Suvai 2015 – Singapore’s First Indian Gourmet Festival

In Tamil, Suvai means to taste the flavours. When Singapore showcases an Indian gourmet festival, I knew I had to taste Indian cuisine in all its glory. Suvai 2015 is an ongoing festival running until August 2nd 2015 and it is located just outside Bugis MRT on Tan Quee Lan Street. Shielded from the rains, it is a tent like structure with ample seating and good hygiene standards. The various spices used in Indian cooking were displayed in a very attractive manner. There is also a live telecast for the attempt at ‘Guinness Book of World Records for the World’s Largest Curry’ which was extremely interesting to watch. At the time of writing this review, I do not know if the record has been made, hence I am keeping my fingers crossed 🙂

Suvai 2015

Suvai 2015

Suvai Guinness

Suvai Guinness attempt

The Orders
Chefs from various culinary backgrounds have set up their stalls. Each stall showcases three unique dishes. For vegetarians, there are dessert options in all stalls and main course options in some stalls. Let me update you on the interesting things I tried.

Chef Jonathan Lee, Head Chef at Artichoke
This was the best stall offering 2 veg dishes. First, we tried ‘Aloo Gobi Sabich’ which was fried cauliflower, potato hummus and herbs filled in pita pockets. The cauliflower was fried to perfection and along with coriander garnish, this dish was extremely tasty.

Aloo gobi sabbich

Aloo gobi sabich at $6

The chef had created ‘Masala Tea Slushie’ as one of his signature dishes. Everything about this drink was unique. Freshly brewed tea with a seven spice blend from Sri Lanka formed the frozen slushie base. It was topped with coconut ice cream and the entire combination worked like magic. The cinnamon notes from the tea hit perfectly and I would highly recommend this.

Masala tea slushie

Masala tea slushie at $5

Chef Vik
The next stall we tried and liked showcased dishes by Chef Vik. Our first order was ‘Potato and Paneer Croquettes’ which consisted of deep-fried crispy croquettes served with minty spinach puree. The dish was presented very aesthetically with fine bean sprouts and almond shavings which enhanced the taste. The size of croquettes were slightly smaller in size compared to our expectation.

Potato and paneer croquettes

Potato and paneer croquettes at $5

We tried the dessert which was ‘Paayasam Panna Cotta’ which had paayasam infused panna cotta topped with frozen meringue and fresh berries. The instant freeze using liquid nitrogen added to the visual effect of this dessert and they nailed the texture of the pannna cotta.

Paayasam panna cotta

Paayasam panna cotta at $5

Chef Devagi Sanmugham
When it comes to Indian starters, chaat is an eternal favourite. We tried a variant in this called ‘The Explosion’ which had potatoes with chaat masala, mint and tamarind chutney and pomegranates served in a crispy shell shaped like a small shot glass.

The Explosion

The Explosion at $6

As a dessert, ‘The Saffron Puffs’ had a combination of different flavours like pistachio, gula melaka and coffee in the sauce. The crispy donuts were infused with saffron.

Saffron puffs

Saffron puffs at $5

Chef Thanyadar Suteedechanon
At this stall, we tried ‘Garam Masala Tom Yum Rice’ which had the Thai ingredients like galangal and lemongrass in balance. For the vegetarian version, we asked for no prawns. I wanted the rice to be warmed better – the dish was served at room temperature.

Garam masala tom yum rice

Garam masala tom yum rice at $6

There are also ongoing live music bands and masterchef classes happening here. The festival will end on 2nd Aug at 10 pm. Check their website for timings. For unique Indian offerings, for an efficiently managed food festival, the different tastes at Suvai 2015 beckon you at the earliest! Head there this weekend for a gastronomical delight!

In a Nutshell Deelightful Rating
Cuisine Type: Food festival- Indian cuisine variaitions ★★★1/2
Nearest MRT: Bugis
Address: Outside Exit D Bugis MRT
Timings: 12 pm – 10 pm (Today and tomorrow)

Honeycomb – Bali Lane [Permanently Closed]

Korean style soft serve and yogurt joints have sprung up all over Singapore. After dining at Bali Lane, we were in search of a dessert place in the area. I spotted a dimly-lit place tucked away on the street and I decided to check their offerings. The place was called Honeycomb. The menu was displayed on a wall next to the counter. This is a very small place with no more than 20 seats. Since the menu is very simple, all you have to do is choose your base and toppings and place your order.

