Chye Seng Huat Hardware

16 May

I can’t believe it’s been 3 months since my last post – my sincerest apologies! It’s summer now, and I’ll try my best to keep this blog alive once again.

Recently people have been talking about this brunch place in a hardware store…So I decided to try it out. Chye Seng Huat Hardware is a coffee and brunch cafe by the guys behind Papa Palheta, and located at 150 Tyrwhitt Road. It’s around the Kitchener Road and City Square Mall area, for those who can’t orientate themselves. I recommend driving, although parking may be rather problematic.

Enter CSHH and be greeted by a coffee bar, with patrons sitting around baristas experimenting with different ways of brewing different coffee. We sat by the coffee bar, and watched the brewing, although less than ten minutes into our meal we were rather put off by how extreme their actions and mannerisms were. Words simply can’t describe it. We decided to just concentrate on our conversation and food…although the food was, unfortunately, nothing to rave about.

Our ham omelette with extra cheese was overcooked for our liking. Thank god for the extra cheese, or else the omelette would have been rather dry.

Again, the scrambled eggs were overcooked, despite how at first glance we thought they looked pretty runny. We ordered extra mushrooms, for $2, if I recall correctly. We had but that miserable portion of poorly sauteed shrooms!

The pan-seared dory, on the other hand, was one of the the highlights of the day. It was perfectly seared, and the fish melted in our mouths. Mildly-seasoned with herbs and salt, this butter sauce was sinful and delightful.

Initially we were hesitant to order chicken patties, thinking they might be burger patties. To our surprise, it was delicious! This was the other highlight of the day. They were made of ground chicken, mixed with lemongrass and chili, and served with Thai sweet chili sauce. Extremely oily, but extremely addictive.

For dessert we ordered a French Toast (we can never resist French Toast!). I found it lacking in egg, and could have tasted better had they added some cinnamon for a twist.

If you like sweet and savory pastries, perhaps the walnut baklavas might interest you. Although they were rather pricey – two for $6.50 – they are bursting with the sweetness and the savoriness baklavas promise. I found them up to par with baklavas I’ve had in Europe, although I’ve yet to have baklavas from Turkey, arguably the land of the origin.

I was tempted by the almond croissant, since I have not had very great almond croissants since Mirabelle closed down. Unfortunately, it was just a normal almond croissant; nothing to rave about.

To close my meal, I ordered a signature blend, long black (aka Americano). It was extremely (overly) citrusy for my liking, although I was intrigued by the aftertaste of tofu.

I would consider this a no-frills brunch place (seen from the presentation of food, and no service charge), with little to choose from the menu. Beats me why they are always so crowded! Perhaps because it is not too expensive…for this meal we spent slightly over $70 for 5 dishes, 1 croissant, and 2 baklavas. Or perhaps because of the novelty of a hardware shop cafe.

My verdict: 1/5 spoonfuls. CCSH a detour? Skip it. In the area? No harm trying, if there’s a parking space nearby and a table available.

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