10/10A Jiak Chuan Road
I adore the lush coffee over at the flagship Oriole in Pan Pacific Suites, and it’s also a fantastic place to have our lunch play dates because the food is pretty good and the staff are excellent (ie. very patient with our mad toddlers).
Their smaller cafe is called Oriole Coffee Roasters and is located in a little nook of a street close to the Chinatown area. It’s actually quite inaccessible so you specifically go there instead of wander past whilst shopping. Despite the random location, I suppose coffee-addicts still know their haunts, because there were quite a few people there.
It’s very communal style, with 2 large tables that you sit around. In the middle is a tray with glasses (for complimentary water), cutlery, and condiments. What I found really interesting was that on one table, they put a jar of biscuits (there’s a name for these Asian biscuits, but I forgot), and on the other table is a selection of cakes. It honestly looks like you’ve entered someone’s home and they’ve put some edible goodies on the coffee table for you to nibble on! But, you pay for these. They aren’t labelled, but take one and it’ll swiftly get put on your bill. I think it’s cute to have the goodies on the table because it’s a great idea to whet the customer’s appetite, but perhaps more practical/fair if there is a label on the jars with the price?
How is their coffee? AWESOME. Just like the other Oriole cafe. It’s really pricey, but is strong and hits the spot. None of that watered-down rubbish that almost all cafes/restaurants in Singapore tend to serve. I thoroughly enjoyed my Iced Latte.
One odd thing though – when I ordered I asked “can I have it decaf?” and the waitress looked completely flummoxed. She had NO idea what decaffeinated means?? And Oriole is supposed to be a specialist coffee joint?? I was so shocked I didn’t know what to do. She had to go ask someone else, then finally came back and told me they don’t do decaf coffee – which is perfectly fine, but just unbelievable she didn’t know what that word was.
Hunter was pretty sensitive most of the time, and that’s putting it lightly. He was furiously chewing down on his fingers and the teeny tiniest things would set him off – like crying oh-so-pitifully when a toy was grabbed away from him, etc etc. I suppose the problem with kids is that you never know when they’ll be in a rotten mood!
The Tuna, gruyere cheese, tomato toastie was very simple but at least came in a sizable portion with lots of filling. The kids rather enjoyed it!
My Philly cheese steak sandwich was HILARIOUS. We couldn’t quite believe our eyes when it arrived at the table! It was super small, consisting of dry tasteless bread, a small scattering diced capsicum and onion, a thin slice of cheese, and a thin slice of roast beef. Ummmm….. where in the USA can this pass off as a “Philly cheese steak”?? It was basically a roast beef sandwich, and a very very sub-par one at that. I wasn’t sure whether to be amused, or highly pissed off.
I thought Chris’ Eggs and toast set was pretty cool, though Chris declared it “just so-so”. The soft boiled eggs are well-known here at Oriole, cooked at the exact temperature of 63 celcius, rendering them beautifully gooey and soft. The kaya pandan toast was very very crisp which Chris didn’t like (“it’s like biscotti!”) but I did, so I suppose it’s a matter of personal preference. The toast is pretty much identical to Yakun’s kaya toast by the way.
Oriole nails it yet again with excellent coffee at this branch, but their food is mediocre at best IMHO. I would, however, definitely pop in if I was somehow in this random area, for one of their fab iced lattes!