Food Picks: Dream Shop's smoked burgers and McGuigan Zero non-alcoholic wines

Crispy Berempah Chicken (left) and basic smoked hamburger from Dream Shop.
Crispy Berempah Chicken (left) and basic smoked hamburger from Dream Shop.ST PHOTO: EUNICE QUEK

Smoked burgers from Dream Shop

After offering a premium version of nasi lemak, online store Dream Shop has now rolled out delicious smoked burgers.

I like how chef Jeremy Nguee - who also runs online kueh shop Mrs Kueh and catering company Preparazzi - constantly switches things up to sustain the interest of diners. The dishes are usually well-packed and travel well.

The basic smoked hamburger ($9) comprises a fairly thick single patty of Australian grass-fed beef rolled in a coffee and Sarawak pepper rub. The patty is sandwiched in a Martin's potato roll and includes a spicy salsa with melted sharp cheddar cheese.

The other burger options build on this basic burger base - with flavourful sauces. Raya Rendang ($13) is topped with a spiced sauce made with rendang rempah; while the Buah Keluak Rich Sauce burger ($13) is topped with Batu Lesung Spice Company buah keluak sambal reduced with coconut cream. The spice company is run by chef Nguee as well.

The burgers are not overly sauced, so they do not overpower the beef patty.

Basic smoked hamburger from Dream Shop. ST PHOTO: EUNICE QUEK

The only non-beef option is the Crispy Berempah Chicken ($13), with 100 per cent chilled local chicken thigh, brined and marinated in Batu Lesung Spice Company paste. It is topped with curry mayonnaise, and papaya pickles for extra crunch.

Add on fat fries ($4), spam fries ($6) as well as Mrs Kueh's famous pandan kueh salat ($3.80).

Bigger families can go for the beer and burger bundle ($140), which includes six burgers and a six-pack of beer from home-grown brewery Pink Blossoms Brewing.

Where: Dream Shop, 97 Frankel Avenue

MRT: Kembangan

When: Till June 13, noon to 6pm (self-collection), 12.30 to 6.30pm (islandwide delivery, minimum order of $47), Wednesdays to Sundays; closed on Mondays and Tuesdays

Tel: 6909-6393

Info: Dream Shop's website

Toast to zero-alcohol wines

Don't scoff at non-alcoholic spirits. They are perfect for people like me who, sadly, cannot handle alcohol.

We are also part of the growing market of people who seek more interesting drink pairings that go beyond commercial juice.

I have tried the zero-alcohol beer options and now it is time for the wines from Australia's McGuigan Wines.

The McGuigan Zero range here features sparkling wine, chardonnay and shiraz. Priced at $23 for a 750ml bottle, they are available exclusively at Marketplace and select Cold Storage outlets, or online.

The shiraz falls flat for me, as I was hoping for a more full-bodied red wine alternative.

The zero-alcohol McGuigan Zero range. PHOTO: MCGUIGAN ZERO

However, I like the refreshing and bubbly McGuigan Zero Sparkling, which makes for a good, crisp aperitif to kick off a meal. The chardonnay - with a peachy aroma - will go well with seafood dishes and salads.

To make the wines, McGuigan uses a spinning cone technology which removes the alcohol content at a low temperature. No artificial sweeteners or additives are used in the production process.

The McGuigan Zero range in Australia includes a rose and sauvignon blanc as well, which I would love to try.

Info: Order online at Cold Storage's website