Thursday, February 17, 2011

Pearl Cafe

As it is the 15th day of the Lunar New Year, which marks the last day of the LNY celebrations, we found a perfect excuse to treat ourselves to a nice lunch at Pearl Cafe. My friend had  informed me she had made a reservation earlier and we now understand why it was necessary to do so.
 Mr food hunter and I were really surprised to see how very busy this little cafe was on a thursday afternoon.

Pearl Cafe has been around for a few years now, we've heard much hype surrounding this place and the reason why it took us THIS long before making our first visit, was due to the several negative reviews we've heard. This little cafe was criticized for being pretentious, having slow service and indifferent attitudes and food that wasn't worthy of the price. We must say things have changed for the better, the service was friendly and attentive, the cafe was not at all pretentious, but we are not so sure food wise.

We had good frothy cappuccinos and a mocha by Genovese. The lunch specials of  a Confit of Atlantic Salmon on a bed of salad, asparagus with a yoghurt dressing was very popular amongst the crowd. Mr food hunter and our friend ordered exactly that and Miss food hunter had the Vitello Tonnato Green Mountain Veal.


Oh the Atlantic Salmon, if only you were truly confit as promised!  As you can see from the picture the salmon was sadly overcooked, tough and dry was the result.  It's such a shame because this could have been a perfect summer salad.  The combination of ingredients were perfectly complementary with just the right amount of yoghurt dill dressing.  So good that I think I may pinch this recipe and make it myself! Hmmm...our friend in contrast, seemed to have had the better chunks of oily confit salmon. No complaints from her.

Veal & odd combination??
Vitello Tonnato is a cold dish made of Veal slices and accompanied with a tuna mayonnaise hidden under the slices. This dish was also dressed with a few slithers of anchovies, capers and cress. The reason behind ordering this dish is simply because I've heard but never tasted this classic Italian summer dish and though it was served as a mid, a side order of my Levain bread with Wendland Olive oil helped complete the meal. The veal was cooked perfectly medium rare and strangely worked quite well with the creamy mayonnaise and the salty anchovies. The capers provided some acidity but personally, I needed more acid and more cress freshness to balance the cream and salt. Perhaps, I should have ordered the side of Pickled Beets. I could not detect tuna in the mayonnaise to be honest but then again I'm not sure how it should really taste!

I heart Levain!!
Our friend who is a dessert fiend loves Pearl Cafe's cakes. This is her second visit and she was not going to leave without having a slice of the Chocolate, Sour Cherry & Pistachio cake. We on the other hand shared a Peach & Pear Yoghurt cake with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. The Chocolate cake was moist and rich, not overly sweet and I maybe wrong here but Miss food hunter thinks almond meal is used here. The Yoghurt cake was rather subtle in yoghurty flavour, it was moist in the center but rather dry towards the outer crusts...more ice cream please! As keen observers, the yoghurt cake seemed to be the popular choice. We say it is good but not outstanding.

Though there were one or two disappointments, there was no doubt to the quality of ingredients used and the love that was placed on the plate. We ate and chatted for over 2 hours, which speaks alot about the comfortable setting of the place. At the sametime, we witnessed the number of times the tables turned! Judging by the number of raving reviews based on breakfast alone and the scrummy sounding breakfast items, we are sure of a return visit! Peruse the current menu below and be tempted....there is a short selection of wines too!

Pearl Cafe
28 Logan road
Opens Tuesday to Saturday 7am to 10pm

Pearl Café on Urbanspoon


  1. I've only been to Pearl once, the service was a little indifferent but the food was pretty good.

  2. Hello Gastronomy Gal!Hope you are feeling much better now from your food poisoning? Yeah, we actually went in thinking there is a good chance of receiving some attitude but the service was more than just attentive! Looking forward to another review of yours soon ;)