Coffee Bar Review: Old Hen Coffee Bar, Singapore

The whole area around Rangoon Road feels as if it is very up and coming and Old Hen Coffee Bar is one of the places really worth a visit. In the same building there are several cafes that all look fairly good but this is the place to go to. The place itself is not huge but there are seats for around 20 people inside and a few people outside. The seats may not be the most comfortable but the place looks very nice so perhaps makes up for it. As there is also no free wifi available it may not be the place to lounge for hours but it was still a nice place to hang out and chat at.

The place is run by three siblings (twins Ivan and Terry and younger brother Mason) and they keep the service both friendly and fast. They are knowledgeable when it comes to coffee and no problem to chat a bit about it either. They offer espresso based beverages, filter coffee (hand-brewed) as well as cold brew (bottled, both black and white). The selection of filter coffee varies depending on what they have in at the moment. I sampled a few different things when I was there: had a nice Rwandan coffee (believe it was from Papa Palheta but not 100% sure) and also sampled an excellent Colombian Geisha from the Cupping Room HK as well as some Ethiopian from Bangkok’s Roast. They have also recently had other nice roasters like London’s Square Mile Coffee, Melbourne’s Small Batch Roasting Co, Coffee Libre from Seoul and several other Bangkok roasters (Brave and Phil’s). I personally would be ecstatic to have such a nice place in my neighborhood. They do also know how to make the coffee so really good at that as well.

The cold-brew was also sampled and it was excellent as well. Nice balance to it and I would easily select the black one as there is no bitterness at all in it so no need for milk. The espresso based beverages also pulled nicely so the guys know their things.They also offer nice teas and some other beverages for the non-coffee drinkers.

The food menu is fairly short but a lot of things sound very nice.The grilled sandwich was very nice, fresh ingredients and nice flavor to it. The pastries were also well worth to stuff down. One of my real favorites in Singapore.

So how does it rate:
Coffee quality: 4.5
Ambiance and Service: 4
Food: 4
Vs Local Average Competition: 5

Coffee bar review: I+D Style Cafe by BRAVE Roasters (Bangkok)

Tucked in at the back corner of the ground floor of the Siam Center this was just something I accidentally stumbled upon while walking through a number of malls to get to the food court at MBK. They share their space with some sort of interior design store selling accessories. The coffee area is fairly small with a small counter where they somehow fit three to four people behind it and make both food and coffee. There are also a few tables but not the place I would linger for long. Looking at the limited space they do have a very ambitious food menu and what i really love is that each dish is matched with different coffees, teas or other beverages. Beautifully presented menus also add to the experience that this place is really serious about everything. Service was knowledgeable and while not super-fast, it was the attention to detail that was the cause of the time spent on every order.

The attention to detail really is apparent when having coffee here. They ensure each cup leaving the bar is just as they want it. Of course measuring to the gram, grinding as they want it for the brew method, ensuring right water temperature but also trying each cup before being served. If it does not meet the quality standards set they just pour it and make a new one. I must say that I am sucker for that type of dedication to quality, and while it may cost some in throwing away things, I hope it pays off in the long run.

We sampled several coffees here and I was truly impressed by both the Burundi coffee I tried as well as the honey processed Thai coffee. By far the best Domestic Thai coffee I had, and while I maintain they have ways to go before being good enough to compete on the international market this was a remarkable step up from what i previously tried. Normally I am skeptic to flavored coffees but I did have a small sample of the ice coffee they were trying out. It was a blend of several coffees but also flavored with cinnamon and lemon peel. It was remarkable refreshing and while not really strong in coffee flavor I must say it is perfect in hot weather. All in all one of the better coffee places in Bangkok when it comes to quality of the coffee.

So how does it rate:
Coffee quality: 4.5
Ambiance and Service: 3
Food: 4
Vs Local Average Competition: 5

Coffee Bar review: One Ounce for Onion (Bangkok)

It is a great feeling that it is Monday again and that means that it is time for Coffee Monday! This week featuring another coffee bar review from Bangkok. On a back street off Ekkamai 12 there is a small laid back cafe called One Ounce for Onion, it shares the space with a fashion store called Onion. It has a few seats inside and around 20 or so outside. The focus is on high quality specialty coffee, from local roaster Brave, but they also do cold beverages, snacks, pastries and some light dishes. I was actually due to publish another review but this place got my all excited as I loved the vibe, staff, coffee and food so I just felt a need to share this first.

The space is nice and cozy, it is just perfect to lounge for a while. On weekdays it appears pretty relaxed but understood from staff that it is a bit crazy on weekends. The offer free wifi so also possible to sit and do some work, browse or such as well. I was taking my time there and did not really get any complaints from staff so appears to be fully acceptable to do just that.

They had six different beans to choose from for filter coffee on my visit. They also use a blend for the espresso based beverages so no lack of choice. I opted for a honey processed coffee from Chiang Mai. A lovely cup, one of the best local beans I had. The nose had hints of chocolate and nuts. These also came through in the flavor but there also a clear mix of berry like acidity and hints of orange. Great cup and excellent execution. After also sampling a macchiato I am convinced that these guys (and girls) really know their coffee. They are one of the top spots in town. However, I had not realized that the competition was this tough in Bangkok so they do not really make it to number one, but they are clearly in my top 5 (a top list will follow when all the cafes have been reviewed).

The food assortment is not huge but what they do they do really well. The eggs, sausage, bacon with asparagus and tomatoes was awesome. The pastries also very good (not really up to the level of Size S) but still tasty.

So how does it rate:
Coffee quality: 4.5
Ambiance and service: 4.5
Food: 4
Vs average local competition: 5