September 12, 2016

DW Workshop, Bistro, Café, & Retail @ Rochester Drive, Buona Vista ~ What A Hidden Gem!

PinkyPiggu loves DW Workshop! And there are good reasons for making such a bold statement.

Occupying a charming black and white colonial heritage building, DW has several concepts converging at one location. It is a bistro, hipster café, as much as it is a design workshop and retail space as well.

Eat, drink, create, shop, all at once. Its premises is sooooo chio and so Instagrammable too!

If there is a best-kept "secret" in the Rochester Drive, it could very well be DW.

As the building is somewhat hidden behind Rochester Mall, DW might not immediately visible but is easily accessible.

My friend told me, "Just cross the road from Star Vista's taxi stand and walk in". Ahh... so that's where it is situated, just behind Pies & Coffee, with Starbucks a few doors away.

For friends who drive, parking space is available at Rochester Mall, and for those who don't, it only takes several minutes walk from Buona Vista mrt station (EW21/CC22) to reach.

Stepping into DW's beautiful space felt so much like entering my dream house! And that is exactly what the design team has in mind.

The Private Dining area where the round, wooden communal table is perfect for intimate gatherings over delicious food. Unwind at the Living Room for catch-ups with friends, or laze around the comfy Iconic Fireplace for cozy conversations.

There is also the outdoor Patio Hangout for secret tête-à-têtes at the corner cushioned porch, as well as the alfresco dining area for those who enjoy natural air.

Head up to the second level, more seats are available at the veranda. The air-conditioned Communal Dining area will suit larger groups of 6 to 30 people.

The space also doubles up as the workshop where classes are conducted regularly.

Participate in activities (changes on a quarterly basis) such as paper pleating to create mini handcraft bouquets or own collage using recycled materials, and even personal customized accessories.

I thought the "Evening Concrete Lamp" workshop where we can mold-make our own light-holder is rather interesting. It can also be a great idea for couples who are looking for something different to do other than the typical movie date.

Those with eagle eyes will also notice chests of drawers discreetly placed around the house, holding a selection of unique items sourced from all over the world. What catches your fancy can be yours for a price. Shop, shop, shop.

Comfortable vibes and engaging activities aside, what matters most is still what tickles the palate and satisfies the tummy (at least for this PinkyPiggu lol)

The smell of freshly-brewed coffee would be a good start for any time, any day. No regular caffé latte or cappuccino here as DW's focus is on The Drip ($9), brewed using the Poursteady machine which is said to offer the gentle taste of filtered coffee.

There is also the Stove Brew ($9) concocted with 3 shots of espresso(!!!). Full-bodied with a strong caffeine kick, it kept me super awake omg!

For tea lovers, options ranges from the soothing warm Earl Grey Lavender ($6.50), Osmanthus Sencha ($6.50), Chamomile Dream ($$6.50) to the cold Summer Hibiscus ($7.50), Spearmint & Lime ($7.50) and Icy Chai Latte ($7.50).

My personal favorites are the Cold Pressed Market Juices ($9 per bottle). The Mighty Spinach, Cucumber & Red Apple Lemon certainly sounds power-packed enough to keep the doctor away lol. There's also refreshing Summer Watermelon & Strawberry Mint, and thirst-quenching Pineapple, Carrot & Citrus Mandarin Squash.

Weekend Brunch is a long, leisure affair that starts early morning at 9.30am till 5.30pm in the afternoon which is perfect for bums like me who love sleeping in on non-working/serving days. Though I woke up pretty early that Sunday morning to meet my friends, I'm not complaining since the company was good and the food wasn't bad either.

The Crab Salad Croissant ($24) was a huge serving of freshly-baked pastry with an adequately crisp buttery bite and slivers of nicely-chilled sweet crabmeat in savory Japanese mayo dressing that reminded me of a particular offering from Delifrance (I meant it in a good way haha). If only the crabmeat are in chunks. Love the inclusion of poached eggs that gave another layer of creaminess, and the generous portion of crispy kale dressed in choron sauce.

Skip the Ground Beef Plate ($22) where the ground beef was too finely-minced resulting in the lack of enjoyable texture, and go for the well-executed Signature Potato Rosti ($21) with poached eggs, asparagus and vine tomato in béarnaise sauce.

Being besotted with quinoa recently, I returned for DW's Weekday Lunch where each Lunch Bowl ($19 per bowl or $25 including cold-pressed juice and snack)) is customizable with choice of Grain (red quinoa, brown rice and basmatic rice), Main (grilled chicken, grilled ribeye, pan-seared duck breast, salmon, sweet potato frittata and monthly specials - squid ink tempura, teriyaki chicken skewers), Side Dishes and Topping.

My colleague was like... is this ang moh chap chye png? Haha nevermind the label as long as the taste is delectable. The grain bowls are also comparatively much wholesome without the excessive drench of gravy, though a little sauce would enhance the combination with some overall moisture.

We clean finished our orders but it still felt light on stomach for me. No falling into food coma at work afterwards. Then again, I've always been told I have an amazing appetite oops.

For Dinner, options are a lot more heartier with a menu designed for sharing. Expect mains such as Signature Braised Beef ($42, serves 2pax), Savory Grilled Chicken ($38, serves 2 pax), Crackling Pork Belly ($36, serves 2 pax), Salmon Trout ($38, serves 2pax), Duck Confit ($42, serves 2pax), and Braised Lamb Shoulder ($38, serves 2pax).

Ending the meal with a host of Sweet Treats? Why not, since according to DW, they "bake it the old-fashioned way by using just good quality ingredients with simply no preservatives". At least it made our indulgence of Matcha Pie ($8.90) and Lemon Curd Tart ($8.90) felt less guilty.

DW Workshop looks set to become a regular hangout especially after church services on Sundays, though I wish the kitchen can expand on the variety for their brunch menu to keep our palates interested and coming back for more.

Great venue too if you're sourcing for event spaces to hold weddings and conferences (Food & Socialikes Connect 2017, maybe?). The workshops would be suitable as corporate team-bonding activities too.

This is indeed a wonderful find.

DW Workshop & Bistro

Address: 41 Rochester Drive, Singapore 138582
Contact: +65 6659 0879
Opening Hours: Mon-Sun 9.30am-10.30pm

Prices are (1) Stated in Singapore dollars (2) Subject to 7% GST, no service charge (3) Correct at point of published date.

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