Cookyn with Mervyn, Events, FOOD, Food reviews, Food reviews - Singapore, Living in... Singapore GRUB @ BISHAN PARK 22 April 2013

GRUB @ Bishan Park
510 Ang Mo Kio Avenue 1
(car park along Sin Ming Ave, opposite Blk 408)
Singapore 569983
PRICE: $$
RATING: ?????

R-I-D-I-C-U-L-O-U-S.

It’s absolutely ridiculous how long I have waited for this to happen. Six years? Seven years? Maybe more?

I still remember, a decade ago, when Chef Mervyn was not a chef, but rather a normal guy working in an office (not that he isn’t normal now.. you get what I mean!). He had a HUGE passion for cooking and would whip up all these fancy rah rah dishes for us. Chris and I would always eagerly look forward to our holidays to Singapore, and quietly hope and pray we would be treated to one of his meals. And back then, I always said “I wish he had a restaurant, then we could go all the time!”. And it was always Mervyn and Amanda’s dream.

Dreams do come true 🙂

Here we are in the whizz bang fantastic GRUB!!!!! (Facebook page)

Guess just about everyone knows about Cookyn, a cooking party extravaganza first concocted by Mervyn and Amanda.. which grew to a bonafide successful business owned by multiple partners. Well, it’s the same guys that have opened GRUB.

How did it come about? About 2 years ago, Mervyn and Amanda were in the USA. They saw the plethora of family-friendly, responsible cafes that cooked with real ingredients (that you would use in your own kitchen), at a wallet-friendly price. They and their two friends (and co-owners), Dexter and Kelvin, wanted to do the same in Singapore.

And… ta da! GRUB. Over a year in the making and this gem is now ready for business. It’s located in the beautiful and green Bishan Park (hello gorgeous views) and is a stand-alone cafe that they built from the ground up. It’s SO GORGEOUS. Half outdoor and half indoor, it doesn’t feel like Singapore, but more like Australia when we used to eat at little cafes dotted around a park.

Beautiful ambiance at GRUB

 

50/50 indoor and outdoor dining. I’ll be frank, it’s way prettier sitting outdoors if the weather permits!

 

Indoors

 

A compact kitchen churning out a ton of great dishes. And lookie – there’s Mervyn himself right there!

 

There’s Carter and I, happily enjoying the cool air (it had just rained before we arrived)

 

The entire premise of GRUB is: Responsible Ingredients. Inspired Menu. Delicious Food. 

Did you know that in most cafes in Singapore and other countries, when you order food like mashed potato, it comes in powder form in a packet???? The cafe simply mixes it with water and voila! There’s your mashed potato.

Ewwww.

So happy to learn that at GRUB, they only cook and serve what they would with their own families. That means REAL potatoes, and REAL ingredients. Nothing reconstituted, no preservatives. The headache that the kitchen has is to churn out good food made from FRESH ingredients asap.. but the waiting time is actually not longer than any other cafe.

You can see their menu here.

Eating responsibly

 

Anyway! A good ‘ol beer to start off! This one was Monteith’s summer ale from New Zealand. I liked it because it tasted more like fizzy ginger ale than beer 😛 Sooo good icy cold.

Hi my name is beer wench

 

Iced honey lime juice ($2.50), Iced latte ($6) with a bizzarely monster-sized pot of syrup

 

Random insertion of photos of Carter at GRUB

 

If you’re a mussel kinda person, you’ll be pretty astounded at how tender and plump these ones are. The Tasmanian mussels and chorizo stew with fries and aioli came in a dish swimming in very nice broth (I wish it was served with some baguette to mop up that tasty broth!).

So here is the thing: I have a relatively big-ish appetite. If I had ordered just this dish, it wouldn’t fill me (this is why I rarely order mussels as my main, unless it’s all-you-can-eat). I pointed this out, and was told that these aren’t the (much cheaper) green-lipped mussels, but blue-lipped mussels air-flown from New Zealand which are a lot more expensive. So this is a case of paying for quality over quantity. But just warning you, if you are a big guy or have a big appetite, you’ll need to order an appetizer as well to fill you up!

Tasmanian mussels and chorizo stew with fries and aioli ($19)

 

The GRUB cheeseburger with 100% freshly minced beef patty, monterey jack cheese is so cheap for a very solid and good burger. Good value for money. The bun is really nice, so picture-perfect it looked fake! Very fluffy and held together well. I really liked the beef patty – it didn’t have weird bits in it (oh my goodness how I hate it when you bite into a burger and there’s something like part of a horse’s hoof in there) and was juicy and with an excellent more-ish beefy flavour. I enjoyed the fresh lettuce too, which was all uniformly green and crisp. I point this out because sometimes other burger joints serve browned or mushy lettuce which freaks me out.

