[ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGE] Ondeh-Ondeh Porter, a Unique Singaporean Concoction, and Other Craft Beers by Sunbird Brewery Co.

Hello everyone!

Singapore might just be a tiny red dot on the world map, but our capabilities are not to be belittled. Already, our country boasts a few homegrown brands (such as Razer and Tiger Beer) that have earned international acclaim for their products. Now, with more companies demonstrating their ingenuity, the list is just going to keep growing!

Sunbird Brewery Company is one such example, as they have been making waves in the craft beer industry since entering the scene in July last year with a collection of four craft beers. Led by founder Clive Tan who paid his dues at Archipelago Brewery and Brewerkz, Sunbird (named after Singapore’s national bird) is driven by the passion to produce bolder flavours with an innovative edge for consumers of the future. Curious to know what the hype was all about, my companion and I promptly accepted the company’s invitation to taste all of their craft beers – including their latest offering launched in April – at Orh Gao Taproom last Saturday (after restrictions on public gathering had ease, that is).

Orh Gao Taproom - a new casual bar serving residents in Bukit Timah!

Orh Gao Taproom – a new casual bar serving residents in Bukit Timah!

Orh Gao is a colloquial term for stouts

Orh Gao is a colloquial term for stouts

Menu overhead (also pictured is the founder of Sunbird Brewery Co on the left)

Menu overhead (also pictured is the founder of Sunbird Brewery Co on the left)

Fly in Light

Fly in Light

Fly in Light

Fly in Light

A pale ale, Fly in Light has a 5% alcohol content with a fruity – more specifically, passionfruit and citrus – taste which complements the dry earthy flavour of the malt. It is light on the taste buds and does not make one feel surfeited after a couple of sips, therefore making it easy to drink. This was one of my favourites (as a non-alcohol geek) that evening, along with Fluff Up.

Fluff Up

Fluff Up

Fluff Up

Fluff Up

Fluff Up – a Belgian witbier (think Hoegaarden) – too has an alcohol content of 5% but with a more interesting flavour profile. It packs a little kick due to its spice and orange peel notes, which makes it a perfect accompaniment to seafood especially in countries with hot climate like Singapore.
Birds of Paradise

Birds of Paradise

Birds of Paradise

Birds of Paradise

One cannot forget to mention Birds of Paradise since hoppy and bitter brews are becoming a huge trend in the craft beer industry. A white IPA with a creamy taste, it has bitter taste profile as with American IPAs (which neither of us is a fan of). That said, its citrus and pine undertones will definitely go well with the holiday season (because we shouldn’t let the pandemic stop us from feeling the holiday spirit, right?), or simply spicy food like buffalo wings (psst.. Orh Gao taproom serves great buffalo wings 馃槈).
Some finger food to go with the beers. Not sure if we were just hungry but they were ALL delicious. We practically cleared the plate!

Some finger food to go with the beers. Not sure if we were just hungry but they were ALL delicious. We practically cleared the plate!

And probably the best thing that was served with the platter - the chilli. Haven't had such satisfying chilli in a while! I swear it this came in bottles, I'd totally get it 馃槅

And probably the best thing that was served with the platter – the chilli. Haven’t had such satisfying chilli in a while! I swear if this was sold in bottles separately, I’d totally get some 馃槅

Eclipse of the Sun

Eclipse of the Sun

Eclipse of the Sun

Eclipse of the Sun

Another beer in Sunbird’s regular range is Eclipse of the Sun and it is wildly popular among expats here. Despite the slightly higher alcohol content of 6%, the Scottish Ale is malty and full-bodied which could be due to the caramel that gives it a raisin taste, as well as its deep copper brown colour.
In commemoration of National Day this year, Sunbird has rolled out a new and exciting seasonal concoction infused with flavours familiar to the local palate – the Ondeh-Ondeh Porter. This one-of-a-kind craft beer pays homage to a timeless traditional dessert – as its namesake implies – with an alcohol content of 6%. The drink has a distinct roasted and dry taste, coupled with a caramel flavour and coconut smell which is further drawn out and complemented by the addition of pandan.
Ondeh-Ondeh Porter

Ondeh-Ondeh Porter

Ondeh-Ondeh Porter

Ondeh-Ondeh Porter

Ondeh-Ondeh Porter, bottled (look how cute the ondeh-ondeh illustration is on the bottle - haha!)

Ondeh-Ondeh Porter, bottled (look how cute the ondeh-ondeh illustration is on the bottle – haha!)

