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by Bobby

While I do enjoy kimchi once in a while, I had never been a fan of Korean food. Having tried Jang Shou this extremely expensive and hugely disappointing Korean barbecue restaurant in the Esplanade, you can understand why I was very reluctant to try Ju Shin Jung. Ju Shin Jung is located at East Coast Parkway and it belongs to this chain of asian restaurants which include Long Beach and Waraku that has its own car park so parking was not any trouble at all.

Like Jang Shou, the menu consisted of 2 parts: a selection of barbecue meat and the side dishes that included items such as the usual ginseng chicken soup and kimchi. Beware as the prices stated for the barbecue meat selection is that for one person and at $35, it is pretty expensive. So if you do the math, you’d realise that it is much more worth it to go in a group of 5 rather than as couples or worse, alone.

Kim Chi

While similar to Jang Shou in many ways, the food here is delicious and the spread of the side dishes that came with the meat was much bigger than what I remembered having at Jang Shou. We ordered the Wagyu beef, Ginseng Marinated Pork and Chicken, Kimchi Casserole and a Ginseng Chicken soup. The barbecue meat was good, though I can’t really imagine how wrong barbecue meat can go. However the meat, especially the marbled wagyu, was dripping with oil and I did feel a little disgusted after a few pieces.

Wagyu Beef

The Kimchi casserole was good, appetizingly sour and not overwhelmingly spicy, The ginseng chicken soup was quite an interesting dish as the chicken was stuffed with glutinous rice that gave the soup a distinctive taste while possible to taste hints of ginseng. The food is rather salty and the flavorful meal was wrapped up with a bowl of refreshing sweet ginger tea. To enjoy ginger tea, you probably need an acquired taste for it and as expected not everyone at the table found it palatable.

Ginger Tea

While the food was good, I found the portions small and at that price (around $45 per person), I doubt I would ever return to the restaurant any time soon. But this is definitely a good place to try good Korean barbecue.
Ju Shin Jung 1018 East Coast Parkway #02-01Telephone: 6447-9279

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by Morris

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With 876 raving reviews (and counting) on Yelp and multiple recommendations on publications like the New York Times, it’s little wonder that the line at Tartine bakery is almost always never ending. With all the publicity though, this place is strangely nondescript. It doesn’t even have a striking signboard that says Tartine bakery nor does it show signs of expansion to accommodate the growing crowd. In my opinion, the bakery is one that satisfies every free spirited, organic food loving hipster of San Francisco. Every waiter/waitress has his personality painted all over his face. Just yesterday, I was served pastries by a voluptuous woman with tattoos all over her chest, complete with earrings and nose rings and what-have-you.

Ok, on to the food. Its rare that a bakery can get everything so right. I think it has at least partly something to do with their consistent use of organic produce. My personal favorite is the buttermilk scone and the bread pudding. Now, I am a sucker for scones and I go around trying all types of scones. This one scores on the top of my list with a perfect balance of moisture (not too dry as to make you thirsty, but certainly not soggy), has the right amount of buttery aftertaste and the sugar crust just makes my sweet tooth happier.While most bakeries avoid making bread pudding because more often than not, they just end up serving soggy bread, Tartine does a great job with it. Even though it doesn’t look too appetizing (wet bread with random fruits is something that I will shun in theory and imagination), it is absolutely delicious and wholesome. When I lose my teeth when I am old, I want to have this for breakfast everyday. Of course, if you like savory stuff, the hot pressed sandwiches are also something to die for. I personally recommend goat cheese sandwich which is pretty delectable.

Although a bit pricey, it certainly is an ideal place for breakfast or tea (minus the bustling crowd that is).

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600 Guerrero St. (@18th Street)

by Bobby

The best thing about Orchard Road is that it is spotted with numerous cafes and restaurants. I was with a friend, exhausted from shopping when we popped into the basement of Paragon, and found ourselves in a pâtisserie, Canelé. Stylishly decorated, the dimly litted cafe draws its inspiration from Pierre Herme’s cafe in Paris and its jewel-box concept display of its delicate dessert.

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While I found it hard to resist the temptation to order the macaroons (having tried them twice before), we ordered the Tarte Tartin ($12++) with flambé caramelized apple with toffee, crème chantilly and caramelized filo pastry. I love the caramelized filo pastry that gave every mouthful of the dessert a crunchy texture. The overall sweetness of the dessert is not at all sickening and is sure to delight. While service leaves much to be desired (actually its horrendous ), I’m sure i will return again, if only for those delicious macaroons.

Also try the : Sea Salt and Caramel Macaroon and Strawberry Shortcake

Canelé 1-25 Paragon, 290 Orchard Road

by Nathan

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Chop’t bills itself as a creative salad company. It tells you that they employ a “lettuce bouncer” at each of their restaurants, whose sole responsibility is to sieve the good lettuce from the bad. Well, I didn’t taste any particular difference in the lettuce, and the ingredients that go into your salad are about as creative as grilled chicken and chick peas. That said, it was still a pretty damn good salad. It is a nice break from greasy pizza or asian food.

I highly recommend getting a salad sandwich, which means that your salad gets wrapped up in a tasty carbo-rich tortilla. You also get to customize your salad, but that means you have to pay more. The dressing I tried, the red wine sauce, was just right. Also, they made a great show out of chopping all the ingredients into bite sized pieces, which also resulted in the different flavors being evenly distributed.

3.5 stars.

24 E 17th St
New York

by Morris

For the past 2 times I’ve visited NYC, it seems that I have to make it a point to visit Chikalicious… A delicious little dessert bar on 10th St between 1st and 2nd Avenue, run by a Japanese woman Chika and her husband Don. For $12 (+$7 with suggested wine pairing), you get a Prix Fixe: an Amuse, dessert of choice and a petit four.

As with all French deserts though, do not expect anything to fill you up nauseatingly like cheesecakes from Cheesecake factory. Everything here is made just to the right portion with much love and attention to detail by Chika and her dessert chefs. It helps though to have some knowledge of the names of French deserts just so that you know what you are ordering. Like brioche is just a fancy name for French bread

But even so, Chika adds a healthy dash of culinary creativity into her desserts that you should always expect the unexpected, like pepper-corn ice cream.

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The Petit four (though it’s only three small items all the time). Always leaves me wanting for more.

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Very delectable Fromage Blanc Island “Cheese Cake”

Other recommendations: The Brown Sugar Panna Cotta… simply let it melt in your mouth and ooh heaven.

With it’s ever increasing popularity and long waiting lines, I’d suggest you try it at the earliest possible opportunity!

203 East 10th Street, New York, NY 10003