Brownice, Singapore

i was skeptical when i heard about the vegan ice cream that brownice serves – what could ice cream possibly be without any cream/milk/eggs?!?! but i’m glad i gave this shop along sin ming road (they have another branch in balestier) a chance and paid it a visit, because the ice cream they serve is a great alternative that’s healthier and more guilt-free than regular ice cream.

you’re probably wondering how exactly vegan ice cream works. i was equally baffled because i just could not imagine how ice cream could be made without any dairy products! at brownice though, they prove that it can not just be done, but be done well. they do not use any animal products in their ice cream at all – they pride themselves on making all-natural foods without any artificial flavours or colouring, and use organic brown rice milk, fruits and nuts instead. this makes the ice cream perfect for the lactose-intolerant or the super health-conscious!20131220_172430

i visited on a friday afternoon, and it was really quiet which made it a great spot for great conversation with great friends 🙂 service was very good and i loved how they are so willing to let you try as many flavours as you want. (this is despite the fact that they don’t use disposal spoons, and have to wash each spoon that you use to sample the different flavours!) there were 12 flavours available when i went, but they have many more flavours than that. the full range of flavours can be found on their website: http://www.brownice.com/flavour.html . the shop is spacious and bright, giving off a nice casual vibe with simple furniture and cute little handwritten signs like these:
20131220_145750
20131220_145028

here’s the menu with what you can order:20131220_145824a single scoop costs $3.80, but it gets much cheaper if you order more (the more the merrier!). toppings can be added at $1 each, while brownies and waffles are available at $4 and $3.50 respectively. there are options for specials such as the sundae (2 scoops + 1 topping served sundae-style) and the ice cream bowl (4 scoops + 4 toppings).

since the ice-cream was less unhealthy/calorific/fattening, we decided that we could have heaps more than we normally would, and that is how 2 girls ended up with an ice cream bowl to share between us:
Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset
ice cream bowl (clockwise from white scoop: banana oats, cranberry hazelnut, black sesame, green tea with caramelised almonds x2, roasted walnuts, roasted almonds) – $12.50

my favourite out of the 4 flavours was without a doubt, the black sesame. the green tea and cranberry hazelnut were both also really good, and my least favourite was the banana oats. the black sesame was so wonderfully fragrant and thick and smooth and bursting with amazing black sesame flavour!!! i am a complete black sesame fan so this was heaven for me. the texture of the ice cream is a little different from regular ice cream – i would say its a bit less creamy and more sorbet-like almost? – but its not very noticeable, especially with the black sesame and green tea flavours, i felt! the green tea was equally fragrant and smooth, while i thought the cranberry hazelnut was an interesting combination that actually worked. as for the banana oats, i didn’t quite enjoy it as i thought the oats made the texture of the ice cream rather odd and kind of icy/rough? but its one of their most popular flavours, so don’t let this deter you from ordering it; it might just be a case of personal taste that i didn’t really enjoy it. the caramelised almonds were amazing and came highly recommended by our server, hence the double portion 😀

we enjoyed the black sesame and hazelnut so much that this is what happened next:
20131220_1549262 scoops (black sesame, cranberry hazelnut) – $5.90

some other flavours that were available that day and i think are worth mentioning are chendol and coffee hazelnut. i really felt like i was having chendol when i sampled the chendol-flavoured ice cream – its texture was very sorbet-like but i think it works well that way because it really resembles the dessert! as for coffee hazelnut, i have to say that i’m not a fan. it sounded really enticing so i very excitedly gave it a try, but was very disappointed to find that it tasted like the snow skin of mooncake?! to me, at least! but once again, its a popular flavour, so to each his own!

the great part about brownice is that they understand that their ice creams might taste a little different from the equivalent flavour of regular ice cream and are therefore extremely willing to let you sample all the flavours before ordering. and i really think this is important to make sure that you really love what you are getting! because in my case for example, i didn’t like banana oats or coffee hazelnut as much as i thought i would! oh and interestingly, i thought the ice cream tasted better in scoops than in the little bits i sampled of the flavours. i thought its texture resembled that of regular ice cream more when it was had in scoops.

besides ice cream, they also serve some hot vegan food:
20131220_173550
oh and i heard the mudpie is worth trying too! and they also do ice cream cakes, and ice cream tub deliveries.

healthy low(er)-fat ice cream that tastes just as good as regular ice cream? what’s there not to love? 🙂

20131220_145042

Brownice 

8 Sin Ming Road
Sin Ming Centre #01-03
Singapore 575628

Hummerstons, Singapore

Hummerstons has been around in the casual dining scene for quite some time now, but it was only very recently that i finally decided to pay it a visit. located at robertson quay, its not the easiest place to get to via public transport, which is probably why it was never top on my list of places to check out, until i got more independently mobile lately with my ability to drive myself places! Oh the sweet freedom (and food choices :P) it brings!

