Wednesday, 26 June 2013

Mia's Sneak Peek: The Lone Ranger

From producer Jerry Bruckheimer and director Gore Verbinski, the filmmaking team behind the blockbuster "Pirates of the Caribbean" franchise, comes Disney/ Jerry Bruckheimer Films' "The Lone Ranger," a thrilling adventure infused with action and humor, in which the famed masked hero is brought to life through new eyes. Native American spirit warrior Tonto (Johnny Depp) recounts the untold tales that transformed John Reid (Armie Hammer), a man of the law, into a legend of justice-taking the audience on a runaway train of epic surprises and humorous friction as the two unlikely heroes must learn to work together and fight against greed and corruption. (c) Disney

I've previously watched the trailer when I was catching a movie with my friends. Needless to say, we were instantly blown away by the thrill of the actions and humour the film seems to be packed full with. It didn't take more than a flick of the finger and a knowing grin to confirm that we'll be sitting alongside each other in the theatre again, sometime after 4 July.

 Apparently, there has been controversy over the portrayal of Tonto, a Native American, by Johnny Depp. There's also concerns about whether the film will present a positive and accurate portrayal of the Comanche. However, the film's supporters has cited the presence of an adviser from the Comanche Nation as evidence that Tonto's portrayal will be well-handled. Moreover, Johnny Depp was adopted as an honorary son by LaDonna Harris, a member of the Comanche Nation, on May 22, 2012, making him an honorary member of Harris' family, but not an enrolled member of the Nation. Harris, president of Americans for Indian Opportunity, invited him to join her family after hearing he would be portraying the role of Tonto as a Comanche in "The Lone Ranger". The ceremony took place at Harris’ home and Comanche Nation Tribal Administrator, Johnny Wauqua, was in attendance. (c) Wikipedia

Even though not truly a hardcore Depp's fan, I can't deny that he has carved a niche for himself as a somewhat dark, idiosyncratic performer ever since his success with Edward Scissorhands. Depp has consistently selected roles that surprised critics and audiences alike. Roles such as Sweeney Todd, Mad Hatter, Willy Wonka, and of course Captain Jack Sparrow. Roles, which now doesn't seem to suit any other actor other than Johnny Depp. The character of Tonto also seems to be yet another colourful and humourous role, which Depp can add on to his amazing filmography.

"The Lone Ranger" also stars Tom Wilkinson, William Fichtner, Barry Pepper, James Badge Dale, Ruth Wilson, Helena Bonham Carter, and Mason Cook.

In my own humble opinions, another name in the cast line up popped up alongside Johnny Depp and that's no other than Helena Bonham Carter. You might be unfamiliar with the name, but definitely not with her face or the characters she has portrayed in various movies, such as Bellatrix Lestrange in the Harry Potter francise, Madame Thénardier in Les Misérables, Red Queen in Alice In Wonderland, Mrs. Lovett in Sweeney Todd and Mrs. Bucket in Charlie & The Chocolate Factory.

Catch Disney's "The Lone Ranger" in Singapore cinemas this 4 July 2013! For more updates, like the Official Walt Disney Studios Singapore Facebook Page, follow @disneystudiosSG and subscribe to the Official Disney Studios Singapore YouTube Channel!

Monday, 24 June 2013

Molly's Update: Apples VS Romaine Lettuce

Oh yeah, it's dinner time! My favourite Romaine Lettuce!

Hey, lettuce don't run! Mia, the lettuce is flying away! 

 Oh yeah, I got it! 

Finally, dinner time! Nom Nom Nom...

  And at this moment, Mia's papa walk over and placed a piece of apple in front of me.... A-P-P-L-E!

Now, who wants lettuces when there's apples?! 
Nom Nom Nom...

 On a side note...
*Listens as Mia whispers....

WHAT? They're not following me on Instagram? T.T

Follow me larrrr, please please please? 

With lotsa love & binkies,

Friday, 21 June 2013

Updates from Mia: Ssikkek Korean BBQ

A couple weeks ago, Ade suddenly had this pregnant lady's craving for Korean BBQ and I totally worsened it by raving on Blue Garden (located at Link Hotel) to her. Without a doubt, we ended our chat with an arrangement to meet up with the rest of the girls for a Korean BBQ session and that's how we found ourselves at Ssikkek Korean BBQ (Chinatown branch) earlier this week! And as I've visited Blue Garden previously but didn't blog about it, I will be squeezing in some comparisons along the way.

