Category Archives: Coffee

The Drinking Market have a physical location now!

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Hey peeps!

It’s been a long Long LONG LONG time since i’ve updated the space. Yes i know!

I do apologise for it:(

Now, that’s because we’ve been really busy setting-up the first every Brick & Motar shop by The Drinking Market!

A Thai Kitchen + Bar concept, we have finally launched our very first neighbourhood Thai Kitchen + Bar at the charming area of Katong.

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Placing the emphasis as a neighbourhood Thai Kitchen + Bar, we made sure prices are set affordable and wallet-friendly!

Yes, all our items in the food menu are $10 or below and our prices are ALL nett!

With no Service Charge or GST, we aim to be one of the most wallet and people friendly location for all to be in!

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Introducing you to our whole list of Authentic Thai Food prepared by our Thai Chefs who have been working in Singapore for the past 20 years and counting!

You can’t get more Thai then this mates!

Wanna know more about us?

Check us out on our Facebook link:

https://www.facebook.com/thedrinkingmarket

See you here real soon!

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Add: 226 East Coast Road. Singapore 428923

Call us: 64408939

Opening Hours:

Tuesday – Sunday

12.30pm – 11.30pm

(Last order for food at 10.20pm)

 

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BURNOUT – A Tribute to the Food & Beverage Industry

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BURNOUT – physical or mental collapse caused by overwork or stress. (Google)

TDMers, i know that i’m suppose to be blogging about Oushin Japanese Steakhouse, but prior to that, on a more serious note, i’ve got some thoughts that i want to pen down on this blog entry and i sincerely wish that you can share it with your friends on Facebook, Twitter, or other social media platforms.

Last Friday, as i sat on the comfortable chairs with food on my table, many thoughts and memories came through my mind. I thought that it’ll be nice for me to share with you some of my thoughts and i hope that you’ll learn to appreciate and thank the people who are serving your breakfast, lunch or dinner in a restaurant or cafe.

Let me start off by saying…

Singapore’s Service Standards are like SHIT!

No, that’s actually not what i’m trying to bring across, but have you been one of the culprits who said such things before? Or perhaps you might have heard many of your friends and family judging our service standards in Singapore.

Before we jump into any conclusion, allow me to share my personal experience when i started as a junior employee with a restaurant group.

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A typical day working in a restaurant starts at 10am for me, the moment i step into the restaurant, i would have to start doing the daily administrative work, clearing the cellar, setting-up the restaurant and making sure that everything is ready for operations. At about 11am, we would normally start the day with a row call, which the chef would then explain the specials for the day or if there’s anything that is not available.

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11.30am, the restaurant opens for operations, as usual, we would be serving the hungry diners who are rushing in-between work or meeting to catch a quick bite, in fact, the lunch operations is always a challenge as many would require us to serve fast, be quick and hopefully, turnover the table for the next seating.

2.30pm, the last order for lunch, but that’s not it. Diners who are normally a little more free would prefer to stay a while longer to have their tea or desserts slowly, thus, we would be standing-by, waiting, waiting and waiting.

4pm, we finally cleared the restaurant, and that’s almost 6 hours since i started work. This is when i probably would have my 1st meal of the day.

5.30pm, all geared up, dressed in our uniforms, we are back to set-up the restaurant for the dinner service. 6pm, our second row call for the day, and the chef would now explain the items available for dinner as well as the specials for the evening.

