I fell in love with Paris when we were there on a short holiday some years ago although French friends say that they don’t like Paris very much and prefer the other parts of France (I haven’t been and I’m craving to now). Meanwhile I am excited about the proliferation of French Cafes sprouting all over the island. Some of them with original stores in Paris, some of them run by French chefs and some of them just French inspired. I think this love affair with all things French will always be there. Singaporeans tend to love all things French and Japanese. Here are my picks, starting with the authentically French:
My absolute favourite place is Maison Kayser. It has an outlet in Paris but the very first branch in Singapore at Scotts Square is run from it’s Japanese headquarters. There are some Japanese staff here and the service is impeccable. The bread here is the best in Singapore, my opinion. I’m addicted to the orange bread. So chewy and I like the citrusy sweetness. I really like the soup here too. Very creamy. Another plus factor is that it’s pretty conveniently located. You can walk through the underpass from Orchard MRT. Takes just 5 minutes.
The next authentic Paris Cafe is Paul. It had some teething problems and was slammed as atas by food reviewers. But since then I find that service has improved. The best part about this cafe are the cosy sofa seats on the outside of the cafe and the fact that it’s just next to Kinokuniya bookstore. Both my cousin and I loved the creme brulee here. Very good and the portion was very generous. Just pick up a book or magazine and come here for a croque monsieur and relaxation. You can walk from Orchard MRT, through Wisma Atria and the Cafe is located at Ngee Ann City. I like the convenience and it’s a huge factor as I tend to be super lazy. This whole list is influenced by my laziness and location is a huge factor.
A bit further off is Heidard. About a 12 minute stroll from Wheelock Place. I found this hidden away cafe lovely as well. After your brunch or tea, you can walk to Tanglin Mall next door for some grocery shopping perhaps? That’s what we did.
This place is run by a French chef from Paris. The only problem for me is, it’s quite a walk and I really hate the scorching Singapore sun. About 15 minutes from Tiong Bahru MRT and I would get lost without google maps. We usually come here by car. I truly adore the decor here (lighting fixtures, fresh flowers, natural light) and I particularly liked the orange and lemon curd tarts. I liked the filling more than the tart itself though. The iced latte was really good, but the last time I was here it was a bit dilute.
This place is run by a French Chocolatier. I still recall that the hot chocolate was perfection. I recall the lovely decor too but the cafe was very tiny. It’s located at Robertson Quay which is not near any MRT which is the only reason why I haven’t been back there in ages. I here there is another Cafe at Portsdown Road and I need to try the pastries next time.
This is a Korean Chain that’s big in the US. I found the price for the tea just too much. Also I wish there was table service, but the little sandwiches are very enticing I must say and the service was polite. Another place I picked because of it’s very convenient location at Wisma Atria which is connected to Orchard MRT.
Finally. Another option besides TWG & High Society. I loved the hot chocolate and cheesecake here although the prices are steep. Not too fond of the chairs though as I didn’t find them comfortable or too good for my back. I would have preferred the booth seats but those were meant for at least 4 people I think. This is a Singapore grown cafe and I am keen to find out more about their origin. I do like the convenient location at Marina Bay Sands which is connected to Bayfront MRT Station.
The reason why this is so low down the list even though I love the tea here as well as the macarons is the terrible snooty service. Prices are exhorbitant too. If the service would improve by leaps and bounds all will be forgiven. Don’t like to be treated like crap when you’re paying through the nose. The decor here is lovely though and I’ve had high tea here a number of times for special occasions and I like the branches at Marina Bay Sands best.
This is a Japanese cafe that is French inspired. The croissant was so bad, but the strawberry parfait I had was very lovely. Service is Japanese standard and so welcoming. This place is also convenienty located at Parco Millenia which is next to Promenade MRT Station.
This place was inspired by Japanese French Cafes. I was disappointed by the food but the setting is lovely and we must support indie stores. A bit out of the way too but it’s a nice escape and the service here was warm. I guess it would be a good place to read a book or write if you live near by.