlet. So here’s a long pictorial essay. As a precaution, do not proceed on an empty stomach as it will be sure to growl at these food-porn up ahead.

I had the pleasure of trying the hotel’s dinner and breakfast buffet during my stay. With a name inspired by the Singapore international dialing code (+65), HJTS’ new all-day dining restaurant J65 is open to diners for breakfast, lunch and dinner. HJTS is one of the only hotels in Singapore to offer net pricing at it’s F&B outlet, meaning that diners get no unpleasant surprises at the end of their meal. HJTS’ other dining outlet – Jen’s Kitchen On-the-go – offers locally roasted coffee and snacks 24-hours a day.

First, let’s talk about Hooked! – Seafood Dinner, which is available on Fridays and Saturdays from 6pm to 10pm. The vibrant restaurant with a modern market look and feel offers an eclectic fusion of authentic Southeast Asian cuisine alongside the buffet’s signature selection of fresh Fin de Claire oysters, sushi and sashimi, tiger prawns, Boston lobster and Sri Lankan crab. Hot dishes include soup-baked cumin red mullet and lobster bisque, poached sweet clams, grilled sea bass and other seafood treats.

J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin 2

The layout of the buffet starts with the salad bar and cold dishes in the middle, and grilled meats and hot dishes at the side, but I couldn’t make up my mind, and so decided to attack the grilled meats for starters. The hand-carved meat cuts offered all kinds of red and white meats, including Iberico ham and roast with fancy trimmings. I’ll let the pictures do the talking.

Pork knuckles, anybody?

J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin grilled meat

J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin grilled meat

A trayful of cheesebaked mussels for my birthday pleaseJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin baked mussels

Fancy meat, bread pudding, cheesebaked mussel: a plate full of (sin and) happinessJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin on my plate

This corner of the buffet is built to resemble the classic Singaporean hawker centre: note the hanging roast ducks and chicken, layout of a gazillion chillis and sauces, plus satays and authentic peanut sauce. 6 types of regional laksa (Singapore, Penang, Johor, Thai, Sarawak, and curry) are cooked on the spot by the skillful chef. J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin 3Here’s all 6 of the laksa selection!Hotel Jen Tanglin J65 Laksa SelectionJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin Laksa

It was sooo hard to make a choice! Finally went with Penang Laksa.J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin Penang Laksa

Singapore chicken rice with all its accompanying sauces and condiments; once you’ve eaten at J65, you’d have tried a big portion of Singapore’s renowned delicacies
J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin chicken rice
Hotel Jen Tanglin J65 Chicken Rice Booth
And my favourite: SATAY! A pity they only offered chicken. Would have loved me some lamb or beef.J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin satay

This is one helluva fascinating buffet area: the YUSHENG BAR. As it was nearing the end of the Chinese New Year, you could make your own yusheng at J65, and toss in fresh salmon from the Japanese sushi bar right beside it. Staying true to the Southeast Asian/Singapore tradition indeed.J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin 1

There ain’t no lack of fibre at this buffet with this well-stocked salad bar. Tantalizing bowls of pre-tossed Thai-style mango salad, a mixed deli couscous, delectable choices of cut beetroot, shaved carrots and tomatoes are all the fibre you’d need in a meal or two.J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin saladJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin salad barJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin salad

Finally onto the seafood bar. The mussels are especially fresh. Some of the oysters tasted a little strange, but it could have been just my taste buds. The crab was amazing though.J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin seafoodJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin seafoodJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin seafood

I must say, the sushi platter and fresh salmon / sashimi are the fastest to go, once restocked. I loved the fresh salmon! The selection was not bad at all (though I couldn’t waste anymore tummy space on rice)J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin sushi

Here’s a peek at what filled our plates at dinner:J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin salmonJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin Meat FestJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin PlatesJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin MusselsJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin plate

What’s dinner without desserts? It’s like I have a separate mood centre in my brain that lights up at the sight of desserts (and coffee, too). So much happiness on this table right here.J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin dessert bar
Look at this spread!J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin coconut tart desserts

J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin DinnerJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin cakeJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin cupcakeJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin chocolate cakeJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin mango mousseJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin Cakes and DessertsImpressed by this selection of ice cream, really! The matcha was to die for (actually had the matcha at breakfast, scroll down for my matcha with sprinkles)J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin ice cream bar

