YES THE FIRST 24 HOUR HELLO KITTY CAFE IN THE WORLD IS RIGHT HERE IN CHANGI AIRPORT. Explodingbelly is so busy with work these days, this post is brought to you by Chewypompipi – the same person who brought you the review of POMPOMPURIN!
Digress a bit, Pokemon café (pop-up) is coming up next! Omg so many character cafés and kawaii food… IS IT CHRISTMAS ALREADY?! (Editor’s note: wtf she writes more and more like me)
As every Hello Kitty Café features a different theme, Singapore’s Hello Kitty Orchid Garden adopts a more feminine floral theme inspired by our national flower. (E: OMG i hate that dreamy dreamy edit, chewypompipi. PLS)
The first thing I noticed about the cafe was not its interior but the CRAZY LONG QUEUE. People actually had to queue for an HOUR to get into a cafe on a weekday night… (E: we’ve checked, 3am.. THE COAST IS CLEAR. Supper place, anyone?)
Second thing I noticed – wah a lot of plants. They went all out on the garden thing. It’s super floral and pretty, but I was quite surprised that Hello Kitty’s presence wasn’t as much as I had expected.
We were told that Hello Kitty Orchid Garden wish to convey a more sophisticated and elegant feel. Hence we don’t see a Hello Kitty popping up at every corner. (E: Then why still call it hello kitty cafe, walao. I go character cafe is want to bombarded by the character one. #justsaying)
Instead, we see Hello Kitty in the smaller details, which I find very tasteful. It’s a Hello Kitty café targeted at grown-ups, not so much for the younger princesses. There are two photo spots with 3D life-sized figurines of the exclusive double-bowed Hello Kitty, ONLY found in Singapore!
Kitty’s Apple Pie Tea ($7.80)
I went with the Apple Pie Tea, which came in a cute teapot and teacup. (Their coasters are very cute, which you should totally bring home shamelessly.)
I thought this Apple Pie Tea sounded too good to be true… And it was. It’s an acquired taste, I didn’t like it but there were others who loved it. I felt that the “hint of cinnamon” was a bit too strong for my liking, and it was little heaty for my throat. So… It’s a no for me, hahaha.
On the other hand, I thought that the coolers were pretty good, I really liked the Cumbernade – it’s a fizzy mock tail of cucumber syrup, lemonade and soda water.
Ok, I know it doesn’t sound THAT GREAT, but trust me it really works leh! It’s not too sweet, and it’s damn refreshing! I would recommend this drink, unless you really hate cucumber, then okay it’s probably not the drink for you.
Kitty Blush ($7.90)
I think this looks the best out of the 4 drinks we ordered, so pretty!
This was slightly sweeter than the Cumbernade, I prefer the latter. JUST ORDER THE CUMBERNADE, FRIENDS!
Prior to the tasting, I read some reviews from guests who have already dined at Hello Kitty Orchid Garden, some of them were not so impressed with the food.
So I went to this tasting with ZERO expectations for the food but wah I was wrong. I was quite impressed with the food standards for a character café, and it’s more than “just edible”, cos I had second helpings for certain dishes.
Hola Nachos ($15.90)
It’s not mind-blowing good but it’s a simple dish that’s not too bad. Tortilla chips are nice and crisp but cheese sauce could be cheesier in my opinion.
Over the Rainbow Salad ($15.90)
WAH THE CARROT IS HELLO KITTY. Okay just saying.
I liked this salad much more than I had expected. It’s a mesclun salad with PORTOBELLO mushrooms (yes!!!), tropical fruits like pineapple and jackfruit, feta cheese and pine nuts, dressed with a laksa mustard vinaigrette.
I was skeptical about the laksa mustard vinaigrette – fortunately/unfortunately, I couldn’t really taste the laksa, but it wasn’t a bad vinaigrette.
I LOVED THE PORTOBELLO MUSHROOM, FRUITS AND THE FETA CHEESE. I finished this salad. Burp.
Big Breakfast Surprise gives you Hello Kitty waffles with cheddar cheese, scrambled eggs, shiitake mushrooms and smoked duck. You also get a special honey lime maple syrup to go with your waffles.
I thought this dish was pretty average, although I liked the hint of lime in the maple syrup.
Cowabunga Wagyu ($24.00)
The beef was tender and flavourful, goes well with the rice! But I found the rendang was a tad oily though.
& finally it’s time for desserts!!!
Each plated dessert comes with a really solid Hello Kitty chocolate that’s super cute.
Hide & Seek ($16.90)
The Gula Melaka sauce comes in a squeezable tube that you can drizzle on the panna cotta. The pandan flavour in the panna cotta is quite muted though.
The Cat in Paradise ($18.50)
Camping Under the Stars ($19.50)
Points for creativity for this plated dessert “Camping under the stars”. The graham crackers are stacked on chocolate and hazelnut gelato to look like a tent, placed on green tea powder (the “grass”) and toasted muesli (“campfire”) HAHA.
Soft Serve Frozen Yoghurt (from $4.90, with 1 topping)
Out of all the desserts, I like the froyo best – just simple frozen yoghurt with fruits. Yum.
The food at Hello Kitty Orchid Garden exceeded my expectations for a character café. Compared to Pompompurin Café, I think the food at Hello Kitty Orchid Garden is better.
Recalling my experience at Pompompurin, because they had to make the entire purin face out of rice, they compromised on the sauce to rice ratio. In contrast, the “Hello Kitty” elements in the food they serve is not THAT SIGNIFICANT, it’s like a subtle cute presence that doesn’t compromise the taste/quality of food.
Although the food is not AMAAAAAZING but it’s quite palatable and ITS CUTE, GOT HELLO KITTY.
But the queue….. Urgh.
If you really don’t want to queue, you can come at 3am, tried and tested NO QUEUE AT ALL and you can have almost the entire café to yourself MUAHAHA