Sunday, 27 April 2014

Mia's Review: Sinpopo Brand

I first visited Sinpopo Brand for desserts with DS, Sa and T after our peranakan dinner at Guan Hoe Soon as it was located along the walk back to Katong V Hotel (our staycation hotel). And immediately the day after we checked out, I dragged T over for lunch again. Wanna know why I'm so intrigued by this restaurant? 

Having reused the name of a nightspot in the olden days, Sinpopo Brand, however, has retained none of the sleaziness. Instead, this old-school nostalgic restaurant has injected a 'new' feeling of the past 1950s of Singapore, which I believe will be so familiar with the generations of our parents and grandparents.
Other than serving some traditional local food that are close to our hearts, we can also expect to find some 'lost' or 'rare' local delights like the attap chee ice cream (where else can you find this, really?) and Ais Bor, which is the common Ice Kacang served in the form of an ice ball with all the fillings wrapped within. Been hearing about this Ais Bor from my mummy since I was a child, but I've never got to see (or try) it until now. Food prices are also pretty affordable (for a cafe/restaurant) at pretty much nothing above $10.

Even the menu give out such a retro feel. I really fell in love with this seemingly humble looking restaurant, yet actually was pretty much painstakingly decorated, even before I tried out their food. 

 Our Ais Kacang...

In comparison to DS and Sa's Ais Bor.

The ais kacang tasted just like any ice kacang and I wouldn't say that they're exceptionally generous with the fillings/ingredients either... But for the ice shavings, obviously it's a yes. 
One disappointing point to note is about the brown syrup, which I thought is the gula melaka syrup. It was totally salty (like brand's essence of chicken kind of salty) on our ice kacang, and very unappealing to our tastebuds. However, it was less salty and much sweeter on the Ais Bor. So, different syrup or what? 

While we were waiting for desserts to be served, we were wondering just what is a Sng Muay Pop (as shown on the wall decor). 
And I found out for myself the very next day...

 Served in this very old-school, retro metal cups...

Sng Muay Pop is really just sour plum with calamansi soda water, filled with bite sized ice ball with a piece of  sour plum flesh inside. A really refreshing and 'fun' drink, for we can suck on the ice ball until we get to the sour plum flesh.

 My lunch for the day was Chicken Curry with Fried Chinese Buns. 
Stated as an authentic Hainanese Curry, I can't be sure of the authenticity even though being a Hainanese myself. *guilty* But it definitely is similar to the chicken curry my grandma used to cook for us when she's still around. The resemblance is hard to miss, with the curry being very much more watery and 'washed down' yet still flavourful but less spicy than the average curry we find elsewhere. 
The fried chinese buns were awesome, for they were served freshly fried, crispy on the outside yet soft and slightly sweet on the inside. I mean, who can ever resist a well fried, piping hot mantou? The fact that this curry is more watery as compared to the other curries also means it's much more easier for the mantou to absorb all the curry gravy as you dip it in. With the correct dipping time, the outer portion remains relatively crisp while the insides of the bun is thoroughly soaked with the curry gravy that oozes out as you bite into it. 
Tell me, even if you're a fan of rich and thick curries, how can you not like a crispy, curry gravy soaked fried mantou? 
Unfortunately, the actual content of the curry pales in comparison. I only managed to dig out a tiny piece of potato from my bowl (I love curry potatoes!) and the 4 pieces of chicken wings inside didn't feel to be thoroughly cooked through in the curry. Don't get me wrong, the meat is well cooked and still relatively tender, but lacking the oomph of the curry flavour that I'll expect to be inside the meat.

T's Scissors Cut Rice.
This popular Singapore street dish is actually an 'economical rice' served with the fixed ingredients of some crispy scissors-cut pork cutlet, curry chicken, and flavourful stewed cabbage, topped up with a fried egg with runny yolk and drizzled with a combination of braised pork flavoured lor chup (braised sauce gravy) and curry gravy. 
T's said it's not bad.... But I have to say that this boy loves everything edible. 

Lastly, our dessert for the day was these Rainbow Soft Bread with Attap Chee Ice cream. Somehow, the soft bread wasn't really soft at some areas, which I reckon that they were frozen from being in close contact with the ice cream. And after one bite of the bread with ice cream, I was reminded of why I always go for wafer whenever I buy some ice cream from those uncle street vendor with the mobile push cart. My mum has always raved about these rainbow soft bread ice cream and will always get one for herself whenever she sees them, but this combination of bread with ice cream is really not my cup of tea. 
The Attap Chee ice cream, on the other hand, was pretty good. A creamy, refreshing sweet taste that slowly turns light as the ice cream melts on our tongue, with whole attap chee stuff within, albeit too sparingly. It's probably the first time I've tried an attap chee flavoured ice cream, and even though the ice cream itself didn't really taste much like attap chee, I still really liked it. 

Sinpopo is located at 458 Joo Chiat Road.
For more information, visit their FaceBook HERE

Till then,


  1. So much food! Never got a chance to order though. Amazingly, the 'older' Sinpopo is still around (:

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