This pistachio cake with chocolate fudge, and chocolate cupcake were out of this world.J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin DessertsThe pistachio bits were really darn goodJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin pistachio cake

Feel free to order one of these:Hotel jen Tanglin J65 Desserts Foodporn yummy

These go into your ice cream, or wherever you’d like them, even on your sashimi if you pleaseJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin Ice CreamJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin Ice CreamMore desserts: osmanthus jellyJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin jelly

If you need to load up on carbs, again, no lack of them. Shelves and shelves full of them, to your fancy.J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin BreadJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin JuicesJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin 6

J65 Hotel Jen TanglinSeafood galore:J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin Bar

At dinner, we made our own Kueh Pie Tee!J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin DIY kueh pie tieJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin Kueh Pie Tie

So we added everything that was available at the DIY area. Was so tempted to throw in random junk like ice cream and sprinkles in my Kueh Pie Tee shell, but that would be untrue to local traditions, and I suppose is a nono at J65, which has such strong roots in local flavours and cuisine. The buffet isn’t all, there’s an ala carte menu if you’re looking for something more.

I learnt that on other buffet nights, pizzas and other Western dishes would also be available.
Hotel Jen Tanglin J65 Pizza BuffetTravellers hunting for authentic Southeast Asian food should definitely make it a point to try J65’s Hooked – Seafood Dinner, because this is where you get the best of both worlds – Western, Singaporean, Asian – you name it, they probably serve it.

Now onto breakfast! After an awesome night’s sleep, we woke up refreshed, and ready for HJTS’ breakfast selection.

At J65’s Sunday morning breakfast, we were greeted by this table full of cold cuts to pair with the great salad bar. And as all good breakfasts should, there were hash browns, sausages, baked tomatoes and bacon. In addition, we also got to choose from a variety of Hong Kong style dimsum (chicken paus, rice rolls), and Malay style beehoon and curry. Good ol’ Peranakan style Kuehs were also available!

J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin BreakfastJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin breakfast meatsJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin Salad BarJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin Bacon Grease

J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin BreakfastJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin buffet paoCereal table, and shelves full of bread behind. Carbs heaven!J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin cereal barJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin eggsJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin buffet kuehJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin tabao bagWhat went onto our plates:J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin breakfast plateJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin breakfast choiceYes there is KIMCHIJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin breakfastAnd aforementioned to-die-for matcha ice cream!J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin breakfast dessertsI went for 2 cups of ice-cold desserts: the vanilla and matcha, both decked in my favourite crunchy choco/malt balls.J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin ice cream breakfastJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin Matcha Ice Cream

Breakfast was just as satisfying as dinner, with the mad selection of meats (which were too heavy for us), and sweets.J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin Breakfast Buffet

Really grateful to HJTS for this staycay opportunity and for a chance to taste their signature weekend dinner and breakfast spread! Definitely spreading the word, and keeping this place in mind for future staycays. Do click through this Link for HJTS’ room rates and deals!

J65 at Hotel Jen Tanglin Singapore

J65 HJTS BuffetWeekday Lunch Buffet
S$29 net per person
Monday to Saturday
12pm – 2.30pm

Hooked! – Seafood Buffet Dinner
S$78 net per person
Friday to Saturday
6pm – 10pm 

Sunday Champagne Brunch
S$128 with free-flow Champagne, wine, beer and cocktails, or
S$88 net without alcohol

Every Sunday
12pm – 3pm

Book online for a 15% discount on the total bill.

For more information, email J65@hoteljen.com or call (65) 6831 4374.

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Launch Party: Trulife Collagen Manuka Max

Following my review on TruLife Collagen Manuka Max, I had the pleasure of attending the launch party for this amazing new contender in the collagen market!

The launch was held last Friday, 4 March, at the homely Two Bakers Cafe on Horne Road, just opposite the Jalan Besar Stadium. Upon arrival, we were greeted by this gorgeous dessert bar!

Trulife Manuka Max desserts

If you’ve never visited Two Bakers Cafe, it’s time you should! Known for bespoke birthday cakes, artisan pastries and one-of-a-kind, crafted-to-order desserts, the cafe’s pastry chefs boast credentials from the Le Cordon Bleu. You can pretty much guess why desserts were one of the highlights of the evening. The Panna Cotta, Mini Chocolate Cake (oh-so-pretty), and the Yuzu Lemon Mini Tarts were simply to-die-for.

