The Return of Ellenborough Market Cafe at Swissotel Merchant Court

Swissotel Merchant Court is a landmark located along the Singapore River, and its flagship buffet restaurant Ellenborough Market Cafe is famous for its Peranakan cuisine. The restaurant is now back after a hiatus to showcase its selection of Straits Chinese cuisine and international buffet spread, such as a Lamian station, roast beef, cincalok egg and signature durian pengat.

The man behind this medley of cuisines is none other than the newly appointed Executive Chef Louis Tay. Chef Tay has over 33 years of experience and was the former Executive Chef of The Tanglin Club Singapore.

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The costs of the buffet are as follows:

  • Monday to Sunday lunch: $52
  • Monday to Thursday dinner: $62
  • Friday to Sunday, eve and day of PH: $68
  • Saturday, Sunday & PH high tea: $42

Ellenborough Market Café
20 Merchant Road,
Singapore 178882
Tel: 6239 1848
Opening Hours:
Breakfast 0630-1030hrs daily
Lunch 1200-1430hrs daily
Dinner 1830-2200hrs daily
High Tea 1530-1730hrs (Saturday, Sunday & PH)
Nearest MRT Station: Clarke Quay Station (Northeast Line)

Baba Wins’ Peranakan Cuisine @ Star Vista

I always knew that there was a Peranakan restaurant in Star Vista. In fact, I had walked past it a few times. However, I was usually alone or with people who were not in the mood for Peranakan, hence I had never tried it. This time around, sis and I specially went there just to try Baba Win’s Peranakan Cuisine to see how it fared.

Do not expect much in terms of scale of the restaurant. It is a small and cozy place, seating less than 20. And in spite of the recommendations on the wall, sis and I ordered what we felt like eating.

Nyonya Chap Chye ($10). For my sis, no Peranakan meal is complete without this dish. This is a popular Nyonya dish of mixed vegetables stewed in a Penang-Peranakan recipe of tauju gravy. It was a harmonious combination of vegetables bringing out the flavour of fermented bean paste.

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Restaurant Week 2015: Indocafe–The White House @ Scotts Road

Indocafe has been on my watchlist for the longest time. The iconic black and white colonial structure is steeped richly in its Peranakan culture. Other than being known for its Peranakan dishes, Indocafe has a wonderful collection of Peranakan art. The set dinner here cost $35++ per person.

I was pleasantly surprised to be led to a private room, which was beautifully decorated with Peranakan artifacts.

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Lunch Buffet at Lime @ PARKROYAL on Pickering

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Being a small eater, I was not very agreeable when my sis suggested having buffet for lunch. I could never eat my money’s worth. However, she insisted that Lime @ PARKROYAL on Pickering had excellent reviews and it was noted for its modern and upscale architecture.

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And boy was she right! Look at all the lovely floor to ceiling windows, letting in all the gorgeous natural lighting. Also, the setting was very comfortable and welcoming. The buffet had an awesome spread and we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves.

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Little Cravings and the best cream puff ever!

This is one food post where I am going to cram a lot of pictures in. First, we will start with a visit to Little Cravings, a small Peranakan restaurant hidden in Katong and from there I will take you to the best cream puff ever. I swear.

My family and I got a voucher from Groupon for Little Cravings. It was quite a good deal as we paid $20 for $40 worth of food. The food there was so affordable we had to keep ordering to hit $40.

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Since the place was so small and they did not take reservations, we had to stand outside and wait for tables available.

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I ordered Penang Assam Laksa, which is very different from the type of Laksa that Katong is famous for. This one is a bit sour and comes with slices of cucumber, pineapple, onion and sardine. Also, with a spoonful of prawn paste, which is an acquired taste.

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My family stuck with the safer choice of nasi lemak (coconut rice) which one can never go wrong. Yes, it is unhealthy and drives your cholesterol level up, but it is almost a staple here. The nasi lemak they have to offer comes with a choice of sambal prawns, curry chicken or both. Served with ikan bilis, peanut, achar, sambal and hard boiled egg.

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We had a free dish given to us: Rojak. Grilled fruits and vegetables tossed in prawn paste and topped with chopped peanuts. It may look unappetizing but don’t put it down till you have tried it!

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I’m sad to say after so many wonderful dishes, I also tasted the worst chicken wings here. The staff recommended their fried belachan chicken wings which looked really tasty in picture. However, when it arrived, it was soaked in oil and there was no sign of the belachan chilli. It was so oily I had to dab the wings with tissue and after we finished the dish, there was a puddle of oil left.

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I was the only one who ordered drinks. The longan tea was great and refreshing, especially after the rich and flavorful food.

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On to the desserts, we had the banana and sweet corn apong, which was a fluffy sweet pancake with fillings inside. Good try! It only cost $2 (if I don’t remember wrongly)!

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The pulut hitam was thick and gooey but still not sweet enough for me.

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Here is the gula melaka mango sago dessert with extra sugar. One for the sweet tooth!

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Ice kachang with durian, the king of fruits that most westerners abhor. They do also serve it without the durian. Rather large bowl, good for two.

Just a side note, the cafe doesn’t offer water or napkins (at least they didn’t offer it to us and our surrounding tables). The service also was not very good.

After the filling meal, we made space in our tummies (there is always a separate compartment for dessert) for the best cream puff ever! Good for us, it was just across the street from the shopping mall. The bakery, Mooshi Bakes, is under the group by Awfully Chocolate.

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Other than cream puffs, they do sell a range of pastries and pies that look totally sinful. But we were there only for the cream puff.

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Drumroll please… And here it is! A huge puff with loads of cream!

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Don’t even bother counting your calories. You know you have to work this off anyway and it will be totally worth it.