We’ve passed by this nondescript café on the second floor of Tanglin Mall so many times, but always at night and it looked quite empty and forlorn. It was only after my friend D told me that this is her default brunch/tea place that we decided to give it a try. Sure enough, at lunch time on Sunday the place was absolutely packed with both locals and expats, babies and strollers in tow.
Understandably the presence of so many kids does tend to create quite a din, but the good thing about the place is that it’s situated in the open area of the Mall, not an actual closed-up restaurant, so even with the crowds and the noisy kids it doesn’t get too chaotic or overbearing.
They have a wide range of sandwiches, and slightly more limited selections of salads, pastas and pizzas. We tried 2 pastas – A had the ravioli with spinach, ricotta and gorgonzola served with broccolini, and I had the linguine with sausage, garlic, spinach and sesame seeds.
These turned out unintentionally similar – both were sautéed with garlic and olive oil; I actually expected the ravioli to be in some kind of cheese or cream sauce. I preferred the linguine, which was tasty without being overly garlicky or oily. The ravioli skin was just too thick, and I barely tasted any gorgonzola in the filling. The seasoning was good though, and the broccolini was cooked perfectly – tender and crisp, and not overdone.
The coffee/tea is good here. A had a latte and I had a chai. The chai was very thick and heavily spiced, and a tad too sweet for me, but the latte was perfect, and only $4.50. We spotted another restaurant nearby that’s also worth a try, so it’s good to know that Tanglin Mall finally has more culinary offerings than the rather sad Spageddies and Don.
Best coffee I’ve had in awhile. And it’s cheaper than any western chain coffee (definitely way more worth it than the $9 one at Cova. Twice as good and half the price, that makes it four times better.
The pastas are light but the portions are very small so I personally don’t find them very good value for money though. The salads and pizzas do look very interesting so I’m definitely going to try those the next time.
163 Tanglin Road
#02-K1 Tanglin Mall
Open daily: 10am to 9pm