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

[L.A.] FOOD SNAPS IN LOS ANGELES

Tribute to all the food-snaps I take that go un-posted as soon as the physical item gets devoured / forgotten. Here’s a post to say, you’ll always be remembered. Tralala.

I love you, Los Angeles.

▷ Breakfast @ Denny’s for the first time and I liked it! Western portions are way too generous. With a selection like this it won’t be anytime soon for us to taste it all. A tad bit greasy on the side of mashed/fried potatoes but all else’s good.

All American Slam, French Toast Slam, Peanut Butter Cup Pancake Breakfasts
Breakfastception

▷ Late post-shopping lunch with the elder folks was Seafood Port Chinese Restaurant on Hawthorne Blvd Torrance

As much a visual feast as it was physical! Curry crabs and the works, totally Chinese through and through
Highlight of the evening
Managed to get my fortune told

▷ Sneaked in a pizza at Sbarro, Del Amo @ Torrance Bay. Nothing like salad, carbs and mozzarella to complete your trip to the States.

▷ Dining in near pitch-black darkness at Santa Monica Pier Restaurant, whilst chilling to the strong sea breeze at the restaurant’s namesake. Food’s amazing. Mojitos were cray.            

▷ Santa Monica Pier in all its midnight glory. America is gorgeous.  

▷ Too much to eat, too little time and space.

 

 

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

[TAIPEI] oo6. NIGHT MARKET HUSTLING

So we arrived at the famed Raohe Night Market 饒河街夜市 in Northern Taipei, which is in close proximity to Taipei’s Rainbow Bridge across Keelung River (another topic altogether), and accomplished the feat of exploring the entire district in a night. But hang on, this post is all about food! The night market 饒河 (Raohe) is named precisely as the stretch of food, beverages and late-night shops run parallel to 基隆河 (Keelung River). Our native Taiwanese buddies had highly recommended this street for its reputation of being less touristy and cheaper than Shih-Lin or Linjiang Night Markets.

ROUHE NIGHT MARKET TAIWAN

raohe st night market

So we entered via the main street, having walked from the designated exit of Houshanpi Station, into this intermingling of food, clothes, gadgets, lingerie and everything-you-can-think-of shops.

We made these boys eat their first 臭豆腐 Stinky Tofu, Taipei’s famous smelly dish. They had mixed feelings about it.

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“Oh god what is this montrosity!”

 

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“Oh hey, aside from the smell, there’s a party in my mouth.”
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“Crap I actually loved it!”
CHOU TOFU
I’m fabulous #foodporn
handrolls taipei icecream
HERE COMES THE REAL THING: PARTY IN OUR MOUTHS

We all loved this ice-cream & shaved peanut burrito/wrap 花生捲加冰淇淋! The scoops of ice cream came in vanilla, coconut and taro flavours, which tasted soooo good with peanut and the thin skinned crepe. The sprig of coriander added a unique twist. Overall, the dessert was refreshingly light – it felt just like having after-dinner mints, except with a lot more calories. I loved watching its preparation: the vendor first laid out the crepe, then shaved from a huge block of peanut candy. Three scoops of ice cream are set in a row before he shaved another layer of peanut candy, and topped it up with coriander. Then of course the combination is wrapped up, burrito style, and eaten like a Subway wrap. Voila!

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Predator face, with the peanut roll.
peace out girl
Now who’s up for seconds

For a traditionally laid-out Chinese night market, Raohe also boasts amazing Japanese food: teriyaki chicken on sticks, sushi and hand rolls. You name it, they’ve got it.

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日本玉子燒
日本玉子燒 Japanese mentaiko etc
not a selfie
Someone hijacked my camera

This one below is a personal favourite: Taro balls! I’d always thought they were cuttlefish balls but no, it’s made from taro, and fried. The Taiwanese do such amazing things with Taro, I love it.

night market cuttlefish balls
Watch me toss the damn balls
fried cuttlefish balls taiwan
Up up here we go

Okay confession: I cannot remember what the dish below is. We ate too much that night to keep track of everything so if anybody could tell me what this is, I have cookies for you!!

