Without a doubt, I am a fan of The Coffee Academïcs in Hong Kong, known for serving some of the best coffee around.
Its roasted coffee have scored 92-94 from the World Coffee Review – a “Robert Parker” of the coffee world – achieving the distinct honour of being ranked highest in Asia and top 3 in the world.
As for the Singapore flagship store Scotts Square, standards have been inconsistent – mostly positive, but there were some items with quality that didn’t match up to its price.
Unfortunately, the newer Raffles City outlet comes no where close to the original, not even to the Scotts outlet.
Some potential customers who are not aware of TAC’s presence may just walk past and head straight to TB Bakery.
The décor of both seems too similar, without a clear demarcation. And TB Bakery could be at a lower price point overall.
The one beverage to look forward to would be the Nitro Coffee ($10), infused with TCA cold brew through a pressurized valve with tiny openings.
High pressure forces the cold brew past a disc, thus creating a creamy, stout-like effect which produces a silkier mouth-feel to the coffee, giving it a smooth and clean finish.
My tip: Drink the cold brew in small sips, but in a short period of time (say within a 5-10 minutes time frame).
I ordered a White Cold Brew ($7) during another visit, which was unfortunately horrible – not milky at all, bitter, diluted. Let my 4 other friends tried sips – same feedback.
The menu looks different, and there are some dishes exclusively available to only the Raffles City branch.
Brunch items include the standard Academic Breakfast ($25), Mixed Seeds and Fresh Fruit Museli ($22), The Mess ($20), and Chicken Poultry Terrine ($25).
Other recommendations include Warm Butternut Squash with Beets & Goat Cheese ($21) and Gypsy Toast ($16).
The Mess ($20) contains 63°C egg served atop sautéed spicy chicken sausage with baby potatoes, pencil asparagus and buttered corn kernel – inspired by English breakfast.
Loved the softness of the potatoes and crunchiness of the asparagus. But $20? And we wondered if we could duplicate this back at home.
We kind of enjoyed the TCA Chilli Dog ($26), with spicy chicken sausage in a brioche bun topped with chilli con carne and melted cheddar cheese.
The chilli con carne was kind of dry, and could be saucier.
My friend who loved the curly fries, thought this was simply a more ’atas’ (upmarket) version of A&W’s.
Service was also uneven and uncoordinated (for example we had to convey the same information several times to different people), perhaps the staff also looked overworked and tired.
This Coffee Academïcs extends the theme of ‘travel the world through coffee’ experience, with new handcrafted menu of Globally Inspired Coffee drinks released each month.
The Coffee Academïcs – Raffles City
252 North Bridge Road, Raffles City Shopping Centre #B1-12 Singapore 179103 (City Hall MRT)
Opening Hours: 9am – 9pm (Mon – Sun)
* Daniel’s Food Diary pays for food reviewed unless otherwise stated.