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4.0
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4.0
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4.0
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Overall Score 
 
4.0
RuthPestos Reviewed by RuthPestos on November 10, 2016

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"Soup that warms the heart"

I had always viewed The Soup Soon as an over-priced place that served Western-style soups, something I was not used to growing up in an Asian family. I had always thought that soups couldn't possibly be a meal on its own, much less a healthy alternative to regular fare. That was until I tried their soups, which won me over easily.

The soups are thick and flavourful, with each bowl of soup usually comes with a side of artisanal bread. The first soup I tried was the mushroom soup, which was chockful of sliced mushrooms and was creamy and rich. The bread, although not warm, was an excellent accompaniment to the hearty soup.

My first experience at The Soup Spoon totally changed my outlook on Western-style soups and following that, I have tried various soups at The Soup Spoon. I am not disappointed by the different soups that I have tasted thus far. A nice warm bowl of soup indeed warms the heart, and The Soup Spoon has warmed my heart with their delicious soups.

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Overall Score 
 
4.5
Rachel Yohannan Reviewed by Rachel Yohannan on August 05, 2016

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"Totally Worth Queuing For"

You’ll be in for a treat if you can wait out the snaking queue at this famed Kway Chap stall at Serangoon Gardens. Their business thrives so well that they don’t open for dinner; by mid-afternoon, they’re already sold out. Do arrive early to avoid disappointment!

The key to good Kway Chap is flavourful sauce and good chili, and this stall nails both points. A favourite ingredient of mine is the tau pok, which soaks up the sauce such that it coats your mouth in a burst of flavour when you bite into it. Another must-pick is the well-seasoned roasted pork pieces which have just the right amount of saltiness.

Wash that all down with the herbal kway teow broth, which is somehow comforting even in the afternoon kopitiam heat. Who says you need to spend more than $5 to have a good feast?

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Overall Score 
 
2.5
Rachel Yohannan Reviewed by Rachel Yohannan on August 05, 2016

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"Just Try it Once for the Experience"

Travelling an hour one hot afternoon just to try Cake Spade’s highly-raved cake shakes, I walked away in disappointment upon discovering that those are only served after 5pm. On my second attempt, I walked away again, because cake shakes aren’t served on Mondays. Double bummer! “It says so on our Facebook page,” the cashier remarked in an arrogant tone.

Third time lucky, I managed to order the Rodeo Cakeshake ($16.90) I’d waited so long for. Turns out it wasn’t worth all that trouble. The milkshake itself had a substantial texture and went well with its torched marshmallow and chocolate toppings, but the red velvet cake was dry and didn’t taste fresh. What’s a cake shake without good cake?

Don’t expect similarities in size to the famous Black Tap cake shakes in New York. But if the giant ones that took the internet by storm aren’t going to be accessible to you anytime soon, this is a homegrown alternative that’s good for sharing between two and would serve your Instagram feed well.

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Overall Rating 
 
4.5
Rachel Yohannan Reviewed by Rachel Yohannan on August 05, 2016

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"Top-Notch Korean Eye Makeup"

You know how some brands have a few star products, but only a limited range of each? The eyeliner variants by Clio come in a myriad of fun shades, be it in gel, felt tip, or liquid form. If you’re not too adventurous yet, start small with the coloured metallics under the Twisturn Waterproof Turnliner range ($23.90), and you’ll soon be itching to try the vivid Gelpressos (from $18.90).

End off by framing your peepers with a mega boosting coat of the classic Kill Black Mascara ($29.90). It often earns me compliments and questions of whether I’m wearing falsies!

Their notable endorsements by celebs like Dara from 2NE1 may not mean much to you if you’re not into the K-wave, but with its products' long-lasting power and top quality, Clio is one Korean brand you wouldn’t want to miss out on.