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WHAT AM I? Clues: fried, doughy, soya sauce…

And evidently, everything here was so yummy, that even on a full stomach, we couldn’t resist having to juggle all our food on our hands.

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lemme take a selfie...not
Me eating with a camera in my face: this was the most glam shot.

If you’ve got kids with you, they won’t be bored. Take them fishing and you get to bring the little rascals home with your big rascal. Hahha.

kids activities night market
#bored #daddy

For the grownups, there are no lack of fancy-schmancy knick knacks and strange foods at Raohe night market. Here goes collection of my favourite shots:

I LOVE TAIWAN
Sums it up for you
green taipei
Wheatgrass and all sorts of juices
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Royal jelly in a tub, anybody?
street food night market taipei
Guava juice maybe
boobies taiwan
Boob shot
taipei night market
Hustle and bustle and stranger looking into my camera
taiwan raohe market finds
Got coconutmilk

foodporn taipei

foodporn taiwanese night market

clocks taipei

birds taiwan

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This whole scene is too traditionally Taiwanese
cows boss taipei
I’m the boss. The Cow Boss. Hell yeah, steak.

Having eaten our way through the night market, we crowned the ICECREAM&PEANUT ROLLS as the King of Raohe Night Market. If we had a sliver of space left in our bulging bellies we would have had seconds, but sadly we couldn’t roll ourselves back to the stall. Everybody needs to try it once at least, if not from Raohe then at other night markets. YOU WON’T REGRET IT. And life’s like that isn’t it? If you don’t eat it, you might not live long enough to eat it again #justsaying.

Peace out.

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Raohe Street Night Market
Section 4, Bade Road, Songshan District
Taipei City, Taiwan 105
Nearest Metro: HOUSHANPI STATION
What’s good: 藥燉排骨 Medicinal Ribs

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

10 SECRETS TO GOOD SKIN

Shh… I’m letting you guys in on what I do to keep my skin minimally flawed and young-looking.

I’m not without vices – my lifestyle certainly does a great deal of harm to my skin. Constant travelling, difficult climates, dry-air in airplane cabins, late nights, sleepless days, junk food and irregular meals, social drinking and partying – all these adds to the daunting task of damage-control, and to maintain my current skin conditions.As I get older I’ve come to realize the importance of a good skincare regime. Party season has come and gone. January and February is the time for healing and pampering the skin you’ve subjected to abuse. Over the years I’ve tried many products, methods, and these are the ones I’m gonna keep:

 

1. CLARISONIC for cleansing the skin.
If like me your work requires a high volume of makeup, the highly raved-about sonic skin-care cleansing brushes works wonders unplugging clogged pores. I got hooked onto using my Clarisonic MIA ever since I got mine from L.A. and now it’s a necessity in my day-to-day regime. I get my replacement brushes (you’ve got to change them once every 3-4 months) each time I hit the States, since it’s way cheaper in SEPHORA USA. I don’t use fancy cleansing foams: a respectable store-bought brand like Innisfree, The Face Shop or Laneige would suffice for me. The rotating motion of Clarisonic brushes gives me all the reassurance that my skin is being taken care of.

 

2. SHEET-TYPE FACE-MASKS
At least 3 times a week I engage the usual suspects who take really good care of my skin: 我的心機 (My Scheming Beauty), 我的美麗日記 (My Beauty Diary), Innisfree, Etude House, Laneige, ODBO, Acwell. In under 25 minutes I can get a variety of results depending on whether my skin feels especially dry and tight, or oily and clogged.

I get them from COSMED Taiwan, Watsons Hong Kong, and from the big brands themself in Seoul. Try not to purchase them from online stores as there’re tonnes of scams out there peddling the fakes. Yes! Even face-masks are fake these days.
On days when I do apply my face-masks, I see visible differences.