Honeycomb menu

Honeycomb menu

The Orders
I chose a yogurt base. For the toppings we chose ‘Classic’ and ‘Apple and Cinnamon’. As we placed our orders on the table, I noticed something very intriguing. On top of the yogurt, there was 5 ml syringe which contained honey! There was also an actual honeycomb piece in the serving. The yogurt serve was topped off with apple and cinnamon granola. This made every bite nicely crunchy and it will remind you of the cereal that you have for breakfast, only much sweeter. It was nice to inject the soft serve with honey as and when required. The real honeycomb is chewy and is authentic in taste.

Honeycomb classic and apple and cinnamon granola

Honeycomb classic ($6) and apple and cinnamon granola ($7)

We also tried the ‘Caramel’ flavour on a milk base. It was too milky for my liking. I definitely preferred the yogurt base as compared to the milk base. The salted caramel sauce was average. It was also very sweet with the milk base.
Honeycomb caramel

Honeycomb caramel at $6.5

One the whole, I wish there was better lighting and a happier atmosphere to the place. It looked gloomy and the staff did not seem very interested. But if you are in the area and want a different ice cream experience, this place is worth a try.

In a Nutshell Deelightful Rating
Cuisine Type: Desserts ★★1/2
Nearest MRT: Bugis
Address: 30 Bali Lane, Singapore 189866
Timings: Mon-Sun: 12pm – 10pm

J’s Restaurant – Purvis Street [Permanently Closed]

Latin American cuisine is one of our favourite comfort foods, and we always look forward to visiting restaurants that serve it. I had heard about J’s some time back, but it took me a while to actually visit. Nevertheless, I am glad that I finally did. Situated in the busy Purvis Street, is a cosy little restaurant called J’s Restaurant which serves some great and homely Latin American delicacies. I call it homely as you can sense that the dishes are made with a lot of care. The limited seating space coupled with warm, well-lit ambiance gives a feeling of home. This also makes it a nice place for dining with family and friends. We were promptly attended to on entry. As we were led to our seats, one of the first things that I noticed was a decoration on the wall shaped like a tree. The wall lighting highlighted it nicely and I liked it.

Js restaurant decor

J’s restaurant decor

The Orders
To begin with, they have a separate section for vegetarian menu which was good to see. They offer customization options for vegan and gluten-free requirements. Also, their cheeses are animal rennet free (see website). For appetizers, we ordered their famous ‘Jalapeno Poppers’ which were amazing. The jalapeno peppers are stuffed with mozzarella cheese and fried to a perfect crust on top. Totally recommended.

Jalapeno poppers

Jalapeno poppers at $17

For the main course, we ordered the ‘Vegetarian Quesadillas’ which was a sizable portion. The tortillas were amply filled with veggies and I could taste all of them perfectly along with the cheese – which is how I like my quesadillas. The salad, salsa and sour cream as the sides were just right.

Veg quesadillas

Veg quesadillas at $22

We also ordered the ‘Vegetarian Burrito’ which was huge. It was filled with a spicy mixture of rice, beans, vegetables, and (of course) cheese. Perfect for a hungry diner. This dish is also served with salad, salsa, and sour cream.

Veg burrito

Veg burrito at $23

Sadly, I had no appetite left for desserts and I intend to try when I visit the restaurant next time. Among their desserts, ‘Churros with Bananas and Mangoes’ and ‘Bread and Butter Pudding’ are recommended. Though they do not serve alcoholic beverages, there is no dearth of interesting drink options on their menu like coolers and sodas. The serving staff were friendly and there was very little waiting time for the orders. It is better to reserve in advance as it is approximately a 30-seater place. For catching up with friends, for authentic,tasty and quality Latin American food, and for their homely ambiance, J’s Restaurant is definitely recommended.

In a Nutshell Deelightful Rating
Cuisine Type: Latin American ★★★★
Nearest MRT: Bugis
Address:7 Purvis Street #01-01, Singapore 188586