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Overall Score 
 
3.5
Rachel Yohannan Reviewed by Rachel Yohannan on August 05, 2016

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"Affordable Western Fare in your Neighbourhood"

This is a PSA from a Char Grill Bar convert: If you’re the kind who brushes off Western cuisine at coffee shops thinking they’re of sub-par standards, get off that high horse, pronto! Char Grill Bar is highly similar to Aston’s where each main order comes with two sides (around $7). Chances are, there’s one near you as there are numerous outlets scattered across the island.

Meat lovers will be pleased to know that no matter what type of meat you order, you can always expect it to be juicy, tender, and coated in a good amount of sauce. A suggestion would be to pick one veg and one carb for your sides to make a balanced meal. A must-try is the cold cheesy pasta which provides refreshing contrast against the warm meat.

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Overall Rating 
 
1.5
Rachel Yohannan Reviewed by Rachel Yohannan on August 05, 2016

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"Pretty Place, Atrocious Service"

Believe it or not, my friends and I regularly hang out at Khoo Teck Puat Hospital for casual catch-ups. Boasting a scenic garden area right next to Yishun Pond, it’s easily the most beautiful hospital in Singapore. Its tranquil and calming nature even made it an optimal location for us to mug there together during our A-Level period.

However, when it comes to serving its actual purpose, this hospital is atrocious. The staff are rude, lack compassion and have no sense of urgency in dealing with patients’ issues. Ask any Yishun resident about their experiences there, and chances are you’ll hear an “Ugh!!!” followed by a slew of complaints.

Once, I accompanied a friend there who needed to help her dad alter his MC as the doctor had gotten his MC dates wrong. This should’ve been a quick and simple process, but we were made to wait two hours only to be told that her dad needed to be present for the alteration--never mind the fact that he was lying in bed, sick and weak, trying to recuperate. The mistake shouldn’t even have been made in the first place.

It was only after we made very loud comments about blowing the issue up on social media that the staff made an effort to get something done. It’s sad that KTPH was built to better serve residents in the heartlands, yet many feel the need to travel out to further hospitals due to the staff’s lackadaisical attitudes. If I ever have to give birth, I sure ain’t gonna be doing it here.

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Overall Rating 
 
3.5
Rachel Yohannan Reviewed by Rachel Yohannan on August 05, 2016

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"Tempting Low-Priced Fashion, but not for Petites"

Shopping for good quality clothes on a budget isn’t difficult at TEMT, where you can purchase tops for as low as under $10. Unlike many of the similarly-priced pieces at Bugis Street, what’s offered here is of stellar workmanship and made with sturdy material. Designs are trendy and switched up often, so there’s always something new to look forward to.

A huge disappointing factor is that sizes run large. The smallest size, S, is always still too overwhelming for my petite frame. There were many gems that I’ve picked out during my visits, but unfortunately have been unable to purchase any of them due to that very reason.

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Overall Score 
 
2.5
Rachel Yohannan Reviewed by Rachel Yohannan on August 05, 2016

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"You can Do this at Home"

If those pancake art videos going around lately have made you want to try your hand at creating edible art too, you can do so at Slappy Cakes. Their batter comes in nozzle bottles, making it easy to control, and there are sweet and savoury toppings to choose from.

However, after the initial excitement wears off, you’ll realise that this is something you can do at home at the fraction of the price. It’s not like there was anything spectacular about the batter; the chocolate one barely had a chocolate-y taste. Toppings are given quite minimally in tiny cups. I had to resist the urge to run to a nearby supermarket to buy my own fruits and chocolate chips to add flavour to my pancakes.

Parents with young energetic kids who want to play with their food might still find this eatery worth patronising, since they won’t have to deal with cleaning up the big mess afterwards.

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Overall Rating 
 
3.5
Rachel Yohannan Reviewed by Rachel Yohannan on August 05, 2016

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"Glitzy, Girly, but Getting Boring"

You’ll either love or hate the brand and it’s fuzzy terry cloth glory, but I’m not afraid to proclaim that I’m a true blue (or pink) Juicy girl. About 75% of Juicy Couture’s items are in various shades of pink, pink, pink! With their trademark velour adorned with sequins and rhinestones, their iconic tracksuits and handbags unabashedly scream, “I’M A GLAM PRINCESS, NOTICE ME!”

