The Providore @ Mandarin Gallery

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The smoked salmon bagel ($15.50) comes with cream cheese, dill and shallot salsa, and watercress. As a die-hard fan of salmon, this sandwich choice is never wrong.

The crab linguini pasta ($26.50) comes with sundried tomato, bird’s eye chili, fresh basil and The Providore’s No. 3 olive oil. Surprisingly, the servings of the crab meat were pretty generous and I need not worry about not saving and scrimping the crab meat for each mouthful of pasta. It’s slightly oily though, but oh well, olive oil is good oil!

I requested for “mocha art” and I got a hard time figuring out if it’s a bear or a pig.

What do you think?

The Providore
Address: 333A Orchard Road, #02-05 Mandarin Gallery, Singapore 238897
Tel: +65 6732 1565
Website: http://www.theprovidore.com/

Book Review – Subhas Anandan – It’s Easy To Cry

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Book Review – Subhas Anandan – It’s Easy To Cry

Subhas Anandan is my personal mentor some time back in 2009 when I was working together with him in KhattarWong. Oh dear, look at this photo I dug out, I totally looked like crap back then!

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What I can share about this Singapore’s best-known Criminal Law Lawyer is that he is an extremely friendly, humble and generous man. We would meet up every morning at the bar room in court, head for hearings, and then for a good buffet lunch either at Furama Hotel or Cricket Club. One of my most memorable work moments definitely.

Today, I’m honoured to share with you about his book, “It’s Easy to Cry.”

In this book, Subhas Anandan (1947 – 2015) wrote about cases where deep and complex emotions are displayed and his thoughts on the many people who have affected him in one way or the other. It is also a searing and honest account of his life, career, and friendships – dictated to his wife in 2014 while undergoing kidney dialysis. Subhas went back to office for two to three hours on non-dialysis days. It’s heartwarming that he encouraged his son to be a good person and do whatever he wants and be passionate about work to have a happy life. Subhas loved his father so much that he planned to switch off his ventilator in the hospital at night instead of seeing him suffering being kept alive with machines. Thankfully, his father saved him from committing that mistake as he passed away in the morning before Subhas could switch off that ventilator. Subhas mother passed away peacefully and he took comfort in the good memories especially the tight hug his mum gave him before she passed on. I’m so happy for Uncle Subhas to have a close knitted family.

Uncle Subhas has inspired me to be brave and think of positive things and just know that your glass is half full and not half empty. When Uncle Subhas thought he was going to die, he romantically said to his wife, Vimi, that “Your face is in every rose and your smile is in every cloud.” Vimi stood by Uncle Subhas and eased him to sleep every night. The lyrics of “If tomorrow never comes” by Ronan Keating spoke his sentiment.

I agree with him that it is in the times of crisis that you know who your friends truly are. This great man spent the time and effort to visit his dear friends in hospitals even though he himself was unwell. One of his friends, Karpal, taught him that “Look, you call, I will come and if I call, you must come.” The bond will never be broken. Sometimes, friends call you only when in need but they never appear when you needed them most. Subhas never blamed them as different people react differently when their friends are sick. Francis was Subhas good friend in university days and thankfully, they had a good catch up time with drinks at a nightclub before Francis passed away due to cancer. Ah Soo, another dear old friend, had dementia but thankfully was still able to reminisce some childhood memories with Subhas when the latter invited him for a gathering of old friends in Deepavali 2010.

He shared a story where a mentally ill caring teacher was sentenced to two months in prison for amending some of her students answers in the PSLE examinations and that sometimes people do things without realizing the consequences of their actions and willingly accept blame so their loved one will not get into trouble. In another story, repentance and promises from Sadayan to reform and turn over a new leaf and take care of his loving father made Subhas felt his work was so meaningful. Every criminal deserves a defence as Subhas did the appeal for a taxi driver pro bono because the taxi driver’s family was unable to pay fees. Subhas lost the appeal but was still touched by their gratitude.

Over the years, Subhas has learnt to be careful with one’s language as one does not know how the other party is going to react. Subhas tried pleasing his mother by going to Loyola college to study but returned to Singapore shortly after because he was homesick and didn’t like the “fine” system there. In another instance, he noticed that the system in Somalian seemed like everyone is always usually late. However, he had an interesting experience in Somalian pulling out pieces if camel, goat, chicken, potato and rice during one dinner.

The most interesting insights I gained is that people could lose more instead of making more money while gambling yet they still want to gamble. Another ridiculous one goes to people who spend thousands of dollars in costs to prove a point and save their faces. It is also an irony that even though there is a clause in the contract with Sunshine Empire that states the return of investment was at the discretion of the company, many investors went ahead due to human greed and wanted quick money. Needless to say, jealousy can lead to violence as Wu, the China bride, stabbed his sister-in-law, Huang due to the absence of love and understanding.

