The Farrer Park area is once again bustling with new F&Bs added to the neighbourhood.
Opened by the folks behind Muslim-owned steakhouse ASAP & Co at North Bridge Road) that focuses on grilled meats, Cherry & Oak is their latest cafe concept.
The specialty here is in smoked cuisine using cherrybark oak, and thus the name.
Using a firewood oven to smoke most of their dishes, a smokey aroma is infused within the ingredients, giving the food more depth, scent and flavours.
The 100 seater-space with both indoors and outdoors alfresco dining area is spacious, filled with high stools, cushioned and wooden chairs in tones of black, white and brown.
Their signature dishes include the Shabsouka ($16), Smoked Open Toasts ($16), Baby Dutch Pancake ($13) and the Nasi Lemak Bakar Platter ($5 – $288).
For the Smoked Open Toasts, they are available with options such as Brisket ($16), Salmon ($16) or Portobello Truffle ($16).
Served on a slice of sourdough bread with mesclun salad in a metal tray, various toppings were smoked prior to adding to the toast.
The Portobello Truffle Smoked Open Toast ($16) comes with portobello mushrooms smoked with cherrybark oak, topped with running scrambled eggs, sprinkled with parmesan cheese and parsley before drizzling truffle oil as a finishing touch.
The result was a robust and earthly smokiness in the Portobello mushrooms that complemented the lighter truffle scent.
There was also a tasty combination of textures from the crispy sourdough to the creamy scrambled eggs and juicy portobello.
Their menu mainly focused on the Personalised Platter that ranged from $5 to $288, and came with Nasi Lemak Bakar which means Burnt Nasi lemak and Mango Salad.
That’s right, with the most expensive dish being the 1.8kg Wagyu Tomahawk, a F1 free-range Wagyu (50% Wagyu breed) with a Marbling Score of 4/5 from Australia, grain-fed for 350 days.
Other options include Brisket (200g for $12), Beef Ribs (500g for $59), Lamb Cutlet ($9), Half Chicken ($16), Rainbow Sausages ($16), Smoked Vegetables ($7), Smoked Seafood Bucket ($65) and Whole Irish Duck ($88).
I had the Rainbow Sausages Platter ($16) that comes with 4 different flavours of hand-made gluten-free sausages, made from growth hormone-free and antibiotic-free chicken, without using additives, colourings, fillers and preservatives.
Served with a black pepper dipping sauce, mango salad and Nasi Lemak Bakar on the side, the rainbow sausages are named due to the colours according to the different flavours: Beetroot (Red), Spinach (Green), Curry (Orange), Original (Brown).
The curry sausage was the crowd’s favourite, firm and meaty with slight hint of spiciness from the curry flavour.
Both the sausages and the nasi lemak were smoked before serving giving it a distinctive aroma and flavour that is non-overpowering.
The Baby Dutch Pancakes came in both savoury and sweet options: Mushroom & Sunny Side Up ($13), Forest Berries ($13) and Banana Brûlée ($13), all baked within the smoked chamber.
The Forrest Berries Baby Dutch Pancakes ($13) with raspberries and blueberries added a bright citrus touch, in contrast to the sweet mascarpone, granola and maple syrup used, complemented by the subtle sooty flavour.
I wasn’t surprised t all when I saw Burnt Cheesecake ($7) on the menu since they focused on smokey food, with interesting flavours such as Cempedak and Thai Milk Tea, and classic ones such as Original and Valrhona.
Other non-smokey desserts include Valrhona Chocolate Soufflé ($15), Putri Salat ($5) and Ondeh Ondeh Panna Cotta ($8).
Using coffee beans from Dutch Colony Coffee Co. for their espresso-based drink, the usual suspects Espresso ($3.50), Long Black ($4.50), Flat White/ Latte/ Cappuccino ($5), Cafe Mocha ($6.50) and Gula Melaka Latte ($6) can be found.
Both the Cafe Mocha ($6.50) and Matcha Latte ($6.50) were a tad too milky, whereas the latte art was also a little disappointing.
With an extensive menu of smoked food and desserts and a spacious premise, Cherry & Oak will probably be a popular spot for adventurous cafe hoppers in the area.
Cherry & Oak
93/95 Owen Road, Singapore 218907
Opening Hours: 11am – 10pm (Tues – Sun), Closed Mon
* Written by Nicholas Tan @stormscape who loves all things [NEW]. DFD paid for food reviewed unless otherwise stated.