I gotta apologise in advance for the lack of photographs (in both numbers and quality)  for this update. I didn't plan to blog on my experience at Ssikkek initially. Only thought of doing this when I saw a forum topic asking for reviews. :p And yes, in case you're wondering what Ssikkek means, it means Shi Ke in Chinese. 

 The Chinatown branch is located at Oriental Plaza, a 5 to 10 minutes walk from Outram MRT Station Exit H (I think?). And as we're crossing the traffic lights towards the Oriental Plaza building, we can already smell the mouth-watering scent of barbequed meat from the restaurant! When we're there at 730pm on a Tuesday, the shop is already fullhouse and there's a group or two of customers waiting in line outside. A peek at the waiting list shows a handful more. But thank goodness, I had the sense to make a reservation the day before. So, no waiting required! But please, do be punctual if you made a reservation. We were there on the dot. :) 

The interior of the restaurant is relatively packed with many seats (yet still fullhouse on a Tuesday night, yes), but still has sufficient room to move about comfortably without knocking into edges and corners of tables and chairs with every step and turn of the body. We were given a mid-corner table right at the meat section. Yippee! 
As compared to Blue Garden, Ssikkek seems to have a better selection of raw items for bbq. Unlike Blue Garden, which has cut the meat into bite size, Ssikkek serves their meat in bigger pieces while providing customers with clean scissors to cut them up when they're cooked. The scissors, along with tongs, are provided at every table too, unlike Blue Garden, which was located at a common pick up point with the plates and bowls and that resulted in us forgetting about taking the tongs and using our own chopsticks to handle the raw meat! =.="

And there you have it! The pictures of sizzling barbequed meat! There's chicken bulgogi, and a selection of pork like pork collar, pork belly & bacon, and a selection of beef (not a beef-eater, so I can't comment). But Ching totally fell in love with one kind of their beef and just couldn't stop eating it.
Personally, I like the chicken best. The meat is marinated relatively well and is tender and juicy upon cooked (I have good skills, too?). The sangchu (lettuce) served were fresh and had minimal bitter taste (can't help it, sangchu in singapore can never beat sangchu in korea), hence it didn't affect the taste of my wraps as much. My habit of eating Korean BBQ is 1 pc lettuce, 1 pc meat, 1 pc kimchi = 1 wrap. And I only eat the meat as wraps, so the lettuce and kimchi are equally important to me as well. And yes, their kimchi is pretty good too! It's both spicy and sour, with a nice crunch and cut up into bite size for easy eating. I swear some places serves their kimchi badly cut and it's so exasperating trying to find a proper bite size one.
Ching, Ade and Boon obviously prefer the beef to chicken, as they just polish off stack after stack of all sorts of beef from their plates. From my observations, the thinly sliced (bacon-like) ones is the most popular of the lot. And as for the pork, well... they're just, pork. Not a fan of pork to begin with, plus look at those thick melted fats! (urgh!) But I did have my fair share of the pork collar. Not bad, though chicken bulgogi is still the winner. 
And apart from meat, there's also a small selection of seafood (prawn, which weren't fresh on the day we're there, and squids), and other miscellaneous like rice cakes and potatoes. My recommendation will be to just stick to the meat. Even though I love potatoes to bits, the waiting time for them to get cooked (even though they're already thinly sliced) can be rather frustrating. 

And as for cooked food, I have to say Ssikkek is rather disappointing. Was looking around for ddeokbokgi (spicy rice cake) but couldn't find any, even though I was informed that they do serve them. In fact, I did find the container labelled as ddeokbokgi but it turns out to be cooked meat inside... (??) There was also other cooked food like stew/soup, fries, kimbab (with soggy seaweed, of course), and japchae for us to choose from. And Japchae was the only cooked food we decided to try. It wasn't too bad, quite tasty, in fact. Even though the japchae is kind of dry (probably left out in the open for a while, but what to do? it's buffet style.), it's still pretty well seasoned and cooked just nice to give the sweet potato noodles a QQ chewy texture. Worth a try! :) 

On the other hand, Blue Garden seemed to have won in terms of selection of cooked food. I remembered they had abalone porridge (you can hardly find any abalone inside, of course. But it's still good.), ginseng chicken soup, korean pancakes (my favourite!), ddeokbogki, fried chicken wings and etc. But you gotta be fast at Blue Garden because they doesn't seem to refill the cooked food (or perhaps we were there rather late so they stopped refilling....) 

As for drinks, Ssikkek provides free flow of cold drinks, which includes korean tea and the usual soft drinks like Coke, Sprite & ILT. Blue Garden, on the other hand, only provides diner with free flow of water. All flavoured drinks are not inclusive in the buffet.

