Vegetarian

Vegetarian

Featuring Lucky Cat, Infinite Happiness
Xing Wei Chua
Xing Wei Chua

Specialty cafes are pretty much of a common find these days — that has been so given how the third-wave coffee movement had hit the shores a number of years back with cafes sprouting up all over the island. That being said, specialty cafes serving up vegan/vegetarian fare is a tough find — Lucky Cat is one of such places that had opened its doors at Hougang Community Club serving up vegan/vegetarian items alongside specialty coffee.

There are really quite a number of items that caught our eyes which we also ended up ordering, including the Konjac Salmon Sashimi and Maki options that are on the menu. Not having had Monkey Head Mushroom before, this was a main that I found to be especially satisfying — prepared upon order, the Yangnyeom Monkey Head Mushroom Don essentially features nuggets of fried mushrooms tossed in a Korean sweet sauce, served atop a bed of short-grain rice with greens on the side. Absolutely loved how well-sized the morsels of mushrooms were sized; gave enough bite and carried a bouncy texture, whilst crisp on the exterior with the batter not being too thick nor thin — the Yangnyeom sauce being aptly sweet without being in any way spicy though came with a slight tang that kept things refreshing and made the whole bowl pretty easy to have. Coupled with the pearly short grain rice, the leafy greens helped to strike a balance and kept the bowl hearty. The entire package was something I felt pretty easy to accept, and is definitely something I would not mind having again if I ever cross paths with Monkey Head Mushroom dishes some day.

Lucky Cat do also serve up a pretty wide variety of beverages often found in specialty cafes — think bottled Cold Brew and even special concoctions such as Espresso Lemon Tonic and Cereal Coffee Cream; a spot worth checking out if you are a caffeine junkie especially even for those who are not too much into having vegan/vegetarian fare.

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Guess one think good about being relatively near Fortune Centre is the fact about having a myriad of vegetarian establishments to visit for lunch, given the abundance of such options in the area.

Infinite Happiness is one of the slightly newer options in the area, having opened their doors not too long ago at Level 1 of Fortune Centre right across from Killiney Kopitiam. The hole-in-the-wall is probably best known for their vegetarian fried chicken that looks almost like it is being served from a fast food establishment but the said dish was a special run which had since been out of the menu.

Found myself going for the Cha Siu Rice — takes a while given it’s a one-man operation but one could totally tell how he is simply passionate about the craft; so much there is actually two options of “doneness” for it, being “original” and “crispy”, which he recommends the latter. Going for the “crispy”, I could see why this is easily preferred; while usual vegetarian char siew lacks a variance of texture, I quite enjoy how the variant here comes with a slight char around the crisp edges — provides a bit more bite than the usual vegetarian char siew we are used to. Liked how he is also so generous with the cucumbers and the sauce; pretty sure there are actual roast meat specialty stalls that are more stingy with the sauce around — the sauce here comes with just a very mellow sweetness that strangely only runs at the back of the tongue; nothing too overwhelming though still clearly more of vegetarian dish and is different from the usual punchy savoury notes of the sauce in the variant that features actual meat served everywhere else. There again, he also mentions that he does not use white sugar and MSG in the preparation of this dish — definitely sounds like something healthier. The chili on the side is pretty much the same that is served with Hainanese chicken rice — that same zippy concoction that provides a spicy kick that tingles the tastebuds; those with lower tolerance to spiciness are warned!

A dish that surprises for those who are open to trying a vegetarian variant of a dish with zero expectations from the usual meat-based item.

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