SINGAPORE – There is a snaking long queue for Lune Croissanterie. Those in the queue have looks of anticipation on their faces as they wait for their turn to purchase, arguably, the world’s best croissant. Each person is only entitled to a box of 2 croissants priced at S$22 and there is only a limited number of boxes each day. Is it really worth the price?
Yahoo Lifestyle Singapore was at the first-ever immersive café concept in Singapore at Marina Bay Sands to suss out the signature offerings of each of the 10 best café concepts curated from all over the world, which were presented at the Café Culture event from Aug 29 – Sep 1.
The immersive, fun-filled experience presents each visiting cafe brand in a purpose-built setting that reflects the essence of its origin and home location. Menus similarly reflect the signature food, drink and merchandise that fans go to great lengths to seek out on their jetsetting pilgrimages to these destination cafes.
Melbourne-based Lune Croissanterie by Kate Reid
As its name suggests, they sell croissants. But these are no ordinary croissants with The New York Times dubbing them the world’s best croissant. We can see the founder Kate Reid herself in the open kitchen, checking on and churning out her “classic beurre” croissants.
Ingredients are specially flown in from Melbourne and croissants freshly baked here to ensure you enjoy the freshest croissants exactly as they are in Melbourne.
We spoke to one of the people in the snaking long queue about just how popular these croissants are? “Buttery, flaky and delicious and one of the best croissants I have ever had.”, said the Lune croissant fan who first tried it at their Melbourne store.
If you like buttery croissants, you would like this if you do not mind trying out a S$11 croissant just to see if it is worth its price tag.
KOI Dessert Bar by the Poernomo brothers, Sydney
Desserts too pretty to eat, was what we thought when we saw the decadent and fancy-looking creations from Sydney-based patisserie, KOI Dessert Bar.
Reynold Poernomo, one-third of the brothers behind the business, is a Masterchef Australia finalist. Though he did not win the competition, he scored a perfect 30/30 on a dessert challenge for the show.
We tried the signature espresso mousse with salted caramel, chocolate brownie and hazelnut dessert, Nomtella, and it was heavenly good. It had that perfect glaze where you can see your reflection looking back at you. Other signature creations include the Berry Cheesecake and a Coconut Passionfruit number.
They’ve also created a Gardens by the Bay-inspired dessert specially for this Café Culture event.
When asked about his inspiration for his desserts, Reynold said, “Most of it is seasonality. Actually for this event there is one cake called Gardens by the Bay inspired by the attraction. It’s very tropical, coconut, passionfruit, mango and jackfruit and palm sugar as well. Inspiration for the desserts is usually what we like to eat, nothing too sweet, more fruity.”
Curious, we asked him for the inspiration behind Gardens by the Bay dessert: “When Café Culture approached us to be a part of it, we thought we would do something Singapore-inspired. We use ingredients that are local around here of Malaysian, Asian and Indian influence. We really wanted to create something iconic, which is the Gardens by the Bay.” Reynold added.
While we got to savour Koi for a limited-time only in Singapore, Reynold doesn’t think the brand will expand here any time soon. “Definitely, we are not going to expand in Sydney anymore. We are looking into Melbourne and maybe overseas ventures. In terms of concept wise, the company is looking at newer concepts such as bars,” he added.
Award-winning Coffee Collective from Copenhagen
The Danish coffeehouse is headed by coffee enthusiasts Peter N. Dupont, Casper Engel Rasmussen and Klaus Thomsen and has won gold in both the World Barista Championship and World Cup Tasting championships.
Of course, we had to try their award-winning coffee.
The team displayed great dedication at their work as they operate the machines and customers waited patiently for their brews.
Barista Simone explains to us that Coffee Collective started out as a roastery and expanded to include a coffee shop.
“We try to grow and be better. Every year we try to develop new things, to be more sustainable and green. We try to source coffee bags that are more sustainable than the year before.”
When asked about their signature drinks, she said, “In Denmark, in general in Scandinavia, black coffee is a big thing for many many years and it has just been this very very big heavy pot of coffee that has just been standing for 3 hours. We call it the teachers’ drink in Denmark because all the teachers in school would always drink that. We have taken that tradition and tried to transform it into something that tastes really nice, so we brew so many different kinds of black coffee. ”
Ice cream fans: They sell coffee soft serve made with freshly brewed espresso and dusted with a sprinkle of ground beans over the swirls of the creamy soft serve.
Sisterfields from Bali, Indonesia
If you love brunch, turn to Sisterfields for their brunch dishes. Sisterfields was conceived and developed by Australian expat Adam McAsey. The café represents the iconic caf culture of Australia, bringing a love of good food and great coffee to the heart of Seminyak, Bali.
We tried the Pulled Pork Charcoal Rolls and Smashed Avocado on the menu. The pulled pork is tender and sweet with the home-made BBQ sauce while the smashed avocado mixed with pickled onion, cashew zaatar and sumac labna on rye bread is full of flavour.
Bangkok-based latte-sipping hotspot Roast
For truffle lovers, you have to try the Truffle Alfredo Tagliatelle. The smell of truffle is heavenly good over homemade Tagliatelle.
Other signature dishes include the Blueberry Ricotta Pancakes and Grilled Chicken and Spinach Quesadilla.
Coffee maestro Varatt Vichit-Vadakan, a 2014 Barista Champion of Thailand, is behind this café which champions Thai coffee and its farmers.
They also serve in-house roast blends to go with their delectable international dishes.
Tokyo’s Switch Coffee, Melbourne’s St Ali, Bangkok’s Roots, Shanghai’s Pushers
Coffee lovers will have a field day, choosing from a variety of different roasts and blends from Coffee Collective to Bangkok’s Roots to Tokyo’s Switch Coffee.
If coffee is not for you, fret not. There is also Pushers’ teas such as the sparkling tea on tap, ranging from sparkling Oolong and Peach to sparkling Chrysanthemum, Pear and Elderflower and Sparkling Roselle, Strawberry and Rhubarb.