Garuda Padang Cuisine @ Vivocity

I like taking a day's leave from work to run errands, catch up with friends over lunch, recharge by indulging in retail/spa therapy and/or hanging out at a café with a book.

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Sop Buntut (Oxtail Soup) @ S$6.00

Sharon and I met for lunch at Garuda Padang Cuisine (Vivocity) while I was on a few days break. In typical Asian fashion, the food was served communal dining style. We started with a bowl of Sop Buntut (Javanese Oxtail Soup). It was a clear soup that belied its beefy tastiness. The carrots and potatoes were soft when bitten into. They had been simmered long enough for them to absorb the flavours of the soup. This is worth a try if you love soups like I do.

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Pergedel Kentang @ S$1.50 each

One of my favourite dishes whenever I eat Indonesian Padang cuisine is Pergedel Kentang (Deep-Fried Spiced Potato Cutlets). The ones here didn't disappoint as they were served warm, the crust was crispy, the interior fluffy and the base was not soaked in oil (as is often the case at many places). It's best to consume them while they are still warm with a little chili paste.

If you're not too particular about fried food, this is definitely worth a try. Then again, let's face it, if you're eating Indonesian Padang food, you can't be too health-conscious. Most of the dishes are fried or at least had their spices fried and let's not even talk about the use of coconut milk in many of the dishes.

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Gulai Singkong @ S$6.00

I love vegetables and so this dish was also a personal favourite of mine. Its essentially Tapioca Leaves stewed in a lightly-spiced Coconut Milk gravy. The tapioca leaves were soft from the stewing process but had absorbed the flavours of the spices in the gravy. Its a perfect complement to steamed rice and is a MUST-TRY!

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Rendang Daging Sapi @ S$7.00

Another of my favourite dishes in Padang cuisine is Rendang Daging Sapi (Beef Rendang). This dish is prepared by simmering the meat in a coconut-milk based sauce which has been seasoned with a spice mix (rempah) until almost all the liquid is gone. If done well, the beef chunks should be very tender, fully-infused with the rich flavour of the warm spices and coated with a thick layer of spice mix. If done badly, the beef chunks would be hard as stone, with a stringy texture and all you would want to do is to scrape the spice mix off to eat with the rice. The beef rendang here was quite tender, though it wasn't the best I've had.

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Sambal Teri Tempe @ S$6.00

We also had a serving of Sambal Teri Tempe (Fermented Soybean Cake fried with Sambal Chili, Peanuts & Silver Fish).

This is my least favourite of the dishes consumed for personal reasons: 1) I do not like the Sambal Chili used in such dishes as they tend to be on the sweet side and I'm not into sweet food & 2) I still can't get used to the flavour of Tempe (fermented soybean cake). I find the beany, fermented odour of Tempe a little too strong, which is strange considering that I love to eat blue cheese. Sharon was raving about it and so I tried a little. It was pretty delicious I must say, personal preferences aside, but I think I'm still a long way away from becoming a Tempe-fan. If you're inclined to try, think of it as Indonesian cheese and you might also like to know that it's a rich source of protein.

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Condiments: Red Chili Sambal & Green Chili Sambal

Though this place is a little pricey, with rice being served at S$2.00 per person (unlimited servings) its a good thing they didn't charge for the condiments as I loved the Green Chili Sambal and ate a whole plate by myself! It was definitely spicier than its red chili counterpart and was an excellent topping for most of the dishes. The Green Chili Sambal is a Must-Try!

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Lime Juice @ S$2.50 each

After such a scrumptious yet sinful meal, what better way to wash it all down than with a refreshing cold glass of fresh Lime Juice. As you can see from the background in the picture above, the decor is minimalist with white furnishings. It reminded me of a hospital canteen, I know its probably not what the interior decorator had in mind but that's just my own personal impression.

Garuda Padang Cuisine (Vivocity)
1 Harbourfront Walk
#B2-28 Vivocity
Singapore 098585
Tel: +65 6376-9595

Garuda Padang Cuisine (Cairnhill)
15 Cairnhill Road,
#02-01 Cairnhill Place,
Singapore 229650
Tel: +65 6735-4111

Operating Hours: 11.30am to 3pm & 6pm to 10.30pm (Daily)