 

3. SERUM LAYERING
Like lots of people I face the dilemma of deciding which type of serum to use. Well, it never hurts to layer them. I use a good combination of 2 – 3 serums (without toners, because honestly I fail to see the use of toners) from a customised variety. I love Vichy’s Idéalia Life Serum, Laneige’s White Plus Renew Essence, Clinique Smart Custom-Repair Serum and Turnaround Concentrate, Innisfree’s Green Tea Seed Serum, DHC Japan’s PQQ Up-Gel and Vitamin-C Serum, Bio-Essence Radiant Youth Essence etc. Just remember to leave a good 10-second gap between each application.

 

4. OVERNIGHTERS
I never let my skin go dry in the night. After the serum shots I plump up my skin with heavy creams, especially at night. I trust Vichy’s Idéalia Night Cream, Kiehl’s 24-hour Moisturiser, Bio-Essence V Face-Lifting Cream, and Laneige’s White Plus Renew Night Cream. In the day, I rely on just a thin layer of sun-block after the serum.

Confession: I have lazy days whereby I skip all the serum and face masks steps and go straight to sleeping masks. In those instances, Laneige’s Sleeping Mask and Vichy’s Night Detox masks come in really handy.

 

5. COLLAGEN BOOSTS
I’m a big fan of Meiji’s Amino Collagen, but I find it troublesome having to dissolve it for ingestion, and for travellers who don’t always have the luxury of luggage space, powdered collagen is a hassle. Kinohimitsu’s pack-of-6 BB Beauty Drink (Blended Bird’s Nest with Acerola Cherry) is a shot of collagen I take every few months. In between these courses, I try to take SATO’s Hakubi White C pills which are way easier to take around the world with me. Honestly, this seller at Qoo10 sells Kinohimitsu at a way cheaper price than I’ve actually seen in Japanese pharmacies.
A colleague once told me that collagen takes effect from the day you start taking them, so your skin is preserved from the time you begin to ingest collagen. Do yourself a favour and start early! You don’t have to take them everyday but once in a while, the stuff does wonders.

Confession: I dissolve my Meiji Collagen in coffee to replace my milk and creamers.

 

6. TEAS TEAS AND MORE TEAS
My favourite BB Detox Tea from Kusmi Tea is my go-to morning drink (in place of my regular cappucino) after every late-night party accompanied by drinking. Also on my list are Pukka’s Detox Tea from the UK, and Arifoğlu 9-in-1 (Arifoğlu Dokuzu Bir Yerde 9 in 1 Karışık Bitkisel Çay) from Turkey. It’s no secret: green tea, yerba mate, rosemary and thyme are great for your skin in the long run. They also give you plenty of hydration, minerals and anti-oxidants.

 

7. OMEGA-3 FISH OIL SUPPLEMENTS
No way you can do without this. Unless you live in Norway and eat fish for breakfast lunch and dinner, all day everyday. I’ve only recently started to take them on a daily basis and discovered good small changes to how my T-Zones no longer secrete sebum so unwontedly and frequently.

Confession: I love smoked salmon, cooked salmon, fresh sashimi, raw salmon, steamed salmon and salmon with buttered, battered crusts. Basically anything salmon, but I suspect that has little to contribute to good skin in the long run if you’re always eating them pan-fried or oven-baked.
8. MULTIVITAMINS
This is another no-brainer. Without the essential vitamins your body simply cannot function. When the basic functions go into hibernation mode, your skin condition is compromised. So help yourself: take your daily multivitamins. I go for ALIVE! Women’s Multivitamins or Centrum.

 

I’m sure way more females have extensive skincare regimes and secrets. Do share and I hope these are little tips to pick up along the way. Your skin doesn’t get any younger. I don’t have the most perfect skin, but I try.

Viktoria Jean Li

 

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Deux Crèmes | 듀 크렘

Gangnam’s Garosugil is laden with patisseries, cake-shops, chocolatiers and coffeehouses. Deux Crèmes is one of the most popular and renowned pastry houses that occupies a standalone 3-storey building along the main street, drawing in a steady stream of dessert-seeking locals and foreigner everyday, and feeding this steady stream with their very special pie-tart-cake hybrids.

