Tucked away at the second level at Tampines West Community Club is a Muslim-owned cafe named Brothers in Fine Food run by the same people behind Penny University.
Unlike most other cafes these days which has gone pretty much minimalist in their decor or has even incorporated nature into the design language of their interior, the interior of Brothers in Fine Food is pretty much on the more industrial side of things, furnished with wooden furnishings with metallic accents with cement walls to finish the look. Opened for lunch and dinner with an intermission in between where only drinks and desserts are available, the menu features sides, mains, and a single dessert, while they also do carry a small variety of cakes in the cake display at the counter.
Out of the sides available, the Grilled Aubergine stood out the most for its pretty uncommon to find Aubergine served in cafes such as this one. Soft to the bite, the Aubergine carried a nice hint of charred smokiness while also was pretty savoury and carried a light garlicky flavour from the zaa’tar spices and garlic-strained yogurt, while the Pomegranate seeds help to add a little zing for a twist in flavours for a bit of contrast which worked pretty well.
Sharing a main, we picked the Iga Batar — beef rib braised for 48 hours and grilled, served with Kecap Manis reduction and Polenta Fries. While I was not a fan of the Polenta Fries on the side which tasted a lot like salted tidbits, they were crisp and fluffy to their own merit and its probably could be an issue with my taste buds. The beef itself was decent, though could be a little bit more tender and despite being a little bit gamey, it worked with the sweet Kecap Manis reduction on the side as the flavours complimented each other well. What we found interesting were the crisps that were similar to tuille on the side; much like crispy shards of dried chili crackers that was earthy but also carried an appetising level of spiciness, though it seemed a little isolated for it just does not look like it could be paired and eaten together with anything else in the same plate especially with its stark contrast in terms of texture.
(Greek Yogurt Panna Cotta)
The only dessert available on the menu here is the Greek Yogurt Panna Cotta, which also comes with honeycomb crumbs, strawberries, poached pear and lavender honey. The Greek Yogurt Panna Cotta itself paired the lavender honey and honeycomb crumbs particularly well as it exudes an aromatic floral sweetness enhanced with the sweet honeycomb crumbs for a little crunch, but otherwise the berries felt a tad tart and out of contrast for the whole dish and the poached pear was rather bland with its strangely watered down flavour — probably needs some form of caramelization or reduction for more flavour.
We eyed upon the Jaffa Orange Mocha while skimming through the drinks menu and decided to skip the usual Flat White to try it. It carries a balanced chocolatey flavour while one could definitely taste the citrusy notes in this cuppa — they have added Jaffa Orange peels into the cup of mocha which helps to bring out the classic combination of chocolate and orange flavours in this beverage.
Brothers in Fine Food is one of the places that seem to stand out in terms of its offerings on its menu. While some of the food items could do with a little bit more of fine tuning to be perfected, we were definitely impressed with how they are serving innovative iterations of Asian flavours with plating and presentation in mind rather which is pretty much unlike most cafes out there. Prices here are also pretty much on the affordable side when it comes to cafes, and the service is pretty decent as well. Being a Muslim-owned cafe, Brothers in Fine Food is definitely an interesting spot for both residents in the area as well as the Muslim community to try out despite its slightly obscure location, especially for small groups of 4 pax. We do hope that Brothers in Fine Food would be able to refine their recipes further as well as introducing more items on the menu, but it is a spot that is worthy of checking out if one is around the area.
Brothers in Fine Food
Tampines West Community Club
5 Tampines Ave 3