(Next Door Deli has moved to Compass One and ceased operations at Blk 529 Ang Mo Kio Ave 10. Click here to read more about the new outlet)
Nestled around the area where Cheng San Cooked Food Centre and Wet Market is located, Next Door Deli is a neighbourhood cafe run by the same guys by Pine Garden’s Cake right beside the cake shop. It’s pretty nicely named as it’s indeed the deli located next door from the cake shop, and while the cake shop looks more traditional with wooden furnishings, Next Door Deli adopted a modern yet nostalgic look on both it’s exterior and interior which is rather chic for a cafe located in the heartlands.
Next Door Deli should not be a stranger to you if you are the type of person who watches local foodie TV programme. Despite it’s fairly hidden location, it’s feature on Meat & Greed on Channel 5 and HDB Tai Tai on Channel 8 (with it’s neighbour from the same block, Cowboy’s Tavern which closed down late last year) have been able to attract crowds to the humble-looking cafe, gaining much popularity from the office crowd as well as the residents nearby. The cafe was nearly reaching it’s full capacity with it’s interior seats when I went down during weekday lunch hour, and I had to sit outside which wasn’t that bad either because they had decorated the outside seating with faux grass and wooden tables and chairs that are fold-able, making it look like a nice patio to dine on.
Other than mains and desserts, they also sell breakfast/brunch sets. Despite their menu being rather western, they do offer items that would suit local tastebuds or even fusion cuisine with local elements.
(Grilled Chicken Steak)
It wasn’t long before i decided to have the Grilled Chicken Steak. It was well complimented with garlic bread, sauteed vegetables and a mashed potato.
(Grilled Chicken Steak)
The chicken steak had a very crispy skin which I liked, and the meat was soft, juicy and tender, though the downsides were it can be slightly greasy for some.
(Garlic bread from Grilled Chicken Steak)
The garlic bread seemed ok, being slightly toasted on the top while retaining it’s fluffy texture at the bottom.
(Mashed Potatoes + Sauteed Vegetables from Grilled Chicken Steak)
The mashed potatoes here is rather unique; rather than a fully whipped-up potato that provides a smooth texture on the tongue, the mashed potato here had bits of potatoes that are not fully mashed up in them. The texture was rather interesting; while it was solid enough to chew, it was not that hard to ruin the entire texture of the mash. For the sauteed vegetables I would have preferred it to be cooked with butter or just left alone without the thousand island; the thousand island sauce just took away the flavour of the cauliflowers.
(Sea-Salt Brownie Popsicle with Ice-Cream)
For dessert, I settled for the Sea-Salt Brownie Popsicle with Ice-Cream. It is claimed to be the featured dish, and it seemed like it had much novelty to it since it is something that they had came out with. While the whole idea of it was interesting that it could be either eaten with a spoon or like an ice-cream and that it is a creative dessert, it’s sweet start for me turned out to be quite a dissapointment in the end. The first few bits were fine because the sweetness of the chocolate could offset the saltiness of the sea-salt brownie, but after a while it just felt a tad dry though was fine if complimented with the ice-cream. Then out of a sudden when you are near finishing it, it just felt like a whole clump of sea-salt is residing at the bottom of the Popsicle it’s nearly unbearable.
Next Door Deli is really a decent place to hang out with family & friends. The laid-back setting is just cosy to be in and the service staff were really polite and ready-to-serve as well. When it comes to food, I really preferred the mains than the desserts, and the quality it is way higher than expected if you are the type who judges food quality from pricing. The dessert was partly an oversight by myself though; after visiting the place I read countless reviews and many who had been there (and the ones there during my meal) whom had the Margherita Chiffon Cake all said it was pretty good while those whom had try the Sea-Salt Brownie Popsicle with Ice-Cream had mixed reviews. Probably I would give it a try during my next visit and give it a try (and probably another review); can’t wait to make another visit there again!
Next Door Deli
Blk 529 Ang Mo Kio Ave 10