Crafted as a porter due to the nutty flavour profile obtained when the gula melaka brown sugar is toasted, this is certainly nowhere as bitter as a stout but its sharpness might still be a bit too overwhelming for novice drinkers. However, if you’re one who appreciates this category of beer, the bitterness of the porter actually goes hand-in-hand with the roasted caramel taste. As one with a sweet tooth, I only wished this was crafted as a witbier instead. But on second thought, that would probably render the beer too sweet.
Sunbird's brews in bottled form, a.k.a what you would get if you make your order online!

Sunbird’s brews in bottled form, a.k.a what you would get if you make your order online!

Unlike the other beers that are available in singles, the Ondeh-Ondeh Porter is only sold in a pack of 6 at $55 nett (or in a mixed pack of 12 that includes other beers) on the website, maybe because it won’t be on the menu for long (so it’s always good to stock up!). Of course, you could always sample or enjoy one bottle at selected bars and restaurants islandwide – one of which being Orh Gao Taproom – in the month of August with people you have not met in ages! Great excuse to catch up with your buddies, eh?
Leaving you with this memorable quote we saw at Orh Gao Taproom.. Remember this, guys.

Leaving you with this memorable quote we saw at Orh Gao Taproom.. Remember this, guys.

What are your thoughts about this local creation, or the craft beers offered by Sunbird Brewery Co. in general? Beer connoisseurs, do let me know your views in the comments below!
Thanks for reading!
Sunbird Brewery Co 路 5 Mandai Link, #05-05, Singapore 728654 路 order from WEBSITE 路 free islandwide delivery with purchase of $65 and above 路 For more information on where the beers are served, please visit FACEBOOK PAGE, INSTAGRAM or WEBSITE.
Orh Gao Taproom 路 10 Jalan Serene, #01-03 Serene Centre, Singapore 258748 路 Operating hours: 4.00 pm – 11.00 pm (Tue – Thu, Sun), 4.00 PM – 12.00 AM (Fri & Sat), Closed on Mondays聽路 Nearest MRT station: Botanic Gardens (CC19/DT9) 路 For more information, please visit Orh Gao Taproom FACEBOOK PAGE聽or INSTAGRAM.
this was a media invitation. ALL OPINIONS EXPRESSED ARE MY OWN, with contributions from my beer-enthusiast companion.

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[HEALTH FOOD] A Healthier You: Specially Curated Packages of Goodness for You and Your Loved Ones

Hello everyone!

Being raised by traditional Chinese parents has got its own perks. For one, it has exposed me to the various traditional Chinese superfoods (which benefits would have otherwise been dismissed as primitive superstitions in today’s westernised world) that have shown effects in supporting and boosting my health and immune system. I’m sure this isn’t unique to my childhood household, but the moment a cough is heard in the house, a flask of luo han guo tea (or lo hon gwo as what my Cantonese mother would say) would be sitting on the kitchen counter within the next two days. During spells of hot weather (and especially times when we had to continuously burn the midnight oil to study or complete a project), we would magically find a pot of chrysanthemum tea brewing atop the stove. Thank you, Mommy 鉂わ笍

As our parents age, however, these practices have gotten less common. We, the busy grown-ups, in turn become increasingly reliant on what’s more widely available, such as western medicine and dietary supplements (which might, in fact, not be as beneficial to our health as many thought), to get the nutrients we need although deep down, we know that nothing compares to nature’s gifts as far as our wellbeing is concerned. But for some reasons, we feel daunted by the task of purchasing herbs and other dried goods over the counter (it’s the grumpy and impatient shop assistants at TCM shops for the most part for me 馃お) so we would rather not do that.

What if I told you you can now do your herb shopping with just a few clicks of the mouse? Thanks to A Healthier You, getting your (or your loved ones’) herbal fix has never been so easy!

AHealthierYou.sg

AHealthierYou.sg (delivery is free for purchases above S$70. Otherwise, it’s S$4): Enjoy 10% discount with no minimum spending from now till 31 October 2020 using my code “FIONA10“! Everyone deserves to maintain a healthy diet 馃槈

A Healthier You (AHY) is an online food store established on the firm belief that health and wellness are essential to living an optimal life. By adopting a complementary and preventive approach to health, not only would we experience a better quality of life, but many health-related risks could also be mitigated. With this foundation in mind, AHY strives to provide specially curated high-grade health foods that nourishes the body and add nutrition to our diets – in a convenient and accessible way.

Herbal soup packages - all of them only come in one size, which can feed about 2 adults

Herbal soup packages – all of them only come in one size, which can feed about 2 adults

A wide variety of everyday herbs to choose from!

A wide variety of everyday herbs to choose from!

More examples of everyday herbs AHY carries. There's more so go take a look at what they offer on their website!