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Read: Deux Crèmes was awarded Travel CNN’s Best pie-tart-cake hybrid for their Caramel Tiramisu. I think, that Deux Crèmes should be awarded best modernist architectural design for dessert cafes.

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I tried their Muscato Tart: glazed champagne grapes cushioned with a layer of banana and custard cream on a thick crisp crust. Sounds like heaven on a slice? Tastes like heaven on a slice!

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The kind pastry chefs awarded me photographic opportunities and I snapped away at their amazing, aesthetically appealing tarts. These pastries are actually freshly baked behind the counters by talented chefs in white.

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If you’re in the area, you’ve got to seek this place out because their tarts, though pricier than the usual range, is worth every penny. There are over 100 different champagnes and wines to go with the tarts, and the in-house sommeliers can tell you exactly what wines go with the dessert you’re having! Such personalized service makes for a very awesome dessert experience.

강남구 신사동 533-11
533-11 Sinsa-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul
+82 2 545 7931
Daily, 10am – midnight
Free WiFi
Tarts range from ₩6,500 to ₩8,000

For Quick Reference:

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

Pick Your Poison

Introduced my parents to Baileys, my favourite bedtime drink! Stir it into coffee, or over ice and milk…my absolute favorite with almost everything. Personal favourite concoction: Baileys with hot Milo, marshmallows and Nescafé. My Christmas Neslo with liqueurs.

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Also loving: Baileys with peppermint icecream and chocolate chips.

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Globalization is…

…having Hong Kong crispy duck for supper, grilled Frankfurters on a bun for lunch, and Thai rice noodles (phad si eiw) with Tom Yam-based steamboat and crispy chicken green curry for dinner. All these along the same stretch of restaurants in a town village of Germany! Not to mention having our fair share of the delicious local fare. The luxury of our blessed generation extends further than materialistic possessions – food is something we take even more for granted as we face daily choices our ancestors could never dream of making. I count my blessings as I enjoyed my meals in the company of amazing friends.

What are you having for dinner today? Bon appetit!

Thai Food 3 Frankfurt

Thai Food Frankfurt 2

Thai Food Frankfurt

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Guylian Belgian Chocolate Cafè

Sydney Guylian Cafe

Sydney Guylian Cafe Strawberry Tart

Sydney is home to this restaurant slash patisserie bearing the name of a famed household chocolate brand. Guylian Cafè didn’t disappoint, probably as the tarts we ordered came at a time where we were too hungry to be picky. The glazed strawberries didn’t taste as fresh as I’d imagined. But for a quick spike of blood glucose the dessert certainly worked its sugar-laden miracles.

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Circular Quay
Shop 10, Opera Quays
3 Macquarie Street
Sydney NSW 2000
Australia
Sun to Thurs 8am – 11pm
Fri & Sat 8am – Midnight

All day Breakfasts! Wild Honey

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

Wild Honey SG 3

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!

The Loft Chinatown 2

The Loft Chinatown 3

The Loft Chinatown 4

The Loft Chinatown 5

The Loft Chinatown 6

The Loft Chinatown 7

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

[MELBOURNE] oo2. Caffe e Torta

Upon touchdown I had managed to catch a good nights’ sleep (albeit, due to time difference, it was 3am Melbourne time when I finally crashed), and even woke up for hotel breakfast early next morning. Late afternoon, I ventured into the CBD area with hopes of locating Hardware Societe which was further out past Collins Street, but to no avail! Darn Google Maps pointed me in the wrong direction; for some crazy reason, even my GPS is screwed up. But I’m glad that happened, because I stumbled upon Caffe e Torta on Little Collins, and had the most juicy and scrumptious hot apple strudel with ice cream I’ve ever had! The only other worthy contender being the Cafè Braun in Mondsee, Salzburg.

The whole ambience at Caffe e Torta was reminiscent of Italian sidewalk cafes, hence the Italian-inspired name. The baristas and waitresses were all amazingly chirpy, just as how all Australians appear to be. Didn’t get my order of flat white because I was intending to sleep some more when I got back to my hotel, regrettably, but I would regret more if I stayed up all evening from the overdose of caffeine.

