For Coffee Snobs

For Coffee Snobs

For those sick of the trite blend of beans that seemingly all the cafes in Singapore use.
Evan Mua
Evan Mua

Consider this Afro cafe in Keong Saik for your next coffee date, the second storey is a gorgeous space โ€” chic and full of personality, with a touch of understated glamour. And more importantly, great coffee โ€” though not quite in the same vein as your typical specialty coffeehouse.
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Their selection of coffee is diverse and unique, with plenty of African influences. Moreover, many would be charmed by their special Ubuntu blend's full-bodied and intense character, finished with subtle chocolate notes.
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This ๐— ๐—ฎ๐—น๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ฑ๐—ถ ๐—น๐—ฎ๐˜๐˜๐—ฒ ($6) was a charming display of their esotericism. The hokkaido milk made it dreamily creamy, but not at all cloying. A medley of spices including cardamom, cinnamon and nutmeg added a complementary spice-forward complexity to the coffee, but in a tastefully-restrained ratio that would still endear to less adventurous palates.
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[๐˜พ๐™๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™–๐™ฉ๐™ค๐™ฌ๐™ฃ] ๐™†๐™–๐™›๐™š ๐™๐™ฉ๐™ช
๐Ÿ“ ๐Ÿญ๐Ÿฎ ๐—๐—ถ๐—ฎ๐—ธ ๐—–๐—ต๐˜‚๐—ฎ๐—ป ๐—ฅ๐—ฑ, ๐—ฆ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด๐—ฎ๐—ฝ๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ ๐Ÿฌ๐Ÿด๐Ÿต๐Ÿฎ๐Ÿฒ๐Ÿฑ
โฑ๏ธ Lunch (Wed-Fri) 10am-5pm, (Sat-Sun) 9am-5pm; Dinner (Wed-Thurs, Sun) 6pm-11pm, (Fri-Sat) 6pm-1am; ๐’„๐’๐’๐’”๐’†๐’… ๐’๐’ ๐‘ด๐’๐’๐’…๐’‚๐’š๐’” ๐’‚๐’๐’… ๐‘ป๐’–๐’†๐’”๐’…๐’‚๐’š๐’”

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It's a quaint and cleanly-designed space with access to a rooftop with a good view of Orchard, which makes it great for people watching. I've actually never tried their coffee before, this ๐˜„๐—ต๐—ถ๐˜๐—ฒ ๐—ฐ๐—ผ๐—ณ๐—ณ๐—ฒ๐—ฒ ($5/$6.50) was my virgin Alchemist cuppa.
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I was infatuated with the Dark Matter blend's aromatic chocolate-like nuttiness, which blended seamlessly with the milk to form a concoction that was equal parts robust and milky, and immensely easy to drink.
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It could have maybe done with a touch less milk which left a discernablele milky aftertaste and some fattiness, which I'm not a fan of. It was nonetheless a very enjoyable cup of white โ€” coming from a filter drinker with a general apathy towards whites.
----- ๐‘จ๐’๐’„๐’‰๐’†๐’Ž๐’Š๐’”๐’• (๐‘ซ๐’†๐’”๐’Š๐’ˆ๐’ ๐‘ถ๐’“๐’„๐’‰๐’‚๐’“๐’…)
๐Ÿ“ ๐Ÿฎ๐Ÿฑ๐Ÿฌ ๐—ข๐—ฟ๐—ฐ๐—ต๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐—ฑ ๐—ฅ๐—ฑ, #๐Ÿฌ๐Ÿฏ-๐Ÿฌ๐Ÿญ ๐——๐—ฒ๐˜€๐—ถ๐—ด๐—ป ๐—ข๐—ฟ๐—ฐ๐—ต๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐—ฑ, ๐—ฆ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด๐—ฎ๐—ฝ๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ ๐Ÿฎ๐Ÿฏ๐Ÿด๐Ÿต๐Ÿฌ๐Ÿฑ
โฑ๏ธ (Daily) 10am-7pm

