Cafe Hopper Review: Old Hen Cafe @ Rangoon Road

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This is really a very back-dated entry. I have visted this particular cafe last month or so and finally found time and space to pen this down in my blog. Old Hen is some where that I actually planned to visit. I have heard so much about their cold brew coffee and seen so many nice pictures of the legendary bottle in Instagram. Thus, that Sunday morning after my church service, I have decided to give my normal Starbucks at Raffles City a miss and travel down to Rangoon road for this new experience. The cafe was suppose to start operation at 10am and when I was there two young dudes greeted me and asked me if I was here for the cafe. I replied, ‘Yes!’ They told me that they have forgotten the key to the cafe and the father is sending the key down. It would probably take about an hour before the key arrived. Oh…I was rather amused and surprised by the annoucement. I decided to take a cool morning walk down Rangoon road to see if there’s anything else that would excite me.

I returned to Old Hen and was impressed by the neatness of the cafe and the simplicity of it all. Its a very white based cafe and yes….with some dried flowers. I love the big, long table the most. I asked about the cold brew coffee and was very interested to know what is it all about. Basically it was a unique way of brewing coffee with cold water instead of hot water. Not many cafes have this except for Chye Seng Huat Hardware and one or two more. The cold brew is supposedly effective in extracting out the bitter taste of the coffee and making the coffee smoother. When I took the first sip from the bottle, I did felt that the coffee was smoother and certainly tasted good without the bitterness.

I managed to get Terry, one of the partners of the cafe to chat with me for a very long time. His other partner is his twin brother and they both came back from Australia and decided to start Old Hen cafe together. I thought its pretty cool to start something together like this one….and they went to Bangkok for their barista training. I shared with them my cafe hopping experience, both in Singapore and Thailand. It was such a good time of sharing that I actually walked out of the cafe without paying for it. Yes…I actually did that! I was so embarrased when I found out about it and called them immediately to apologise. I paid them evetually…yes I did….!

Ok, coming back to the cafe…it does have alot of potential to develop further. They definitely need to beef up a little for food….and probably a bit more advertising and publicity. Rangoon Road is emerging quite strongly as a cafe haunt soon…..so they have a good location here.

The Gatekeeper

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Cafe Hopper Review: Jewel Cafe & Bar @ Rangoon Road

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Visiting Jewel was a mistake. Don’t get me wrong…it isn’t a bad cafe. I was suppose to visit another cafe along the same road … I arrived at the cafe at 10:00am sharp (their opening hour) but the owner forgot the bring the key out and so customer and two owners were locked out of the cafe. Well, so I decided to take a slow walk down the road. To my surprise, I found another cafe along the same road. So, how can I resist this great find or I should say “mistake”.

There is nothing very spectacular about the cafe but I must say that the cafe has a very cosy feel when you stepped in. I would say that this is a good place to have your morning breakfast on a Sunday and be charged for the rest of your activities of the day. I ordered their egg benedict and I must they are pretty nicely done. I love the crisp coming from the muffin toast. When you bite it down you can feel the crisp and trust me, it’s quite nice having that sensation on a Sunday morning.

The Gatekeeper

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Cafe Hopper – Poet@Cafe

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I have composed some proses and poems during my sit around at various cafés… Decided to share my poems here as well!

Imagine Distance

I am standing from a far
Wondering what you are thinking
But somehow I feel the nearness too
I suppose distance is relative…
It is an imagination.
I imagine distance…
I imagine nearness…
I imagine you.

Composed 10/8/2014

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Cafe Hopper Review: OZ Specialty Coffee @ Upper Thomson Road

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Been wanting to pay this very small cafe a visit, but somehow always deterred by it’s size and the fact that majority of it’s seating space is outdoor! Today, after my hike at Macritchie Reservoir, I decided to pay a visit to any of the cafés along Upper Thomson! Since I have not been here, guess this will be my pick for the day! I came with the intention of just having a cuppa of latte or piccolo, so glad to find piccolo in the menu! I also ordered a set of Belgian waffles! Just a very simple Sunday brunch! I love simple Sunday brunch!

I was impressed by coffee it serves and love the taste of it’s beans! However, the Belgian waffles were pretty ordinary! Small the cafe maybe, it does lift up to it’s name of being a “specialty coffee”. Of course we can’t expect too much from a tiny cafe like this when it comes to food! So I am totally alright about the food being ordinary! I also love the counter seat which somehow shut myself away from the rest of the people in the cafe!

A good cosy corner for a good cuppa of coffee! Do come and experience the marvel of small space!