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6.30pm, our doors are open again for dinner, this goes all the way till 10pm- 10.30pm, depending on the chef or maitre’d who determines the time for our last order. Once the last order is made for normally desserts, coffee or tea, diners would normally stay a little longer while they sip their tea and chat with their partners or friends. A typical day ends (weekdays) at 11pm or (weekends) 12am – 1am. As usual, we’re not done yet, after all our guest have left the restaurant, it’s time to clear all the plates and wipe the wine glasses so that there will not be water marks. Next up, something that most service staff hates, wiping cutleries… all in all, these takes about an hour or so, depending on the night’s service. Having said that, most of the time when we are back home, it’ll probably be past midnight, or if you might agree with me, the wee hours…

This is not all, with the clamping down on foreign workers and the lack of Singaporeans who are unwilling to go into the service industry, we are facing lesser and lesser manpower counts. This meant that:

  1. Service quality would be affected
  2. It’ll take longer hours to complete the same task
  3. Lesser people doing more job scope

Conclusion? BURNOUT!

We spend up to 14 hours a day working in a restaurant with minimal rest, more often then not, we spend most of our time at work than to be at home. That’s not all, because of the manpower shortage, many restaurant chains are forced to have their employees to be on a six-day work week.

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I challenge any one of you to try being in their shoes. Take a week and try your hands working in a restaurant, then figure out if it’s an easy job.

So, what i’m driving at is for you to try and appreciate these people who are serving you. Many of them like myself started-off with passion, our priority is always to just do our best and provide you with the best service, at no time are we there to make your experience bad. In fact, despite the lack of time to rest, we always try to put a smile on our faces to make our guest feel welcomed and comfortable.

Like yourself, the service staff are just working hard to make ends meet for their families. We are all mature enough and i trust my readers are as well, let’s not complain so much and learn to be more patient and kind with our words. The next time you visit a restaurant or cafe, learn to recognise the employees, fill up the feedback form, be generous with your words, say thank you, these means a lot to them:)

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Have a lovely Sunday:)

We Flew to Manila!

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There are probably thousand and one things you can do in Manila, but i’ve streamlined to a couple of things and places to go that perhaps could shorten your need to research!

This trip to Manila was a little impromptu, in fact, unplanned for. Like mentioned in my previous posts, i’ve seen and met many Filipinos while i was working for the restaurants in Singapore, interviewed and spoken to them many times, but i’ve never had the chance to visit their motherland. For once i had the opportunity, so i took my bags, passport and off i flew!

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Less then 4 hours from Singapore, i arrived in Manila, Ninoy Aquino International Airport T1, the oldest airport in the Manila, and perhaps (mentioned by our driver), the busiest airport because most international airlines still choose to land at terminal 1 instead of 2 or 3.

Man! This was indeed an experience, as i enter the country with fear, especially when many of my friends told me to be careful because Manila is really dangerous, i beg to differ! It’s perhaps safer than many other countries across the globe! I’ll tell you why later:) Meanwhile, i’ve collated some places of interest that i visited and perhaps it could give you a rough idea of where to visit when you do happen to be in Manila:)

To VISIT

Taal Volcano – Taal volcano is located in the southern part of Luzon in the Philippines. It is about 50km from the capital, Manila. Right in the center of the island is the main crater that holds a sulfuric lake. It is famous for having an island in a lake on an island in a lake on an island in the Pacific Ocean. Named as the second most active Volcano in the Philippines, i understand that the last minor activity was dated five years ago with hints of smoke and rumbling sounds heard by the residents living close to the area. To get to  the Taal Volcano you have to travel across by boat from Talisay, Batangas and hike up to the crater. On the other hand, for the travellers who wish to have a little more comfort, there’s always a horse-ride available that brings you all the way up to the crater:)

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The Archdiocesan Shrine of Jesus – The Way, the Truth, and the Life
Central Business Park – Located right in front of the SM Mall of Asia and beside the SMX Convention Center, the church holds regular mass sessions and if you’re lucky – like me, you probably can catch a glimpse of a traditional wedding ceremony!

