The good news is that Friends at Jelita has revamped their menu considerably, and added a selection of light bites and pizzas. We welcomed the change, because we sometimes want a quick meal after work on a Friday before doing our grocery shopping downstairs, and having their regular menu was sometimes a bit of a palaver.
The not-so-good news is that I think they still need some time to refine their offerings. While nothing that we tried was outright bad, it was all a bit lacklustre and could do with some improvement.
Firstly, the chicken wings were listed as fried chicken wings on the menu, but when we ordered them, they said there was a change and they would be baked chicken wings instead. We ordered them anyway, but while the marinade was pretty interesting, somehow it didn't really work. The wings were cooked through but I would’ve liked a bit more texture. They seemed a bit soft, and while I would expect that from stewed or braised wings, it didn’t quite gel with the slightly charred aroma.
Another variation on the menu occurred with the tofu. It was described as a crispy tofu with century egg sauce, but when we ordered it, they’d changed it to a cold silken tofu, because the sakura tofu was apparently the highlight of the dish, and by deep frying the subtle flavour was lost. I did appreciate the flavour of the tofu, but a bit more sauce would’ve been nice. Right now, the bites with the century egg sauce were good, but on its own it was quite plain. A light soy sauce would’ve gone nicely, I thought. The century egg sauce itself could also have been better. I think they over pureed it, so it became slightly thick and gummy.
We ordered something called a Tarte Flambe, which turned out to be a simplified version of the Alsace Tart that we had at Bon Marche, with onions and Marche smoky bacon. However the crust on this was a bit odd – light at first bite, but then it gave way to a residual chewiness. It felt as though they made their own crust and hadn’t let the dough rise enough or something.
Because the crusts were similar, we had the same issues with their pizza. We tried the pork jaw and apple pizza, which would’ve been pretty good (albeit quite oily from the pork jaw) if not for the dodgy crust.
So much for making this more of a regular pre-grocery dinner place. I give them a while to (hopefully) sort their new menu out, and in the meantime explore other Friday night casual options.
Still good service but the food's relatively average. So… ummm… yeah… That’s all I can say.
Friends at Jelita
293 Holland Road
#02-04 Jelita Cold Storage Building
Tel: 6463 1011
Open 12 noon to 10 pm daily