And of course, we will need an ice cream dessert after the meal! Ssikkek sells these ice bar (mango and melon flavours) at an addition of $1 per piece. But I gotta say it's just a normal ice cream (plus I'm neither a fan of either flavour). However, at just $1, why not? 
Blue Garden, on the other hand, includes ice cream scoops (chocolate, strawberry & vanilla) in the buffet.

As for the price, dinner at Ssikkek is only $24++ per head, which amounts to $28.25 in total, and $14++ for lunch. I'll recommend you go for dinner, because if I'm not wrong, Ssikkek does not serve seafood for lunch menu. Plus, we don't go home straight after a lunch gathering, right? It's really not a very good idea to go about wandering on the streets after a visit to Ssikkek (and any other bbq restaurants). Every inch of your body and clothes reek of smokey cooked meat. *sick* I felt really sorry for the commuters on the trains, especially those around me, both times I went home after Ssikkek & Blue Garden.
 Nevertheless, $28 for all those yummy meat, what are you waiting for?!

 And because I brought up Blue Garden, here's some (badly taken) pictures of the bbq while I was there.

Till then, 

Thursday, 20 June 2013

Video Day: WTF Part 2 - Bui Bui & Slinky beg for food!

Briefly talked about this in my previous post, so here are the video spamming!
Hear Bui Bui whining pitifully, begging for her food! All the whining came from Bui Bui only.... She sounded so pitiful! T.T

Bad interference noise towards the later half of the video, recommended to turn down the volume.

And watch Slinky jumps!

Monday, 17 June 2013

Updates from Mia: We went WTF!

No, I didn't swear okay. WTF stands for We're The Furballs, a small cafe with dog-petting area located at 45 East Coast Rd (along the shophouses opposite Katong I12, and somewhere in between Botak Jones & Katong 328 Laksa). If you haven't heard of them, they've been around for quite some time! I first went there mid last year, and it was quite a while after I first heard about them from my friends. They started off with 6 puppies, and at one point had two new puppies, and just yesterday when i revisted them, there's only 7 of the pups around.
 First up, let's introduce my favourite pup of the lot. Slinky, the Miniature Dachshund. She's so chic when in chillax mode!

Yuki-Chan, the brown (and older) Pomenarian and a true princess!

Lulu, the forever-alone Poodle (I can't decide if it's Toy or Miniature, though). Lulu is also the disciplinarian of the lot. Always ready to break up any puppy-fights!

Bui Bui, the French Bulldog. Bui Bui seems like the troublemaker of the group, always the first to be up to mischief. Dresden jaw-dropped when I told her Bui Bui is a girl. *eek*

Duchess, the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel.

Mochi, the Maltese. A rare shot of her, to be exact. Mochi also seems to be another forever-alone puppy, always hiding underneath the chair at one corner. Rolled up into a messy ball of white fluff!

Lola, the white/cream (and younger) Pomenarian. She's Dresden's favourite pup of the lot. Totally melted her heart when she trots over and climbs onto her lap for a nap. *aww*

Lastly, it's Sasha the other Poodle! Sasha, along with Lola, are the newer pups of WTF. However, she wasn't around yesterday when I was there... T.T A rather hyperactive and mischievous puppy, always very eager to play (and annoying the disciplinarian Lulu....)

WTF cafe consist of the pet-friendly 1st storey whereby you can have the usual bubble-tea and finger food snacks, and the dog-petting 2nd storey with all the above mentioned cuties! However, do note that the 2nd storey is not pet-friendly. To get to the 2nd floor, you just have to order a drink and top up an additional fees (amounted to $8.40 when i was there on a weekend) and you basically can spend the entire day there with the puppies!

And now for more photo-spamming!

There's Lola chilling on my lap and doing a half-wink in Dresden's arms. How adorable! 

Lulu playing with a ball (by herself, yes) and getting photobombed by Yuki-chan. Just seconds before that, Buibui was play-fighting with Duchess or Slinky (can't remember clearly) and Lulu was annoyed with the commotion and chased after them, barking with the ball held in her mouth! Just imagine the cuteness!

This is what to expect when you come to the top of the stairs. They'll all be there to welcome you! (Old picture, hence Lola and Sasha are not in the picture while Bui Bui, I guess was busy napping at one corner...) Yuki-Chan and Mochi are just a blur of fluff here!

