This is one cafe worth getting excited about for all you West siders or any other else siders studying in NTU or something. If you’re looking for an ideal place to finish up your readings, and have a satisfying + affordable brunch, you can now enjoy the best of both worlds at The Playground Coffee. I sure hope this is motivation for you to study.
Ok lah, but now summer break so.. Just bookmark this first. HAHA!
A quick background on this cafe – first, you’d realize that its interior looks really familiar with its atas looking mosaic looking wall, which will make you go like WA NICE.. But eh?
Damn familiar leh, where I see before ah? Let me answer that for you – Populus lah. The relationship between Populus and Playground is like korkor and didi lor.
The 3 co-owners of Playground started off as the crew from Populus, whom eventually decided to make the move to own their very own establishment under the guidance by the capable men behind Populus. While they do not have any culinary background, their experience at Populus and tenacity to learn saw them conquering the needed skills to run the operations at Playground within a month! Damn zai, and also, their commitment to run this cafe is really commendable, especially since none of them stays in the WEST and still stay very far like Tampines and Punggol hor. #dedication
Just a brief background for you guys if you’re interested, otherwise, let’s get to the review!Located at Nanyang Community Centre – now you’ve got Archipelago Creamery AND Playground Coffee for your cafe, dessert and coffee fix! I loved how the cafe has clear glass panes for the natural light to filter in and it looks really clean, maybe except for the orangey warm lights. Instagram worthy mural.Not exactly a huge space – a good enough space to chill and get some work done. Still can go gym at Anytime fitness beside. Their beans are from 2 degrees North – from @Yiyangk, Singapore’s coffee prince.
During my visit, I thought the ventilation was quite poor and they were frying bacon at that time, CAN YOU IMAGINE HOW MY HAIR SMELLED LIKE AFTER THAT?
Nothing priced above $16, and the best part? It’s NETT! Sorry I forgot to take picture of the drinks menu. Sigh.
We ordered 3 different mains, and came to realize that all of their offerings tended towards being comforting and wholesome.
1. Playground Sandwich ($10)
While the Playground Sandwich did not catch my eye at all, like literally just skip it and ignore, it was highly recommended by Yiyang. But me being me, I was still very skeptical, until he just went ahead to order it without my approval. NO REGRETS. This was so good. That old school bakery bread was fluffy and had that inherent sweetness to it. I heard the bread is sourced from one of their family’s bakery. Mmm.
THE FLUFFY BREAD IS NOT JUST IT. What was sandwiched in between was a SUPER THICK AND SATISFYING slice of SPAM and the sunny side up was just a cherry atop of the cake (ironic). The yolk added to the texture of the entire dish. Super simple, yet the components just fell in together snugly.
This was my favorite dish, much to my surprise! I heard they might phase this out of the menu because no one is ordering it, PLEASE AH, heed my advice, order more, so it stays on the menu, thanks.
2. Sous Vide Eggs Benedict ($15)This changed my impression of having poached eggs on my eggs benedict. Actually, sous vide eggs are a better option for eggs ben, in my humble opinion leh. Reminds me a lot of our traditional breakfast eggs, hen shiok, can slurp it all up with the smoked salmon.
BEST part of it, it’s served with MUSHROOMS. The mushrooms could have been slightly more seasoned though, some of them tasted a bit raw. I really liked this dish a lot and I’m not a huge fan of Eggs Benedict. Wa, their brunch items pass with flying colors leh.
3. Smoked Duck Aglio Olio ($14)This picture very nice hor.
I was pretty impressed by the generous servings of smoked duck in this one, but smoked duck a bit hard ah. And I personally didn’t think too much of this plate of aglio olio. I thought it lacked flavors and heat, very ma ma teh lor. But my partner thought it was rather palatable. So.. You guys would have to judge this on your own ok!
4. Miso Salmon Soba ($15)This one is for you if you’re looking for something that’s wholesome and healthy. This dish is served cold, but I think cold or not, you wouldn’t feel the difference after all that phototaking anyway. I wished the salmon came less cooked, but then hor, they’ve received feedback from diners who thought that the salmon was raw. Sigh you can’t please the world.
Spam fries and that sirarcha mayo was ON POINT. Order.
Their drinks were pretty decent; coffee’s from 2 degrees north. Good beverages with hearty dishes – Best place to snuggle up with a good book or a laptop, minus the smelly food smell.
As you guys can tell, I’m pretty impressed with the offerings that Playground has. It’s a pity that they are located so far away from myself, but I guess that their existence would be a blessing for the Westies and those studying there. I can see myself returning if they were located nearer to me, but WEST IS JUST DAMN FAR.
How to get there?
60 Jurong West Street 91
#01-04 Nanyang Community Centre
Nearest MRT: Boon Lay
Tuesday to Sunday – 11.30am to 10.30pm