Ph.Ds of FOOD

Singapore Food Blog

The Gallerie 食尚 by Koufu

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8 September 2011 marks the official opening of The Gallerie 食尚 at Marina Square by Koufu. Spanning an area of 36,000 square feet, filled with 29 food tenants, with an estimated seating capacity of 889 people, The Gallerie is Koufu’s latest establishment in the Marina Bay waterfront area.

Amongst the 29 food tenants are 4 mini restaurants including Tofu Mania (Korean Cuisine), Pao Xiang Bak Kut Teh, Wee Nam Kee Hainanese Chicken Rice and The Noodee Box by Lam’s.

(from top to bottom) Squid Soon Doo Boo Ji Gae (Korean Style Spicy Tofu Soup); Seafood Jeon (Korean Pizza with Vegetables and Seafood)

(from top to bottom) Squid Soon Doo Boo Ji Gae (Korean Style Spicy Tofu Soup); Seafood Jeon (Korean Pizza with Vegetables and Seafood)

Korean Drinks

Korean Drinks

Tofu Mania – the first branch in Singapore, as the name goes, Tofu Mania’s specialty lies in its tofu. We were however, mildly disappointed with its Squid Soon Doo Boo Ji Gae. The soup was pretty thin and lacked the robustness of Korean tofu soups. The tofu was soft but slightly coarse.  We were hoping that the squid would add seafood sweetness to the soup, but sadly there were very few pieces of squid and each piece was pathetically small. The Seafood Jeon fared slightly better with its more generous serving of prawns, and a slightly spicy and sweet accompanying sauce.

We were rather impressed by the wide variety of Korean beverages offered by Tofu ManiaOrange, Grape, 2 kinds of Sweet Rice Drinks, Spicy Cinnamon, Aloe Vera, Pear, Green Plum and a Berry Energy Drink. Most of the drinks were on the sweet side, accompanied with fruit pulp which provided additional chewiness. What stood out was the Spicy Cinnamon Drink – the flavours of cinnamon was overpowering and we believe this is really an acquired taste. Green Plum was the most refreshing and thrist quenching to us.

Wee Nam Kee Chicken Rice

Wee Nam Kee Chicken Rice

Being one of the popular local Chicken Rice specialty shops, Wee Nam Kee is no stranger to chicken rice lovers. We’ve never been to their flagship store at Novena Ville before, so this is our first try at their chicken rice. Well, we weren’t blown away by their chicken or rice, perhaps largely due to the fact that we are not fans of chicken rice. The white and roasted chickens were pretty average. The meat was tender, slightly bland though. The Ngoh Hiang was a big disappointment. It was cold and hard and the fillings were starchy. It was sorely lacking in the texture and flavours of fresh grounded meat.

The Noodee Box by Lam's

The Noodee Box by Lam's

The Noodee Box by Lam’s is a new spin-off from Lam’s Noodle House which is famous for its “Lam’s Abalone Noodle”. As the name goes, the noodles, or noodee, are served in boxes, rather than in bowls. The noodles reminded us of dried minced mee noodles (aka bak chor mee), with additional accompaniments like eggs and Taiwan sausages. The ban-mian like noodles were cooked to the right chewiness, however we felt that they could be a little more generous with the sauce. On the whole, the Noodee box is an interesting invention, however the food was not all that impressive.

Apart from the 4 mini restaurants, The Gallerie houses 14 Boutique Food Stalls, consisting of the typical food court fare such as Indonesian BBQ (which is actually the same stall as per before The Gallerie was established), Soup EmpireThunder Tea Rice (China Square) and Lau Di Fang Scissors-Cut Curry Rice, to name a few. Indeed, Lau Di Fang Scissors-Cut Curry Rice’s flagship store is the one at Jalan Besar, known for its famous fried pork chops and curry chicken.