"Hidden gem" gets thrown around a lot but I truly believe this place deserves more attention, especially with their very impressive metamorphosis since rebranding from Dancing Goat .
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Their strength is in great knowledge and taste, which allowed for a finely curated selection. They carry a unique Danish-roasted filter coffee, are one of the few places carrying Nylon roasted beans, and also carry matcha from Kurasu and tea from Antea Social โ€” all places I love. Not to mention knowledgeable and friendly baristas!
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I had a ๐—ช๐—ต๐—ถ๐˜๐—ฒ ($4.50/$5.50 for iced; with #burpplebeyond 1-for-1 available) using an El Salvador espresso roasted by Nylon. Very fragrant, with an underlying nutty profile tinged with chocolate notes, which still managed to find a good amount of balance. Good dose of milkiness that doesn't overwhelm the coffee, while imparting a velvety mouthfeel.
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๐Ÿ“ ๐—•๐—น๐—ธ ๐Ÿฎ๐Ÿฏ๐Ÿญ ๐—•๐—ฎ๐—ถ๐—ป ๐—ฆ๐˜, #๐Ÿฌ๐Ÿญ-๐Ÿฌ๐Ÿฑ, ๐—•๐—ฟ๐—ฎ๐˜€ ๐—•๐—ฎ๐˜€๐—ฎ๐—ต ๐—–๐—ผ๐—บ๐—ฝ๐—น๐—ฒ๐˜…, ๐Ÿญ๐Ÿด๐Ÿฌ๐Ÿฎ๐Ÿฏ๐Ÿญ
โฑ๏ธ (Mon-Fri) 8.30am-6pm, (Sat-Sun) 10am-6pm

Not only do they roast their own beans in house, their roasting is impeccable too; have yet to be disappointed by their coffee.
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The filter brew ($5.50 iced; unfortunately forgot to note the origin) was clean and light on the palate, and shined with a pronounced fruity profile, almost like a deeper caffeinated tea โ€” quite refreshing and enjoyable to sip on. And the charming vibes of their shop front made it all the more enjoyable.
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๐Ÿ“ Block 4, Everton Park, #01-40, 080004
โฑ๏ธ (Wed-Fri, Mon) 8.30am-5.30pm, (Sat-Sun) 9am-6pm

I'm more a filter coffee kinda guy, and while I drink the occasional white, it's not something I gravitate to naturally.
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Tiong Hoe's Latte though, was truly bewitching. It possessed all the qualities that makes a great cuppa โ€” fragrant nuttiness, good balance, velvety mouth feel and a smooth finish. And in a stroke of genius, a beautiful tinge of brown sugar which accentuated the rest of the coffee flavours.
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Getting here is a slight chore, but it's worth the pilgrimage โ€” it's probably one of my favourite artisan cafes, along with the likes of Nylon and Apartment.
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๐Ÿ“ 170 Stirling Rd, #01-1133, Singapore 140170
โฑ๏ธ (Mon-Fri) 8.30am-5.30pm, (Sat-Sun) 9am-4pm

Two complex tasting beverages were deftly blended together into this dirty matcha. It was smooth, flavourful and fragrant, whilst having a good mix of flavours from both components. Beautifully balanced, as all things should be.

This flat white made from single origin Guatemalan coffee was creamy smooth. The distinct nutty notes within the creamy blend made it "almost like peanut butter" as the barista put it.

Cool cups and dainty foam art aside, their Ficardie sure is a gr8 cuppa.
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Its taste profile is mainly that of a sweet fruitiness, mixed with roasted bitterness, and finished with a slight tingle of acidity. The blend is one that's milky with good mouth feel, such that it just sensually caresses your tongue.

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Apartment is a gorgeous cafe that nails the minimalistic look flawlessly; every detail from the decor to crockery carries an eye-catching elegance.
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I'd been delighted with their ever-changing coffee selection on all my visits. The coffees are always full of flavour and a pleasure to slowly sip on, whilst you revel in the serene atmosphere. I especially adore their fruity coffees, like this Agaro Duromina filter coffee that I had a while back.

It is smooth and milky (the hokkaido milk is so good) with the right amount of sweetness and roasted fragrance. Topped with dainty latte art, it is a pleasure to sip.

Wasn't a believer of the hype, but this cup ($8) was actually pretty good and easily one of the better coffees I've had in Singapore.
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Unlike many popular cafes nowadays, the Arabica blend isn't the overly safe balanced kind. I like balanced coffee of course, but sometimes it feels too boring โ€” and lacking a je ne sais quos. Arabica's blend possessed quite a depth of flavour: it had a mix of a deep aromatic nuttiness which was laced with traces of chocolate, and left a lingering hint of fragrant bitterness in the mouth.
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They did well to balance it out with a good dose of rich milkiness, which alleviated some of the heaviness and made it really easy to drink. It also gave it a tad of balance, but not so much that it gets robbed of its full-bodied and robust personality.
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$8 feels a tad steep for iced latte, but it may not be that unreasonable for a popular Japanese brand like this. If you luck into a short queue, it could be worth checking out.

Picky eater looking to force opinions down your throat. Don't worry, they taste up to my standards!

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