PS. Cafe’s one of the brunch/lunch places that’s been on my 10923487458 places-to-go list for like…forever. I’ve been asking my parents to bring me there, but they’d never really paid any attention to my requests. Until now. After my mum’s friend told her that there’s this pretty restaurant at the top of Ann Siang Hill called PS. Cafe, she came home and shrieked “Oh oh there’s this new place let’s go there!” And I was like “erm haven’t I told you about this place like light years ago?”
So we finally had concrete plans to visit PS. Cafe at Ann Siang Hill for brunch on Good Friday.
And we realised that children are legally barred from enterring that outlet because it’s layout follows a bar concept. Unfazed by the troubles thrown at us (I just finished typing 4 testimonials ahem), we were undeterred in our decision to dine at PS. Cafe and headed straight to the outlet at Dempsey Hill!!
What I love about the outlet at Dempsey, is that the moment you step into the cafe, you are bombarded with the smell of freshly baked bread and muffins, the symphonic hissing of milk frothing in the barista machine, the clinking and clanking of cutlery, and of course the sight of tall, devastatingly decadent cakes. It’s like stepping into paradise.
We got there at about 11am, and boyohboy it was already so packed! We had to wait approximately 20 minutes for our table! Let that be a warning to you: do not – I repeat DO NOT – visit PS. Cafe on weekends or public holidays, from 10.30am onwards. That’s when majority of the brunch crowd comes pouring in. No reservations are allowed for weekends or public hols, so it is really rather risky to visit them during the brunch peak hours.
By the time we got to our tables, we were so darn hungry we needed something to eat IMMEDIATELY. So we ordered the only thing that didn’t require any waiting. We got desserts. Desserts for breakfast – so rightfully sinful.
Something about lime pies just strikes a chord with me. Maybe it’s because I have a penchant for all things sour. Ok most. Combined with a crumbly, biscuit base, lime pies are an absolutely genius dessert. Having tried so many lime pies/tarts, I observed that most tart shells are baked perfectly. Whether they are graham-cracker crusts, shortcrusts, pate sucres, or even phyllos, the tart shells usually complement the lemon curd pretty well and I’ve not had much complains about them. PS. Cafe’s is no different. Slightly moist and crumbly, theirs fall into the graham-cracker crust category. The moistness suggests at quite some butter being used, yet the crust was not overly oily. It was lightly sweetened, tasted light and was a tad crunchy. On the whole it was quite ok. The filling, however, wasn’t my favourite. Texture and consistency they nailed. Taste-wise I found it to be too sweet. I like my lime pies to be more tart and sour, providing a nicer contrast to other desserts, and at the same time cleansing my palate. This wasn’t sour enough for me, so it kinda fell short just there. Out of the three desserts tried though, I still liked this the best because…well because I like lime pies. So there.
Then again I love chocolate too. Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious. Heard of that before? Well that’s what this cake is. I cannot find a better word to describe it. Soft, moist, and oh-so-fluffy, the chocolate sponge is so light your teeth practically sinks into it. Unlike most sponge cakes, it is not overly sweet and has a very rich cocoa taste. The fudge complements the sponge perfectly, giving the cake a little chewiness and bite. This cake is heated just before it’s served, so the fudge comes all warm and melty. It’s gooeyness is a perfect contrast to the airy sponge. Served with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, every bite is burst of sweetness from the ice cream, dark chocolatey chewiness from the fudge, and a light airiness from the sponge. A wonderful plate of contrasts between flavours and textures.
Oh and it’s name is so apt too, cause I can tell you that the cake is REALLY black. Really. I’ve officially gone to the dark side. As hard as it would be, do share this huge slice of cake so you’d have enough space to try their other goodies!
Carrot cakes are another “must tries” of mine since I had those by Barracks@Dempsey. Warm, fragrant, and hot out of the oven (or microwave), their carrot cake was surprisingly disappointing. To me, that is. If you like fluffy and airy carrot cakes, then tadah this is the carrot cake for you! Unfortunately I belong to the camp that likes moist, nutty and fruity carrot cakes. The airy factor is a nono when it comes to carrot cake. Having had Barracks’ carrot cakes (which I consider the best by far) which are sweetened with figs and raisins, I found M’s Carrot Cake to be lacking in the fruity/carroty sweetness. I found it more towards the savoury/salty side in fact! The cream cheese frosting was not bad to say the least – not overly sweet, slightly tangy – but I thought the consistency was off. It was thick and slightly gooey, which might be because they heated it up, but I didn’t like the sticky, gluey and clumpy feel it had. Ah ultimately, it was the texture of the cake that brought it down for me.