Trulife desserts viktoriajean

Other Trulife products, such as the Berry Eye Health, also found their way into some of these desserts. I found it novel to incorporate health supplements into indulgent food.Trulife Manuka Max Collagen Desserts

Well this is my true intention 😀

Dessert Bar viktoriajean Trulife Manuka Max Collagen

Okay back to the talk of the day: Trulife Collagen Manuka Max.

Midway through dinner we were given a short introduction to the brand and product, as a prelude to Collagen Cocktails and Desserts. Essentially, Trulife is a contemporary health-care brand which aims to answer the health and lifestyle needs of today’s society through developing products that contain a combination of herbal and western ingredients. Founded in 1971, the brand has since evolved into a custom formulator and contract manufacturer of private label health and food supplements.

Trulife Collagen Manuka Max 1 event

Trulife Collagen manuka Max Launch Party

The Collagen Manuka Max is their latest product, which has been pushed to major pharmacies, including Watsons and Guardian stores nation-wide, earlier this month. Each bottle of Trulife Collagen Manuka Max is packed with 7000mg of Micro Marine Collagen Peptides that have been clinically proven to help improve your skin’s structure and firmness.

Each bottle contains 7,000mg of collagen, Manuka Honey, Cynatine, Vitamin C, Vitamin B1, B2, B3 and B6, as well as Zinc. Plus, put your mind at ease, as the product has no added sugar, nor any form of additives and colouring.

The new collagen drink is packed with a protein Cynatine known to reduce wrinkles, promote skin elasticity, improve nail strength and reduce hair loss. We all already know how collagen repairs UV spot damages, promotes clearer complexion, improves skin appearance, and is a valuable component of any beauty regime. More information in my previous post (link here).

Dieters, this will not ruin your diet plans – you’ll be delighted to know that the product is naturally sweetened with 100% pure and natural Manuka Honey that helps to give you a nutritional boost every day. Additionally, studies have found that Manuka Honey is actually beneficial at reducing reflux and balancing your digestive system to heal stomach and intestinal imbalances, hence aiding digestion. For me, this drink has been a delicious add-on to my daily supplement intake.

One of the chefs at Two Bakers’ Cafe gave us a demonstration on a special mocktail/cocktail recipe formulated with Trulife Collagen Manuka Max (which has a unearthly green colour, but is perfect for fancy cocktails!) We all got to try a glass of this unique cocktail.

Cocktail with Trulife collagen manuka max

Wanted to give more airtime to the yummy desserts. The unassuming cup of yellow jello-looking thing is Panna Cotta, made with Trulife Collagen Manuka Max and it was my favourite dish of the night! The frosty glass on the left is the aforementioned cocktail. And the chocolate cake is on the right with the fancy sail made of white chocolate on top.

Seriously, everybody loved the Panna Cotta dessert! The recipe for it includes a full bottle of TruLife Collagen Manuka Max to produce the honey gelee, on top of the 1/2 cup of peach juice, 1 tsp of gelatin and 2 tablespoons of water. The resulting panna cotta gelee is moderately sweet and fruity enough to pass off as a healthy jelly dessert. The panna cotta base is incredibly soft-whipped, I must say!

TruLife even revealed the full recipe, and I’m gonna try my hands at making one of these! (Psst…want the recipe? DM me!)

Trulife, cakes at Two Bakers cafeCakes at Two Bakers Cafe

We all wanted to try the fancy chocolate cake! It looks as good as it tastes.

Two Bakers Cafe cakes

Loved the spread!

Cakes from Two Bakers Cafe SG

I'm here for Collagen Max!

Those were the main highlights of the launch party.

Trulife Collagen Manuka Max launch partyWe’re loving this new handy bottle of beauty supplement.

Also gotta say, dinner at Two Bakers Cafe was amazing – I chose the Butternut Mushroom Risotto from the menu, which was the dish-less-selected as opposed to the traditional Aglio Olio. All my table neighbors could smell a heavy dash of truffle oil. And those who tried the risotto agreed it was the better of 2. Honestly the last good risotto I had was at Venice in 2013! Heartening to know a place that serves a mean risotto in Singapore.