More examples of everyday herbs AHY carries. There’s more so go take a look at what they offer on their website!

Their product range is not limited to traditional Chinese herbs only – AHY also caters to the exquisite taste buds by offering floral teas (in their plain organic dried form) and many more, such as the eco-friendlier and more economically-viable alternative to bird’s nest, peach gum. Every batch of goods from their suppliers is personally examined and quality-checked by their staff before packing them into individual containers or bags upon order by customers. This helps to ensure maximum freshness of the products from the packaging line to your doorstep.

Delivered by A Healthier You - thank you!

Delivered by A Healthier You – thank you!

Whoop, can't wait to find out what's in the package! I'm not sure if your orders will come in this form, but I thought this would make a good gift hamper!

Whoop, can’t wait to find out what’s in the package! I’m not sure if your orders will come in this form, but I thought this would make a good gift hamper!

Whoaaaa so many healthy goodies! You're pampering me, AHY!

Whoaaaa so many healthy goodies! You’re spoiling me, AHY!

Andddd the VERY necessary recipes for each of the products because I can be such a dunce at the kitchen!

Andddd the VERY necessary recipes for each of the products because I can be such a dunce at the kitchen!

Despite their commitment in offering the best possible quality in their products, prices are kept relatively affordable (or rather, low) with the most expensive standard-sized items being their herbal tea blends at S$12. Moreover, all of their products come in very presentable packaging (even the cheapest options!), which makes them ideal for gifting. Instead of sending flower bouquets to your significant other (which is pretty much purely aesthetics 馃し馃徎鈥嶁檧锔), why not show your affection and care for their health with more practical and functional gifts like a container of French rose buds, a glass jar of lavender buds – both of which can be brewed into teas – or, better yet, a box of floral-infused cookies baked by you? Otherwise, you could also consider completing your date night or family dinner with a nutritious home-made gum tragacanth dessert (Psst! Life hack: top ready-made milk pudding with your soaked gum tragacanth to save time) to aid digestion after a hearty meal.

French Rose Buds (75g, S$10.50)

French Rose Buds (75g, S$10.50)

French Rose Buds

French Rose Buds

This is all you need to brew a cup of Rose Tea!

This is all you need to brew a cup of Rose Tea!

It smells sooooo fragrant!

It smells sooooo fragrant!

Jasmine Buds (25g, S$6)

Jasmine Buds (25g, S$6)

Jasmine Buds - another option for tea lovers!

Jasmine Buds – another option for tea lovers!

Osmanthus Buds (60g, S$9.80)

Osmanthus Buds (60g, S$9.80)

Osmanthus Buds - so intrigued by the appearance of it!

Osmanthus Buds – so intrigued by the appearance of it!

Chia Seeds (one size only: 260g, S$8.00)

Chia Seeds (one size only: 260g, S$8.00)

Peach Gum (360g, S$15.50)

Peach Gum (360g, S$15.50)

Peach Gum, known to effectively reduce wrinkles and is also quite good for the skin. I haven't got the chance to use this yet. This will go well with red dates and dried longan!

Peach Gum, known to effectively reduce wrinkles and is also quite good for the skin. I haven’t got the chance to use this yet. This will go well with red dates and dried longan!

No other people know better than the Chinese themselves how important soups and broths are in both Chinese cuisine and traditional medicine (for all kinds of common ailments, and even pregnancy!). Typically low in calories while providing a clarity of flavours and low oil content, herbal soups are believed to help to restore the balance of yin and yang in the body, and they never fail to bring me immense comfort, especially when the weather gets rough. But somehow the idea of brewing them myself terrifies me because that would mean having to source for the individual ingredients on my own (I don’t even know how to select fresh produce…) and to find out the exact measurements for them. Well, if this thought resonates with you, great news – AHY will now take over these daunting tasks. We’d just need to add some meat and bring the concoction to a boil!

Ginseng Chicken Soup (sans chicken, 90g, S$9.50)

Ginseng Chicken Soup (sans chicken, 90g, S$9.50)

Ginseng Chicken Soup (sans chicken): Ginseng is apparently great for pregnant women!

Ginseng Chicken Soup (sans chicken): Ginseng is apparently great for pregnant women!

Ginseng Chicken Soup: Have been feeling under the weather and was craving for some piping hot soup!

Ginseng Chicken Soup: Have been feeling under the weather and was craving for some piping hot soup!

