Must say I haven’t been back Gillman Barracks in a while, though there is always something new and unique to be discovered there.
Situated amidst lush greenery, Gillman Barracks is a collection of restored colonial barracks that date back to 1936.
This distinctive setting serves as a backdrop for its vibrant art scene, creative businesses, restaurants and cafes.
This time I made my way to Kaffa Bella located at 47 Malan Road, serving up a variety of coffee, Acai bowls and pastries.
If you find some motorcycles in the front, you are at the correct place.
It intriguingly shares its space with a Triumph Motorcycle showroom, where you can also browse for motorcycle range, accessories and clothing.
The coffee menu at Kaffa Bella is straightforward, featuring staples like Espresso ($4), Long Black ($5), Piccolo ($5), White ($5.50), and Mocha ($6).
They use their in-house “Gachala” espresso blend, a 50-50 mix of Columbian and Guatemalan beans.
The White ($5.50) I had was a medium-bodied brew, smooth to the palate with a medium level of acidity.
It weaved in subtle flavours of gula melaka, followed by an aftertaste that hints at chocolate and roasted nuts. A good cup.
For those who prefer something less mainstream, their Single Origin Filter Coffee ($6) is worth a try.
The food menu, though not extensive, includes Acai Bowls and a selection of pastries.
I thought I saw something really familiar, which is the Sor Hei ($5.60) – a signature soured from another famous bakery.
This Danish-style pastry, shaped like a traditional hair bun, carries a cultural backstory linked to the historical Majie’s “sor hei ceremony.
It was buttery, crispy on the outside, with a slight char at the bottom, and chocolate chips adding a sweet surprise within its fluffy layers.
Other pastries from the menu, like the Kouign-Amann ($4.80) and Ham & Cheese Danish ($5.80), looked tempting.
There was also a Burnt Cheese Cruffin ($6.40) with blend of creamy and crispy textures.
Kaffa Bella also showcases pastries from Buttermittens, a nod to local baking talents.
There was the Mushroom Danish and Apple Twist – the pastry itself was buttery, flaky, and nicely crispy. The apple filling was slightly tart and pleasantly not overly sweet.
Kaffa Bella operates from 8am on weekdays and opens an hour earlier on weekends. Great for early risers like myself.
47 Malan Road, Singapore 109444
Opening Hours: 8am – 5:30pm (Mon – Fri), 7am – 4pm (Sat – Sun)
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