The Gatekeeper

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Cafe Hopper Review: Clouds and Pebbles @ Central Embassy, Bangkok

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This is really a way overdue entry. I was in Bangkok like about two weeks ago and I finally got the time to put in this entry. Was busy with so many things. Anyway I have decided to slow down a little today and let time catch up with me. For that, I decided to make a long way down to Haji Lane – visiting those vintage shops, fashion and cafes….did I mention cafes? Yah I did mentioned cafes. How can I miss that out right? I have not written anything about the cafes along Haji Lane. Soon I will be. For now, let me finish my last of the four cafes that I visited during my Bangkok trip two weeks ago.

Clouds and Pebbles is located at Central Embassy, a brand new shopping mall near Pleonchit Station. This cafe was also featured during the recent Bangkok Bakers Festival. They are famous for their various types of yogurt dessert and trust me they are really sweet to your soul. I almost felt like I was dying of diabetes. Don’t get me wrong! Not that they are not good….just that most of their stuffs are too sweet for me. However, they do serve pretty nice coffee. I ordered a piccolo…yes…they have piccolo. For cafe hopper like myself, we are always excited to find piccolo in the menu. Why? Cos we don’t want to have an overdose of caffeine.

There are many other big time cafes in Central Embassy itself. If you are needing a good cafe chillax right smack in Bangkok city, Central Embassy may be a good one stop station for some of the famous cafes like Audrey Cafe, Harrods Cafe and etc.

The Gatekeeper

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Cafe Hopper Reflection: Time should catch up!

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My church service today was a rather different one! Slow moving songs, mixed of traditional hymns and contemporary worship songs. Somehow I love the mixed of slow moving songs and the overall cathedral atmosphere…. It gives a very quiet and peaceful feeling…absence of the majestic pipe organ and the great choir…just something simple…piano and the voices! I am thankful for such a service today! Sometimes God speaks to us through soft, moving songs.

As usual, my church service always doesn’t ends with the benediction! For me, I would usually spend an hour or so of alone time at the nearest Starbucks! I guess sometimes you just need to slow down and let time catch up with us! So often we are always catching up with time and always grumbling of no time or so little time. The way to deal with this is really to slow down and let time catch up with us! This time round I even ordered things out of my norm! I gave up my usual grande latte and went for the plain and simple Cafe Americano or simply said… Black coffee or kopi O! Normally I would order pastries and stuff … This time just sandwich! And of course I need to feed my mind too… with Kinfolk! I love this easy-reading magazine! It’s really a good read for cafe hoppers like myself!

I took sometimes to listen to my own voice amidst all the jazzy music and a group of post-grads discussing about their assignment! Arghhhhh …. Seems like there must be work some how existing in cafe! You can imagine what a contrast I am from them… They reading thick and heavy research books and me… Kinfolk! Come on… It’s a Sunday…. Everyone deserves to be lazy!

Well… Time to sip the world away with my Cafe Americano… See you guys soon with my fourth cafe in Bangkok soon! Have a great Summer Day!

The gatekeeper!

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Cafe Hopper Review: Coffee Break at Li-bra-ry, Sukhumvit Soi 24

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It’s quite easy to miss this cafe especially when both Sukhumvit Soi 24 and Soi 26 are filled with lots of great dining area and cafes as well. This very simple, Japanese style cafe can be easily left out. However, you really shouldn’t leave out this cafe. It’s pretty popular among the Japanese community in Bangkok and just looking the cafe from outside, you will have the feel of standing outside a Japanese cafe in the street of Tokyo or Osaka. The furnitures are very typically Japanese and the light wood grains give patron a very relaxing and natural feel as you step into the cafe premise.

You certainly won’t have the library feel but there is a big shelf full of magazines and books for those who need to feed their minds a little. For me, it suffices to just sit in a corner and look out to the full window, seeing the people passing by. I ordered their iced black tea latte, salad and chocolate donut serve in those bamboo dim sum tray. I love how the food is being presented and the salad I must say is fresh and crunchy. It also has a little twist of Japanese taste. Black tea is rather ordinary but definitely satisfying especially when the weather out there is extremely hot during this season. You really can’t ask for too complicated cuisine when the cafe seems to pride itself of simplicity.

The cafe is spacious and thus give patrons enough space to chill out and gossip the world away. There is a upper deck which offers greater privacy. This is something that cafes in Singapore are not able to provide given our expensive land space and extorting landlords. With more space you certainly can create more cosy corners for customers who really come here to get a little personal space away from the hassle and buzzle of city life.

If you happen be in Bangkok, drop by this cafe and experience a piece of quiet and serenity in the busy city of life, Bangkok.

The gatekeeper

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