Friday, June 13, 2014

Hatter Street Bakehouse and Cafe - Through the Cooking Glass in Kovan, Hougang

When you think of Alice in Wonderland, one normally do not associate it with food, except maybe for the tea party held by the Mad Hatter in the story.

For Yvette Chua, a chef and baker trained in CIA (that's Culinary Institute of America, not the spy agency), she has turned Lewis Carroll's famous classic into a delightful cafe of whimsical proportions.

Located among a row of shophouses in Kovan, Hougang, Hatter Street is small, yet fun and causal.

It's main appeal is in Ms Chua's pastry and dessert selections, coupled with some good coffee. That may explain why the audience is mostly made up of a younger age group.

Gula Melaka Waffle with Pandan Ice Cream

I came here especially for this very touted dessert. Homemade waffle, but using a gula melaka sauce instead of maple syrup, and topped off with a pandan flavored ice cream.

The waffle was instantly aromatic as the server brought it to our table, and that is always a good sign. It was crispy on the outside, the cooking time was perfectly judged and I loved the beautifully fried batter that was both fragrant and fresh. The coolness of the mildly flavored pandan ice cream makes the perfect waffle companion.

Passion Fruit Tart

Hatter also has a decent selection of in-house baked pastries, and we decided to try this sumptuous looking passion fruit tart. And it was a joy. The passion fruit filling was perfectly balanced, not too sweet nor too acidic.

The blow torched lemon meringue was not only beautifully crafted, it was also a lovely sugary counterpart to the nice citrus undertones underneath. The pastry was slightly under, but still pretty decent. Somewhat flaky, not too buttery nor raw, and just enough of a savory flavor to round out the entire dessert.

Latte

The coffee was pretty alright. Nothing too robust or overpowering, and may not be adequate for strong coffee drinkers. But for regular folks, it has just enough body to give you a good coffee kick should you need one. And no, the coffee art was nothing to shout about.

The Whimsical Surroundings

On a whole, Hatter Street is a great place to relax and chill, and is most suitable for an after lunch break. Though the spaces are slightly cramped, and the air con could have done with a bit more power, I fancy that most fans of here will praise their waffles and pastries the most.

Indeed, the whole place was constantly filled with a beautiful waffle aroma throughout our time there, and being in a neighborhood area, the prices are as pleasing as the decor.

Through this cooking glass from the outside of the cafe, lies a richly flavored dessert place in the heart of Hougang.

Hatter Street Bakehouse and Cafe
212 Hougang Street 21
#01-333

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