Brain dead. Slow, lethargic. We trudged uphill. And lo and behold, we found the quaintest little hideout at Upper Bukit Timah. Felt like the queens of the hill, and frankly, all energy was restored soon after. Walking at least a mile in that heat was pretty worth it.
Did I say quaint? I said quaintest. The plates, the decor, the everything. I had been meaning to visit this place for at least a year and half, and finally I can announce I have been, and have eaten. Eaten what, exactly? Why, only some of the best tarts I have tried in the country. Starting off with this passionfruit meringue babe, one in their ‘The Queen of Hearts Tarts’ series. Yeah that’s right, they boast six different sorts of tarts to please the senses. One walks in and marvels at the Alice in Wonderland clocks and cutlery, but marvels even more at the quality of double-baked (yes!!) crusts. And I don’t mind double-baked crusts. Frankly, I prefer it. This tart sings with the zesty tang of passionfruit without letting it dampen the filling. Cutting into it was admittedly a little tough, with my fork splaying everywhere, but the surprise lay in the filling, which in contrast to the stout and hardy crust, was very moist and more runny than other fillings I have encountered. Silky, rich, topped with the prettiest dollops of sweet meringue.
And goodness, the lemonade. Fizzy, sweet, gorgeous, refreshing.
I couldn’t not try more babies. Saying it like that is horribly sadistic, but I really can’t find any other appropriate way to describe them. They are such… babies. Mini, petite, pretty, delicate. Too much so to be touched by even the most delicate of forks. And I am extremely, eternally grateful to my friend Liz’s mum for helping me buy them. I still feel a little embarrassed!
The lemon cream tart was my queen. Probably the best lemon tart I have tried so far.
Lemon anything is God-sent. I personally don’t know what would happen to me if I was deprived of this angel of a fruit. And I certainly felt like a queen eating it for breakfast this morning. Equals. The filling, contrary to popular belief, is not too sour at all, and perfectly complements the extraordinarily buttery and only mildly sweet crust. The sourness wasn’t let down by a dribbly consistency, but instead was spread evenly throughout a bright-hued, sacred pale yellow. Vivid and creamy. It’s hard to stop yabbering on about both shell and filling. It’s calling me.
Most everything about it was faultless, from the smooth and silky chocolate top and gooey, almost smoky caramel insides. Cut like butter with a mini fork. Ravishing. A little more salt and perhaps a more sophisticated grade of chocolate would be preferable, but overall, my, my.
The lemon drizzle cake is part of their ‘Eat Me’ loaf cake series, and other options include banana, pear almond and apple cobbler. As I have mentioned time and time again, lemon anything is irresistible. I couldn’t.. not. I was heavily impressed by this one in particular; the cake was of the right tart to sweet ratio, the inside was dense enough to pack in the perfect amount of flavour, light enough to hold the title of a posh fairy cake. The icing was an uplifting experience, I swear.
The downside to all of this was the price. Let’s be real. I was extremely hesitant to pay more than 6 bucks for one minuscule tart, which might not have lived up to expectations. Considering this place was rather off-the-beaten track, and required quite a trek to get to, the prices incited a moderate degree of annoyance. Then again, they do make everything themselves and the quality is pretty unbeatable. They obviously take great pride in their work and efforts, although the service available could have been a tad more professional. I overheard one at the counter asking, in a rather audible tone, if some strange liquid in a cup ‘smelt like shit’. I could’ve said it, anyone could have said it. But right when I was eating a passionfruit meringue tart…?
If anything, go for their lemon-themes tarts or cakes. Those are certainly worth every bead of sweat. They also sell savoury dishes such as quiches, savoury brioche buns and make their own jams. I highly, highly recommend at least one visit!
Carpenter and Cook
19 Lorong Kilat (Upper Bukit Timah area)