Toby's Estate opens in Singapore - Gastronomic Ruminations


The past few months has been really exciting for coffee addicts in Singapore! Yet another specialty coffee cafe opens its doors on Friday, 7 October 2011. Located next to the Singapore River at Robertson Quay, coffee lovers in Singapore now have another cafe to while the time away over a cup or two of well-brewed coffee.

Toby's Estate Singapore - 02
Image courtesy of Toby's Estate & Chrysler Communications

Founded in 1998 by Toby Smith, Toby's Estate is a gourmet coffee chain based in Australia that also roasts, retails, sells wholesale and conducts training. Toby's Estate Singapore is the first branch outside of Australia with a branch to be opened in New York later this year. With more than a decade's experience in the coffee industry, Toby worked on coffee plantations in South America and with a coffee trading company before returning to Australia.

Toby's Estate Singapore - 09
Image courtesy of Toby's Estate & Chrysler Communications

Toby's Estate practises direct farm sourcing in keeping with their philosophy of Social, Ethical and Environmental (S.E.E.) responsibility. The company supports initiatives such as Fairtrade, Rainforest Alliance and Organic Certified as part of a growing movement to promote sustainability and fairer trade conditions for producers in developing countries.

Toby's Estate Singapore - 08
Image courtesy of Toby's Estate & Chrysler Communications

Toby's Estate sources distinctive high altitude Arabica coffee beans from around the world and combine them into their signature blends, ensuring that the flavours complement each other without losing their individual characteristics.

Toby's Estate Singapore - 05
Image courtesy of Toby's Estate & Chrysler Communications

Single origin beans from places such as Sumatra and Ethiopia are also served at Toby's Estate in order to showcase their unique flavours. Here's a picture of Suhaimie Sukiman, Cafe Manager & Roaster at Toby's Estate, brewing some coffee using a Siphon Coffee Maker. Suhaimie is a dedicated Barista who took the trouble to bring his home barista machine to the studio photoshoot for my article on lattes which was published in March 2011's Her World magazine. We soon found a few visitors in the studio who were wondering why they could smell coffee brewing in the office.

Latte at Toby's Estate, Singapore
 Latte @ $5.00

Hmm, looks like the barista who made this latte was probably a little nervous as the latte art was well, a little messy. Anyway, the latte was strong and well-balanced with the sweet flavour of perfectly frothed Greenfields milk. No sugar required.

Toby's Estate's Keep Cups
Toby's Estate's customized KeepCups

I love KeepCups! The KeepCup was created in Australia and is the first barista standard reusable cup because it fits under the group heads of espresso machines. I bought mine with a purple band and a fuschia pink plug at Papa Palheta last year and use it when I plan to take away coffee from cafes. I love it because it is lightweight and it was neutral because chain coffee joints will understandably not use a competitor's travel mug, so you would have to use an environmentally unfriendly takeaway paper cup. Alright, enough about coffee merchandise, I am such a coffee mug and travel mug junkie, I have quite a number of Starbuck's limited edition mugs.

Toby's Estate Singapore's Team with Toby Smith & Alvaro Sanchez

Here's a picture of the chirpy team at Toby's Estate posing next to the Clover Brewing System which uses the trade-marked Vacuum-Press technology to brew single cups of coffee and have been known to produce a clean and pure taste relative to the French Press. I think I shall take up the Man vs Machine challenge when I next visit. The gentleman with long hair tied in a ponytail is Alvaro Sanchez, Master Coffee Roaster at Toby's Estate Singapore, who will be conducting coffee tasting workshops. Right in the middle with glasses and standing next to Suhaimie, is Toby, the man behind Toby's Estate.

Toby's Estate
8 Rodyk Street
Robertson Quay
Singapore 238216
Operating Hours:
Daily from 7 am to 6 pm

PS: Thank you Toby's Estate and Chrysler Communications for the invitation to the media launch event. 

PPS: I must apologize for the grainy quality of the pictures that I took as I had misplaced my compact camera and had to use my iPhone 4 instead. Speaking of iPhone 4, RIP Steve Jobs.