Alexandra Village Food Centre

2016 | 23 Bukit Merah Lane 1, Singapore 150123

We love hawker centres in Singapore. There are simply so many great and cheap selections! We actually visited Alexandra Village Food Centre twice during our short trip here. All prices are in SGD (1 USD ~ 1.4 SGD).

Format is as follows:
Stall Name
<Plate Colour>: Dish name – Dish description (price) [comment] – rating

Clockwise from top left:

Nasi Padang
<black plate>: Sotong – cuttlefish marinated in spices ($3-4) [The cuttlefish has eggs inside it which gives it an extra boost of flavour.] – 8/10
<black plate>: Otak – fish cake grilled in banana leaf ($1/piece) [The Singaporean Otak has spices mixed into the paste so it appears reddish (as opposed to Indonesian Otak, which is white). Lynn loves this.] – 8/10

Hainanese Boneless Chicken Rice
< 3 red plates>: Set meal for 1 – hainanese chicken rice with soup ($3) [Singapore’s national dish! We love this! The hainanese rice is very fragrant and the chicken is moist and flavourful. We found this to be better than the famous Tian Tian Chicken rice] – 8.75/10

House of Desserts
<white bowl>: Durian chendol – pandan leaves, coconut milk and durian dessert ($2.90) [This is our favourite dessert here. The combination of chendol, coconut milk and durian is just perfect!] – 8.5/10
<white bowl>: Pear fungal – dessert with snow fungus and pear ($1.80) [This is very mild tasting and we couldn’t really taste much of the pear or the snow fungus] – 6/10

Teochew Braised Duck Rice
<2 white plates>: Duck meat with rice ($3) [Average. The meat is on the dry side.] – 6/10

Yong Kee Famous Fish ball noodle
<2 blue bowls>: Mushroom minced meat mee pok – dry chinese style flat noodles with soup on the side ($3/4) [Average. The pork flavour seems to be lacking and the meat is dry.] – 6/10

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Clockwise from top left:

Jin Pai zi Char
<on banana leaf>: Sambal kang kong – stir fried spicy water spinach ($6/8/10) [This is amazing; the sambal tastes homemade and well balanced. The kang-kong is cooked just right and we like that they provided more of the leafy part.] – 8.5/10

Star Yong Kwang BBQ Seafood
<hotplate>: Sambal stringray – spicy banana leaf stingray ($16/20) [Another one of Singapore’s must-try dishes. This dish is the main reason we came to this hawker centre. The stingray meat falls off the bone, they also put in a generous amount of sambal sauce] – 8.75/10
<bottom left white plate>: Cereal prawn – fried prawns with butter and cereal (wheat germ) ($26/38) [One of Lynn’s favourite dishes! We love how buttery and crispy it is] – 8.5/10

Hainanese Chicken Rice
<2 yellow plates>: Steamed chicken rice – hainanese chicken rice with soup ($2.50/3.50) [Average.] – 6.5/10

House of Desserts
<blue bowl>: Grass jelly attap seed – dessert made with Platostoma palustre plant and mangrove palm seed ($1.70) [Average, they used canned attap seed instead of fresh ones] –  6/10

Soon Lai BBQ Fish
<red hotplate>: Black pepper crayfish – stir fried crayfish with black pepper($24/36/48) [The texture and taste is very much like a giant-sized prawn. They used a lot of black pepper (which we love!)] – 8/10

Old Punggol satay
<white plate with brown wax paper>: satay – 3 different types of skewers (chicken, lamb and pork) ($0.60 per stick) [We don’t really like this. They are all chewy and overcooked] – 4/10

Azul@88

Overall taste: 8/10 | 2017 | 88 Wharf St, Milton, MA 02186

+++ = highly recommend | – – – = do not recommend

We were invited here for a complimentary meal, but we remain objective in our review.

Although it’s located in Milton, it’s less than 20-minute drive away from Boston. The view is great and the restaurant has a relaxing atmosphere. Most of all, we really love their tacos! We feel that their tacos are slightly better than the ones from Loco Taqueria & Oyster Bar.

