Tagged "CMCR"

Cafe Review: Cafe by Day, Bar by Night

Posted by May Espino on

They say you’ll never go hungry when you’re in Upper Thompson. With so many great options to choose from, this area is one of Singapore’s food and drink havens. Just when you thought you knew them all, another café has joined the line up to make your brunch choice just a little bit harder. But don’t worry, we’ve got it covered, read on for our review of the new all day dining venue offering an amazing selection of food and beverages – Birdy’s.
Birdys coffee
Located in a local neighbourhood, Birdy’s menu ranges from your good ol’ brunch menu to some hearty meals that will leave you wanting more. Not only do they offer satisfying food, but also their beverage selection is one to keep your eye on! Owners Kass and Jas, the duo behind Freehouse, have brought their a-game here with a collection of craft beers and wines sourced from all over the world. Pair this with Birdy’s head chef's beautiful menu, with his emphasis on local ingredients, and you're in for a treat. Since Jas is lactose intolerant, most of their offerings are dairy free but this doesn’t mean it’s boring! Anyone checking out this place for the first time must try the ‘Nut Butter Toast’, sourdough topped with banana, homemade cashew butter and drizzled with raw honey!  Don’t miss out the owner’s personal favourite as well – the not so average overnight oats topped with pistachios and berry compote – delicious!
Birdy's nut butter toast
It’s also very rare to see a Spirit coffee machine in Singapore and to find one on the bar here is such a delight. Jas and Kass have been regulars at Forty Hands since the beginning and so it’s no surprise they opted for a CMCR blend with intense and complex flavours of cherry and caramel notes from their coffee blend. You can also get some tips from the man behind the bar if you want to know which drink (coffee, wine or beer?) to pair with your main or sides!
Birdys Spirit coffee machine
With the ongoing trend of minimalist and an all-white design, Jas wanted to create something that uses neutral colours and whispers elegance. The use of warm tones makes it feel instantly cosy; perfect for a Sunday brunch with your girls and also a place where you can still enjoy beers with the boys!
So when you think of your next brunch or dinner destination, don't think about trekking into town anymore. Head up to Birdy’s and let them bring you quality food without the need to travel far (well if you live north at least!).
215F Upper Thomson Road, Singapore, 574349
Opening Hours:
Monday, Wednesday & Thursday: 10am - 11pm
Tuesday: Closed
Friday: 10am - 12am
Saturday: 8am - 12am
Sunday: 8am - 4pm
Instagram: @birdysallday
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The Best Mylk's in Town!

Posted by Sarah Rouse on

Not a fan of dairy, but also don’t like your coffee black? There’s no need to despair in 2018 with more and more cafes serving up delicious alternative milks, many of them filled with added nutritional benefits helping you boost your vitamin intake while the caffeine kicks in!

 So what’s on offer?

First of all there’s soy, our go-to has always been Bonsoy, it’s organic and works the best with coffee – in both our humble opinion and that of bearded hipsters world wide.


Bonsoy: We choose a select variety of organic Golden soybeans coupled with superior manufacture techniques give this a high protein level for people wishing to increase their protein intake from a vegetable source; this high protein level is great for staying satisfied for the health conscious especially after a strenuous workout to help repair tired muscles.

You can enjoy Bonsoy anytime, but if you love a soy latte, you have to make it Bonsoy! Not only does it taste great in coffee, but ‘stretches’ like regular cows milk giving you that delicious frothy top we know you love. No wonder good Baristas everywhere prefer it.

From: https://bonsoy.com/make-it-bonsoy/

Soy is not for everyone though, so when it comes to healthy and whole options, our mind immediately goes to our friends at Kitchen by Food Rebel, who strongly believe in knowing how your food is produced, and understanding the impact it has on your body. When this comes to coffee, it means you can choose from organic soy milk, coconut milk, house made almond or cashew mylk!

All of these milks (mylks) add a unique flavor profile to your brew, along with benefits such as added protein, nutrients and sustained energy.

Seems like almond mylk has become another go-to for cafes looking beyond the soy bean, with Wild Honey, Open Farm Community and Brownice all offering the tasty nut-based option.

Almond milk: Almond milk is made by blending almonds with water and then straining the mixture to remove the solids. It can also be made by adding water to almond butter. It has a pleasant, nutty flavour and creamy texture that's similar to regular milk. For this reason, it is a popular choice for vegans and those who are allergic or intolerant to dairy.

From: https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/318612.php

 But what if you don’t do diary, avoid soy and aren’t nuts about nuts? Don’t despair, you can find lactose free milk at Jones the Grocer, and coconut milk at the Lokal!