GRUB cheeseburger with 100% freshly minced beef patty, monterey jack cheese ($11)

 

Mmmmmm…………

 

I giggled at the hilarious-looking Crispy fish burger with crumbed hake fillet and remoulade. Just look at it! Hahahha!! It’s basically fish & chips, playing hide-and-seek inside a burger bun.

The fish was moist and beautifully crumbed, and the creamy sauce was spot-on. What more can I say? This was good and great value too.

Crispy fish burger with crumbed hake fillet and remoulade ($11)

 

And……….. THIS.

THIS.

Beef & Guinness pie with mash and side salad.

I just…..

I can’t even………………..

I DON’T EVEN KNOW WHAT IS RIGHT AND WRONG IN THIS WORLD ANYMORE.

I mean, just look at this thing:

The STUNNING Beef & Guinness pie with mash and side salad ($12)

 

Chris and I were speechless when it arrived. This dish, it did NOT look like a beef & guiness pie! We were expecting a regular-looking pie, or perhaps a pot pie. But this…. this was a large disc of puff pastry that was  absolutely sagging under the weight of the big chunks of melty-soft beef, and carrots/potatoes/etc. It was smothered in rich gravy and topped off with gooey mashed potato (made from potatoes in the kitchen, not from a packet!).

It was just insane to see.

It just LOOKED so good!

And I don’t even know how to describe the taste… except just think buttery puff pastry, rich flavourful gravy, and loads and loads of ultra tender braised beef. My goodness. PARTY IN MY MOUTH.

And so their Beef & Guinness Pie is, hands down, A MUST-ORDER DISH. We are most definitely always ordering this baby, and then another main from the menu.

 

“You get this incredible food, and all I get is a spoon?”

 

Palate cleanser before dessert, a Monteith’s Radler Bier ($10)

 

We didn’t have the stomach space to eat our way around their Dessert menu *sadface*. However, we have already tried GRUB’s churros and let’s just say they are splendid. Chris is a churros connoisseur and he really rates these.

But we did order the Belgium waffle with salty caramel, grilled bananas and dark chocolate. Reasonably priced for a nice chunk of fluffy crispy waffle with toppings. It came out… errrrr.. rather messy, though. Like someone in the kitchen had an epileptic fit as they were ‘dressing’ the waffle with the grilled bananas and sauces.

The waffle was deliciously crisp outside yet soft on the inside. It came with a dollop of rich cream, and I LOVED the swirl of fresh salty caramel (ie. not out of a squeeze bottle from the supermarket) – it went so well with the dark chocolate sauce! I actually am not huge on fruit on my desserts but I appreciated that they were grilled bananas and not just plain ‘ol fresh banana slices (sooo boring).

Belgium waffle with salty caramel, grilled bananas and dark chocolate ($8.50)

 

And so I end this monster review of GRUB. It’s a super duper family-friendly cafe, which gets a major thumbs up from me. I really like the outdoor greenery-all-round vibe of the place, as well as how the ingredients are all fresh and thoughtfully put together (I know very well how Mervyn places so much heart and soul into his craft).

The thing I’m really scratching my head about is how they’ll cope with the crowds. The place is surprisingly small! I can imagine it’s going to be gob-smackingly PACKED on weekends.. since families will love to go there for a casual brunch and let the kids run around in the park. You can add GRUB on Facebook to keep track of events and such, to stay up to date.

GRUB officially throws their doors open this weekend, 27/28 April 2013.

WE’LL BE THERE.

See you there too!

 

Come and be a grubber/grubette too!

 

30 Comments

  • Ashley Poh on Facebook posted on April 22, 2013 at 5:12 pm

    Ok. U just made me wanna order everything. Will be heading down this weekend. 🙂

    Reply
    • Beverly! posted on April 22, 2013 at 8:53 pm

      It’s so close to you too.. ENVIOUS

      Reply
  • Danae Lim on Facebook posted on April 22, 2013 at 5:43 pm

    So going when I get back!

    Reply
    • Beverly! posted on April 22, 2013 at 8:55 pm

      Hurry up and come back! 😛

      Reply
  • Cayce Liao on Facebook posted on April 22, 2013 at 5:44 pm

    I honestly can’t wait to check it out!
    and hey you wear colors really well!