Risotto - Two Bakers Cafe
It is a compact but carb-loaded heavyweight, so don’t be fooled by its portion here.

 

Two Bakers Cafe x Trulife

The rest who had aglio olio couldn’t help digging into my risotto. Altogether it was a lovely night mingling with the other bloggers and friends. Truly grateful to Trulife and Blackbox SG for bringing us together!

Trulife x Two Bakers Cafe Event

Trulife Collagen Manuka Max Bloggers

I don’t get why I look so bored and unhappy in this photo, because I swear I was smiling so hard. I guess the photo was distracting me from ogling at desserts and chatting with my new friends.Trulife Collagen Manuka Max Bloggers

Viktoria Jean Trulife Collagen Manuka Max

Thank you for the invite!

Trulife Collagen Manuka Max is now available at all major pharmacies, Watsons, Unity, Robinsons and Metro, retailing at $58.80 for 8 bottles.

You can also get your samples from BlackBox SG!

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Cocoa Colony Singapore – #WhoLovesCocoa ?!

Couple of weeks ago, I had an smashing time at 313 Somerset’s Cocoa Colony. Literally, with a hammer to prove. It was a party both in my mouth and stomach at the media event – from liquid cocoa taste tests, to making our own chocolate desserts, and smashing their signature bolas. My inner chocoholic was in heaven.

Ain’t no new kid on the block, Cocoa Colony’s beans have been around since the 1800s. Barely 2 years since their first flagship store, 6 other stores have popped up island-wide at The Star Vista, Great World City, The Cathay, Suntec City Mall, Shaw Centre and City Square. While the chocolate cafe idea’s pretty well-endowed in other countries, thus far, Max Brenner and Cocoa Colony are the only big players here.

So we got to try their signature drinks menu: Cocoa 38 smelt and tasted a lot like fragrant diluted Milo;  Cocoa 76 was my favourite as it isn’t too sweet or thick (loved it!); Cocoa 100 was like viscous molten chocolate which was a bit hard to swallow but to each his own. Some of us loved the 100. Naturally, Bailey’s rock every drink, so Bailey’s Cocoa inspired my new cocktail mix: Bailey’s Milo Dinosaur.

We were also really lucky to get a taste from the Amazonian Liquid Gold chocolate tap! (Oh gosh thank you) Imagine a beer tap and you get the idea – we got our fill of white and dark chocolate from a free-flow tap possibly connected to underground tanks of chocolate like a well-kept secret.

Moving on to their mains, Cocoa Colony’s smaller portions might not be satisfying for those seeking a filling meal – it’s however perfect for tea. Savoury sides were fantastic companions to our sweet escapade, so something to munch on never hurts.

Pictures here we go.

So we smashed a bola or two:

the crispy inners were like Chinese biscuits – the really yummy ones that only surface annually at Lunar New Year house visits.
   Satisfaction at smashing balls – great stress relief don’t you think?

For true-blue cocoaholic-converts out there (which I trust you soon would be), these gorgeous Cocoa Colony paraphenalia are available in-store at each and every outlet.
   (customised chocolates for us! Thank you Cocoa Colony. Much love)
  
  At some point in life everybody needs wisdom, wealth and love advice. But chocolate trumps all.
  
  

Went back for a cocoa fix just this week! We tried the Iced Hazelnut Cocoa, and the Iced Cocoa Shakerato. According to my friend, the former tasted like melted down Ferrero Rocher. So, so dope.

xoxo,

Viktoria Jean

[SINGAPORE] Privé Grill @ Keppel Bay (& other tantalizing eats)

Disclaimer: This throwback post contains images of food, coffee and good people having a good time.
Do not proceed if hungry.

The Privé Grill and Privé Cafe are amongst my favourite haunts, especially since the cafe’s pretty zen on weekday afternoons when I need my caffeine most. The coffee is above-average but not the best since I’ve had better lattes for less (just had a really good ice latte not long ago at The Plain!), but definitely the view of docked yachts, calm seas and expats’ properties definitely beats the  scene at the central business district.

This afternoon, sometime back, was a weekday brunch at the grill. My friends from Thailand finally tasted the famous Privé meats, cooked to perfection using the acclaimed “Spanish imported Josper grill”. According to the extensive all-day brunch selection, Privé Grill also features tantalizing appetizers, mouth-watering mains and decadent desserts.

