Taking over the space of now-defunct ToTT Bistro within ToTT at Sime Darby Centre located opposite King Albert Park MRT Station is 5 Senses Bistro, the second branch of 5 Senses at Bedok Point.
Being situated in the space that used to be occupied by ToTT Bistro, 5 Senses Bistro is located on the left side of ToTT as one enters the store via its main entrance of the Sime Darby Centre building. The seating area stretches from the Lil’ ToTT area all the way to Scanteak, with seatings placed along either side of the aisle leading up to Scanteak. We had visited the 5 Senses branch situated at Bedok Point a while ago where we had the Confit of Duck, 5 Senses Royale Custard Apple and Flat White, and the menu offered is pretty similar to Bedok Point branch, with a variety of items ranging from fish, poultry and meat dishes to pasta and rice bowls available on the menu. Beverages offered at the Sime Darby Centre branch includes coffee, tea, cold pressed juices, beer, soft drinks and flavoured soda.
(Australian Beef Steak Rice Bowl)
As our dining partner was not in much of an appetite, we decided to share a single main, which we opted for the Australian Beef Steak Rice Bowl. All rice bowl orders at 5 Senses Bistro except for the Mushroom and Tomatoes Rice Bowl comes seasoned with Furikake, Poached Egg, Garden Vegetables and Coleslaw. While we did enjoy the other elements such as the wobbly poached egg and the Furikake which flavoured the rice quite a bit and made the rice pretty easy to finish, the Australian Beef Steak (which we specified to be medium rare) was much of a letdown for how the beef was simply too chewy and tough; it was pretty bad considering we had to swallow some pieces whole; as much as the other components fared well, it was a dish that we found a little difficult to enjoy or like for the lacklustre beef, supposedly the main star of the rice bowl.
(5 Senses Royale Custard Apple)
For dessert, we decided to go for the 5 Senses Royale Custard Apple since our dining partner had not tried it before. Thankfully, the 5 Senses Royale Custard Apple tasted pretty much we have expected since our previous visit to 5 Senses at Bedok Point some time ago; the apple still soft yet carrying a bite as it encases the eggy custard pudding within. It comes with a scoop of vanilla ice-cream; smooth and aromatic, speckled with vanilla beans while the bits of strawberry on the side adds an interesting, light tanginess that gives the dessert a flavour contrast.
(5 Senses Brulee Coffee)
While the Bedok Point branch used to serve speciality coffee brewed from blends roasted by local roaster Two Degrees North Coffee Co., 5 Senses Bistro at Sime Darby Centre uses a coffee machine that churns out a rather generic tasting coffee which was not to our preferences. While the 5 Senses Brulee Coffee conceptually replicates much of the Creme Brulee Latte served at Pies & Coffee or the now-defunct The Art Space Specialty Coffee previously located at Suntec City, the use of the generic tasting coffee felt that it brought down the experience a little despite the coffee itself having a crackling layer of torched sugar over the top. Probably just something that is not to our own preferences.
Our experience at 5 Senses Bistro was actually rather significantly different from the previous visit to 5 Senses at Bedok Point. The food that we had was generally lacklustre with lots of room for improvement; the differences in the dining experience could probably be attributed to our food orders however as we had decided to try something new rather than to stick to what we had previously as they seem to be better handling fish and poultry over beef. That being said, improvement is probably needed on those items in order to convince patrons whom have ordered those dishes to return again despite the price point being affordable for most. The dining scene is particularly competitive in Bukit Timah, with plenty of options ranging from good local fare to well-designed cafe fare and fine-dining establishments in the area. 5 Senses Bistro would have to fine tune their recipes and create a strong branding to stand out from the competition in the area.
5 Senses Bistro
Sime Darby Centre
896 Dunearn Road
#01-01A (within ToTT)
Web Page: http://www.5sensesbistro.com/
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/5SensesBistro/