In a few hours, we would have tied up an entire year of good, bad and blah eats. 2015 has been pretty darn fantastic. I’ve been eating well in Bali, Penang, KL, Tokyo and even Yangon.
But some of the best meals I’ve had were in Singapore. This includes new restaurants like Alma, Maca, Little Island Brewery and my usual favourites Artichoke and Mrs. Pho.
Today, on a super random day that happens to be the last day of 2015, Daryl suggested Carvers & Co for lunch. “What a pretentious name for a place. Trying too hard to be hipster much?” I said apprehensively. Then he clicked on the website and the pink roast on the landing page won my heart. 😉
Our meal was simple. And by simple, I do mean only a sweet potato chips with salted egg yolk mayo, burger, fish & chips, and this fantastic dessert called the crack pie (yes of Momofuku fame).
The chips were liberally sprinkled with cinnamon and the sweetness proved a great match with the sharpness of the mayo (which really didn’t have a salted egg yolk taste).
Char is so important because of the smokey flavour it imparts to the meat and I’ve never had a burger with this crucial element. This rich component is even more delicious with the homemade ketchup. Who even makes ketchup these days? These fellows really know what they’re doing.
Good fish and chips are hard to come by in Singapore. Two elements make the ideal English favourite – batter & freshess. Their batter was crisp and stayed firm, allowing me to pick up the whole slab for tartare sauce dipping. The fish was so fresh, flakey and tasty. Impressive.
Dessert. Crack pie. Addictive stuff really. I checked out the recipe and the ingredients seem simple enough – milk, butter, sugar. If I can make this, it will be amazing. Crack pie all damn day baby.
Oh and did I mention, the coffee is one of the best I’ve had.
Allow me a second to take a deep breath and realise that I have just stumbled upon a rare find.
Carvers & Co, we might be best friends sooner than you think.
Carvers & Co
43 East Coast Road
Blessed are those hungry in appetite, that they be surrounded by great pies and coffee, and cuisine from Indian to Thai, to exotic (think turtle soup!) and the common (McDonald’s), for they shall find culinary comfort day after day.
Yes I am one of those blessed people. And I say this with sincere gratitude to God. No jokes. Where I work, I am spoiled for choice when it is lunch time. Which makes me very excited every single day. Having worked where I’m working for 2 years + now, I have seen eateries come and go. The saddest exit that I still mourn over, is the closure of the Indian coffeeshop just opposite my shophouse office. Sigh.
But as they always say – when one door closes, another one opens. Hell-ya! Since mid last year, so many cool outfits have opened within 1 km of my office. Hurrah! Chye Seng Huat Hardware, Broers, L’etoile, Suprette are some of the gems that I visit quite so often. They’ve been blogged to death so I don’t see a need to expound on how great they are.
But the latest addition to the neighbourhood – Windowsill Pies have gotten me all hot and bothered, in all the right ways so I have to declare my love here!
Pies/tarts are a tricky thing to bake and through my personal attempts (apple pie, kiwi tart etc), I have learnt how difficult it is to get all the pie-components right. For me, a good pie has to have a: crisp crust and base, decent filling (if it’s an apple pie, give me my apples, don’t stinge!), and a good balance of flavours (sweet & salty is my fav combo at this moment. no surprises there). And I’m very surprised that Windowsill Pies does all these to perfection! Many times, I’ve lamented about the lack of good pie shops (it’s sad to have to go to Starbucks or Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf for a pie fix. it’s a coffee joint for goodness sake!) here. Whoever the pie guru behind Windowsill Pies is, I want to salute you. Your pies are a bit pricey ($7.60+ per slice) and I baulked at it first. But once I tasted the first forkful, I was sorry I complained about the price in the first place.
You guys have got it right in so many ways.
Your pies are a huge draw and better yet, your decor – makes me want to come back again and again.
From your wooden larger than life tree, to the side ceiling to floor window area, to your furniture and adorable tree door handle. I wouldn’t mind living in your cafe. This is the exact style I would follow for my own future house. Seriously!
Though I have yet to try their entire repertoire, I am confident that the rest of their pies are great as well. At least that’s what I’ve heard from online chatter.
I did enjoy the two slices I had: The Sam Willows & the Strawberry Lemon Tart. The Sam Willows Pie is ‘a quartet of pear, peanut butter, hazelnuts and rosemary’ (from their site). This is a combination I wouldn’t have thought of myself. Loved the pear and while I was trying to guess the cream layers at the bottom (hazelnut, rosemary and peanut butter), I thought it worked. Like I said – salty, sweet pairings are my current loves. I don’t normally describe pies as fragrant. But this one was. I like sniffing my food. Yes, I’m weird that way but hey I loved the scent of The Sam Willows.
The Strawberry Lemon Tart – if you have a low tolerance for sour, then you shouldn’t try it. Myself, however, I lapped it up like a hungry puppy. I think they used Meyer Lemons (these have a slightly sweet profile, even though it’s lemony sour.) for these. Think of it like lemon curd mixed with tarty sweet strawberry jam. So so good.
Come to this side of the woods if you ever feel like having some good pie. It’s worth a trip I tell you.
As for me, haha, I’m still laughing happily at the convenience of having this place just a stone’s throw away from my office.
78 Horne Road