Although impractical and a little embarrassing to walk around town decked out H to T in Juicy, their items can add a glamorous touch to your getup when worn separately. I like pairing their jackets with floral jeans and booties for a laid-back Hollywood vibe. A friend did comment that I looked like a “rich Sweet Sixteen brat”, so yay me, ‘cause that’s exactly what I was going for.

Unfortunately, the brand has recently been sold off by its original owners, so designs have been getting increasingly basic. Which is a pity, because their unapologetic glitziness was what made them stand out in the first place. Can we please have more of the old image back?

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Overall Score 
 
3.5
Rachel Yohannan Reviewed by Rachel Yohannan on August 05, 2016

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"Portions only a Monster could Finish"

Those who are self-proclaimed bottomless pits had still better think twice about embarking on solo attempts to devour entire dishes from Monster Curry’s Monster range ($24). With giant heaps of rice and ingredients drowned in rich Japanese curry, these are a challenge for even a ravenous pair to finish. A good pick If you’re going for quality and quantity.

Being a chili-lover, I made the smart-alecky mistake of thinking that the third level of spiciness, “Extra Hot”, would be no kick for me. I was so wrong. Unless you’re on a bet, I don’t suggest even trying anything higher than level three, as you might not be able to enjoy the taste of your food properly. Two should be safe enough if you don’t want to keep fanning your tongue between bites!

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Overall Rating 
 
4.0
Rachel Yohannan Reviewed by Rachel Yohannan on August 05, 2016

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"Your Literal Bosom Buddy"

If there’s one lingerie brand I swear by, it’s Young Hearts. Initially drawn to their bras for purely superficial design-related reasons, I also eventually discovered that they provide great comfort, and, ahem, magical boosting powers.

Many of my more asset-blessed friends have complained about having to settle for frumpy nude-coloured granny bras, as cute ones from most brands only come in smaller sizes. Young Heart caters to gals of various sizes, including bigger girls and pre-teens.

Young Hearts understand that as girls, we need different bra cuttings for us to pair with our extensive wardrobes. Be it strapless, with or without padding, racerback, tube-style, or for sports, you’re pretty much covered. Literally. If you like to snuggle up in some good ol’ comfy PJs, there’s also an adorable but practical range of sleepwear.

Tip: Resist the temptation to spend and wait for a sale instead. Young Hearts holds regular atrium sales throughout the year, where you can get bras and sets for as cheap as $5 and $10 respectively! You’ll save AT LEAST a good $15 this way and won’t have to worry about busting your bra budget. Pun intended.

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Overall Rating 
 
3.5
Rachel Yohannan Reviewed by Rachel Yohannan on August 05, 2016

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"Slowly but Surely, Zap those Hairs Away"

Fellow females will agree: Shaving your pits every few days is a hassle, and when you forget to do so, it’s annoying how your wardrobe options get limited. Unless you’re one of those who subscribe to the recent long pit hair trend.

What could be better than an affordable, safe, and painless method to kill unwanted hair follicles? The $38 deal for lifetime armpit IPL treatment at Musee Platinum was a deal not to be missed.

No complaints on the treatment itself. However, the staff are visibly annoyed whenever I forget to bring my appointment card, even though they can easily retrieve all my info from keying my mobile number into their database. If you’re willing to look past the service, it’s a good investment.

Sounds unbelievable, but you’ll see results after just two sessions! The process takes time, though; It’s been two years of bi-monthly treatments, and while my hairs grow way slower than before, they still sprout. If you’re the impatient sort who’d want to un-gorillafy yourself quickly, you’d be better off going for laser.