          

Sometime back too, was this insanely good catching up over coffee with a university senior from the good old days. Ogopogo at the Bussorah Street near Haji Lane (aside from its renowned night scene) offers really good flat white, and amazing old-school knick-knacks. Throwback to the ’90s, anybody?      

I miss humongous and insanely yummy cakes from the Cheesecake Factory in the States. I guess one of those places on this sunny little island with portions, quality control and taste that actually can be compared to the cheesecake giant, is Lady M. Of course, without the crazy waiting time. In the States, we had to make reservations and wait for up to 1.5hrs for a seat at the Cheesecake Factory. Whereas the Lady M is much classier and serves up a mean millefeuille. Bon appetit.  

This is the last of my dessert reminiscences, I swear! Tiong Bahru Bakery brings back really good memories, not just for its good coffee – every time I get TBB I’m reminded of the first person who ever brought me for TBB croissants, black smoked salmon sandwiches and latte. Cheers to good ol’times. One unfortunate thing about this place happens to be their iced lattes – they seriously don’t taste as good when cold.

Privé
2 Keppel Bay Vista, Singapore City 098382
Phone:6776 0777

Ogopogo
73 Bussorah St
Singapore 199486

Tiong Bahru Bakery @ Eng Hoon
56 Eng Hoon Street
#01-70
Singapore 160056

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

[SINGAPORE] ASANOYA BOULANGERIE

I must confess: I’m a breadaholic. My favourite home appliance is my bread machine, and preferred choice of breakfast is always flour-based.  So the pastry-maniac in me jumped for joy when I finally popped by Asanoya Bakery, and 81-year-old brand founded in Karuizawa Japan.

The place is absolutely haven for all dough-lovers out there! With the abundance of seats it could jolly well serve as a cafe. The boulangerie is ready for business as early as 8am, but their signature Karuizawa Matcha Green Tea Bread doesn’t appear till 10. If that happens, stay calm, take a seat and have their royal milk tea loaf in the meantime. Their mean selection of salads comes in petite Asian portions which are just right to go with your dough. To ogle at pastries and sweetbreads please continue to scroll…

I’m in love with these cubes, not to mention they are absolute darlings in the mouth.

Tiramisu in bread = more than I can bargain for!

                          

The royal milk tea loaf tasted like it was soaked and glazed in frothy tea, which, for a tea-lover like me, was killing two birds with a bite as I could eat and drink tea at the same time. The maple walnuts pretzel was slightly more savoury, though too crispy and hard in certain parts. I’m still looking forward to coming again, and trying every darn thing eventually!

  

Asanoya Boulangerie
15 Queen Street, #01-03, Singapore 188537
Tel: (65) 6703 8703

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

[SINGAPORE] 3 COFFEE JOINTS WHICH ARE AS HIPSTER AS IT GETS

What do I look for in an excellent coffee place? Ambience, brews and its insta-worthy quotient. Here are 3 Cafes I’ve been in love with for all the right reasons: [1] THE NEW BLACK Chatted briefly with the barista whose photograph I blatantly took while he was expertly manoeuvring complicated brewing equipment in The New Black laboratory. Think Back To The Future meets pop art plus mad scientist (sorry, but bubbling filter glass pipes just screams nerdist). Totally in love with their graphic site listing their international brews. I miss my days in London, and a whiff of good old Workshop Coffee brings back wonderful memories.       What I loved: generous scoops of coffee powder, expertly filtered through the water pressure pipes; be assured of painstaking efforts taken to brew and prepare each and every cuppa. I had the ‘Sweet Bloom’, which I presumed, from what I understood of the menu, was made of Aricha Natural, an Ethiopian blend expertly mixed in Colorado. The floral scent rendered me unable to stop sniffing at my aromatic cuppa while the enticing black liquid cooled – it didn’t help that the cup was uber pretty in sunny pop-art colours. The barista was right – even without sugar, the blend was amazingly, refreshingly sweet. And when it’s cold and cooled it had none of the rancid acidic ratchet aftertaste. Instead, it tasted even better when left to cool on its own. On the plus side (as if it needs any bonus points) one standard sized cup was loaded with enough caffeine to tackle your roughest mornings. I’m in love. THE NEW BLACK CONCEPT OUTLET ONE UPPER CIRCULAR ROAD SINGAPORE 058400 8:00 – 18:30 MONDAY – FRIDAY 8:30 – 16:30 SATURDAY CLOSED ON SUNDAY ☕ ——————————————————————— ☕ [2] COMMON MAN COFFEE ROASTERS Only recently discovered this amazing joint when colleagues decided on brunch. Common Man Veggie Wonderland is a darling at breakfast, at times when you need the fuel and are not in the mood for grease. They also make a mean flat white. But try to stop yourself from getting that third cuppa.    Processed with VSCOcam with n3 preset Coffee is never a bad idea. Common Man Coffee Roasters 22 Martin Road, #01-00, 239058 6836 4695  ☕ ——————————————————————– ☕ [3] Toby’s Estate Coffee A big name in the local scene. This place’s been here for awhile now and it’s reputation stays strong with its solid brunch menu. Loving the french toast with espresso bacon. I mean, who needs coffee when you’ve got espresso in your fatty fried meat? Processed with VSCOcam with c3 preset   Also in a way the place’s really calm and warehousey in a de-constructed re-furbishment-in-progress manner. Whatever the ambience you may seek, Toby’s establishment is the right fit.    Toby’s Estate 8 Rodyk Street #01-03/04, 238216 6636 7629 What are some of your favourites? xoxo, Viktoria Jean