The soup was a welcomed dish after all those sweets. It came piping hot, which is something we feel very strongly about. It was thick, with a consistency more pasty than watery. Like a squash soup without cream added. Hearty and delish. The addition of feta cheese to every few mouthfuls were bursts of saltiness that kept the soup interesting. However there was too little feta and far too much soup. To top it off, the drizzling of pesto was barely detectable. As a simple roasted tomato soup, this is great. But it fell short of being as good as what its description promises.
Looks good? Trust me, it tastes better than it looks. This is my favourite of all dishes I’ve had at PS. Cafe. It was so good it inspired me to make my own muesli later that day! But that’s a post for another day (: I’ve learnt to love greek yogurt for its creamy texture and natural sourness. Sweetened with crunchy honey toasted muesli and all those delectable berries, this bowl of berrilicious goodness was an instant hit with my family. The yogurt and berries compote were the sour components of this dish; the berries and muesli gave it a natural light sweetness that was neither coying nor overwhelming. All in all another wonderfully executed dish that balances both flavours and textures.
A pretty standard breakfast dish, there’s nothing much to say about eggs benedicts in general unless it’s horrible. And horrible this dish is not. Fluffy muffins, lightly toasted, topped with lightly grilled ham, poached eggs, and hollandaise sauce – this was a well done safe dish. The hollandaise was not overwhelmingly creamy, and I liked the sprinkling of pepper over the sauce. The mesclun salad accompanying on the side was perfectly dressed. However the dish on a whole fell short of being perfect because one egg was slightly overcooked, and the cherry tomatoes were not sweet. In such a simple dish, everything matters and small details like this should not be overlooked.
Featured as one of the Top 10 Fish & Chips in Singapore in Appetite magazine, I was looking forward to trying this dish. I’m not a fish & chips person, so when I say this is good, it really is quite good. Coated lightly in beer batter, the fish fillets were surprisingly thick and substantial. The batter was thin, not floury and starch, and most importantly the fish were not swimming in oil. Indeed, it was crisp and light. The chunky fries weren’t wow, but good. What I really liked was the addition of veggie sticks to this dish. It added a crunch and was a refreshing change from the salty fries. Who could have thought veggie could taste so good dipped in either the tartar or the aioli?
Fluffy and soft, these pancakes were rather good. Not as fluffy as the ones I had at Hatched, but it got pretty close! Lightly sweetened, you could taste a slight saltiness that made it easy to imagine these babes as savoury pancakes! A great batter to be honest. If anything it was a tad too thin, resembling some fast food restaurant’s hotcakes. I didn’t like that they topped the pancakes with fresh blueberries. It made the blueberries seem like a simple side when it should have been the star of the dish. I would have preferred for the blueberries to be incorporated into the batter, instead of merely topping the pancakes. Even blueberry coulis/sauce would be better than just fresh blueberries.
By the time this dish arrived, I concluded that PS. Cafe had a penchant for naming their dishes after the least significant ingredient. There was hardly any portobello in this “Portobello” stack! It seemed more like a standard eggs and bacon/american big breakfast kinda dish as compared to the delicious sandwich the description made it to be. Calling it “The Works” or I don’t know “Eggs and Bacon” or something would have been a million times more apt. Besides the disappointment of not being what was described, the dish itself was pretty good. Loved the generous drizzling of aged balsamic; perfectly poached egg; sweet tomatoes; crispy bacon; and ohmyohmy their potato gratin was so gooooood. But honestly it’s not so much a gratin as it is a chunky mash. Once again their vocabulary failed them. The brioche was over-toasted, so it was quite a trouble to cut it and to chew on it. I maintain that the best brioches I’ve ever had come from Wild Honey and Jones the Grocer.
With hits and misses for both their savouries and sweets, PS. Cafe’s definitely far from being perfect. They might not be perfect, but they are certainly good. That, and their sweets alone, would warrant another visit from me. But of course, throw in the toasted muesli and I’ll be there, ANYTIME.
❤ their muesli.
PS.Cafe at Harding
28B Harding Road