Monthly Archives: March 2012

A Singapore Dining Special: Urban Bites

This post is also dedicated to Faye, my UPLB Jocks sister, who requested for a Mediterranean cuisine entry!

It’s been almost two months since my passport was last stamped with an entry in “Singapore”. I can honestly say that I miss the country and how convenient everything was. I mean, if there’s one word for Singapore, that would be efficient.

My three-month stint in the country is one of the highlights of my career and my personal life as well. I’ve always wanted to work in SG because it is the headquarters of all the Broadcasting corporations that were part of Cole’s Grand Plan to World Domination my dreams of becoming a travel journalist–Discovery Channel, National Geographic, BBC World Asia…Disney Channel, and of course, my dear MTV Asia.

But perhaps, this isn’t the right time in my life for that. I am certainly not giving up on my dreams, I am just gearing up for the challenges plotted to achieve my goals and ambitions. Anyway, this post is a sweet reminder of one of the best moments of my life in the concrete jungles of Southeast Asia, that is food trip. Like I said in my previous posts, since traveling would hurt my finances a hell lot than when I was in Laos, I channeled all my energy and resources in food trips–since, I had to eat, right? 🙂 Now, I know SG isn’t really one of the off-the-beaten tracks Cole Walks is trying to showcase, but there are those underrated restaurants that, in fact, have excellent food, good and fast service and reasonable prices. SG is known to be the melting pot of Asian culture, with cuisines coming in from across the globe. But if I would pick a favorite from all my walking-eating-moments, there is that one place at Tanjong Pagar Complex that caught my taste, and made me break my vegetarian diet for a while. I am talking about, Urban Bites.

Urban Bites, a small restaurant located in quaint Telok Ayer street, is specialized in Mediterranean cuisine. It has been also featured in Real Deal for A Good Deal, a lifestyle show aired over MediaCorp. What separates Urban Bites from other restaurants (I think) is their No-Salt-Policy. I don’t know how they do it, but if no-salt tastes this good–that’s one body part (kidneys) I need not worry about! Plenty of tourists chill at this place, in search for a different twist from the usual Chinese and Malaysian menu. To get to Urban Bites, From taking the MRT to Tanjong Pagar, look for the sign that says Telok Ayer. Walk out of the station and continue walking on your left-hand side. You will pass by a huge hawker center, some restaurants, Watson’s Pharmacy, other offices, and finally a Chinese temple. Once you see the Chinese temple on your left, Urban Bites is just across the road. Although, it is located at the CBD, it’s exact place is a little obscure for its along the lines of massage places, and other small restaurants. It’s façade is also modern, so don’t expect an exotic architecture (see below).

What can I say, my siblings and I love this place. Below is a list of usual orders, and they are not just usual because of preference but because they are really good. Have I mentioned fast and efficient service? Staff are pleasant and friendly, too, if I may add. Trust me when I say, if my siblings, who are so meticulous and picky in what they eat (they are both chefs in the making, for some reason) say it’s good–it’s friggin worth it. We spent a little over SGD60, but that’s because my brother eats for two already!

So, here’s Urban Bites for you with commentaries from my siblings to give them a little more credibility HAH! I hope to visit again someday and perhaps, take my friends there. It’s a good place to dine after a long week of work routine.

123 Telok Ayer Street, Singapore 068592

Tel: 65 6327 9460

Opening hours: 9AM-9:45PM | Mondays – Saturdays

Website: http://www.urbanbites.com.sg/

Location: http://www.streetdirectory.com/urbanbites/


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Filed under Food and Dining

If You Can’t Stand the Heat–Build Your Own Kitchen

If you’re wondering why I haven’t purchased a ticket to fly somewhere and get on my Cole Walks action, don’t worry, I’m not suffering from any serious illness of some sort: 1) Since I arrived from Singapore, I was hunting here, there and everywhere for a job; 2) If I’m not showing up at interviews, I’m at home completing my courses–oh, my academic life; and 3) I’m trying to learn the basics of one aspect of my life that I haven’t really cultivated, that is cooking.

Yes, who would have thought, right? Princess Cole, can’t do the dishes, can’t do her own laundry, can’t cook to save her life, is now her household’s Pasta Chef, or at least because her family has no choice but to eat what their Princess has prepared for them–whether it’s relatively edible or utterly repulsive. But I have to say, I’m not that prissy. I can handle things on my own, only that I haven’t mastered the chores part yet. Although, when I moved to Laos and had acquired my own place for a while, I was the one cleaning my flat even if I lived in a guesthouse. I managed my own finances, and above all, I looked after my own health and safety.

Things had leveled up though, when I got domesticated while in-between jobs here in my hometown. I started doing my own laundry (my parents drop off theirs at a shop somewhere), and that was also my first time to use the washer. My good friend for a decade now was shocked about this tidbit. Poor her, she’s friends with a priss. I didn’t exactly plan on messing with our kitchen because I really wanted to get back to playing the piano. Plus, I seriously thought I won’t be able to do anything right in the kitchen because I am a firm believer that there are some things one just can’t do. The thought of slicing, dicing, mincing, sautéing, burning/slicing my finger just freaked me out. I keep hearing my mom’s shrieks when she accidentally cuts her finger whenever I see our knives. But as it turns out, my hand-eye-coordination worked better in the kitchen than tapping the keys of our old piano. I got hungry one afternoon, spotted some cheap-az pasta sitting in the cupboard, and leftover ready-made pesto sauce in the fridge. What else am I supposed to do?

My first try was, of course, a tragedy. Pasta was overcooked. The whole thing upset me that I just had to accept the challenge of the culinary arts. In the following weeks: 1) My mom shared some secrets of the trade; 2) I studied Giada de Laurentiis’ and Rachael Ray’s recipes on Food Network; and 3) Forced my family to be my guinea pigs for my cooking HAH! And well, whaddyaknow, one Sunday morning (or okay that was almost noon, I slept real late–insomnia attacks), my brother was kicking my foot saying “Hoy, Pigrolac, gumising ka na!” (Hey, Pigrolac, get up!) If you’re wondering what Pigrolac is, it’s a brand of pig feeds. I know, I have the sweetest brothers in the whole friggin world. So I got up, my mom was in the kitchen, I asked her why all of a sudden my brother was so eager to wake me up because the last time that that happened was back when we were in college–and that was a loooong time ago. My mom just answered “Magluto ka na daw,” (It’s time for you to cook). I didn’t know if I was going to be pissed off with the Pigrolac comment or actually be proud that, at least, my brother requested for me to cook. For real or not, I was happy.

And so, there goes my story, enjoy my pasta creations. Hit me up for some collaborations HAH!

So what’s next–Filipino food? Mexican? Lao? 😉

All photos were taken using Hipstamatic for iPhone.

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Filed under Food and Dining, I Heart RP