Monday, November 26, 2007

Waraku @ East Coast: First and Best

The first launch of Waraku at East Coast in year 2000, kick-started it's business to the many more branches today.

We were greeted by these interesting Tatami seats upon entering the reserved room. They weren't the traditional Japanese ones however, because I guess Singaporeans wouldn't want to kneel down in front of their food. So, Waraku improvised the Tatami seats by having a hole underneath the table, and the customers could slot their legs in and sit like on a normal chair. After all, Singaporeans want to eat in comfort.

Gyu Yanagawa Wazen

Gyu Yanagawa Wazen,   S$16++,   

This set comes with simmering raw beef, a raw egg to be put in, a bowl of Udon, rice, and potato salad. An interesting dish we would say. The beef was fresh and juicy when being brought out; with the add of an egg in it, it was heavenly. The Udon was the usual, nothing much about it. The potato salad was really nice, fresh and sweet - sure an appetiser to start with.

Gyu Yanagawa Wazen
The yummy beef when cooked.

Cha Soba

Cha Soba,   S$9.80++,   

Texture, thickness and elasticity of these cold noodles were perfect. The Soba sauce, with a dip of it, simply brought out this Cha Soba's very best. One bite and you will know. Excellent!

Potato Mentai

Potato Mentai,   S$8.80++,   

Potato slices, topped with baked cheese and a piece of butter, made this one of the very popular side dish here. However, the potato slices were rather raw, and we felt this dish could be better if the potatoes were softer.

Gindara Teriyaki

Gindara Teriyaki,   S$11.80++,   

Small small piece of cod fish steak, heated on a claypot with slow fire. It was good - nice and warm as it entered our mouths, but the quantity we got wasn't really worth the S$11.80++.

Matcha Ice Cream Cake

Matcha Ice Cream Cake,   S$6.80++,   

More like "Ice Cake" to us. No taste of "Matcha", no presence of "Cream", just little ice bits in the shape of a cake. The corns and red beans didn't integrate in well either.

Dorayaki Ice Cream Tempura

Dorayaki Ice Cream Tempura,   S$5.80++,   

You have the eat this quick - else the ice cream would melt to a horrible state in no time, (because of the warm fried outer Dorayaki,) and when you try to pick it up with that small feeble toothpick, everything falls down into a clumsy plop.

Cha Soba was the best bet of the day; the set meals were the value for money ones, with portions enough to feed 2 not-very-big-eaters; and the desserts were below average. All in all, Waraku serves good authentic Japanese food, in a friendly dining environment, suitable for everyone - couples, friends, and families.

Waraku - East Coast
Waraku - East Coast
1020 East Coast Park Way, S(449878)
(+65) 6242 1123
Mon - Sun: 11.30 a.m. - 11 p.m.


Saturday, November 17, 2007

Vienna Buffet: Could Be Cheaper

Vienna International Seafood & Teppanyaki Buffet Restaurant on a Saturday afternoon.

Once you get your butts settled down, you'll be immediately served with a bowl of Buddha Jumps Over the Wall (which you can get more from the buffet), and a cup of complimentary drink, with fruit juices and soft drinks to choose from.

Vienna International Buffet
The buffet area has an wide array of mouthwatering food ranging from Chinese, Western, Japanese to Italian cuisines.

Mixed Platter

(From the top, and clockwise down:) Peking Duck, Cha Soba, Sushis, Fruit Salad, Cheese Scallops, Smoked Salmon, Grilled Unagi



I thought that the Teppanyaki was very good, especially the salmon and dory fish. They were grilled to the right amount of crispyness and tenderness, leaving fresh fish juices in your mouth. The rest of the meats: chicken, beef, lamb, and shisamo were like just any other Teppanyakis - nothing really special. There's beansprouts and vegetables too, but it's advisable to get those in moderation. Because after half a plate, you will get pretty tired of chewing the hard and tangled vegetables.



Only the fresh oysters, prawns and crayfish were worth the eat. Others, either the meat is quite rough and musty, or you fight through a lot to get a small piece of not-really-worth-the-fight meat.