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Overall Score 
 
3.5
Rachel Yohannan Reviewed by Rachel Yohannan on August 05, 2016

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"Inconsistent, but Fantastic when Good"

I discovered this Thai eatery during my Junior College days when I went exploring around the area in between classes. Just a stone’s throw from Marymount MRT station, their Green Curry and Tom Yam Chicken Noodles were my go-to dishes for whenever I needed something warm and comforting after a long day of lectures.

With each main dish averaging about $5, this place was and is extremely popular among my peers. Everything tastes authentic, meat portions are generous, and the staff make an effort to remember the regulars.

Unfortunately, this great quality isn’t consistent across all outlets. The Marymount one still serves the best food, so that’s the only one I patronise now. I’ve had to deal with the disappointment of almost-meatless olive rice and diluted milk tea at Dhoby Xchange and Purvis, the latter of which had a very grumpy server who chased us out after our meal even though it was still 15 minutes to closing.

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Overall Rating 
 
4.5
Rachel Yohannan Reviewed by Rachel Yohannan on August 05, 2016

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"Kawaii Sophistication Worth Paying For"

It’s often difficult to find unique bags and wallets that appeal to my not-so-inner princess, but the designs by Samantha Thavasa never disappoint. Instead of the basic black, navy, and white, their leather goods come in a whole range of pretty pastel hues, and are subtly embellished with bling. Still not enough sparkle for you? They’ve also got loads of rhinestone charms for you to add that finishing touch to your items.

They keep coming up with series after series of limited edition collections, usually in collaboration with other brands such as Sanrio or Disney. A hot fave is the Disney Princess collection. Engraved with fairytale-related images, the wallets from the collection are a sure way for you to scream princess, even as a working adult. It’s all about striking a balance between classiness and kawaii femininity.

Kudos for quality; I purchased my first wallet and charms from the Japanese brand more than a year ago. Despite being quite “chor lor” and unintentionally knocking them around quite a bit, all the bling has remained intact!

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Overall Rating 
 
3.5
Rachel Yohannan Reviewed by Rachel Yohannan on August 05, 2016

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"Dirt Cheap and Surprisingly Decent"

I was skeptical when I heard of Essence Cosmetics, because the prices seemed too low to be true. Surely something so dirt cheap would also be of dirt quality? However, I was but a broke beauty junkie who wanted to try bronzer for the first time, so an Essence Bronzing Blush it was. I was pleasantly surprised. One application would last me through an entire day, and never made my acne-prone skin break out.

Their Colour & Go nail polish ($2.90), which, unlike other “cheapo” nail polishes I’ve tried as a penniless student, dried nicely in just a minute without uneven lumpy bits. The XXXL Longlasting Lipgloss ($4.50) lived up to its name and stayed on even after a drink. The Stay All Day liquid foundation ($7.90) didn’t provide a heavy enough coverage for my liking, though. It’s a gamble, I guess.

One thing to note is that Essence regularly switches up its collections, so do stock up if you gain a favourite product. That Bronzing Blush I fell in love with has been discontinued and I’m truly heartbroken. Sob.

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Overall Rating 
 
4.0
Rachel Yohannan Reviewed by Rachel Yohannan on August 05, 2016

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"Kitschy Local Items Perfect as Gifts"

It’s hard to miss Naiise amidst the many cookie-cutter stores in a mall. Stocking the kitschiest and quirkiest of items from various local brands and indie designers, going in there isn’t merely a trip to a store, but a whole experience in itself.

Most of the products here are unapologetically Singaporean, which is a super cute way of giving a nod to our oft-underrated vibrant local culture. Think iced gem biscuit-shaped cushions ($29.90), ang ku kueh-shaped soap ($5.90), t-shirts with Singlish phrases (around $30), Bandung lip balm ($9.80), and even Singapore Sling Marmalade ($15.50)!