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Museum of the Filipino PeopleDO NOT BE FOOLED! Tell the driver the National Museum and he will bring you to the art gallery which is currently undergoing a major renovation (my personal experience). Make sure you tell your driver that you want to head to the Museum of the Filipino People, a division of the National Museum. Over here, you will be able to understand a little more about the cultures and history of the Philippines. Also, this is where over one million archeological treasures and masterpieces are kept from the remains of the San Diego Sinks. pambansang museo

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SHOPPING & FOOD

168 Shopping Mall – It’s perhaps THE MALL to go to if you visit Manila. Think about Platinum, MBK and Chatuchak Market in Bangkok combined into one in an air-conditioned complex, that is 168 shopping mall. You can almost get anything you want! Most importantly, it is much cheaper compared to the rest of the places. Nevertheless, if you are cool with the heat during the day, try the Divisoria Market which is located just outside of the 168 Shopping center, i heard that you might get the same item for a cheaper price, not much cheaper though, but perhaps you’ll enjoy the thrill! *One tip, as most of the shops are owned by Chinese Nationals, if you happen to speak Mandarin, my experience shopping there proves that you’ll probably get almost half the retail price! What i understand from my driver is that if you were to speak in English, they’ll mark-up the prices to a hefty price tag, if you speak Tagalog, they’ll mark-up by just a little more above cost, but if you speak MANDARIN, like i’ve mentioned, almost cost price! So remember to BARGAIN!!

999 Shopping Mall – Situated just beside 168 shopping center, 999 sells relatively the same items as what 168 offers, i personally prefer to shop at 168 because of the wide variety of items available. Nevertheless, 999 is where the ladies can shop for their cheap accessories such as hair bands, clips, etc… for the guys, just stay at 168, you’ll probably be able to get a lot more stuff there:)

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168 Mall, 999 Mall & Divisoria Market

SM Mall of Asia – A huge mall that is worth to visit, you’ll be able to get many locally-made products and International brands here in the mall. Opened by a group of Chinese businessman (one of which is the richest man in the Philippines), you’ll definitely see a lot of SM malls all around Manila, but the one that you should really visit is the SM Mall of Asia, the biggest mall in the Philippines and also apparently, the World’s third largest malls with 4 hectares of shopping, leisure and entertainment facilities such as an ice-skating ring, IMAX theatre, bowling alley, hypermart, departmental store, etc…  all in one location!

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Bonifacio High Street – Food, Shopping, Shopping and Food, these are probably the two main things you’ll enjoy in Bonifacio High Street. A heightened experience of gallery-designed offices, avant-garde/fashion forward boutiques, and chef-based restaurants it offers consumers a variety of International brands such as MUJI, La Senza, Springfield, Topshop, etc… and for the Singaporeans, if you think that Charles and Keith is the only Singaporean brand at Bonifacio High Street, you are wrong! Guess what i saw? WEE NAM KEE HAINANESE CHICKEN RICE! Lol!!

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TRANSPORT

There are probably more public transport than you can actually think of, you’ll see a lot of Taxi, Jeepney, Tricycles (Motorbikes/ Bicycles with sidecars), Tranvia (horse trams), LRT, MRT and PNP (which are basically acronyms for train services.

But for your own security and comfort purpose, just go ahead with the taxi services, they start at 40Peso (SGD1.16) and increases about 15 Peso/KM

Most importantly, you need not squeeze with the crowd on the Trains and Jeepney which in my honest opinion is almost unbearable.

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SECURITY

Security is perhaps one of the most important thing on all of your minds before travelling. But don’t worry too much, because in all major malls, banks, restaurants and hotels, there’ll be security guards on duty. Armed with pistols, rifles and handcuffs, you’ll perhaps worry more for the robbers and burglars then yourself! Oh! Also, most malls have only one entrance and exit point, and they are taken care of by the well-trained security guards. Holding a drum stick on their hands, all bags have to be checked by them prior to you entering the building:)

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Tasting @ Platters Bistro & Wine Bar by Guest Chef Karl & Eugenia

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OKOK!! I know you’re already drooling! But these are just some of the dishes we had at Platters this afternoon! I’m now in the midst of writing them, give me some time!! hahaha!

