Sunday, May 27, 2012

Coffee or tea: 26 May 2012, Starbucks at Rochester

In Hong Kong, there is a Starbucks with interiors modelled after a Hong Kong cafe (click here for the branch); in Singapore, we have one that is housed in colonial black and white house.

I especially like the corridor seats at the second floor.

The next time I come, I will come with a book and of course, a camera.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Dining 'set'

Tulip table; Knoll Bertoia Side Chairs; Kartell- Prince AHA Stools

The tulip table has been my 'dream' dining table. With its clean lines and sleek look, its hard to believe that the design date back to 1950s. For Star Trek fans, do you recall the tulip chairs?

The tulip chairs, to go with the tulip table would of course be a more cordinated look, but I thought the wired chairs would create a more interesting look, together with some cute retro looking stools.

Coincidentally, I saw these 2 pics only after I did the board above. These combinations must have registered in my sub-consious mind while browsing through photos of nice interiors.

Some other chairs which I thought should look nice with the Tulip table.

Magis Vanity Chair; Mademoiselle by Kartell

My only issue... is of course, the cost.

Snow white blossoms at Taipei

My latest trip to Taipei, which happens to be the season of Tung blossom. Click here for full post.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Remembering Tokyo Tower

I happened to read online that 22nd May 2012, i.e., today is the last day of operations of Tokyo Tower. The news came as a surprise to me. A few years ago in my visit to Japan, I made a trip to Tokyo Tower, perhaps because of its resemblance to the Eiffel Tower. I have always wanted to go to the Eiffel Tower, but have yet to make it to that part of the world.

Since its opening in 1958, the Tokyo Tower, standing at 333m, has been the world's tallest self-supporting steel tower. The Eiffel Tower in Paris is 320 m high.

I'm still not sure if Tokyo Tower is really closing, since I did a search online, and did not see other news of its closure.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

At Suguo (舒果), a vegetarian chain in Taiwan

On the last night in Taipei, I made my way to Suguo, a vegetarian chain restaurant. Dinner time was packed but fortunately, I could get a table after about 15 minutes wait.

A waitress came with a menu and left me alone for a few minutes to look through. The restuarant only provides an eight course meal and for most of the courses, you get a few dishes to select from. Although I made up my mind of what to have pretty fast, the waitress learning that it was my first time here, went through the menu and selection for different courses in rather great details. Click here for the menu. 

Food was served promptly despite it being a busy night for the restaurant.

 A very refreshing and creative appetiser

It really looked as pretty as the photos in the menu!

 Rosemary bread with a dip
 fruit salad with yogurt dressing

Burdock with cashew nut clear soup, with a natural, sweet taste
By now, I'm actually starting to feel full, although the salad and soup I chose are supposed to be the lighter choices.
main course: mushroom with potato

Even the main course is displayed with such exquisity. Of special mention by the waitress is the little purple pear (on the right), infused with roselle.
These looked too cute to be eaten.

The waitress 'pre-warned' me that as the mushroom was cooked in an Italian floral sauce, it may be too flowery for some. Perhaps this being my favourite type of mushroom, I find the texture and flavour just right. 

Beneath the baked cheese is a mixture of mushroom, tomato and a special type of potato which I can't quite translate (佐洋芋盅). I found this to be very tasty, though I could barely squeeze in more food by now.
 Five-grained fried rice 

Sesame paste, walnuts and pudding

Finally, the last course, Camomile Citron tea

Each course may looked like a small portion, but in totality, it was too much for me, or perhaps I had my lunch too late that day. The very attentive waitresses, who after every few courses, would ask how is the food, shared that generally Taiwanese find the portion, especially the items I chose, to be too small. I thought, Taiwanese must have great appetite. Nevertheless, from appetiser to drink and dessert, the food was generally good in terms of quality, taste, display and often, creativity, and I would say that this is an almost perfect meal. And inexpensively priced at TWD 398 (less than SGD 20), I don't think I can find something similar in Singapore.
Click here for the branches of Suguo.

2014 Update: As mentioned by one of the commenters, Suguo has opened in Singapore, at Raffles City. I've tried almost all the items that are vegan. Will update with another post.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Singapore stores featured on US site

While searching for the address of a furniture store online, I happened to stumble upon a feature of it on Apartment Therapy, a popular US home furnishing and interiors site.


I like the clean cut lines of their collections, which are often featured in Home & Decor, a Singapore interior magazine. Unfortunately, a visit to their store at Seah Street proved to be disappointing. They seemed to have filled the store with too many items within a limited space, which doesn't really do justice to the designs. Or is it a realistic reflection of things will look in a cluttered house?

Here's another of our local store, One Thousand Tales (at Haji Lane), featured on Apartment Therapy.

Comparatively, the atmosphere is much better and homely at One Thousand Tales. Oh, and I love those chairs and sofas, except that I can't really afford them...

photos from Apartment Therapy and Soon Lee.