    Reply
    • Beverly! posted on April 22, 2013 at 8:56 pm

      aww thank you, I was a bit rainbow-y that day huh 😉

      Reply
  • Peng Wenmei on Facebook posted on April 22, 2013 at 5:46 pm

    Yay! Congrats Amanda Ang-Phan! I have been waiting for your hubb to open a restaurant. Cookyn is great but all I wanna do is to eat. This is super awesome news!

    Reply
    • Beverly! posted on April 22, 2013 at 9:01 pm

      Man what you said is so true. Cookyn is fun for socialising but sometimes I just want to eat and do nothing else 😉

      Reply
  • Ruth posted on April 22, 2013 at 7:59 pm

    yay! another nice place near my area 🙂 will be checking it out for sure.

    Reply
    • Beverly! posted on April 22, 2013 at 9:03 pm

      I like on the opposite end of SG.. grrrrrrr…

      Reply
  • Iris posted on April 22, 2013 at 10:15 pm

    I sooooooo…… want to go this weekend! The food looks so gd and prices so reasonable! Thanks for the review! 🙂

    Reply
    • Beverly! posted on April 23, 2013 at 3:47 pm

      I love the combo of good food and reasonable prices, heh!

      Reply
  • Mary Rizkalla on Facebook posted on April 22, 2013 at 10:25 pm

    Looks amazing cant wait to check it out. Congrats Amanda and Mervyn 🙂

    Reply
    • Beverly! posted on April 23, 2013 at 3:48 pm

      You’ll have to bring Mia there.. I think she’ll love running around in the park!

      Reply
  • zhing posted on April 22, 2013 at 11:26 pm

    yayyy! 🙂 congrats amanda! let’s go when im back from perth!

    Reply
    • Beverly! posted on April 23, 2013 at 3:48 pm

      Will do 🙂 Have a safe flight (in advance for Sat)!

      Reply
      • Mag posted on April 23, 2013 at 9:08 pm

        Let’s go when Zhing is back from Perth 🙂

        Reply
        • Beverly! posted on April 24, 2013 at 2:26 pm

          It’s a date 😀

          Reply
  • Rowene posted on April 23, 2013 at 9:18 am

    Bev!!!!!! Now we ain’t gonna score a table this weekend following ur review haha

    Reply
    • Beverly! posted on April 23, 2013 at 3:49 pm

      Yeah.. errrmmm I didn’t quite think that one through before blogging. Oops!!

      Reply
  • Shirley posted on April 23, 2013 at 6:32 pm

    Maaaan, your description of the pie makes salivates so badly! It looks so good!

    Reply
    • Beverly! posted on April 23, 2013 at 7:57 pm

      It is veeeery veeeery good *faint*

      Reply
  • Beverly Burgess on Facebook posted on April 23, 2013 at 6:32 pm

    Shirley commented on Beverly’s adventures!:

    Maaaan, your description of the pie makes salivates so badly! It looks so good!

    Reply
  • olimomok posted on April 24, 2013 at 1:48 pm

    The prices are very very reasonable and the food looks amazing!!! So happy it is just in the neck of my woods (I live near Amanda). WHEEEEEE I am going to be there this weekend 🙂

    Reply
    • Beverly! posted on April 24, 2013 at 2:31 pm

      Argh you’re lucky it’s in your area!! You can go all the time and let the kids run around in the park outside, heh

      Reply
  • Beverly Burgess on Facebook posted on April 24, 2013 at 2:31 pm

    Argh you’re lucky it’s in your area!! You can go all the time and let the kids run around in the park outside, heh

    Reply
  • Yvonne posted on April 27, 2013 at 4:20 pm

    I dropped by grub with my little one and hubby this afternoon. 🙂 the food is good! I ordered the mussels and its cooked just right! The broth is so tasty! But u r right that it’s too light as a main course. Some bread or pasta will make it more filling! I will be back try the dinner mains! And the churros!

    Reply
    • Beverly! posted on April 27, 2013 at 10:47 pm

      Ya those mussels are so tender.. I’ve often had mussels elsewhere where they’re a bit chewy, urk. But yep, with baguette would’ve been perfect for me 🙂

      Ahhh have their churros and waffles. VERY GOOD

      Reply
  • FIX CAFE: Original Handmade Goods | Beverly's Net: family. food. fashion. posted on August 10, 2014 at 10:21 am

    […] by the folks at GRUB, Fix Cafe offers the same laid-back vibe, but with very different food and setting. […]

    Reply
  • FOOD REVIEW: Fix Grill does “Original Handmade Goods” | Beverly's Net: family. food. fashion. posted on May 1, 2015 at 8:22 pm

    […] much half of Singapore (at least?) seems to know about GRUB, GRUB Noodle Bar, and […]

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