Ginseng Chicken Soup: It was surprisingly easy to prepare! Even though it's stated that I'd need to boil and simmer it for about 1-1.5h, mine was done in about 45min on top of the stove. The longer cooking time is probably applicable to those using slow cooker. I used Kampung chicken and added chicken stock for maximum flavour 馃構

Ginseng Chicken Soup: It was surprisingly easy to prepare! Even though it’s stated that I’d need to boil and simmer it for about 1-1.5h, mine was done in about 45min on top of the stove. The longer cooking time is probably applicable to those using slow cooker. I used Kampung chicken and added chicken stock for maximum flavour 馃構

Dried Chrysanthemum with Goji Berries and Red Dates Tea (170g packed into 5 sachets, S$12)

Dried Chrysanthemum with Goji Berries and Red Dates Tea (170g packed into 5 sachets, S$12)

Dried Chrysanthemum with Goji Berries and Red Dates Tea (170g packed into 5 sachets, S$12)

Dried Chrysanthemum with Goji Berries and Red Dates Tea (170g packed into 5 sachets, S$12)

Step aside, flower bouquets and over-priced gift hampers, there’s now another way to express our love and concern for our loved ones without having to dig into our pockets, and that’s through A Healthier You! If such concepts of gifting health food packages takes off, I hope AHY could consider selling their products in bundles, or in a form of gift hampers (i.e. for the floral tea and herbal tea blends because these are much easier to brew)!

What are your thoughts about A Healthier You? If you’re not familiar with oriental herbs or floral teas, has any of the above products caught your eye? Let me know your views in the comments below!

REMINDER: FROM NOW TILL 31 OCTOBER 2020, USE CODE “FIONA10” TO ENJOY 10% DISCOUNT WITH NO MINIMUM SPENDING WHEN SHOPPING AT AHEALTHIERYOU.SG 馃槉

Thanks for reading!

A Healthier Youahealthieryou.sg 路 For more information, please visit A Healthier You FACEBOOK PAGE, INSTAGRAM or WEBSITE
PRODUCTs WERE SUPPLIED BY A Healthier You聽FOR MY EDITORIAL CONSIDERATION. ALL OPINIONS EXPRESSED ARE MY OWN.

Follow me on Instagram and Facebook for bite-sized food updates!
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[FOOD DELIVERY] Avoid Death Stares from Commuters – Let Durian Delivery Deliver Your Durian to You!

Hello everyone!

When a certain distinctive pungent aroma (or odour 馃お) hits every corner of Singapore, we know the season of the King of Fruits has arrived. Normally around this time of the year, durian stalls along the streets of Geylang and at all over the heartlands would be thronged with people wanting to get their hands on the best picks for the day.

Photo by Elaine Tan

Photo by Elaine Tan

But the pandemic happened and the recent imposition of restrictions on dining out meant that most food services are now limited to take-out and delivery. Unless you live a stone’s throw away from the stall, durian take-outs probably would not be very ideal as the fruit is banned across all types of public transportation – even cab or private-hire drivers might be reluctant to pick up passengers with durian in tow because its putrid smell can linger in the car for days!

Thus, that leaves us with the option of delivery which may also have its own constraints related to location and timing. For instance, it could take up to 5 hours for durian all the way from the west (my former area of residence before moving to the north-east) to be delivered to me even with orders placed in advance. Sometimes, sellers may give priority to walk-in customers and refuse to deliver due to manpower shortage, or charge exorbitant delivery fees if they do. Worse still, the likelihood of receiving durians of quality that falls short of expectations is definitely there since we can’t personally choose them. Isn’t it frustrating that eating durian has now become an increasingly stressful and expensive affair, especially amidst this economic downturn?

You’re not alone! In fact, it was precisely these problems that prompted Durian Delivery to start their own durian business (way before the coronavirus reaches our shores!) because like us, they’ve seen enough of unscrupulous and inexperienced sellers who are unable to meet the growing needs of millennials.

Durian Delivery website

Durian Delivery website

Some examples of the durian they sell..

Some examples of the durian they sell..

Durian Delivery also sells vacuum-packed durian, durian puree and durian puffs (as pictured)!

Durian Delivery also sells vacuum-packed durian, durian puree and durian puffs (as pictured)!

By adopting a strong e-commerce model, Durian Delivery is able to efficiently collate advance orders from the day before and notify their durian plantation in Malaysia to send them out the first thing in the morning. That said, orders can still be made on the day itself, but would be subjected to availability (which you are able to check on the website where stocks are regularly updated). You can rest assured that your durian is plucked (just as it is about to drop) within 6 to 12 hours of it being sent to your doorstep so you get to enjoy the freshest harvest with your loved ones. Otherwise, a replacement would be on your way (upon verification) at no extra cost should you receive a defective order (i.e. unripe, sour or watery durian)!

My order from Durian Delivery!