Prices are relatively steep, but hey, I wouldn’t mind paying for the uniqueness, while supporting homegrown brands in the process. Plus, these items would make great gifts for friends and family who’ve migrated and might be feeling a twinge of homesickness. Majulah, Singapura!

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Overall Score 
 
4.0
Rachel Yohannan Reviewed by Rachel Yohannan on August 05, 2016

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"Best Fancy Date Restaurant"

Walking into the compound of The White Rabbit feels like stepping into a fairytale scene. Think garden swings, manicured plants, and plant arches adorned with rows of fairy lights.
What used to be a chapel has now been refurbished into a fine-dining restaurant and garden bar inspired by Alice in Wonderland, stained glass windows intact.

Their 36-Hour Brandt Short Ribs ($48) were the best short ribs I’ve ever tasted. The meat was tender with enough bite, and the truffle miso sauce complemented it perfectly. However, when it came to dessert, I wasn’t a fan of the Lemon Meringue Tart ($16) as it was tiny and had a pretty tough crust.

The place looks especially magical and romantic at night. If you’re planning a fancy dinner date, this would be the perfect restaurant to pick. *cough* hope my boyfriend sees this *cough*

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Overall Rating 
 
4.0
Ashlyn Wong Reviewed by Ashlyn Wong on July 11, 2016

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"For a mind-blowing good time"

Board games are the go-to for icebreakers and for some good ol’ bonding. My friends and I decided to try this cafe out when we were bored out of our wits walking around Dhoby, and it turned out to be one of the best decisions we ever made.

Offering different price packages, you’ll only be blowing off about twelve bucks per person for hours of fun. Some of the games resembled soldiers that barely made it back from war, so if you’re picky about the condition of your board games, it’s best to bring your own set from home. From games like Monopoly to Cards Against Humanity, you’re bound to find a game for you.

Be prepared to gain some laughing abs and memorable memories, and come after you’ve had something to eat, as the food isn’t to die for. Oh and to hold your bladder, because the Dhoby branch only had one toilet for both genders.

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Overall Experience 
 
4.0
Annabelle Lim Reviewed by Annabelle Lim on July 11, 2016

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"An Authentic Martial Art Experience"

If you’re looking for Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Muay Thai and Wrestling in one place, Evolve MMA is your go-to. With 3 branches spread across central Singapore, upping your fitness has never been more accessible.

I took Muay Thai classes at Evolve for 3 years and only stopped when classes became too big due to the establishment’s growing popularity. My main instructor, whom I referred to as Big Papa, was a seasoned professional in Thailand and relocated to teach in Singapore. Many of my other instructors were of the same background too - talk about getting the real Muay Thai experience.

I also really like how Evolve’s timetable allows maximum flexibility in terms of classes and instructor. Let’s say you’re feeling both Wrestling and Muay Thai today. No problem, back-to-back classes are readily available. However, I recommend going on non-peak timings to ensure personalised attention!

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Overall Score 
 
4.5
Annabelle Lim Reviewed by Annabelle Lim on July 11, 2016

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"A Guilt-free Indulgence"

As a classified health junkie, I’ve always made it a point to steer clear of overly processed foods and sweets. Yet, I’d always assumed that living the healthy life was also the boring life. But ever since patronizing the Living Cafe, I’ve discovered a new realm of healthy eating - one that does not involve binging on salads.

Located along Sixth Avenue, Balanced Living encompasses both a health foods store and an eatery (The Living Cafe). My personal favourites include their Grilled Tofu Guacamole Wholewheat Wrap ($14) and their decadent Raw Chocolate Cheesecake ($8). The latter in particular was. So. good. Imagine a rich, creamy cheesecake, with a buttery-like crust. That was what it tasted like, except so much better?! I have no idea what they put in it, but boy was I a happy camper. To top it all off, there was no fattening and heavy cream cheese involved!

The quality of service really depends on what time you arrive. Expect slow service around lunchtime and after-work-hours (6-7pm) as that’s when the office-goers come for their health-fix!

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