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Cafe Culture

Cafe Culture

Featuring One Man Coffee (Upper Thomson), Oriole Coffee + Bar (Somerset), The Lokal, The Refinery, The Bravery Cafe, Chock Full Of Beans, Forty Hands (Tiong Bahru), Toby's Estate, Two Bakers (Jalan Besar), Craftsmen Specialty Coffee (Siglap)
Melissa Chee
Melissa Chee
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I’ve tried the Black Sesame Soy Latte before and I’m glad to say that the standard is consistently good at Craftsmen. The Black Sesame fragrance is strong, and the taste is prominent. It’s mixed nicely with the milk, resulting in an amazingly creamy and smooth beverage. Great for a non-caffeinated drink.

The butterscotch latte is just one of the many creative drinks available at Craftsmen. It indeed tastes of butterscotch, with a pleasant sweetness to balance the slight bitterness of the coffee. Craftsmen has achieved just the right level of sweetness in this beverage, resulting in a pleasant drink to go with your meal, or a nice beverage to have with your friends or family over a catch-up session.

I’ve loved all the drinks I’ve had at Craftsmen Coffee so far and will definitely be back for more and to try the food!

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I was surprised by this when it arrived as it looked more like a soft serve than coconut ice when it arrived. The texture leaned more towards soft serve rather than ice blend too as the ice was really fine, creamy and smooth. I found it a bit weird that there were some ice cubes inside the ice blend though. I’m not sure if that was intentional or if those didn’t get blended properly.

The drink is topped with some coconut flakes, and if you eat the coconut ice on its own it’s extremely coconutty and quite sweet. I recommend mixing some of the ice into the espresso at the bottom to achieve the middle ground of bitter espresso with sweet coconut ice. This blending of flavours was lovely, with none outshining the other. Super refreshing cold beverage with a caffeine kick. I can see myself ordering a main with this beverage whenever I’m at Craftsmen if it weren’t for the astounding number of choices available. I definitely have to visit more to try the other items on the menu.

I admit I was drawn in by the name, plus they serve healthy food which would cater to my health-conscious girlfriend. This was one of the three mains that we ordered to share.

I’m a fan of cafes that smash the avocado for you and have some sort of seasoning inside as it’s easier to spread all over the bread. The smoked salmon and eggs were added at an additional cost, but they really elevated this dish. The lava flow from the perfectly poached eggs coated the zesty spiced smashed avocado, resulting in a luxurious creamy spread. The sourdough wasn’t particularly memorable as it didn’t have much of a tang, but it served its purpose as a vessel for the smashed avocado and wasn’t too hard overall. The smoked salmon added a layer of savouriness to the dish to round off the luxuriant creamy fattiness of the avocado, and really completed the whole dish. I would recommend adding on at least the smoked salmon or some ham to the avocado toast unless you REALLY love avocado as it becomes quite one dimensional and boring after a while.

Carrotsticks and Cravings is a really chill and cute location to spend with your girlfriends or bae along charming Robertson Quay. It is actually much pricier than a regular cafe in my opinion for the quality and innovation of food served, but I guess it’s the location that contributes to its priciness. Pro tip: ask for a table inside, or at least under the building instead of the umbrellas as it gets extremely windy sometimes and stuff starts falling over on the table, plus hearing the umbrellas grate against the wall is not a nice sound or feeling.

Skim milk available at this cute cafe, though their matcha latte wasn’t that fantastic, it was decent. It could do with thicker matcha to balance out the milkiness, but it’s not too sweet fortunately. They have tons of other interesting drinks like Muay Thai Latte (thai milk tea latte) and Sweet Potato latte, among many others. I’m really not sure where this cafe is going as they seem to have a mix of so many East Asian and southeast Asian influences as there’re Chinese, Thai and Korean words around the cafe. Overall, the staff are polite and nice, and it seems like a very quiet spot to spend a weekend afternoon (especially for parents who’ve dropped their kids off for tuition classes).

*FavePay is available at Caffe Pastore!

If you’re looking for some desserts after your mains, or a sweeter start to your morning, try the Waffles & Ice Cream at 6 Letter Coffee. There’s not a whole lot of flavours to pick from, so we got the Belgian Chocolate with this.

There’s also an option to change the waffles to matcha or chocolate waffles (which I wanted to, but completely forgot while ordering!) which cost an additional $2. Thankfully, the regular waffles are pretty good already. This took a while to serve as the waffle griddle was heating up. It’s beautifully plated with two waffles sandwiching a scoop of ice cream of your choice, before being drizzled with chocolate syrup and granola.

The waffles are slightly crisp on the outside, but easy to cut into. We realised that the waffles seemed to be overbrowned on one side, but it didn’t add too much bitterness from the browning, and instead worked well to balance the rich ice cream. The Belgian chocolate flavour was a great choice, as the chocolate was prominent, and there were chocolate chips as well as brownie bits in the scoop. The ice cream doesn’t melt that quickly, so you don’t have to gobble the dessert down, but I recommend pushing it off the waffles so they don’t get soggy.

