Sunday, February 03, 2008

Dessert 'Wars'

Sometime ago, i blogged about this dessert place which i visited with Cece. It's actually called 'CANELE' and it is @ Paragon.

Canele, must go!!

Our first dessert @ Canele

We went back the 2nd time a few weeks back and were once again treated to the delighted desserts. This time, we tried the mains as well.

When we reached the Patisserie, we were a tad disappointed coz there didn't see to be any seats. But we were lucky, we managed to find a two seater amidst squeezy tables. You see, the shop space aint very big, it prolly only has about 12 relatively small tables. Half the shop space is being devoted to their display of slices of cakes, small chocolates and biscuits. Even the kitchen looked rather small aswell it's a wonder how the chefs cook inside.

Anyway, whilst deciding which mains to order, we looked around us and saw two group of girlfriends and their orders. One group ordered this sandwich which has a sunny side up egg and looked damn delish, the other group also ordered a sandwich and some cakes, didn't looked very exciting. So Cece decided that she had to have the sandwich with the sunny side up. As for myself, i went with the chicken stew coz i was craving for some comfort food.

When our orders arrived, we weren't disappointed. The sandwich Cece ordered was definitely yummilicious. The sunny side up was just one part of the sandwich, the rest of the ingredients inside, which were 3 slabs of slightly fatty ham were to die for. I'd order that sandwich the next time we visit the place. Cece already mentioned that she was gonna order that same dish. I am sure it must be damn good.

Cece's sunny side up sandwich

As for my chicken stew. It was delicious. Absolutely the comfort food which i needed. It has loads of vege like carrot, broccoli and bite sized chicken pieces. There were no potatoes, but the potatoes i gathered, were mashed and cooked into the soup. Very tasty. The stew comes with 3 slices of crispy baguettes! Nice combi! If Ann was there, she'd sure to say 'Cuqee Pok Pok'!

My chicken stew

We were also ambitious and were determined to try a new crepe. We ordered the Exotique and Lo and behold, it was excellent. It was even better than the one we tried the first time!! The presentation looked similar. nutella was spread onto the thin crepe which was folded into a big quarter. It was topped with whipped cream, super thin wafers, caramelize banana and passion fruit/banana sorbet. Everything mixed together nicely. We had our dessert craving satisfied!

our first crepe Nogat-something, cannot remember the name.

the very yummy Exotique!!

We seemed to be on a dessert eating mood these days, so after watching Sweeny Todd last night, Cece, DH and me headed down to 2am dessert. Having read about this hunt somewhere, i had wanted to go for the longest time. It's got pretty rave reviews and the fact that it opens till 2am in the morning, i guess there's no better time to check out than last night.

We had a hard time finding the place because the idea of heading down to this place came only halfway when we were having dinner, i only remembered the name, but have no recollections of the address.

Nevertheless, we asked around (coffee bean, 7-Eleven no one seems to know about this dessert hunt!!?) so i had to call on the help of my bro who checked the web for the address. We had to walk to the other end. It's actually at 21 A Lor Liput, on the 2nd floor near the new carpark, right at the end. We were happy to finally find the place so we went upstairs.

The decor was cosy and nice. Black and white theme, soothing lights and no frills cement floors. There's a lounging area which is by the glass windows, the middle area is made up of 2 single long tables with quite a number of tall white leather single sitting chairs. Then there's the bar area, where you can get your tea/coffee/alcohol prepared and served in front of you.

This place is definitely bigger than Canele, but the menu is rather limited. The dessert selection was prolly about 15 and the mains were less than 10. They serve lots of wine, alcohol, champagne, coffee and tea. The explanation of the food items were rather general, it's really hard to imagine what you are going to get when you order. So we asked for recommendations.

We were recommended Twix and Tiramisu. I was a little dubious of Tiramisu as it's such a common dessert these days and i haven't exactly tasted a really good one for sometime. However, we went ahead with the recommendations and we were not disappointed.