 And it's feeding time! Bui Bui and Slinky begging for food outside the gate while Lola & Yuki-chan were getting fed first. Bui Bui was whining so pitifully! (Took a video of it, shall use that as a Video Day post later on!) And subsequently, Bui Bui got fed first and Slinky could only look on....
Contrary to believe, Bui Bui actually is one of the lesser eater among the lot, no joke.

Another old picture, Bui Bui staring at the drink in another lady's hand as if in a trance. Slinky just cannot be bothered. Lola wonders what's so enticing about the drink that got Bui Bui tranced, and Mochi just being Mochi. In her own world. 

 And the two buddies sleeping butt to butt! It's M Style~ (You won't get it if you're not a Shinhwa/Min Woo fan.)

Till then,

Saturday, 15 June 2013

Video Day: Molly Eats Chye Sim!

It's Molly's video day again! Watch her in action battling a stalk of chye sim! :)
ps. mute the volume. too late to remove the ear-splitting background noise. 

Sunday, 9 June 2013

Updates from Mia: Daruma Ramen House (1-for-1) & Smoothie King!

Met up with Sa, JX and YH over the weekend for some random shopping & ramen dinner! If you haven't know it, I'm a huge ramen fan. :)
Yes, it's 1-for-1 ramen at Daruma Ramen House, located at level 2 of TripleOne Somerset. The shop is located at a corner (though not secluded) and has the outlook of a (typically traditional) Japanese Ramen House. The 1-for-1 promotion ends 30th June and is only valid for diners in pairs. :)

And their ramen aren't expensive either! Although there isn't a wide variety of flavours, there's still 3 different type of soup bases (with additional choice of original or light) with 2 to 3 different combination of ingredients for each soup base. Even though I always prefer spicy ramen, I also do have a 'fear' for them sometimes because some ramen house simply pour on a thick coat of rayu (chili oil) to make it "spicy". Urgh, not my type at all. Hence to be on the safe side, I chose R8 instead. Japanese braised pork belly, barbeque pork and mentaiko.
The 1-for-1 promotion is only valid for the same order of ramen only. Meaning if you order R8, the FOC ramen must also be R8.

And that's my dinner for the night. Tonkotsu Ramen with pork belly, bbq pork, and mentaiko. Look at the generous glop of orange smack on top of the braised pork belly! The goodness of the ramen is finally topped up with half a soft boiled egg, generous servings of chopped green onions, marinated fungus (i thought it was kelp at first sight) and dried chilli threads (which i think is saffron). To add on to my ramen, I've ordered extra toppings of bamboo shoots, which I thought would have been served cold and dumped into the ramen (like many other ramen houses). But nope, the bamboo shoots her are served hot and marinated on a side dish plate, that is tender and slightly chewy at the same time and gives off a fragrant sesame oil taste as you slowly chew it down. MUST TRY! 

The ramen is really not bad! The soup is light (because I chose for light), and not salty at all. It'll be a good choice for those who shun away from ramen because they're "too salty". The mentaiko (perhaps because immersed slightly in the soup) is kinda runny as compared to the more solid texture we usually see in 'mentaiko on rice'. It's is neither acutely salty nor spicy, but just has a slight tinge of both as it melts away on your tongue. Recommended to first push the mentaiko to one side of the bowl (probably secured with a slice of the pork belly) as you slowly eat it, bit by bit, with the noodles. Next up, the pork! I'm never a fan of pork, much less to speak of these charsiu served in Japanese ramen as many of them served in Singapore's Japanese ramen chains tend to be more tough than tender. But the braised pork belly served here are just amazingly tender! It take just one soft bite to get a clean cut on the meat, which is a good mix of fats and lean meat. After which, the fats simply melts away in your mouth as you chew on the remnants of the lean meat, which is equally tender. The bbq pork, made from rolling up pieces of thigh meat and cooking them in hot water before bbq-ing the surface and then cutting into slices, has significantly less amount of fats, yet still tender and flavourful. 
And as for the noodles and the soft boiled egg, I gotta say they aren't as promising as the rest. The noodles are somewhat harder and less springy, not quite to my liking for I prefer softer and springier noodles. The soft boiled egg was also a disappointment as it didn't seem to be well braised/flavoured and the egg yolk was a mix of runny-ness and well cooked bits with a small spot of the egg white being very runny (urgh!). 
But overall, it's still worth a try, regardless of whether there's 1-for-1 or not. 18 dollars (9 dollars, in case of 1-for-1) for a bowl of ramen with 3 + 1 pieces of tender pork and mentaiko, why not? 

And this was Sa's ramen. The spicy soup base of my ramen. Tried the soup and it was actually not much different from mine apart from a slight hint of spiciness. The redness of the soup is actually nothing to be afraid of. Both of us would have preferred it to be much more spicier, though.