Vienna International Buffet
I like the way Vienna presented their buffet servings. Small and delicate - it makes eating them easy and enjoyable, and you will still have the stomach space to go for other varieties.



Generous portions of whole cakes simply ruled the desserts section.



I'm spoilt for choices over the variety I get. However the seafood section, (which is the most expensive section,) wasn't really fantastic. And somehow, I felt that the buffet price could be a tad lower.

Vienna International Seafood & Teppanyaki Buffet Restaurant
Vienna International Seafood & Teppanyaki Buffet Restaurant
#B1-01, United Square
101 Thomson Road, S(307591)
(+65) 6254 6686
Mon - Sun: 11.30 a.m. - 10 p.m.

Buffet Lunch:S$27.80++ (Weekdays)
S$29.80++ (Weekends)
Buffet Dinner:S$34.80++ (Weekdays)
S$36.80++ (Weekends)


Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Sun with Moon: Wrong Dishes Probably

Have been so tempted to try Sun with Moon for a very long time, and today we are going to satisfy it.

Salmon Avocado Sushi

Salmon Avocado Sushi,   S$8.50++,   

The appetiser came later than our main course, and it ended up as a side dish instead. These five sushis sat side by side (in a single file) on a very long plate, which was nicely placed between us without sacrificing much table space; easy for sharing too.

The taste of salmon and advocado weren't very obvious, but they blended in well with the sushi rice and japanese fish's eggs. The mayonnaise runs in graceful thin streams on top of the sushis, giving them a tang, and at the same time, doesn't cast the sick aftertaste of those overused mayo.

For main course, both of us settled for their house specialty, kamameshi, which is known to us as "claypot rice" in local context.

When the sand in the hourglass runs out, the kamameshi is ready to be eaten.

Yakiniki Kamameshi

Yakiniki (Beef) Kamameshi,   S$14.80++,   

Tasty and richly beef flavoured rice in a hot steaming pot. The tamago (egg) made the rice stick together, and it highlighted the aroma of the kamameshi. Delicious, but not exactly near heavenly. It didn't deserve a squeal of "Oishii" from me.

Pork Kurabi Kamameshi

Pork Kurabi Kamameshi,   S$14.80++,   

The reason I chose PORK Kurabi Kamameshi, because I was picturing a completely different kind of pork. You know, those thinly sliced, lean pork (艘肉), if done well, can actually taste much better than chicken. But this dish turned out to be a total disappointment. 90% of each pork slice is made up of yucky fats, and only 10% is our so-called MEAT. I ended up spending my time separating the fats away, so I could chomp on some pathetic shreds of meat. After about 4 slices, I gave up. The rice here wasn't good either - it tasted almost as bland as plain rice. A complete turn-off!

Kaki Bacon Yaki

Kaki Bacon Yaki,   S$12,80++,   

Not being a fan of oysters, I'm not in a position to really judge this. But according to Lionel, it was quite nice. Crispy on the outside, succulent and juicy in the inside. I got sick after eating the first one, and soon I was picking out the bacon and spinaches underneath the oysters.

Matcha Tiramisu

Matcha Tiramisu,   S$5.50++,   

Dessert was the best thing of the day. Priced reasonably, this Matcha Tiramisu really does leaves sweet sensations in our taste buds. The fluffy cheesy goodness from the traditional tiramisus was retained, the expresso part was taken out, and a new kind Japanese matcha twist was added into it.

Expectations fall short - Perhaps the picture was painted too well with so many beautiful reviews of this restaurant, making the real thing taste poorer than what we expected. Or perhaps we just happened to order the wrong dishes. However, we wouldn't mind a second visit.

Sun with Moon Japanese Dining & Café
Sun with Moon Japanese Dining & Café
#03-15/16/17, Wheelock Place
501 Orchard Road, S(238880)
(+65) 6733 6636
Sun - Thur: 11.30 a.m. - 10.30 p.m.
Fri - Sat: 11.30 a.m. - 11 p.m.