When the food arrived, the waiter actually explained to us what the dish is made up of and what's the best way to eat it.

Twix i guess mirrors the sweet candy snack which we get in supermarkets or convenience stores. The yellowish brown slice you see is actually caramel cake/mousse, i forgot.. but it's really soft and melts in your mouth. The crumbly bits are actually peanut bits, but don't really taste like it. and the ice cream, it's a bitter chocolate ice cream with chocolate shavings. It's really quite bitter, i guess it's to compliment the caramel slice. To me, i think it's so so only. Though presentation and idea wise, it's really cool.


The tiramisu is just nice. The cream, the cake soaked in alcohol was not overwhelming. cake was soft and had soaked in enough but not so strong alcohol, and eaten with the light fluffy cream, it just melts in your mouth and you can continue to eat it easily. Not too sweet, just nice. It's served with two smallish cubes of kaluwa jelly which looked like 'tofu'. i think the cubes were too small to even taste the flavour which is a pity. And that melting scoop you see at the side is an expresso ice cream. You definitely can taste and smell the expresso when you put it in your mouth. It's quite strong.


Then came 'Mudslide'. What's your impression of mudslide seriously? My idea was this brown colour cake with cream and ice cream on top. that's about it. As such, when the dish arrived, i was pretty amazed. This turned out to be the best dessert we had from 2am. It's close to molecular gastronomy i guess. Mudslide in fact is actually cheese cake, not served in the form of cake but in the form of cream, biscotti that is loaded with dried fruits and nuts, with a small tiny bit of honey comb (it is ultra small indeed), some nuts, figs and rock melon.

The creamy cheese 'cake' compliments the biscotti very well as with the fruits. pity to say, i can't really see the connection between the honey comb and the whole dish, it's too small to even be savored. It's quite a pity coz natural honey comb does pack in the sugar, but can't taste it in this dish, maybe coz the 3 of us shared all the dessert. the honey comb was too small to be shared (by the way, if you can spot it, it's that tiny bit of goldish brown on the left of the pic. Also, this is prolly the richest dessert we had from the shop. It gets gelat when you finish the biscotti.


Then we had our final dessert called 'blackberry'. I wanted to try this because it says in the menu 'lychee foam' and i started to think about the El Bulli episode from Antony bordain's show. They had this carrot foam thingy and i wanted to know how lychee foam tasted like.

The dish was served by the chef. He walked us through how to eat the dessert. The dessert came with a sprig of Thyme in a beaker. You are supposed to take a bite of the blackberry (which is hidden from the photo) and then smell the thyme and then eat the blackberry again. It's supposed to enhance the flavour. We tried that but hmm.. don't really smell or taste the difference. The purplish half ballies are actually made with blueberry. there was 2 small scope of lychee sorbet and 3 rose petals. Some basil sauce and 3 small cubes of cake. It's gastronomical i must, but pity i can't exactly appreciate it coz it didn't blow my mind. As for the lychee foam hmm.. there wasn't much left after the explanation of how to eat the dessert.


So the battle of the dessert wars, who wins?

I'd definitely go to Canele anytime when i have a craving for dessert. The price is comparable to 2am, but it makes my money worth spending. Not only coz my sweet tooth is satisfied, i leave the shop tummy satisfied as well. For 2am, i'm visually satisfied. The presentation is noteworthy and kudos to the staff and chef for explaining what's the best way to eat the various dishes, but it's a pity i just don't see the reason to go back again. Given that we have had 4 out of like the 15 dessert and the mains didn't seem appealing. Though if you'd like to nuah more than having your sweet tooth conquered, 2am's a good place to go and just lounge.

Then again, perhaps i am not ready for molecular gastronomy as i thought i was.. hmm..

By the way, for Citibank cardholders, if you order two desserts at 2am dessert, you'd get a free glass of Hungarian white wine. It may not compliment some of the desserts your order, but it's a good deal. So remember to bring your Citibank Credit card! Oh, on the menu, there is also recommendations for the wine suitable for your dessert. Nice touch.

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