We only intended to drop by RS Deli along Upper Thomson Road to pick up some snacks - namely, their sweet garlic emping. For lovers of emping, the bitter Indonesian cracker made from the belinjo nut, this is a heavenly version of it.
As M would say (albeit in a different context), the normally one-note bitter emping is now really complex and layered, due to a coating of caramelised sugar and garlic. I admit that this can be an acquired taste, but I grew up with this so I'm thrilled that it's now readily available.
We ended up staying for dinner because the menu looked interesting. A ordered a nasi lemak burger - essentially an all-in-one nasi lemak, with rice cakes for the buns and a patty of fried chicken and otak. Great concept but it could've been executed a bit better. The rice lacked the coconutty punch of proper nasi lemak rice.
I ordered a chicken curry rice set, which came with sambal eggplant. This was a bit disappointing as the chicken thigh pieces were a bit overcooked. The curry, being thick and sweet, also wasn't my thing.
The sambal fried chicken wings were better, with the chicken still tender and juicy. Again the sambal had a bit more sweetness than I normally like, but I suspect that's more of an issue to do with me.
The Pisang Saleh dessert was good - chargrilled bananas served with coconut ice cream and drizzled with gula melaka. A would've preferred the bananas battered, a la goreng pisang, but I liked the cleanness of the plain grilled banana.
We definitely won't come all the way to Thomson just for the food, though I definitely would for the emping, so whenever we return for another emping fix, maybe we'll try some of their other food offerings.
The quirky menu attracted me with the nasi lemak burger. Unfortunately, the rice wasn't coconutty. Other than that, I liked every other element. Overall though, the place is generally a cheap and good Indo-fusion bistrocafe. The only thing stopping me from more frequent visits is the horrible parking and traffic in the area.
244R Upper Thomson Road
11:30 am - 10 pm; closed Mondays