Have a great Wednesday and i’ll see you here soon:)

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Wine Dinner @ Skyve tonight!

Wine Dinner @ Skyve tonight!

See you there!!

Skyve Wine Bistro
No.10 Winstedt Road
Block E, #01-17
Open Daily: Monday to Sunday
(including Public Holidays)
10:00 am till late
(last order for food 10.30 pm)

Reserve:+65 6225 6690   Office:+65 6737 1975   Fax:+65 6737 1976E-mail:enquiry@skyve.sg

TDM-ASIA makes your trip PAID for!

Seen that? Yes, it’s all true! TDM-ASIA alongside WorldVentures and Rovia, an award winning travel agent is bringing you to travel to be paid!

Let’s see what has ROVIA achieved, just in 2012!

  • Honoured with the Golden Apple. Premier Apple and Platinum Apple award for exceptional quality & service
  • Recognised by TRAVEL WEEKLY in 2012 with a GOLD Megellan Award for best community involvement programme
  • Recognised by TRAVEL WEEKLY in 2012 with a SILVER Megellan Award for best travel guides, ratings & reviews

Unheard of? You’ve seen the video, by now you would have realised how many people in the WORLD, yes WORLD have joined us in this PAID to TRAVEL lifestyle programme!

Interested to join us in this journey of travelling to be paid?

Don’t hurry to do it! Like all businesses, there’s always a term and condition. Let’s meet-up over SKYPE, VIBER, FACE-to-FACE, whatever! I just want you to know the whole idea of TDM-ASIA & WV!

Before you leave, let’s see another video of what some others are doing NOW!

CLICK on the PHOTO to view!

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Now, what’s your idea of fun? If you’re a self-confessed travel fanatic, LIKE ME, fill up the form at the bottom of this page and let’s keep in contact.

But… If you’re certain of joining the team of travellers, sign-up NOW !

 

Weekend Khakis – A mid-night trip to Johor Bahru

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In this week’s Weekend Khakis, we took our wheels out and headed to Johor Bahru, Malaysia.

Johor, or JB an acronym that we call the country, a place that many Singaporeans visits for grocery shopping, refuelling petrol, car wash, massage or just for a meal.  Simple as it is, we’re just 3.3km (Google Maps) away from each other, better still? it’s just SGD1.20 (Land Transport Authority) to get into Johor Via the Woodland’s Checkpoint.

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Currently, the exchange rates as of 3rd Aug 2013,  SGD to MYR is at 2.49 for SGD100 and above, so what’s stopping you? NOTHING!

So, last night, we decided to drive-in to JB for a massage cum car-wash kinda thing. KSL, Holiday Plaza and JB Sentral these are just some examples of the common places we Singaporeans visit. This trip, we headed further down from into Taman Sentosa and decided to stop-by Tianyu Foot Relaxing Centre (address at the end of the post), for some of you who are more frequent travellers into JB, you probably would have known this place, it’s actually one street down from the usual makan place at the Hawker Centre that serves fantastic “Zi Char” just beside Shell Petrol Station, a 5min drive down from Holiday plaza and probably 3min drive from KSL.

What can you get there?

Well, if you’re afraid that your car will go missing during a car wash, especially with all the negative news you hear about your friends losing their cars in Johor, but you’ll still like to grab a cuppa traditional coffee and toast, then this is the Place to go!

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Just less then 50metres away from Nanyang Kopitiam is a 24hour car wash service that i reckon is one of JB’s best car grooming centre. With just MYR10, you get a snow-wash, vacuum, dusting, etc… Yes, i know the other car grooming services in JB does that as well, but trust me, i’ve went to quite a number of them this year, especially with my frequent visits to Malaysia, but this particular one beside Nanyang Kopitiam deserves to be listed as one of my top choices!

My apologies, as it was really late at night, i didn’t really take a picture of the exact place, but fret not, once you’ve found Nanyang Kopitiam, it’s just beside it, clearly visible and obvious – possibly the only one at that area.

