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Musings on Travel, Fashion & Fun


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Tai Cheong Bakery 泰昌餅家 opens its first Cha Chaan Teng in Singapore

Tai Cheong Bakery Singapore 泰昌餅家Tai Cheong Bakery, a Hong Kong brand known for its egg tarts, has opened its first Hong Kong-style cha chaan teng diner in Singapore. The diner at Holland Village comes after a series of pop-up stores and a takeaway counter at Takashimaya Food Hall.

Tai Cheong Bakery Singapore 泰昌餅家Diners can have a taste of Hong Kong with traditional cha chaan teng dishes at the 60-seat eatery located right in the heart of Holland Village. With already so many similar Hong Kong cafes in town, I was curious to find out if this one is as authentic.

Cha chaan teng culture came about in the 1950s as a result of Hong Kong’s increasingly cosmopolitan and westernized middle class. Back in those days when Hong Kong was still a British colony, only high-class restaurants served western food and most of them did not welcome local Hong Kong people. After WWII, in a bid to end such discrimination, local Hong Kong people started to open their own restaurants called Cha Chaan Teng (translated into tea hall) serving affordable dishes combining elements of Western dining with unique Hong Kong flavours for people from all walks of life. Such cha chaan teng operate-around-the-clock serving a wide range of food at a breakneck pace to match Hong Kong’s busy lifestyle. In fact, cha chaan teng is so much representative of Hong Kong that it was suggested that the humble local diner should be listed in the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage List.

For me, visiting a (non-touristy) cha chaan teng is a must whenever I go Hong Kong. You learn to adapt to their pace and it’s the best way to experience the local culture. You get to share tables with the locals (tab toi), get scolded for hesitating over your order and overhear the latest gossip in the neighbourhood lol. Sometimes the waiters are the funniest bunch of people to talk to when they are not so busy.

Tai Cheong Bakery Singapore 泰昌餅家Tai Cheong Bakery will have a takeaway counter to sell its signature egg tart and other pastries, including a new durian and cheese tart specially created for Singapore and sold exclusively at the diner. Dine in customers can order up to 2 egg tarts per person and are not allowed to take away egg tarts. Customers at the takeaway counter may order up to 4 boxes/16 egg tarts.

Tai Cheong Bakery Singapore 泰昌餅家I visited the diner during its first opening weekend, and queued for about 45 minutes. You can give your name and mobile number to the staff, and the system will call your mobile once your table is ready. I chose to wait by the diner and feast my eyes on the menu.

Tai Cheong Bakery Singapore 泰昌餅家Piping hot egg tarts are the best! I always love eating them hot when the warm egg filling slides down your throat, and the crispy crust melts as your teeth sinks into it.

Tai Cheong Bakery Singapore 泰昌餅家We started out our meal with a coconut tart and an egg tart to share. The egg tart was up to expectation while the coconut tart was a disappointment – I tasted more flour than coconut.

Tai Cheong Bakery Singapore 泰昌餅家I loved my spicy cola boiled with lemon and ginger; it made me feel like I was in Hong Kong once again. The Hong Kong milk tea went terribly wrong though, it was tannic and didn’t taste anything like the Hong Kong tea we knew. Even after one packet of sugar the taste wasn’t right.

Tai Cheong Bakery Singapore 泰昌餅家The mains fared much better. We ordered the Three Colour Silky Egg with Rice (with roasted pork and crispy pork belly) after seeing it on many of the diners’ tables. The portion was huge. The curry fan in me initially wanted the Beef Brisket Curry Rice but decided against it after seeing the actual pitiful-looking dish being served. So, presentation does play an important part in whetting your guests’ appetite.

Tai Cheong Bakery Singapore 泰昌餅家
The Three Egg Macoroni Soup with Luncheon Meat was comfort food to me, though the luncheon meat strips were really salty. We were feeling a little ‘egged out’ by the end of our meal – almost every single dish had eggs in them so our cholesterol level must have shot up by quite a bit. Overall, it’s a nice casual place to hang out with friends, and I hope the downsides we had were just nuances of a newly-opened eatery. I would probably visit again if I am in the neighbourhood.

