Once again, Jalan Besar is now the hipster spot for cafe hoppers, with many new entrants lately.
Located just a few doors away from Two Bakers, Ai Cafe is the newest kids on the block
In this case, Ai is the abbreviation for Artificial Intelligence and not Ai（Love 爱）.
This was what the owners projected to be initially, a cafe fully automated by machines and robots to create an immersive and futuristic experience.
Eventually it didn’t turn out the way they expected, as the only AI machine is their air purifier robot making its rounds from time to time. #isee
With 11 tables indoors, the interior is decked in a bistro-like manner, with an ‘instagrammable’ blue wall with angel wings for taking #OOTD.
Instead of the usual brunch food, Ai Cafe serves Burgers ($16 – $20), Pasta ($16 – $20), Pizza ($18 – $20), Mains ($12 – $20), Bites ($8 – $20) and Desserts ($8 – $10.80) on their menu.
Their signature mains is their Fish & Chips with Homemade Tartar Sauce ($18) that comes with beer-battered fish, fries and apple slaw.
Crispy and golden brown on the outside with a moist and tender texture, it was comforting dish and probably safe option.
Instead, their selection of desserts is more eye-catching, ranges from AI Magnum ($9.80) to MSW Durian Truffle Chocolate ($10.80), Black Forest ($9.80), Mango Passion ($8.80), Bao de Litchi ($8.80), Matcha Goma ($9.80), Lemon Cremuex Tart ($8) and Banoffee Tart ($8.50).
Wait, the Bao de Litchi ($8.80) looked strangely familiar, just like the one I had at Two Bakers just a few doors away.
The service staff explained that they made all their pastries in-house.
The Ai Bao de Litchi ($8.80) comprised of lychee mousse gateau filled with lychee jelly, raspberry cremeux, earl grey sponge on top of a vanilla sable.
On the other hand, Bao Zi at Two Bakers is made from chrysanthemum white chocolate mousse with yuzu, lemon and matcha sponge.
With a smooth texture and a refreshing note, the Bao de Litchi ($8.80) had the right amount of sweetness balanced by the citrus touch from the raspberry.
The most aesthetic-looking dessert had got to be the Matcha Goma ($9.80) shaped like a bamboo shoot.
It is made from matcha mousse gateau filled with black sesame mousse, black sesame feuilletine and matcha sponge on a vanilla sable.
The matcha taste was earthy with slight bitter notes, complemented by the nutty taste from the black sesame and the refreshing yuzu jelly on top.
22 Martin blend from Common Man Coffee Roasters is used for their espresso-based drinks: Espresso ($4), Long Black ($4), Flat White ($5) and Latte ($5.50).
Other interesting Latte included Vanilla Latte ($6), Rose Latte ($6), Roasted Almond Latte ($6), and Caramel Latte ($6).
My cup of Flat White ($5) was medium bodied with dark chocolate, hazelnut, toffee and a long lingering finish.
Head down to Ai Cafe to see if you will really Ai (爱）their place and food.
74 Horne Road, Singapore 209076
Opening Hours: 11am – 10:30pm (Tues – Sun), Closed Mon
* Written by Nicholas Tan @stormscape who loves all things [NEW]. DFD paid for food reviewed unless otherwise stated.