As I got ready to fly home yesterday, I felt tremendously blessed and so spoilt for choices. Whilst others cafè-hop in their own countries, I get to explore quaint cafes in every city I travel to. And I get to experience cultures or practices deviant to and unlike my own. It’s scary because this nomadic lifestyle is the kind I love and could stick to forever, because seeing the world puts things back home in simultaneously greater and finer perspectives. I want to shake hands with all parts of the world everyday, forever.

Caffe e Torta Shopfront

Caffe e Torta Interior 3

Caffe e Torta Interior 4

Caffe e Torta Interior 2

Caffe e Torta Interior 5

Caffe e Torta Interior

Caffe e Torta Stairs

Caffe e Torta Hot Apple Strudel

Caffe e Torta Menu

Caffe e Torta Exterior

314 Little Collins St,
Melbourne VIC 3000, Australia
+61 434 595 885

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Baker’s Terrace in Perth

Australia is my favourite stopover for minced meat pies and squishy meat pastries!! For my airport-bound breakfast, I filled my tummy with this juicy chicken and veggie pot pie. It wasn’t altogether to-die-for because seriously I’ve had better meat pies from Pie Face or downtown Brisbane’s steak pie joints, but I’m a happy girl after my pastry brunch.

Baker's Terrace Perth

Baker's Terrace Perth

Chicken and Veg Pie Baker's Terrace Perth

Baker's Terrace Perth

Foodporn-worthy!
xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Shop 60, 255 Adelaide Terrace

[THAILAND] oo8.CoCo Tam’s Bar, Koh Samui

CoCo Tam’s Bar, Koh Samui

Day beds, bean bags, egg chairs, shishas and the island’s most varied selection of cocktails on the beachfront: there’s nothing not to love about CoCo Tam’s Bar. The music was sooo good we had to ask the bartenders for their playlist! Ideal for after-dinner chillout drinks, we took a short walk here from H Bistro @ Hansar, and watched the sunset on Koh Samui whilst chilling out on our beanbags with cocktails. A jug of Samui Sling, anybody?

CoCo Tam’s Bar, Koh Samui

CoCo Tam’s Bar, Koh Samui

CoCo Tam’s Bar, Koh Samui

CoCo Tam’s Bar, Koh Samui

CoCo Tam’s Bar Samui

CoCo Tam’s Bar, Koh Samui

CoCo Tam’s Bar, Koh Samui

CoCo Tam’s Bar, Koh Samui

CoCo Tam’s Bar, Koh Samui

CoCo Tam’s Bar, Thailand

CoCo Tam’s Bar, Koh Samui

Beach Koh Samui

Living the Life CoCo Tam’s Bar, Koh Samui

Sea CoCo Tam’s Bar, Koh Samui

CoCo Tam’s Bar, Koh Samui Girls

CoCo Tam’s Bar, Koh Samui

Viktoria Jean Thailand CoCo Tam’s Bar, Koh Samui

Couple CoCo Tam’s Bar, Koh Samui

CoCo Tam’s Bar, Koh Samui

Coco Tams Bar Samui

Shisha CoCo Tam's Bar Samui

Cocotails CoCo Tam's Bar Samui

Cocotails CoCo Tam's Bar Samui

Girls CoCo Tam's Bar Samui

Girls CoCo Tam's Bar Samui

Girls CoCo Tam's Bar Samui

Girls CoCo Tam's Bar Samui

Girls CoCo Tam's Bar Samui

Sunset Girls CoCo Tam's Bar Samui

Girls CoCo Tam's Bar Samui

Girls CoCo Tam's Bar Samui

CoCo Tam’s Bar, Koh Samui

Couple CoCo Tam’s Bar, Koh Samui

Worth a second trip down here when we come back for Koh Samui’s Full Moon Party in the future!