Some last take away points I learnt is that you have to take risks and have faith sometimes. Man should be helpful, not arrogant. People have short memories and very easily you can become yesterday’s hero.

In loving memory of Subhas Anandan (1974 – 2015).

Eighteen Chefs @ Orchard Central

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“Confirmed Heart Attack – 5 Sept to 31 Oct 2016”

I walked into Eighteen Chefs solely because I was really impressed and attracted by this catchy tagline of its current and latest promotion.

True enough, it was a heart attack meal. The fried rice was extremely dark, smoky, hot and fragrant. So good on its own though it could definitely be improved if the grain wasn’t cooked till so hard. Like a bit under-cooked. Look at the knife stabbing that “bloody” chicken that’s beautifully split into half. The hot dogs were soft and the chili’s not bad. You can choose the level of spicyness too! Chicken’s well roasted and tender. I had the beef done medium rare and I loved it because it’s very tender and the perfect texture for me to chew on.

This heart attack meal serves 2, not 1!

Eighteen Chefs (Orchard Central)

Address: 181 Orchard Road #B1-01 Singapore 238896
Tel: 6634 1322
Opening Hours: Monday to Sunday 11.00am to 10.00pm; (last order at 9.30pm)
Website: http://www.eighteenchefs.com/v2/

Parklane Zha Yun Tun Mee House @ Sunshine Plaza

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Parklane Zha Yun Tun Mee House owns two units in Sunshine Plaza, directly opposite each other, and therefore sufficient seating capacity is available almost all the time. As its name suggest, the famous food is the Yun Tun Mee (wanton mee) and Zha Yun Tun (fried wantons).

Noodles wise = quite QQ and springy. Generally cooked quite wet and the dark soy sauce added good flavour to the noodles. I think the char siew’s texture really depends on your luck, sometimes it’s a little hard and sometimes it’s like a tender and soft.

The fried wantons are really crispy but the meat in it’s kind of way too little. So the overall it’s more like just eating the fried wantons skins with minimal and negligible amounts of meat.

Overall, decent food, affordable price.

Parklane Zha Yun Tun Mee House
Address: Sunshine Plaza #01-53 Singapore
Tel: 6835 9212
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Parklane-Zha-Yun-Tun-Mee-232583662096/

The Coffee Academics @ Scotts Square

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At The Coffee Academics, I instantly like the one page dinner set menu that’s presented to me. It’s one of those dinners where I don’t have to spend too much time and energy choosing and flipping a thick menu and be so spoilt for choices. Simple is good. Fast and decisive.

Appetiser: The starter is a Tomato Bruschetta consisting of toasted sourdough bread topped with marinated tomato, basil, shallot and  balsamic reduction. The chopped tomatoes and its accompanying ingredients matched the crunchy and well toasted bread as every bite just got more appetising and you’d realise it’s all gone into the mouth and stomach within seconds.

Main: The smoked duck thai curry pasta is very spicy to me. It’s basically tagliatelle pasta coated with creamy red curry sauce and served with seared, smoked duck slices and baby spinach. As true as it’s picture, the duck’s very tender, fragrant and enjoyable. The pasta thickness is kinda thicker than the usual common ones and I loved it because of that. It’s quite rare to have this combination and I give it two thumbs up!

Main: The philly cheese steak sandwich is kind of average to me. It consists of grilled steak served with toasted ciabatta, caramelized onions, red bell peppers and cheddar cheese. It also comes with a side of mesclun salad and yummy curly fries. I personally find this overall dish quite common so it didn’t leave much impression on me.

Drink: The hot chocolate cocoa is very thick and definitely to my liking. I requested for “latte art” and the staff suggested a bear and a swan. Not too bad, simple, but still nice.

The Coffee Academics Singapore
Address: 6 Scotts Road, Scotts Square Level 2, Singapore 228209
Tel: 6538 1940
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheCoffeeAcademicsSg/

The Workbench Bistro @ Blk 332 Ang Mo Kio Ave 1

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I’m a north-ie and the Ang Mo Kio area is one of my favourites.

Today, I visited The Workbench Bistro to try their latest new addition and signature egg lava beef burger ($16.90). This huge burger holds a juicy donut beef patty with a half boiled egg in the middle. It’s topped with the most sinful yet irresistible grilled  bacon and cheese. With the fries alongside, it’s a perfect high calorie deal.

That aside, I like their crab meat linguine ($15.90). It’s full of lumpy jumbo crab meat in white wine and light tomato cream sauce. Appetising and lovely.

The meal is complete with fruit beer and PCY is happy!

The Workbench Bistro
Address: Blk 332 Ang Mo Kio Ave 1 #01-1881 Singapore 560332
Tel: 6452 0810
Website: http://workbenchbistro.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/theworkbenchbistro/