Lactose-free Milk:  Lactose is sugar found in milk and requires the lactase enzyme, which your body secretes naturally, for it to be broken down into monosaccharides. You are incapable of fully digesting the milk sugar if your lactase level diminishes. Drinking lactose-free milk becomes the only alternative you have if you at all have to consume milk. Even though it lacks lactose, there are benefits of drinking lactose-free milk.

From: http://healthyeating.sfgate.com/benefits-lactosefree-milk-7284.html 

Coconut Milk:

Coconuts are highly nutritious and rich in fibre, vitamins C, E, B1, B3, B5 and B6 and minerals including iron, selenium, sodium, calcium, magnesium and phosphorous. Unlike cow's milk, coconut milk is lactose free so can be used as a milk substitute by those with lactose intolerance. It is a popular choice with vegans and makes a great base for smoothies, milkshakes or as a dairy alternative in baking.

From: https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/howto/guide/ingredient-focus-coconut-milk

What about CMCR, I hear you say?! We may be a little late to the party, but when people talk, we listen, so we’re excited to share that we now have Oatly oat milk available at CMCR Martin Rd, Grounded by CMCRCommon Man Stan, and over at Forty Hands!



Oat Milk:

Oat milk is a tasty vegan alternative to dairy milks, and it is also nutritious. Oat milk is made with presoaked oat groats, which are hulled grains broken into fragments. Oat milk features a mild, slightly sweet taste, which substitutes well for low-fat or skim milk. Oat milk can also be used in the same way as rice milk or soy milk. Western herbalists recommend oat milk as a tonic for the nervous system. Oat milk is very low in fat and lactose free.

From: https://www.livestrong.com/article/267017-what-are-the-benefits-of-oat-milk/



It’s all in the oats. 100% organic Swedish oats that are grown in clean soil and spend the summer getting rained on to grow strong in the never ending Nordic sun. It’s vegan approved, contains no added sugar whatsoever and is full of that big scientific word betaglucans* which are great for your heart.

From: http://www.oatly.com/products/international/organic-oat-drink/


Go forth and enjoy!

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The delicious heart of Artichoke

Posted by Matthew Patrick McLauchlan on


Dining at Artichoke is like getting invited to the cool kid’s birthday party – only with alcohol, better food and no naughty corner. Undeniably cool, Artichoke strikes the perfect balance between unapologetic nonchalance and casual welcoming hospitality, all whilst serving up some of the tastiest dishes the city has to offer.

The man responsible, chef/owner and Singapore’s answer to the cult of the celebrity chef, is Bjorn Shen. He’s the culinary maestro and anti-hero of the local restaurant scene who, somewhat infamously, encourages other inspiring young chefs to eschew traditional culinary school and get straight to work in the kitchen. This combination of enthusiasm and disregard for tradition sets Artichoke (and the other projects Shen puts his name to) apart. Artichoke breaks free from the confines of the tired formal and ‘fine dining’ experience with which the Singaporean restaurant scene is saturated, whilst still making an occasion of dining. Sharing good food in a relaxed environment with friends is the key to their phenomenal success.

Behind the blaring gangster rap and haphazard décor, the heart of Artichoke is tasty, lovingly prepared food and the kind of dishes you would whip up for friends if you just happened to have mad kitchen skills and a penchant for falafel… If you find yourself lacking these requirements and also fancy the addition of great coffee (proudly provided by CMCR), a tightly curated wine list, friendly wait staff and a fun atmosphere, then get yourself down to Artichoke ASAP.

Our recommendations:


Drink: once you’ve finished your coffee, make sure you order a glass of house-made lemonade. A brunch exclusive, it’s a standout at $4.5.
Eat: Cauliflower Sabbich. Brassica is the new black and Artichoke is definitely doing it justice. It’s a snip at $22 +. Maybe add some fries because hey, it’s the weekend and they come with garlic whip for $8!



(Share with friends recommended or eat alone if you’re very hungry.) Dinner is very much a sharing experience at Artichoke and the menu provides suggested servings for your party size.
Drink: A curated selection of premium international beer and wine is available, including Mac’s craft brew from New Zealand. If wine is what you are after, have a chat with your server and you may even be recommended something ‘off the list’.
Eat: Slow roasted lamb shoulder. This is the next level in juicy tender lamb with a crispy crust. It leaves you wanting more and all for $36. Make your mom happy and get some Brussels sprouts; unlike any you have had before, finishing these won’t be a problem $18.

These are all dishes you want to photograph, not because the food is painstakingly arranged for that perfect Instagram shot, but because it just looks so damn tasty #foodenvy

161 middle road,
sculpture square, singapore

Opening hours:
Brunch: Saturday + Sunday 11.30am - 2.45pm
Dinner: Tuesday – Saturday 6.30pm - 9.45pm
Reservations (highly) recommended: 63366949 after 3pm Tuesdays onwards.