My order from Durian Delivery!

Despite online being their primary mode of sales (they do cash-and-carry at their brick-and-mortar premises too!), Durian Delivery tries their utmost in digitally replicating the shopping experience at their physical stall by enabling customers to conveniently select their preferred type(s) of durian and fulfilling their orders – dehusked – within the next two hours at S$9.70 (or one, at a premium of S$13.70). No minimum spend value is required to qualify for delivery, which is a huge plus for small households of durian eaters like mine. Large orders of above S$100, however, would be entitled to free delivery (so organise a spree and get your whole kampong on board!). What’s more, their delivery hours stretch all the way to 3am just so that you wouldn’t go to bed feeling durian-deprived!

Bird's-eye view of the king of fruits..

Bird’s-eye view of the king of fruits..

Glorious, glorious bed of yellow.. Looking at this just makes me salivate..

Glorious, glorious bed of yellow.. Looking at this just makes me salivate..

Whether you like your durian sweet or bitter, or prefer to indulge in the decadence of the more luxurious types of them (think Black Pearl or Black Gold), Durian Delivery does not snub and has got it all covered with its diverse offerings, albeit depending on the harvest phase. My taste buds lean towards the sweeter side of things (also great for my wallet when durian is in question 馃槵) so my go-to breeds are Red Prawn (which, in this instance, is brought in from Durian Delivery’s private plantation in Muar) and D13 (only if the former isn’t available but so far, this hasn’t been listed on the website). To give my family a choice of flavours, Mao Shan Wang (from Pahang), which is known to have bittersweet notes, was added to my order.

Red Prawn / Ang Hei (800g)

Red Prawn / Ang Hei (800g)

Red Prawn / Ang Hei (800g)

Red Prawn / Ang Hei (800g)

Red Prawn / Ang Hei (800g)

Red Prawn / Ang Hei (800g)

Their durians typically come in two weights – 400g and 800g (the latter of which, according to Durian Delivery, comes from roughly 3.2 kg of durian with husk, and is enough for two) – and packed in airtight plastic containers that, in my opinion, are rather effective in containing the smell. I did not weigh my order but my 800g Red Prawn and 400g Mao Shan Wang durians certainly felt substantially heavy when held. And no, it wasn’t due to their seeds. These durians had seeds that were a lot smaller than usual, enveloped by their thick luscious flesh that were almost pillowy-soft, creamy and sticky – you really get what you paid for!

Mao Shan Wang / Musang King (400g)

Mao Shan Wang / Musang King (400g)

Mao Shan Wang / Musang King (400g)

Mao Shan Wang / Musang King (400g)

Mao Shan Wang / Musang King (400g)

Mao Shan Wang / Musang King (400g)

MSW's small seed

MSW’s small seed

For the eagle-eyed: This picture of Red Prawn was taken a few days after my order was delivered because I was constantly feeling bloated prior to this. Still, it tasted FANTABULOUS, so much so that we refused to share it with our dog (which would usually get a small mouthful of durian flesh from us)

For the eagle-eyed: This picture of Red Prawn was taken a few days after my order was delivered because I was constantly feeling bloated prior to this. Still, it tasted FANTABULOUS, so much so that we refused to share it with our dog (which would usually get a small mouthful of durian flesh from us)

Small seed!

Small seed!

All the small Red Prawn seeds!

All the small Red Prawn seeds!

Since Durian Delivery prides themselves on selling the freshest produce straight from their plantation, leftovers at the end of the day would be frozen and sold to confectioneries and dessert shops to prevent wastage. This is unlike many dishonest sellers who would prey on the naivety of uninformed buyers by pushing old stocks first, often at the very same price as the new ones. This, coupled with the fact that Durian Delivery also offers a 100% replacement guarantee as mentioned above, gives me the confidence to part with my money on my future purchases with them – even when we are free of any pandemic.

What are your thoughts about Durian Delivery? Will you be giving them a shot? Let me know your views in the comments below!

Thanks for reading!

DURIAN Delivery SIngaporeDURIANDELIVERY.COM.SG 路 Delivery hours: 10.00 am – 11.59 pm (daily) 路 For more information, please visit Sushi Delivery FACEBOOK PAGE, INSTAGRAM or WEBSITE.
PRODUCTs WERE SUPPLIED BY Durian DELIVERY Singapore in collaboration with BEST IN SINGAPORE FOR MY EDITORIAL CONSIDERATION. ALL OPINIONS EXPRESSED ARE MY OWN.

Follow me on Instagram and Facebook for bite-sized food updates!
Be sure to watch out for my Stories because that’s where I post my tasty encounters
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