By Alexandra Lin
This small patisserie in the east side of Singapore, tucked away in the neighbourhood of 79 Lucky Heights, rolls out a range of delicate tarts and pastries. The best-selling flavour is the Orh Blanc Tart which is inspired by the decadent French Mont Blanc tart, as well as the richly flavoured local Teochew orh nee dessert. Sink your teeth into this unique tart made with fresh yam and coconut filling atop a crispy buttery tart crust. There are many other interesting flavours to sample too. Recommended for gifting is the tart gift box – which you can fill with eight tart flavours of your choice, from Cherry Crumble to Cognac Caramel Chocolate. Also check out the recently launched Cruffin Boxes with seasonal flavours updated every six weeks.
At this pretty spot along charming Joo Chiat Road, you will find a glass counter lined with pastries and delicate desserts, finely executed with high quality ingredients. Savour Chef Maxine Ngooi’s Beehive ($13), a signature yellow-hued dessert comprising a sphere-shaped hive made of white chocolate shell. Encased within is a combination of lemon, thyme and lychee honey jelly, airy lemon sponge, honey parfait and yuzu mousse. The creation is garnished with a pretty honeycomb-shaped chocolate.
Or, try the pretty Pink Guava and Pear cake ($10) made with pink guava cream and jelly with fresh pear cubes, and elderflower liqueur and pear mousse. Its whimsical decoration mirrors the speckles of colour on the store’s terrazzo counters and tables. Enjoy these delicate items with tea and your day will be complete.
Score a table at local patisserie Luna, located at 53 Amoy Street, which showcases a range of beautifully made cakes. One of the items that’s tailored to local tastes is the signature Orh Nee Cake ($8). This treat is made with vanilla sponge layered with velvety yam ginkgo paste and yam cubes, then topped with coconut Chantily cream, white chocolate pearls and desiccated coconut. Meanwhile, chocolate lovers can zero in on the Luna 2.0 ($9), composed of Valrhona Guanaja 70% chocolate mousse and hazelnut sponge, and topped with a shiny dark chocolate glaze. Textural contrast comes in the form of hazelnuts, salted caramel, hazelnut dacquioise and dark chocolate coated feuilletine.
After browsing at your favourite stores at ION Orchard (#04-11A), make a beeline for The Marmalade Pantry for a caffeine fix. The Gula Melaka Lava Cake ($16) is their local take on the well-loved lava cake, and available exclusively (for dine in) at the bistro’s flagship outlet. The warm spongey lava cake is made with gula melaka, coconut milk and white chocolate, as well as a touch of vanilla and pandan. The molten core of gula melaka is unveiled as you cut into the centre. Enjoy the rich ‘lava’ which is irresistibly caramelised and nutty. Served atop coconut flakes and drizzled with gula Melaka syrup, the cake is accompanied by a scoop of French vanilla ice cream and fresh strawberries. If you like, the menu also has a Salted Caramel Lava Cake with salted toffee sauce and vanilla ice cream.
This Copenhagen-based pastry shop known for modern interpretations of Danish cookies recently launched its official flagship in Singapore. Located at 14 Keong Saik Road, the café’s inviting Scandinavian-inspired setting is perfect for coffee paired with an assortment of signature hand-crafted småkagers. The menu changes seasonally. For now, Leckerbaer’s Christmas Collection features eight new adaptations injected with festive flavours. For instance the Chocolate balanced with tangy calamansi and blackcurrant, and the Hazelnut cinnamon cake piped with lemon meringue. Each småkager is priced at $2.80.
Aside from the Christmas collection, other must-have items are the small bakes such as Dark Chocolate Hazelnut Tart ($8.50) whose crumbly chocolate shell is layered with cherry curd, chocolate brownie and dark chocolate hazelnut namelaka, and topped with hazelnut and caramel pearls. There’s also the Apple Pie Puff ($8.50), a light and airy choux pastry piped with apple custard and fresh whipped cream, and finally topped with more whipped cream and apple compote.
The Lady M Champagne Bar at ION Orchard (#03-32/33) offers a full selection of desserts that are hand-made fresh daily. The outlet-exclusive Champagne Mille Crêpes ($25) is a bubbly-infused rendition of Lady M’s signature mille crepe. It comes with layers of strawberry pastry cream and is complete with a topping of champagne gelee, which is infused with Rosé Première Cuvée Extra Brut Bruno Paillard Champagne for a more distinct red fruit character. Also exclusive to this outlet is the Lady M Afternoon Tea comprising a two-tiered tray filled with bite-sized savouries and cakes. Think: Champagne mille crepes, signature mille crepes, strawberry shortcake, seasonal fruit tart and choux pastry. Available on the weekends, the afternoon tea comes with artisanal tea and champagne ($60 per person, for minimum of two).
Guilt-free cakes anyone? Yes, they do exist. Head to Carrotsticks & Cravings at 5 Stanley Street or 75E Loewen Rd at Dempsey for their ultra-moist carrot cake ($9). This recipe passed down by the Australian founder’s grandmother is lovingly prepared with grated carrots and a touch of cinnamon and vanilla. Studded with chopped walnuts and slathered with cream cheese frosting, this best seller is perfectly balanced in terms of natural sweetness. The menu also includes a Gluten-Free Chocolate Cake ($9) and other vegan and refined sugar-free dessert options.
If you happen to be shopping at Hillion Mall, enjoy the Beary Cute Coconut Dessert (Qing Bu Liang) ($5.90) at The Hainan Story. This popular Hainanese summery dessert typically comprises a bowl of sweet and cold coconut milk, filled with watermelon, pineapple, raisins, sweet potatoes, peas, and jujube. The Hainan Story’s version comes with coconut water, taro balls, red kidney beans, pearl sago, coconut jelly and honey sea coconut, topped with shaved coconut ice. The unique addition here is a cute frozen iced bear, definitely one for the gram. Also check out the new Hainanese High Tea set available daily from 2.30pm to 5.30pm.