On a side note, look at the cuteness of the tiny pot they used to keep the condiment! It's garlic inside, btw. :)

And after our dinner, we did a little shopping at F21 at 313 and came across Smoothie King!

They have a really extended list of smoothie menu (indicated with their calorie count) generally categorized into Refreshing (added ingredients that are good for overall health) and Slim & Lite (added ingredients that aids in weight loss). You can also ask to add extra enhancer at additional cost to your yummy smoothie. 
Apart from smoothie, food such as wraps are also served at the restaurant. 

Upon completing our order at the counter, we will be given a beeper/flasher as shown, which will start flashing once our order is ready at the collection counter. 

 And here's our orders for the night. YH's Very Berry (small), my Angel Food (regular) and Sa's Yoghurt D-Lite - Blueberry (large).
 Both the yoghurt d-lite blueberry and very berry actually tastes similar. Very "berry-ful" (think tangy) and generally appealing to all ladies. 
However, my Angel Food (supposedly a blend of bananas, strawberries and soy protein) was a disappointment. There isn't any taste of strawberry at all. It tasted pretty much like a banana smoothie, which gets kinda sickening after a while (should have gotten small instead of regular), for I'm not really a banana smoothie fan. I prefer bananas to be eaten as a fruit, nothing else. The strawberry, if it has done anything, was to give the smoothie a pretty, red colour.
The smoothie is pretty light, though still thick and creamy, if you get what I mean. Some smoothie are way too rich and sweet, it's impossible to finish the whole cup of it by yourself because you'll just end up getting so sick of the richness after a while. But for Smoothie King, there's no such issue. Even though I practically ended up with my much hated banana smoothie, I still did manage to finish it without much problems, while lusting for Sa's/YH's instead. 

Till then,

Friday, 7 June 2013

Video Day: Molly loves apples!

Apples are Molly's favourite treats. She gets totally excited upon the sight of my bitten apple and will do anything to reach them for one bite!
Videos muted due to excessive background noise.

Sunday, 2 June 2013

Mia's Reivew: Canele French Macaroons

 Met up Dresden & SL over the weekend for a trip to Gardens By The Bay (nah, not blogging about it today) and subsequently treated them to some yummy french macaroons & tea at Canele. 
 Look at what's written in the teacup. Stressed = Desserts. Very true indeed! I have to say that we can find much cuter teapots and teacups elsewhere, but I still like the bright yellow small teapot that contains my chamomile flowers tea. It's caffeine free too, just nice for a cuppa at night for a good night's sleep. 
I'll recommend not adding any sugar to your tea (unless you love everything extra sweet) when you're taking it with their French Macaroons. 
And the french macaroons (also known as macaron)! Look at them! Such cuties! And those pretty macaron feet! The flavours are Chocolate Noir, Fleur De Sel (salted caramel, my favourite!), Cookies & Cream, and Rose. 

I've tried macarons from Bakerzin (my first try, and I hated it!), Obolo, Pique Nique, and Canele. I have to say, Canele wins hands down, followed by Obolo, then Pique Nique, then Bakerzin (yuck!). 

Being a chocolate craze and yet choosing their Fleur De Sel as my favourite flavour really speaks a lot (or maybe because to a certain extent, chocolate is just too common). The macaron shells (meringue cookies) are crunchy on the surface, yet somewhat chewy on the inside and as you chew on it, the cream filling adds on not only a flavourful salty sweetness of the salted caramel but slight moistness to the chewy texture..... Simply brilliant!
Even Dresden, who was put off by yet another yucky macaron from a high class dining place, loved them from the first bite of her Cookies & Cream and even craved for more after finishing her Rose. 

And because I brought up Pique Nique, here is an old photo I've taken of their macarons when i was there with Ade & Boon. Flavours are: Chocolate, Coffee, PB & J, Red Velvet. Loved the red velvet because it's so pretty! Look at those cute tiny sugar stars they've added on top of the macaron shell! But taste wise, the macaron at Pique Nique is less crunchy, but somewhat hard (on the surface) and also less chewy (on the inside). Unlike Canele's, which can be easily poked through with a fork and eaten bite by bite, it might be more challenging to do likewise for Pique Nique's (and also Obolo's). The latter's will tend to break apart and crumble so it's much easier to eat by hand. It actually reminded me a little of whoppie pie as the macaron shells has a slight "cakey" texture to it. Their cream fillings are also less flavourful as compared to Canele.

Till then,
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