When you think Rangoon Road, I’m sure the first thing you think of is probably ‘super shiok’ Bak Kut Teh, right? Well, we’re going to give you another reason to drop by this foodie paradise.
As of this year, the infamous road now houses a new gem, the new Jewel Café + Bar. (Pun intended.) Armed with a roaster, a dream and the passion to make cups of exceptional coffee, owner Adrian Khong, has set up the second Jewel outlet. This will be the first full-fledged café and bar to appease our coffee pangs!
“When we chanced upon this old shophouse, we were completely taken by its high ceilings and spaciousness, as well as the rich cultural heritage of this quaint neighbourhood.”
Unlike the other tenants on the bustling street, Jewel boasts an industrial chic exterior that would catch anybody’s eye. The interior is warm and inviting with luminescent lighting coming from glittering crystal ‘The Great Gatsby-esque’ light bulbs. If you are looking for a laidback and quirky little establishment to chill out at, Jewel Café + Bar would be your ideal place to take a chill pill.
Note: Please prepare tissue and any drool wiping device because most of the pictures after this one will leave you salivating (wet).
We started off the evening’s culinary adventure with an exquisite citrus concoction, the No. 1 Yuzu ($16), which marries vodka and Yuzu juice that is trending both in Singapore and in Japan. It was light on the palate and had a fairy familiar taste.
The French Onion Soup ($8) was not one of those outstanding dishes, however I enjoyed the comforting mix of Swiss Cheese, Parmesan, and Gruyere that was melted on top of the baguette croutons. It is definitely a go to dish on a cold rainy day!
If sinful needed a dish to describe it, it would be the Fat Soldiers ($9). Imagine coating slices of freshly toasted baguette with a very generous dollop of bacon jam. It resembles a steaming pot of Chili, however, it doesn’t taste like beefy goodness. The bacon jam is everything from sweet to savoury, it packs so much flavor that it’s close to impossible singling out individual ingredients with one tasting. I honestly spent most of the meal trying to figure out what went into the making of ‘God’s Gift to Men’. The taste is slightly similar to the traditional Chinese New Year favorite, Bak Kwa, but slightly more spiced? It’s definitely worth the try! (If anyone has figured what goes into this, please feel free to hit us up. )
The unique Shio-Koji Octopoke ($12), Jewel’s rendition of the poke, a Hawaiian raw fish salad, that’s given a touch of Japanese glamour. The dish consists of tender cubed pan-seared octopus which are tossed in shio-koji (a fermented rice-based salt substitute), wasabi and extra virgin olive oil, and paired with creamy avocado and shredded ginger flower for extra zing. Surprisingly the contrast of all the flavors, complimented each other very well and it was one of my personal favorites!
Luncheon meat in a burger? This is the first time I’ve tried such a decadent burger right here in the super health conscious shores of Singapore. The OMG! ($20) burger is a hefty decadent stack of crispy bacon, luncheon meat, beef patty, cheddar, lettuce, onions, tomatoes, and a sunny-side-up. All the burgers here are made with USDA beef patties, soft sesame Brioche buns and are served with a generous portion of salad and fries. The burgers here a MUST TRY due to the fact that they are simply.. Amazing. Adrian actually took the responsibility to perfect all the burger recipes, the team had to try can after can of tinned meat just to find ‘The One’!
This was one of the lows of the meal. The Umami Prawn Capellini ($22) was only an average tasting dish.The pasta consists of al dente capellini, grilled prawns, homemade crustacean oil, and Jewel’s secret umami ‘magic dust’. It looked good and tasted good but it didn’t have that ‘OMG I WANT MORE’ factor that most of the other dishes possessed.
Next up was the Black Cod ($32), a perfectly pan-fried black cod with parsnip mash, sautéed vegetable with cardinal sauce. This was undeniably amazing, the cod was oily, sweet, juicy and left me wanting more. The parsnip mash was not so heavy on the palate and complimented the fish very well. Fans of fish dishes and oily Cod goodness will love this dish!
Fusion food gets two thumbs up any day, this Japanese- Spanish mash up may not be any meat lovers favorite, but is exceptionally good. The Miso Presa Iberico ($34) is a dish that features the prized Iberico pork marinated with miso and mirin, and oven baked to a precise pink-centred medium doneness. It is accompanied with a lavish amount of mashed potatoes and seasonal vegetables. I suggest eating this slightly less well done because there’s more juicy goodness and you can actually taste more of the japanese infused flavor.
Finally the sweet stuff! I am sucker for maple drenched, oh so sweet desserts! The Brioche French Toast ($13) may look intimidating due to the large portion of battered bread, however I am sure after your first few bites you will unknowingly finish up the rest of the dish. The toast comes served with lemon zest mascarpone, strawerries, blueberries and caramalized bananas. (Hold on, wiping off drool from the keyboard.)
The Best Palate Cleanser/ Super Hot Day Snack Award goes to the Pan-Seared Watermelon Steaks ($9). This was so refreshing and I totally did not feel like I packed on a few pounds right after my meal. The tangy homemade pineapple sorbet made the sweet watermelon slices taste even better and the sea salt that is sprinkled on top of the dish gave the dish it’s extra ‘BOOM BOOM POW’. The mere thought of this is giving me hunger pangs, I hope it’s giving you hunger pangs too!
“We decided to offer only single origin coffee as I wanted to help our customers appreciate the subtle differences between the beans.”
I ended the evening with an Iced Mocha. The ratio of chocolate, coffee and milk really did hit the spot got me feeling so stuffed! Yes, I did sleep really well that night. The amount of effort and time taken to make a coffee experience not only unique but educational is commendable. For all you coffee snobs out there that require no less than a double shot of espresso, Jewel will be your new favorite coffee place. All their espresso-based coffee specialties are served in its signature double shot style are lovingly pulled using the Italian state-of-the-art La Marzocco Strada Machine and freshly ground single origin coffee beans from different countries such as Brazil, Ethiopia and Sumatra. I’m a blend kinda girl but the single origin coffee was honestly pretty good and I enjoyed it!
Jewel Café + Bar
129 Rangoon Road, Singapore 218407
Contact: +65 6298 9216
Open: Tuesday – Thursday: 9AM to 10PM, Friday and Saturday: 9AM to 12MN
Sunday: 9AM to 10PM
Closed on Mondays
Happy Hour: 20% off alcoholic drinks, 3PM – 7PM daily. (Here is your reason to drop by after work to try their much raved about cocktails.)