Common Man is also excited to announce an upcoming collaboration with the offspring of Artichoke, NehNeh Pop, which will see a CMCR coffee-infused ice cream creation available for a limited time. Keep an eye on social media for more updates on this exciting collaboration.

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Retreat from a busy city at the Tastemaker Store

Posted by Matthew Patrick McLauchlan on


Back in June 2014, I caught wind of a cafe opening up in the neighborhood of Havelock Road, a leafy part of Singapore just north of the ultra-hip Tiong Bahru. So whilst out jogging the other day, I decided to track it down.

The place stood out from the traditional shops around it, adding a touch of modernity to the otherwise antiquated HDB estate. The interior was minimalistic with lots of light shining through the front glass, while the small, clever details in the café décor made it super ‘Instagram-worthy’. I ordered and was promptly served a cup of coffee from Bon Café, all the while thinking how great it would be if Common Man Coffee was served in such a beautiful cafe.

Then my wish came true. The Tastemaker Store is now serving up delicious Common Man coffee! I recently had the opportunity to catch up with Alvin, to learn more about the ethos behind their beautiful food and coffee. Alvin’s sister (who is an architectural designer) designed the café, while his folks and co-owner Shing Jie run the day-to-day operations in the cafe.


So what's the story behind The Tastemaker Store?
Alvin: Drawing from architectural design, engineering and hospitality, we conceptualised the store as a place where friends and family could be brought together by a shared appreciation for design and quality in both food and life. This is not a café, but a concept store, where both locally and internationally sourced products will be available in future.

What can we expect to find on the menu?
Alvin: The Tastemaker Store features a simple, hearty menu with a local twist. Serving quality food, we experiment with flavours and refine recipes you are already familiar with. Our menu consists of local delights and daily bakes, and we focus on producing high quality food and drinks. Right now, we are constantly experimenting with and refining familiar flavours to create a taste that is both personal and simple to understand and appreciate.

What are your signature dishes?
Alvin: Our Lemon Curd with Clotted Cream ($3.00) is really popular. It's served on an English muffin with a soft boiled egg on the side. Something more traditional would be our delicious homemade Glutinous Rice ($3.80) and Yam Cake ($3.80).

During lunch hour, the café is packed when the corporate crowd stream in from nearby office buildings for delicious coffee and something tasty to fill their tummies. This place is definitely a pleasant retreat from the hustle and bustle of a busy city.

The Tastemaker Store Block 22 Havelock Road #01-705

Opening hours
Mon, Wed & Thurs - 11am to 6pm
Fri and Sat - 10am to 9pm
Public Holidays - 10am to 6pm
Tues - Closed

Nearest Station: Tiong Bahru


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Home Made Delights and Great Coffee at Spiffy Dapper

Posted by Matthew Patrick McLauchlan on


Located next to the Amoy food market (which is well known for its fried Kway Teow and Lor Mee) sits Spiffy Dapper, with its delicious offerings of coffee by day and a full bar by night. The owner, George, who is a carpenter by trade, built the place himself and there is a sense of homeliness which attracts you from the moment you walk in. Dim lighting, a copper-clad bar counter, beautiful wooden beams and antique furniture all combine to create a place which is full of character, offering a welcome escape for those working in the Central Business District (CBD).


While George handles the bar operations, Christine Seah manages the coffee programme at Spiffy Dapper. Having studied at culinary school and worked in restaurants previously, she has created a menu which is refreshingly healthy with an emphasis on homemade items. It’s clearly aimed at the gym crowd who frequent the area. Think homemade bread with ham and bacon jam, soft boiled eggs and hazelnut pesto or baked chicken thigh with spiced quinoa. Besides serving the espresso blend 22Martin from a 3 group La Marzocco Linea, the coffee offerings include a cold brew Yirgacheffe which strives to highlight acidity. Homemade almond and hazelnut milk is also available for the lactose-intolerant crowd. But if you fancy tea without caffeine, Spiffy Dapper offers dehydrated fruit tea infusions which not only look beautiful, but taste great as well.


If you’re working in the CBD, why not check out Spiffy Dapper? It’s a great place for a quick meeting over coffee. It’s also a cool opportunity to hang out with the friendly baristas or simply do some work via their free WIFI. They even have wall plugs at every table. Great coffee, fantastic food and a friendly ambience; what’s not to love?

Spiffy Dapper
73 Amoy Street, Second Floor.
Singapore 069892

Opening hours
Cafe: Monday - Friday 8:00am-5:00pm
Bar: Monday - Friday 5:00pm - late
Saturday - Sunday: 6:00pm - late


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