Day Zero – Panopolis

For two weeks away from home, I’m not usually such a light packer, although this time round I did forgo many physical possessions and settled for my old trusty cabin-sized Polo trolley-bag. Currently chilling at Panopolis, a classy open-spaced cafe at my most-frequented place for the past year (Singapore Changi Airport). It’s quiet, spacious and not only do they make a fine iced caramel macchiato, their baristas are seriously kinda cute too 🙂 Rarely do I compliment any guys on their physical appearance (close to never, actually) but these baristas have got killer smiles.

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This deserves a spot here.It’s thy first selfie with my GF6.20140319-193709.jpg

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Loving the serenity at the airport’s departure hall. Not being here for work feels incredibly liberating. Usually I’m rushing through the terminal, my head filled with thoughts of getting my job done and sleeping in the hotel after landing. I forget this excitement that comes from the process of traveling. I hope I never lose this sense of wonder at touching down on a place that I’ve never been to before. Note to self: Treasure this opportunity, the here and now, and never throw away any chance to discover something new about myself and the world.

Day Zero: awaiting my flight to be allotted a slot to check-in my bags. Incheon, here I come!

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

The Great Tom n Toms Escape

Life is endless escapism. Despite feeling very sick, I escaped to Tom n Toms to avoid the accumulating mess in my room which is the result of 3 travel luggages meshed by my bedside. I will have to start packing for my trip tomorrow, I swear.

Meddling with my baby Lumix GF6 on a rainy afternoon at Icon Village led to a series of repetitive shots on food & various cafe knick knacks. When you have a long list of books you wanna read, escape to Tom N Toms, closest substitute to Seoul cafes. Cold weather never deterred me from an ice-cold strawberry smoothie! On the plus side, lunch was my favorite Tom n Toms honey and cheese thick toast.

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After conducting tomorrow’s dance workshop, I’m escaping to Incheon! The rest of March is gonna be amazing.

Currently suffering the aftermath of having mounted the epilogue of one fantastic novel. The insomniac (me) is facing more trouble getting to sleep by having started on Sophie Kinsella’s Wedding Night. Yes a little late to the game but this only just arrived on my doorstep! To be frank, the book has been a disappointment from where I left off, but I hope the rest of the book lives up to what I’d expect from Sophie Kinsella.

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 “Youth is still where you left it, and that’s where it should stay. Anything that was worth taking on life’s journey, you’ll already have taken with you.”

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Dolce Tokyo, SG

Had the worst Matcha Latte in my entire life at Dolce Tokyo, 313 Somerset, this evening. Beautiful place, but terrible matcha latte – such a disappointment and shame to claim its affiliation to Tokyo! The drink was so diluted and watered down that the matcha powder wasn’t fully dissolved, so it tasted so much like grainy water that has been scattered match powder. The matcha gelato was not too bad though. Definitely far from the matcha lattes I’ve had in Japan. I’m officially so pampered by this lifestyle, I have to admit. Nonetheless the matcha was so unacceptable. Eurgh.

