Monday, January 17, 2011

House @ Dempsey

I started the New Year with a lovely brunch. Does a good meal on the first day of 2011 represent more of such good stuff to come? I certainly hope so.

I have just started using a new camera - Canon EOS 550D (my old one was its predecessor, the Canon EOS 500D) and I really like how the clear the lighting is in my photos now. That and the sharper LCD screen. But of course, I still touch up the photos minimally using Photoshop...

Starting off 2011 with brunch at...
Barracks Cafe at House at Dempsey

I've heard good reviews about Barracks Cafe at House at Dempsey, but I didn't have a chance to visit the place before. Dempsey's a really good place to hang out, but only if one has a car (or buddies with cars) cos it is pretty hard to get to the place. Thus, out of the many dining establishments, I have only visited a handful - Chang, P.S Cafe, Jones the Grocer, Ben & Jerry's and now House. (:

We made reservations as supposedly, there's always a crowd there and we were quickly ushered to our seats after arriving. The place was not very crowded as expected when we reached, then again, it was the start of a New Year, and everyone was probably resting at home after a long night of partying or whatever. The place filled up as we were having our brunch though, so making reservations was certainly a good move.

I ordered a banana apricot smoothie to start off my day. Mistake. No no no. The apricot just made the overall smoothie taste sour, and while I did manage to slurp down everything (it would be a waste!), I must say it wasn't a pleasure to do so.

Grilled figs with parmesan crumble skinny pizza

Oh well, let's put the smoothie aside and start on the mains shall we? We ordered a skinny pizza, which is House's specialty I guess. Doesn't the pizza look really good? It's unique from other pizza places as the pizza crust was cracker-ish thin, it tasted like we were eating a large topped cracker instead of a pizza. This is one pizza that sure won't leave you with a bloated feeling! Nice. I can't wait to visit again to try the other flavours. Macadamia roasted pumpkin , Wild truffled mushroom, Ratatouille, The English breakfast etc., can you blame me for drooling at the mere mention of the enticing names?

Lobster linguine; Old-fashioned American sliders

Sis had been there previously, so she recommended a few dishes - truffle fries, lobster linguine and strawberry shortcake. The lobster linguine certainly didn't disappoint. It was really really good. Though not a big pasta fan, I happily polished off my portion and was debating whether I should I have seconds. Reason won in the end, I had to leave space for the other dishes...

The burgers (we chose the sauteed mushrooms and onions) came with a mix of sweet potato and truffle fries. I love sweet potatoes, so lucky for me the Sis wasn't a fan and I happily nom-ed my way through. The truffle fries were really good! Can taste the truffle flavour clearly. Who can resist piping hot fries? the burger was not bad too, the patty was moist and the middles still slightly pink. Mmmmmmm.

Spanish donuts; Barracks Good ole Fish & Chips

The Spanish donuts were actually just churros. I didn't really like the texture of the churros much. Personal opinion. I mean, they were soft and fluffy, which normally is a good thing, rights? But for me, I feel that churros should have a slightly crunchy exterior, if you get what I mean, and these churros didn't have that slightly crunchy bite. They were still good dipped in the chocolate though.

I was too stuffed to touch the fish & chips but everyone said that it was good. The dish was also paired with their yummy truffle fries. Yay, more to go around for everyone. ;)

Desserts menu; Chocolate hazelnut gateaux

I find House's menus really gorgeous. The brunch menu was in the style of a tabloid newspaper, so it's like flipping through the weekend papers at the table. Not to be outdone, the desserts menu was done up in a food magazine format. Nice.

We ordered three desserts to share among the five of us. We were so full by then but really, how can we leave without having desserts? The chocolate hazelnut gateaux was good, albeit a slightly sweet confection. Mind you, it's not for the faint hearted. Chocoholics will rejoice in the intense rich chocolate flavour.

Warm Strawberry shortcake

The Sis was raving on and on and on about how House had the best strawberry shortcake in town. My expectations were of course, set quite high. My first mouthful and I was like, huh? The best? Er. It wouldn't even make it into my top three list. No offense, it's a matter of personal opinion again. It didn't taste bad, just that my ideal strawberry shortcake is the Japanese style, with soft fluffy cake and airy light cream. The House version of a strawberry cake compose of a moist (but dense texture) cake served warm, and topped with strawberries and a vanilla bean cream sauce. Nope. I'm a straight strawberry shortcake done Japanese style purist, give me my Patisserie Glace or Tampopo version anytime please!

Banana salted caramel cake

Our last dessert was the intriguing Banana cake above. I kinda insisted that we order it actually cos the description and picture in the menu was just too tempting. Apparantly, it was supposed to be a salted caramel banana cake? I couldn't taste the salted caramel. But the cake was still good, with a moist dense crumb. And paired with the interesting coffee popcorn and coffee soil bits, which is a pretty interesting concept...

The desserts list was extensive and I have several that I know I must try in future - Lemon cake, Chocolate toffee cake, Apple crumble, Rhumbaba, Bitter chocolate tart, Grilled grapefruit tart... Erm. Whoops, I'm getting carried away here...  

Overall, I feel that House has pretty decent food, it is definitely going to be a frequent place to visit in future! 


  1. i LOOOVE Japanese style strawberry shortcake! It's so light and cute. My faaav

  2. it's plain burgers! should give it a try. burgers stuffed with mushrooms and onions are the best! (:

  3. I'm French, but American... and I never had a slider... can you believe it?


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