Thunder Tea Rice

Thunder Tea Rice

The only other time we tried Thunder Tea Rice was from Food Republic at Vivocity. Even for vegetable lovers like us, it was still an acquired taste. And after trying the Thunder Tea Rice from Thunder Tea (China Square), we still believed it is indeed an acquired taste. The main highlight of the dish has got to be the accompanying green tea, made from tea leaves, basil and mint, which should be poured over the rice mix. However, we still squirmed at the flavour of the tea, hence we ended up just having the rice on its own, which was just mediocre. An healthy dish it may be, but our 2nd try has only made us more certain that we do not like Thunder Tea Rice.

(clockwise from top left) Egg Tarts; Scallop and Shrimp Dumplings; Egg Custard Bao

(clockwise from top left) Egg Tarts; Scallop and Shrimp Dumplings; Egg Custard Bao

Koufu‘s F&B island stall offers drinks, cold and hot desserts as well as dim sum. We did not like the Egg Tarts. The fillings were bland and the crust was moist, soggy, starchy and lacked fragrance and taste. Similarly, the Scallop and Shrimp Dumplings were disappointing. We ordered the dish thinking that the scallops were the main highlight. But sadly, the scallops were too soft and tasteless. In fact, you could eat the entire dumpling without realizing the presence of the scallops. The only dish that we took fancy of was the Egg Custard Bao. For food court standards, it wasn’t too bad and definitely better than Crystal Jade Dining IN’s.

Having tried different dishes from the mini restaurants, boutique and island stalls, we were very surprised that at the end of the day, our favourite dishes came from the smaller scale food kiosks! There were 4 food kiosks – Korean Snack, Nesh’s Yoghurt, Apa’s Rojak and Zuki’s Popiah.

Hanyong Korean Snack (bottom left to right) Rice Cake; Kimchi Pancake

Hanyong Korean Snack (bottom left to right) Rice Cake; Kimchi Pancake

Hanyong Korean Snack – Both the Rice Cake and Kimchi Pancake were rather simple dishes, nothing too fanciful. But it was the spicy Korean sauce which blew us away. The sauce of the rice cake was thick, rich in flavours and packed with a whole lot of spiciness! The rice cake was bit chewy, we felt that it could be cooked a little longer to reduce the toughness and chewiness. But this dish left us salivating and sweating.

Popiah

Popiah

Zuki Popiah – From the skin to the sauce and the fillings, everything is made by the owners. We tried 2 different flavours – the original and a Mexican Burrito inspired flavour. Both popiahs were generously packed with fillings and weren’t too soggy as well. The Mexican Burrito inspired flavour was rather appealing. Packed with chunks of chicken meat, the popiah was infused with a sour tangy sauce which was very appetizing.

Apa Rojak

Apa Rojak

Apa’s Rojak was also one of our favourite dishes. The owner’s father created the Rojak sauce 40 years ago in Malaysia. The sauce is cooked over an entire day to increase its fragrance and reduce the heaviness of the prawn paste. And we really could appreciate the hard work which went into the sauce. The rojak sauce was thick and very rich. True enough, the prawn paste wasn’t too overwhelming. The generous dose of peanuts were crunchy and fragrant, evident of its freshness. The other ingredients like the dough fritters, pineapples and cucumbers were fresh and crunchy and thoroughly coated in the sauce.

Yoghurt - Raspberry and Cookie Crumbs

Yoghurt - Raspberry and Cookie Crumbs

Desserts of the day – Greek yoghurt! Pure yorgurt and not yoghurt ice cream is sold here. After trying both the Raspberry and Cookie Crumbs, we came to a conclusion that cookies do not go well with yoghurt. The thick creamy and sour Greek yoghurt was more compatible with the sourness of fruits, compared to the crunchy and slightly salty cookie bits.

The Gallerie 食尚 by Koufu
Marina Square, Level 4
6 Raffles Boulevard

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Written by foodphd

September 10, 2011 at 5:28 pm

One Response

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  1. Hi dears, Vincent From the Noodee Box here. Thank you so much for taking your time to come down to meet with us and thanks for your feedback~!! we’re constantly trying to improve on our food, I apologize if we did not meet your expectations, will continue to work on our recipe! One day perhaps, we’ll have round two!! Kudos~!

    Vincent

    September 14, 2011 at 7:05 pm


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