THE DARK GALLERY
Chocoholics will be delighted to know that a new artisanal chocolate boutique and cafe has opened at Millenia Walk, offering dark chocolate desserts and drinks.
The Dark Gallery focuses on dark chocolate, with its signature goodies made using couverture chocolate sourced from gourmet chocolate brands such as Valrhona and Cacao Barry, as well as other small-batch bean-to-bar chocolatiers.
The chocolate rhapsody ($18) comprises a scoop each of its signature dark, milk and white chocolate ice cream on a bed of crunchy chocolate "soil", surrounded by dollops of chocolate mousse, crispy chocolate meringue and cacao tuile.
To try an assortment of its sweets, go for the single origin chocolate pastries platter ($12), made up of two 64 per cent Madagascan chocolate macarons; a tartlet filled with 66 per cent Ecuador dark chocolate ganache; a housemade s'more of molten 70 per cent Dominican Republic dark chocolate on torched marshmallows and graham crackers; and a mini trifle of 72 per cent Venezuelan dark chocolate mousse, caramelised bananas, brownie chunks and whipped cream.
Wash it all down with a cup of the cafe's hot chocolate ($7) or iced chocolate ($8).
Where: 01-K5 Millenia Walk, 9 Raffles Boulevard
Open: 11am to 9.30pm daily
Info: Call 6255-0368 or go to www.thedarkgallery.com
KARA CAFE AND DESSERT BAR
This chic cafe is opened by Ms Lee Li Ping, who founded Sogurt, a self-serve frozen yogurt chain, in 2010. It serves both sweet and savoury treats.
On the menu are comfort foods such as classic grilled cheese sandwich ($10.50) and Kara homemade soup ($6), as well as hearty grain bowls such as pork belly miso ($16) with fork-tender kakuni braised pork belly, soft egg, ramen crisps, cucumber edamame salad, miso cream and nori atop a choice of Japanese steamed rice or quinoa.
Sogurt soft-serve offerings are also available, with classic flavours such as Original and Dark Chocolate ($3.20 for 100g) and novel flavours such as maple lavender and strawberry thyme.
Patrons can deck their yogurt out with a variety of toppings. There are new artisan choices such as sesame puff pastry sticks, cacao nib sables and salted gula melaka sauce.
Hot desserts such as Cacao Mochi Waffle ($12.50) and Skillet PB Cookie ($15, above), a peanut butter batter cookie baked in a skillet and topped with a softie swirl and gula melaka, are also available.
Where: 617 Bukit Timah Road
Open: 10.30am to 10.30pm daily
Info: Call 6468-8940
JIAKPALANG EATING HOUSE
The name of this casual modern eatery is a playful take on the Singlish term "chapalang", which refers to the random mixing and matching of things. The word "jiak" is Hokkien for eat.
As its name suggests, Jiakpalang experiments with local flavours and puts its own spin on zi char favourites.
One signature dish is the Ang Ji Kao stout-braised beef cheek ($17) with crunchy peanut butter mash and Nashi pear. Ang Ji Kao is Hokkien for red-tongued dog, the iconic mark of stout brand Guinness, and the common term used by local Chinese men to refer to the beverage.
Other highlights include sesame soya chicken ($6.90) with marinated wood ear fungus and pomegranate; and Nonya assam salmon ($8.90) with pineapple salsa, eggplant and okra.
Here, the iconic Milo dinosaur has been turned into a dessert of Milo panna cotta with Milo crumb powder ($8, above).
Where: 01-06 Fragrance Empire Building, 456 Alexandra Road
Open: Mondays to Fridays, 11.30am to 3pm (lunch), 3 to 6pm (tea - drinks, cakes and bar bites are served), 6 to 10pm (dinner)
Info: Call 6266-8511 or go to www.facebook.com/Jiakpalang/
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