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

99/1 Moo 1, Bophut
Koh Samui 84320, Thailand

[THAILAND] oo5.H Bistro @ Hansar Samui

I’m hella fortunate to have Thai friends who know all the best hideouts and dining places. While waiting for a couple more friends to touchdown in Koh Samui, we dined at the beachfront H Bistro at Hansar Resort. Its French Mediterranean menu boasts the likes of grilled Hokkaido Scallops, pan-roasted Miyazaki sirloin, smoked duck prosciutto, white asparagus soup with langoustine and white truffle. oil. Best of all, it’s amazing close to Samui’s open-air international airport, so it’s a great place to hangout before catching your flight or for filling your tummies upon touching down.

H Bistro at Hansar Samui

H Bistro is directly adjacent to Hansar’s indoor pool, whicb faces the ocean and Koh Samui’s Bophut Beach. The post-monsoon winds were crazy, we chose to sit indoors instead.

H Bistro at Hansar Samui

H Bistro at Hansar Samui Beach

H Bistro at Hansar Samui Pool

H Bistro at Hansar Samui

H Bistro at Hansar Samui

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H Bistro at Hansar Samui

H Bistro at Hansar Samui

H Bistro at Hansar Samui

H Bistro at Hansar Samui

H Bistro at Hansar Samui

H Bistro at Hansar Samui

H Bistro at Hansar Samui

Spinach Ravioli with Pork:
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Calamari Rings and Crabmeat Patty:
H Bistro at Hansar Samui

H Bistro at Hansar Samui

Asian Gyoza:
H Bistro at Hansar Samui

Assorted Bruschetta:
H Bistro at Hansar Samui

H Bistro at Hansar Samui

Caesar Salad:
H Bistro at Hansar Samui

Smoked Salmon Tartine, my favourite!:
H Bistro at Hansar Samui

H Bistro at Hansar Samui

Bophut Beach is lined with restaurants after restaurants targeted at tourists, offering a major selection of fusion and seafood-centred cuisines. Loved the ambience at H Bistro! Plus it’s so near to the sea, we took a good long stroll after our meal before we set off to pick up our friends. Its lunch a la carte differs from its dinner menu, which boasts more main courses than its usual lunch set! 5 days seriously isn’t enough to try everything on Ko Samui!!

101/28 Moo1, Bophut
Koh Samui, Suratthani
Thailand 84320

[THAILAND] oo4.Beyond The Sea, Siamese Brasserie

BEYOND THE SEA, Siamese Brasserie

The entire week spent in Koh Samui, we basically feasted all day long on authentic Thai food and fresh-from-the-ocean seafood. The high tides plus bad weather made it nearly impossible for water-sports, so we cancelled our initial plans to take the open-sea scuba-diving license exams. On our first morning we drove to ShaSa Resort for the best mango sticky rice on the island. The resort’s incredibly enticing infinity pool is the first sight that greets all diners and guests, followed by a crazy bird’s eye view of the ocean and beach. The restaurant serves a fusion of Thai, Siamese and Western cuisines but they are best known for Kaw Neaw Ma Muang (mango stickies). I particularly enjoyed the island mojito and the incredibly warmth service from the ever-smiley hosts.

BEYOND THE SEA, Siamese Brasserie

BEYOND THE SEA, Siamese Brasserie

BEYOND THE SEA, Siamese Brasserie

BEYOND THE SEA, Siamese Brasserie

BEYOND THE SEA, Siamese Brasserie

BEYOND THE SEA, Siamese Brasserie

BEYOND THE SEA, Siamese Brasserie Menu

Loving it BEYOND THE SEA, Siamese Brasserie

BEYOND THE SEA, Siamese Brasserie

Mojito BEYOND THE SEA, Siamese Brasserie

Mango Sticky Rice Bangkok Thailand

BEYOND THE SEA, Siamese Brasserie

Mango Sticky Rice Koh Samui

Selfie BEYOND THE SEA, Siamese Brasserie

BEYOND THE SEA, Siamese Brasserie

The thing I love most about resorts on islands is that every single square feet is photo-worthy. If you’re tired of swimming in sodium-laden ocean water, the pool’s great at ShaSa! With an insane view to boost 🙂 It’s no secret, I LOVE THAILAND!!

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Maret, Laem Set
Koh Samui 84310, Thailand

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

Costa 5

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.