Suddenly, so many shops in Singapore are selling Cheese Tarts – Prima Deli, The Icing Room, Antoinette. But the real McCoy is Bake Cheese Tart from Hokkaido, which has opened at ION Orchard to 3-hour long queues. (Read: BAKE Cheese Tart Shinjuku)
These tarts from Japan have a crumbly exterior, fluffy inner texture, and cheesy warm soft filling – making them an instant hit.
Question: How long will this fad last?
The reason why I say this is because these tarts work better in a colder climate, and it is somehow more pleasurable to savour warm cheese elsewhere rather than hot humid Singapore.
There are still long queues at Hong Kong’s outlet, but you can easily get your hands on them at Bangkok’s EmQuartier.
Plus at $3.50 a piece, this will make people think twice before buying them regularly. Contrast this with Japan’s price of 216 Yen ($2.70), Bangkok’s 80 Baht (SGD$3) and Hong Kong’s HK$20 ($3.50 – similar). Fads are coming and going too quickly. Remember the Salted Egg Croissant craze in Singapore…?
Here are 10 things about Bake Cheese Tart
1. 3 different types of cream cheese are used to create the cheese mousse – Hakodate cheese for mild flavour, Betsukai cheese for full-bodied taste, and French cheese for a saltier balance.
2. The tart pastry is twice-baked, once just as cookies, then all over again with the cheese mousse on top to create a twice-baked pastry.
3. These tarts were originally sold as chilled blueberry cheese tarts.
4. BAKE Cheese Tart started in July 2011 in Kinotoya Hokkaido.
5. Price in Singapore – $3.50 per tart, $19.50 for box of six tarts.
6. BAKE currently has a total of 13 stores – 9 in Japan, 4 in the rest of Asia including Hong Kong, Seoul and Bangkok.
7. Singapore’ branch is the 5th store outside Japan.
8. The tarts sold in Singapore are flown in from Japan once every two weeks, and baked in-house before sale.
9. If you are buying the tarts home, you can reheat it by using a toaster oven (nope, microwave doesn’t really work that well). They last well about 2-3 days in the fridge.
10. One way to eat the tart is like an “ice cream” after putting it in the freezer.
My verdict? I will be happy to buy one or two for a teatime snack IF there is no queue, but won’t go to the extent of lining up for long hours for a box. But that is just me.
Uncle Tetsu which was previously just a few shops away didn’t last long, despite the initial long queues. I actually hope BAKE Cheese Tart will do well, but the local consumers, can be quite fickle.
Bake Cheese Tart Singapore
ION Orchard #B4-33, 2 Orchard Turn Singapore 238801 (Orchard MRT)
Opening Hours: 10am – 10pm (or till sold out)