오늘 저녁에 내 인생 전체에서 최악의 녹차 라떼를 마셨다.  그렇게 끔찍한 맛. 세계를 여행에서 응 석 이야. 어떤 습관을 난 개발을 방지해야합니다. 하지만 돌체 도쿄의 끔찍 했어요.

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Sigh.

Reading a very beautiful book written by a Taiwanese travel journalist whose books I’ve come to love. I will talk more about this book when I’m in the mood to!
대만 여행 작가에 의해 쓰여진이 놀라운 책을 읽고 있어요. 그것을 읽은있을 때 나는 모든 사람에게이 책을 소개합니다. 다음에 보자!

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Cups n Canvas Cafè Singapore

Having been to cafès in downtown San Francisco, Cups n Canvas really really oozed the American jazz-pub vibe. It is chill, artsy-fartsy, complete with an art-studio section which is regularly closed off for painting lessons. This much raved-about artistic cafè on Selegie Road, just off Orchard Road, was jam-packed on a pre-Christmas weekend afternoon.

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We shared their Breakfast Canvas (which was huuuuge) and a Red Hot Chick. Their drinks came in cute semi-jugs reminiscent of the ones I had in San Francisco! My iced caramel latte was good (too sweet though) and Ere had the strawberry shake.

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The staff then invited us to decorate their wired Christmas tree with messages, using their basket of pencils and markers. We laughed at our own kiddy festive greetings which looked too much like elementary-school doodles in comparison to those impressive wall paintings in the cafe!

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Would love to try their sweet potato latte, if only I’m not that much of a caffeine-hit addict. Next time, perhaps 🙂

Cups N Canvas
139 Selegie Rd, 188309
6884 6855
(Closed on Mondays)

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

ReStore – Vintage Cafè SG

Don’t be fooled by this cafe’s ‘furniture warehouse’ exterior! This well-hidden jem of an indie cafè in Singapore’s Tanjong Pagar Road is vintage-themed and oozing with old-school charm. Its pre-loved cafeteria/kopitiam chairs are even for sale!

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We were glad to realise that all lattes, including its mocha, caramel and cinnamon specialties, come with a choice of iced, hot or with ice-cream. The sparingly good selection of waffles, cakes, sandwiches and ice cream were also satisfactory.

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We ordered a Caffe Cinnamon and a Caffe Caramel, both with ice-cream, and shared a dark chocolate tart. To our disappointment however, the ice-cream was melted when it came so it was all blended into the hot coffee (was surprised that the waiter who took our orders didn’t ask us to specify hot or cold lattes). The dark chocolate tart was also soft in the crust, as if it has been left outside for hours before being served.

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Thankfully the ambience was its saving grace, plus the bonus fact that it closes at a considerably late hour of 11pm (could be later though!). Definitely hope the food and coffee could be improved, because I really love its location and selection of books on its shelves…

Restore Living
124 Tanjong Pagar Rd, 088533
Tel: 222 3510

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

All day Breakfasts! Wild Honey

This is how 3 people overdosed on carbs on a Thursday night:

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Wild Honey’s bread basket with strawbery compote, jam and butter.
Wild Honey SG Bread Basket

The Norwegian: poached eggs wrapped in imported Norwegian smoked salmon, with avocado and home-made Hollandaise and salmon pearls on whole-wheat brioche.
Wild Honey SG Norwegian

The Spanish Hash: Diced Chorizo, house-corned beef and potato,poached eggs, Hollandaise sauce and grilled ciabatta
Wild Honey SG Spanish Hash

The Sweet Morning: Signature brioche french toast stuffed with grilled mango, with vanilla scented mascarpone and forest berry compote
Wild Honey SG Sweet Morning

All so delish!! ❤

Wild Honey SG 1

Wild Honey SG 2

Wild Honey SG 4

333A Orchard Rd, 238897
(Mandarin Gallery)

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Cafè-Hopping: The Loft

In the weather news, Melbourne is a scorching 40 degrees today! I’d managed to come back to Singapore this morning, escaping the northwesterly winds that are dragging the heat with it. Whew.

Tomorrow I would be in Russia, possibly hibernating my winter away in the subzero freeze. Whilst loading up on instant Chinese food to pack away in case we get snowed in, I happened to chance upon The Loft at Chinatown. There I stopped for some Earl Grey Iced Tea with aloe vera, and a Garden Salad with smoked salmon. There was a private Christmas party going on in the third level, but basically the second floor was pretty calm and quiet, save for diners who come and go for The Loft’s reputed pancakes and waffles. Remind me again that I’d need to try that at a later date!