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Guacamole – made to order, corn tortilla chips, smoky salsa ($13) [We like that it’s made to order! Jeff hates cilantro and would like the option to have guacamole without cilantro.]
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Chorizo with melted cheese – chorizo, melted oaxaca & chihuahua cheese, fresh tomatillo-serrano salsa, hand pressed corn tortillas ($12) [Jeff loves the cheese. He pretty much ate the whole thing!]
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+++ Tacos baja – beer battered fish of the day, jicama slaw, black sesame seeds, salsas fresca, cliantro garlic aioli, chipotle aioli ($8) [This is our favourite taco. The fish was fried to perfection and went so well with the accompaniments.]
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Taco de papa y champinones – potatoes, mushrooms, spinach, chile poblanos, raisins, pumpkin seed salsa ($8) [For a vegetarian taco, this was pretty good, but not something we would personally order since we L O V E meat. haha]
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+++ Guisado de puerco o carnetaco – braised beef, roasted tomatilla salsa, crispy sweet potatoes ($8) [The beef was moist, tender and meaty. We also like the crispy sweet potatoes on top!]
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Beef taco azul – deconstructed slow cooked beef brisket, jicama slaw, pickled red onions, limes, corn tortillas ($8) [This is quite similar to the taco above, but we like the combo above more.]
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+++ Tacos al pastor – grilled achiote marinated pork, pineapple, bacon, pickled red onion, soft corn tortillas, salsas fresca ($9) [This is our 2nd favourite taco after their fish taco. We don’t particularly like pineapple in savoury food but the chef managed to make it work here. The pork was also extra yummy and had the right amount of fat.]
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+++ Camarones enchipotlada – shrimps, chipotle-garlic olive oil sauce, mexican rice, black beans ($22) [The picture shown here is the sample portion, not the $22 portion. They were prepared well and were really fresh and plump!]
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Tamal – corn tamales, chipotle shredded pork, mole colorandito ($5) [We are not huge fans of Tamal in general. This reminds us a lot of an Indonesian dish called “lontong”]
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– – – Enchiladas suizas – chicken filled tortillas, creamy tomatillo sauce, chihuahua & oaxaca cheese ($18) [We found this kind of average and we both never liked chicken breast.]
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+++ Churros – cinnamon sugar, chocolate sauce ($8) [We both liked to eat it by itself instead of dipping it in the chocolate sauce. They were still warm when they served it and it was one of the better churros we had.]
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Boca negra – chocolate cake, sweet tomatillo sauce, lime custard sauce ($8) [This was good but we felt that the interior could have been more moist.]
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– – – Flan de caramelo – custard, rich caramel sauce ($8) [We didn’t really like the taste and texture of this flan.]

Click menus to enlarge.

Cochon555 Boston

April 9, 2017 | 540 Harrison Ave, Boston, MA 02118

We received complimentary tickets to attend this event, but we remain objective in our review.

What is Cochon555? In short, it’s a pork-themed feast with free-flowing cocktail, spirits, and wine. Regular tickets are priced at $125pp and VIP tickets are priced at $200pp. We personally do not recommend the VIP tickets. It’s a lot more expensive and the only difference  is you get to go in one hour early. A lot of the stations were also not ready at that time.

There were a lot less pork than we expected. We felt that it was more of a cocktail heaven. There were a lot of selections and efforts were made to make it fun . There were dry ice, test tubes, pipettes, neon light, & for one of our drinks, they let a burnt wood sit in the cup for a few second to create a smokey flavour. We’ll let the pictures speak for themselves.

As for their food selection, not only were there less pork than we expected, the variety was also lacking. There were simply so much pulled pork. We would prefer if they had more interesting cuts of pork (e.g. tail, feet, ear, pork jowl) and more creative preparation methods. Here’s some of the food selection: (from top left to bottom right) head cheese (one of our favourites), deviled egg, soup with pulled pork, pulled pork on bread, pulled pork taco, pulled pork burger, accompaniments (tomato, artichoke, toast), cured meat (salami, prosciutto), chocolate.

Quality-wise, there’s definitely room for improvement. For example, some of the bread was rock hard. As for the burger, the buns were straight out of the fridge,

Here’s our highlight of the day: (from left to right) foie gras pate, pork skewer and truffle butter (and no, we’re not referring to the urban dictionary definition). The foie gras pate was amazing and it was comparable to the ones served in expensive french restaurants. The pork skewer was moist and meaty and was very similar to Chinese char-siu. We also loved the truffle butter! It was silky smooth and had the perfect amount of truffle and salt.

All in all, it’s a very fun event to attend. However, we think it’s more suitable for alcohol lovers than pork lovers.