泰昌餅家 Tai Cheong Bakery Singapore
Address:
31 Lorong Liput Singapore 277742
Opening Hours: 10:00AM to 10:00PM (Mon to Fri)/9:00AM to 10:00PM (Sat, Sun, PH)
*Note that mains are available at 11:00AM – 2:30PM/ 5:30PM – 9:30PM (Pastries and drinks are available all day)
Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/taicheongeggtarts

Tai Cheong Bakery’s original store in Hong Kong
Address: G/F 35 Lyndhurst Terrace, Central, Hong Kong
Tel: +852 8300 8301
Opening Hours: 7:30AM to 9:00PM (Mon to Sat), 8:30AM to 9:00PM (Sun & PH)
Nearest Train Station: Central MTR, Exit D2
Website: http://www.taoheung.com.hk/tc/brands/tai_cheong/index.html

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Sunday Folks – Because the best things in life are sweet

Sunday FolksSingapore seems to be in a soft serve fad lately. Before Honey Creme came to town, another soft serve cafe had already been getting lots of good word-of-mouth. Started by the owners of Creamier, Sunday Folks is the first in Singapore to feature a soft-serve dessert concept, offering 6 flavours of soft serve ice cream. What’s even better, you can enjoy your soft serve with the crisp eggy waffles made with Creamier’s super-popular recipe in more spacious and elegant settings.

Sunday Folks

It is not difficult to spot the café from the row of restaurants along Chip Bee Gardens – just look for the crowd outside waiting for their table.

Sunday Folks

When you get there, put your name down on the electronic reservation system at the entrance. You can wait at the benches in front of the café, or take a little stroll nearby as they will send you a message when your table is ready. We queued for about 30 minutes.

Sunday Folks

The wood and copper interior gave an elegant feel to the cafe, making it a great place to hang out, or to impress a first date.

Sunday Folks

Everyone comes here for waffles
Waffles are a must here. So just pick a flavour from the six available, and decide if you would like any extra toppings to go with. And patiently wait for it to arrive.

Sunday Folks

Lazy to queue? Get a take-out in a chocolate cone :)
The freshly churned soft serve comes in six flavours – Earl Grey Lavender, Summer Strawberries, Roasted Pistachio, Madagascar Vanilla, Seasalt Gula Melaka and Dark Chocolate.

Sunday Folks

This must be the prettiest soft serve cone I have ever seen to-date.

Sunday Folks

The cafe also serves a range of cakes baked in-house such as Japanese Matcha Cake and Tokyo Yuzu Cheesecake, as well as coffee brewed with beans by local roaster Liberty Coffee.

Sunday Folks

With such a whimsical tap, Sunday Folks makes drinking tap water seem cool.

Sunday Folks

Eagerly awaiting our waffles…the smell of freshly baked ones were simply intoxicating…faster!! :D

Sunday Folks

Waffles come with standard toppings of strawberries and blueberries, and you can choose additional toppings from the mind-boggling variety available at the bar counter. Just a word of caution – don’t go overboard, or you may end up with a very impressive-looking $50 dessert LOL.

Sunday Folks

Enjoying his waffles

Sunday Folks

We ordered an earl grey lavender soft serve with an additional Matcha Nama Chocolate topping. We enjoyed the distinct lavender flavour and it went very well with the crisp eggy waffles which never seemed to lose its crispy texture.

Sunday Folks

We ordered an additional scoop of Dark Chocolate as well. I would have tasted all six flavours if my friend didn’t start protesting :p I will be back, Sunday baby.

Sunday Folks
Add: 44 Jalan Merah Saga #01-52, Chip Bee Gardens, Singapore 278116
Tel: 6479 9166
Email:  info@sundayfolks.com
Opening Hours: Tue – Fri: 1:00PM – 10:00PM; Sat – Sun: 12:00PM – 10:00PM; Last Order 9:30PM
Website: http://www.sundayfolks.com
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/sundayfolks.singapore

Getting There
Take Exit A from Holland Village MRT. Walk across the public carpark towards Chip Bee Gardens. Walk out of the small road in the middle of the carpark, turn left and walk up the slope. Sunday Folks is about 3 to 4 shops down.