I think the granola was a nice touch. The additional crunch was so satisfying, but I think the oats could’ve been toasted longer or seasoned more as they still had a strong earthy and powdery taste. Actually, nuts would’ve probably done the same job but I appreciate the effort to add granola on top.

Another item from the Breakfast and Brunch menu - the Arabiki Sausage & Pancakes is a marriage of sweet and savoury in a dish. Two arabiki sausages served with a sunny side up egg on two pancakes, with a garden salad and maple syrup. For some, this savoury-sweet combination is a no go, but I think this worked perfectly for me.

These pancakes are by no means perfectly shaped or as beautiful as many of the other popular cafes, in fact they’re irregular and quite ugly as cafe pancakes go, but they taste awesome and that’s what counts. The top of the pancakes were slightly crispy, and the interiors soft and fluffy. There was a subtle sweetness to the pancake that made it so delicious to eat on its own, even without maple syrup. When paired with the savoury arabiki sausage and egg, I loved the flavour and texture contrast between the sweet and savoury components, but I guess not everyone would.

The garden salad was only a side, but I really enjoyed it because of the creamy green dressing slathered on the crisp greens. Overall not a complex or beautifully plated dish, but well worth the $12.

The classic French omelette is chef’s recommendation under the Breakfast and Brunch menu - note that the Burpple Beyond deals can not be used for these items.

This dish is a classic combination of fine herb, pork sausage and shiitake mushrooms in a buttery custardy egg pillow served with fresh garden salad and butter toasted sourdough. Seriously you can hardly go wrong with such a combination in eggs. The omelette is so cheesy, you gotta dig in quick before it hardens and watch that cheese pull! I think the omelette might have fared slightly better if it were a little less cooked and softer on the inside, but I’m not complaining because taste from the mushrooms, sausage and cheese more than make up for it. I enjoyed loading the omelette up on the sourdough bread, which didn’t have a distinct tang, but was chewy and not too dry.

The garden salad was also great! 6 Letter Coffee uses a green dressing that’s ever so slightly sour, but so addictive when paired with the fresh leafy greens. If there was an option to upsize the salad, I’d probably do it.

*Note: 6 Letter Coffee is GrabPay & FavePay-friendly!

I was really taken by surprise when I tried the coffee here at 6 Letter Coffee. I don’t know what blend of beans they use but it’s out of this world. Extremely aromatic and fragrant, but I wouldn’t exactly call it nutty. The cappuccino is smooth and so so amazing. Note that they don’t have skim milk available here, but soy milk is available at an additional $1 (no other non-dairy alternatives available as of yet).

Perfect for a morning coffee run.

*6 Letter Coffee is FavePay and GrabPay-friendly!

Good quality matcha latte at this little hideout along Tanjong Katong Road. I love how quiet and peaceful it is here on a weekday morning, at least until 10am. The matcha latte is quite thick, with a very slight bitterness. Would rank among one of the better ones and also affordable for a large cup.

So good we got a second slice!

When I went back to place the order, I realised that the remainder of the cake that was on display when I’d placed the first order was already gone and they were cutting a new whole cake at the back which was also quickly being plated. It’s no wonder how come this cake goes so quickly, as every table is almost sure to get at least one piece.

The cheesecake tends to be slightly inconsistent between cakes. I found this second slice to be more gooey, and the cheese interior actually flowed out the other side. The burnt crust this time was thicker and more bitter. It didn’t have the exact same magical feeling as the first piece, but it was really good nonetheless and we wolfed it down.

One of the specials for the week: corn chips and spicy mayo. A seemingly simple appetiser, but took quite a long time to serve as it comes from the kins’ kitchen preparing hot food in the unit next door.

Seriously when this arrived I already regretted spending the $6 on it. I should’ve just gone to a supermarket and bought some nachos and a dip. The spicy mayo dip wasn’t even spicy in my opinion. This was a miss, and I have to say the kins’ menu is on the expensive side. Apart from the burnt cheesecake and exceptional matcha, Houjicha and turmeric lattes, I don’t think the other menu items we tried were worth the price.

Nestled right at the entrance of The Bijou condominium directly opposite Pasir Panjang MRT is the kins’ cafe which has been making waves in the cafe scene with their Burnt Cheesecake.

It’s definitely not the most photogenic, and it defies all the rules of what a cheesecake should be. With its burnt exterior, uneven top, and gooey middle, the basque cheesecake breaks all the rules and remoulds it in its own glory. The slightly bitter burnt crust balances the sweetness and saltiness from the gooey cheese perfectly, resulting in a gastronomical experience of epic proportions. The mouthfeel and delicate balance of flavours is incredible. You really have to try this for yourself and experience the magic of your first bite, and many subsequent bites, first hand.

Note that takeaway is only available for the whole cake as the cheesecake slice will melt, so it’s only suitable to be eaten at the cafe!

Always biding my time to my next meal. Everything in between just serves to kill time.

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