Ms Skinnyfat

A Food & Travel Blog from Singapore

Restaurant Review: Hidden Finds- Arbite

By Wednesday, February 01, 2012 , , , , , ,

Serangoon Gardens is one of my regular chill out places in the North East. It's convenient, homey, quiet and it also has a lot of food establishments. In my younger days, Chomp Chomp was the regular supper venue for the the brothers and i. The famous RK house is also around the corner- it never occurred to us to pull such a terrible joke on the servers, that's just mean. Ice Cube was our dessert spot till Frolick popped up and then Udders. Before myVillage opened, we studied at the old Coffee Bean and ate at Cafe Cartel and now there are so many more options. Gardens is pretty much the Holland V of the North East, just less noisy and more chill.

I'm usually not very adventurous when i head to Gardens for food. I associate it with comfort food and tat usually meant Sushi Tei for me. Each time i head there, i'd pass by Arbite, which is just next to ST on the 2nd storey. I never went in because it always look empty (typical Singaporean) until Bernie suggested having dinner there one night. I tried it and i kinda fell in love and the rest was history.

I recently headed there for a farewell lunch for a colleague and we noticed that they have converted the sitting area to accommodate more tables. Guess more people have discovered this gem! The interior feels pretty much like a dining room at Ikea. Simple furnishing and decor. Natural light is very important to me and this place is lit up nicely. 

The selection of drinks is not very extensive but it suffices. Milkshakes for $6 (not very thick. Strawberry one is somewhat fizzy? The colour is extremely artificial as well.). I love the Iced Lemon Tea ($3) which is made fresh. It's about as yummy as Toast's. There are some ales and ciders which are priced reasonably ($10). 

These were what we ordered for lunch. 
Mediterranean Vegetable Sandwich- Grilled eggplant, zucchini, capsicum, pickled onions, roasted cherry tomatoes, rocket leaves and crumbled blue cheese on a sun dried tomato focaccia ($13.90). The veg were fresh and juicy. Love the vibrant colours on the plate. I was eyeing the sundried tomato focaccia, it looks really tasty (didn't try it because Piglet was obviously greedy!).
Papardelle with mushroom and parma ham, spinach in a cream sauce drizzled with truffle oil ($19.90). The papardelle and tagliatelle are made to order and served fresh daily. I love this dish but it may be too cloying after a while. I liken the papardelle to our Chinese mee hoon kway but this has more bite to it. Not really al dente but it's just right for the huge sheet of pasta. I wished they gave more of the parma ham because the cream sauce could be a little bland. Highly recommended anyway. Order it to share and get another savory dish. :)
Japanese Curry Pulled Pork Wrap- Shredded pork collar, caramelized apples, leeks and a Japanese curry sauce wrapped in a tortilla skin ($13.90). This is another great dish. The pulled pork simply melts (probably due to the fats), and caramelized apples go so well with the slightly sweet Japanese curry. The sweetness is nicely harmonized by the salted wedges and that is always an important factor for me (read about it here).
Pork Schnitzel- Breaded pork loin deep fried till golden brown, mashed potatoes, seasonal vegetables served with blue cheese apple butter and gravy ($17.90). This is huge. Boss devoured it before i could take a closer look at it. I suppose it must be really tasty? The description of the sauce sounds really yums. I will probably try it someday, after i run like 10km maybe.
Squid Ink Tagliatelle with crab and tiger prawn. Jumbo lump swimmer crab with tiger prawns, asparagus and leeks in a Rose Sauce ($23.90). I had this for lunch when i was there. Tagliatelle is like meepok and sadly this was a little overcooked. I didn't taste any of the squid ink in the pasta, which is a shame. But when it comes to squid ink pasta in a creamy tomato sauce, Valentino is my go to place. The asparagus taste is also quite overpowering, so if you don't like that, get them to remove it from the dish. Fresh seafood and general servings of the shelled crab. Succulent and sweet+savory prawns as well. Average dish perhaps but maybe i'm just fussy.

The portions are more than sufficient and i always do not have space for desserts after. Shall make a conscious effort to eat lesser next time. OH! Did i mention that there's All-day-breakfast too? YAY!
66A Serangoon Garden Way
Tel: +65 6287 0430
Tue – Fri: 11.30 am – 3.00 pm, 6.00pm - 10.30 pm
Sat – Sun: 11.00 am – 10.30 pm
Last Order at 2.30 pm & 9.45 pm
Closed on Mondays

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  1. Eh where is the nice photo of me???

    1. on FB piglet! Wasn't sure if you guys wanted ur faces on my blog so i didn't. OINK.

  2. Exactly !! Valentino for squid ink, at only $5+ more. I could not believe how tasteless the food was when I was there, I only had the tomato soup (artificial flavor), & the tuna salad (one-dimensional taste)... So i'm amazed at the craze for Arbite. Seriously, hawker food would be much better than this tasteless & overpriced food. Their food is not difficult to make with the right ingredients & knowing how the flavors fuse together. The only reason it seems exotic is the ingredients, and trust me, it is not worth going to.

    1. A lil harsh to compare it with hawker food. They certainly don't do Parma or truffle at kopitiams. Price wise the regular stuff are alright for the neighborhood. Tt said, I haven't been back since so I can't be sure if its still ok.