Nanyang Kopitiam serves up delicious local delicacies that goes as low as MYR3 per “small bites” , you can enjoy the traditional Kaya Toast, noodles, rice dishes, etc… Most importantly, for the smokers, you can smoke anywhere at the alfresco area, while looking at the car groomers washing your car!

Oh Oh Oh!! Yes, just in case you’re wondering if you’re short of MYR, there’s a couple of Money Changers just along the Nanyang Kopitiam, in fact there’s one just beside it!

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Right after we left the keys and the car with the groomers, we headed-off to Tianyu Foot Relaxing Centre, just across the Nanyang Kopitiam. Again, apologies for the lack of Pictures because by the time we were there, it was already past Midnight!!

This time round, after our previous experience doing the full-body massage, we recommended our Khakis to try-out their massages there too! No complaints at all!! They enjoyed it!

But my recommendation is, if you were to visit them, try out their Chinese Massages instead of the Thai Massage. It’s not that the Thai Massage is bad, it’s just that the employees are made-up of mainly the PRCs, and many of them were previously trained in Chinese Massage and TCM in China, having said that, i think my point is rather obvious which to choose right?!

* try getting these two masseuse, [123] & [118]… they did our full-body massage for Ms Small Girl and myself and we thought that they were really good!

One more hint!

Try going there earlier… recommended to go around 12pm to 5pm. As per what the masseuse said, it gets busier at night, and they do get quite tired because they only work one shift, which is from 12pm – 2am (last call)… meaning if they have a client coming in at 2am for a massage, be prepared to be cursed and swear-ed by them while you “enjoy” your massage!

After the Massage, if you’re feeling a little hungry, Don’t worry!

If you’re there early, street stalls just beside the Tianyu Foot Relaxing Centre opens for business at around 6pm, mostly local Chinese delicacies, you’ll be overwhelmed with choices such as the Chinese “Zi Char”, Ba Kut Teh, Fried Kway Teow, Wonton Noodles, Chicken Wings, etc… approximately a 100-150m stretch of street stalls serving up piping hot food that could easily satisfy your cravings!

For our dearest Muslim friends, do not fear, there’s definitely something for you too! Just directly opposite the Chinese Street food Stalls, or directly along the stretch of where Nanyang Kopitiam is at, there’s also a whole stretch of street food stalls that serves only Muslim Food! Things like Nasi Lemak, Gado gado, Satay, etc… literally the Simpang Bedok of Johor!

However, if you happen to finish your massage past 1am, which we did this time round, at the first floor of The Store (a shopping centre) in Taman Sentosa, there’s a franchise of the Old Town White Coffee which is 24 hours! Serving hot coffee and comfort food, you never have to worry about being Hungry! If that doesn’t satisfies you, you can always make a trip back towards the food stalls behind Shell Petrol Kiosk, 2 minutes from KSL for your abalone noodles!

Well, i hope i’ve fed some of you with some useful information about our trip to JB for the Weekend Khakis, if there’s nothing else, i’m attaching a map to guide you into where the places are and i hope you’ll enjoy your short little trips to Johor like how we did!

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Address:

Nanyang Kopitiam

63, Jalan Sutera, Taman Sentosa, 80150 Johor Bahru

Tel: +607 333 1788

Old Town White Coffee (Taman Sentosa)

Plaza Sentosa, Lot 8-10, Block A, Ground Floor, Jalan Sutera, Taman Sentosa, Johor Bahru

Tianyu Foot Relaxing Center

34, Jalan Sutera 2, Taman Sentosa, 80150 Johor Bahru

Tel: +607 332 8898

 

* Pictures of VW are compliments of Mr Drummer!

 

To all TDMers, have a great weekend and I’ll see you end of next week!!

Flying-off to Ho Chi Minh City on Monday!!! On a spree of Holiday Moods!

WEEEEeee!!!

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