the very kind sister decided that she would take leave from work to bring me for a birthday treat last monday, and hummerstons was our choice (not our first choice but there are unfortunately a limited number of places open on mondays) for the day! thankfully it did not disappoint or i would have been a sad birthday girl; after all, what are birthdays without good food???

they only open at noon on weekdays so our plan to have brunch turned into one to have an early lunch. we arrived at quarter past twelve and managed to find a parking space along the street right outside the robertson walk building very easily so that was nice! hummerstons is tucked away in a corner of the 2nd floor of robertson walk and requires a bit of exploring to find. they have both indoor and outdoor seating, and i can imagine it getting quite busy on weekends, especially with the residents who live in the apartments in the area.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

the inside is quite nice and spacious, with ample space between tables to have good conversation without worrying about neighbouring tables being close enough to eavesdrop:OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAas you can see, we clearly did not have any problems at all getting a table that monday afternoon; there were only about 4 occupied tables the entire time we were there!

now on to the food, the sister isn’t into feasting till her stomach hurts (unlike me ;)) so we decided to go easy with our choices – we ordered their brunch burger and a salad to share!

the famous hummerstons brunch burger has been dubbed the best burger in singapore by many reviewers and i was very excited to see if it lived up to the hype! i wouldn’t be so quick to say that it is truly the best you can get in singapore since i’m not someone who has tried many gourmet-type burgers here, but it was certainly one of the better ones i have tasted, and probably one of the best that our little island has to offer. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
hummerstons brunch burger – grilled beef burger topped with applewood smoked bacon, caramelised onions, tomato, fried egg, greens. 

it looks huge in the picture, and it was really rather big and certainly very filling; definitely suitable for sharing unless you are a ravenous growing boy. i loved how the burger was full of ingredients and not just the standard beef topped with melty cheese and pickles etc (think yupi gummy burgers hahaha!). each component by itself was delicious, and together they tasted even better! the beef was grilled to a perfect medium-rare (which we chose) – it was tender, juicy and retained the taste of something that has been grilled well. the bacon is also something worth mentioning – they were quite generous with the amount they topped the beef with, and it was crispy and sinfully yummy, as were the caramelised onions! the greens were fresh and i loved the fried egg that topped it all off, though i would have preferred a runny yolk (i am the #1 fan of runny egg yolks/soft-boiled eggs) . imagine the yolk running down over all the ingredients especially the beef and bacon – yummmmmmmm.

besides all the yummy components of the burger, another part of it that was my favourite was definitely the bread. here’s a picture that’ll give you a good look at the burger bun:OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

it reminded me of brioche and was really moist and buttery. topped with sesame seeds, it was definitely one of the parts of the burger that stood out to me, especially in comparison to other run-of-the-mill macdonalds-type burger breads that you get elsewhere.

the fries that accompanied the burger were pretty well done but nothing outstanding. we really enjoyed the dip that came with the fries though – spiced tomato chilli aioli! yummy.

the staff very kindly halved the burger for us when they realised we were sharing:OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

look at that cross-section!!! I SALIVATE.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAif you’re craving a hearty burger, this will provide guaranteed satisfaction in my opinion 😉

we also ordered the super salad bowl in a bid to have a balanced meal and to negate the sinfulness of the serious dood food that came in the form of the burger hahaha. it was a very refreshing accompaniment to the burger and even though we only ordered a half portion, it was definitely big enough for sharing:OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
super salad bowl

the super salad bowl consisted of blueberries, pomegranate, flax seeds, peppers, cherry tomatoes, avocado, spinach, chick peas and almonds. all the components of a delicious salad in my opinion, and what made it even better was the spiced avocado herb & yoghurt dressing. the amount of dressing was just nice so the salad wasn’t too dry or too wet, and all the ingredients used were really fresh and added in generous amounts. i loved this salad and its interesting and wide range of toppings mixed in. if you’re looking for something healthy but still very satisfying, i highly recommend this! this was the half-portion and we shared it very very comfortably; the full portion must be a really huge serving!!! it’ll probably be hard for someone to finish the full portion alone, even as a main.

we had a really satisfying lunch at hummerstons! i would certainly like to return one day to try their breakfast offerings (pancakes, truffle eggs etc) and desserts but it will definitely be difficult to steer myself clear of the burger and towards the brunch menu hahaha. i find the prices reasonable for the large serving sizes that you get, and the robertson quay area is really chill and pleasant so after your meal you can take a stroll by the river. i’m sure you’ll be very satisfied 🙂OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Hummerstons

11 Unity Street #02-14 Robertson Walk,
Singapore 237995

photo (13)a