ICE CREAM CAKES AT CREAMIER
Creamier, one of my favourite ice cream parlours in town, has launched two ice cream cakes this month.
The cakes ($58 for a 20cm cake, good for six to eight people) are not conventional - they are more of a luxe French-style confection with ice cream. Their disc shape also makes them look like giant macarons.
The Azelia Passion is for chocolate lovers. Think rich hazelnut milk chocolate mousse with a refreshing mango passionfruit sorbet centre that is sandwiched between layers of moist chocolate sponge cake. Crushed feuilletine gives the cake crunch.
Opt for the Yuzu Ichigo (above) for a taste of summer. Tuck into strawberry ice cream with vanilla sponge cake and a layer of blackcurrant fruit jelly that is encased in a tangy honey lemon yuzu mousse.
WHERE (TEL): Three outlets - Block 128 Toa Payoh Lorong 1, 01-835 (6250-1476); 5A Lock Road (6262-1087); 78 Yong Siak Street, 01-18 (6221-1076) MRT: Braddell/Labrador Park/Tiong Bahru OPEN: Toa Payoh and Tiong Bahru outlets - noon to 10pm (Tuesdays to Thursdays and Sundays), noon to 11pm (Fridays and Saturdays), closed on Mondays; Gillman Barracks - 1 to 9pm (Tuesdays to Thursdays), noon to 11pm (Fridays and Saturdays), noon to 10pm (Sundays), closed on Mondays INFO: The shop uses halal gelatin. Order at least three days in advance. Go to creamier.com.sg or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
BAR BITES AND MORE AT MISS G'S GRILL & BAR
In January last year, I wrote about a place called Yuki Onna in Far East Square. I raved about its reasonably priced cold truffle somen with scallops.
Well, it has closed, but the owner has since opened Miss G's Grill & Bar, a spacious eatery with both indoor and outdoor seating, round the corner. Miss G refers to its owner Eelin Goh.
The somen is still available here, but there are many more items now. Barachirashi, which includes a Thai version, starts at $8.90. A bowl of minced fatty tuna with an onsen egg and flying fish roe costs $9.90.
Stellar is the tender Iberico pork collar char siew ($10.90 with rice and condiments), which is sous vide for 12 hours before it is grilled and blackened around the edges. Also try the grilled lemongrass chicken with brown rice bee hoon tossed with fried shallots ($8.90) - juicy, fragrant chicken that hits the spot.
In the evenings, it also serves bar bites such as spam fries and uni toast and offers a wide array of alcoholic drinks and sake.
WHERE: 01-01 Far East Square, 44 & 45 Pekin Street MRT: Telok Ayer OPEN: 11am to 11pm (Mondays to Thursdays), 11am till late (Fridays), 6pm till late (Saturdays), closed on Sundays TEL: 9328-4524
WHAT TO EAT AT HOKKAIDO MARCHE
For a taste of all things Hokkaido, head to Hokkaido Marche, a Japanese food hall at Orchard Central.
It opened about three weeks ago and features seven stalls that sell items such as chirashi, donburi, katsu curry and skewered items.
Stand-outs for me include the miso ramen (from $13) from Sapporo Ramen Shirakaba Sansou and the Iberico pork shabu with cold soba ($16) from Soba Maruki.
Miso ramen broth can be thick and heavy, but Shirakaba Sansou's version is robust yet light. It is not cloying and suits Singapore's tropical weather perfectly. There is also a hint of spice, which gives it extra kick.
I love the texture of the soba from Maruki - it is springy and chewy, with a delicate flavour. The shop also sells udon and tempura (from $1 a piece).
You must save space for the Bocca Soft Serve Ice Cream (from $4.20 a serving) from Dot Bar & Cafe - a smooth, clean and creamy soft-serve that will make you coo like a baby after your first bite. Opt for the Berry Parfait ($6.80, left) for something more decadent - soft-serve with a slice of chocolate cake, cornflakes and berry compote.
WHERE: B2 Orchard Central, 181 Orchard Road MRT: Somerset OPEN: 11am to 11pm daily INFO: www.hokkaidomarche.com.sg
GRILLED UNAGI AT UYA
Uya, which opened at Wheelock Place recently, is the latest eatery to offer live grilled eel or unagi here.
The restaurant takes reservations, which beats having to queue for an hour in the heat for the live unagi at Man Man Japanese Unagi (I like the unagi there too) in Keong Saik Road any day, especially when pressed for time.
While the restaurant also serves items such as wagyu bowls ($27) and sashimi rice bowls ($23), it is the unagi here - sourced from Japan or Taiwan, depending on the season - that is the star.
The smoky eel has a perfect char with a nice crust. It is just firm enough - not mushy like the frozen versions you may have tasted. I also love that it comes hot, straight off the grill.
There are four unagi sets that you can opt for, including an unagi rice box ($46), served with salad, soup and pickles.
I like the signature hitsumabushi set ($35 for a medium set, $48 for a large one), a bowl of chopped unagi atop rice which is served with soup, dashi and condiments such as scallions, wasabi and shredded nori.
Eat it three ways-as it is, with the condiments or as an ochazuke (rice with soup) with the condiments and dashi.
WHERE: 02-15/16 Wheelock Place, 501 Orchard Road MRT: Orchard OPEN: 11.30am to 3pm, 6 to 10pm daily TEL: 6732-1096 INFO: www.uya.sg