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The Loft Chinatown Earl Grey Iced Tea with Aloe Vera

The Loft Chinatown Garden Salad with Smoked Salmon

The tea was surprisingly refreshing but there was too much ice! The salad was good but the salmon a tad too salty. Then again I’m a little picky when it comes to food… and I’d much enjoyed their service and serenity of the quaint multi-level cafè. So that means I’m definitely coming back again with my friends to try their desserts. We’re such suckers for sweet pretty things.

The Loft Chinatown 1

268A South Bridge Road
Tues – Sat 11am-10pm
Sunday 9am-9pm
Monday Closed

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Cafè-Hopping: Working Title SG

Stumbled upon {working title} at Arab Street whilst wandering along Haji Lane and Bali Lane before kicking ass at Muay Thai on a Monday morning. They share a place with a hostel, and the cafè’s small but cosy. Iced latte was okay, nothing fantastic; there’s also a selection of tummy-fillers like their ice-cream cookies which I’ve yet to try! Great for cafe-hoppers who’re looking to leech on WiFi.

Working Title SG Shopfront

Working Title SG Counter

Working Title SG Interior

Working Title SG Iced Cafe Latte

Working Title SG WIFI

48 Arab Street
Singapore 368979

1-Caramel Dessert Boutique

I miss hanging out here at 1-Caramel with my girls! On our usual cafe-hopping trips in Singapore, we go everywhere in search of the best cakes and coffee. This one at One Rochester Park served the best fluffy strawberry shortcake and Maltesers cheesecake, plus up here at Buona Vista, away from city centre’s hustle-bustle, we can chat away all afternoon with our coffees and cakes.

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1-Caramel Viktoria Jean Cafe Cake

Affogato al caffè, the signature coffee with ice cream, my nemesis. Desserts and coffee in one; it’s too good to be true.
1-Caramel Viktoria Jean Cafe Coffee Icecream

Sticky-date pudding with a killer dribble of caramel!!
1-Caramel Viktoria Jean Cafe Sticky Date Pudding

This is how we spend our cafe-hopping afternoons.
1-Caramel Viktoria Jean Cafe

1 Rochester Park, #02-01
Singapore

Costa Coffee and Travel Woes

Costa Coffee Costa Coffee

Woes of a traveller: sometimes you’re bound to crave familiar and comforting sights or foods!! Costa Coffee is one of those lighthouses I’m always happy to see in foreign lands, along with Starbucks and Boots. At the moment, they have gingerbread coffee coolers and lattes as their festive drinks, which I find none too amazing. Boo. But the classic flat white never fails to please.

Costa Costa Coffee

Costa 3 Costa Coffee

Heading to Thailand tomorrow with my crazy travel buddies: Beth, Dia, Jennabelle and Ake’s bunch of guy pals. I’m always forced to try strange foods when I’m around these girls. Besides staple ramen, look what we had at Ippudo the other day: Lotus Root Crisps and strangely-spiced corn. They make me realize what an unadventurous foodie I’ve always been!!!

Costa Coffee

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TIME TO GET PACKING! Truth be told, I’ve started throwing bikinis and swimwear into my bag 3 days ago. I’ve NEVER packed so religiously early for work purposes. KOH SAMUI HERE I COME!!

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Hoshino Coffee

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Post-workout dinner in which the matcha souffle we were looking so forward to turned out not so fantastic whilst the main dishes were amazing. Whenever I’m back in Singapore, enochlophobia kicks in. Peak hour dining, rush hour traffic, a Friday night out – tell me how I can avoid the crowds please! Thankfully my usual working hours are big-time screwed, so I get to watch movies at non-peak periods and chill at cafès while everybody else is at work. Home sweet home, everybody.

PAUL, Maison De Qualite

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The best flight-less Saturday brunch…
with my favourite nurse!
The waffles were simply HEAVENLY.
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Thank you for the heart-to-heart.
Really needed and appreciated it.
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Kudos to the kind Caucasian lady who took the photograph for us
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And I’m home early for the weekend to bake my family a Rice Krispies batter treat! Dessert ought to be served at any time of day.