Thursday, October 30, 2008

Heart Attack Grill, Arizona USA


Aileen forwarded this email to me and I definitely have to share it in my blog. Read on and be amazed...

Heart Attack Grill is a hospital-themed restaurant in Chandler, Arizona and the intent of the restaurant is to serve "nutritional pornography", food so bad for you it's shocking.


The menu includes "Single," "Double," "Triple," and "Quadruple Bypass" hamburgers, ranging from half a pound to two pounds of beef, "Flatliner Fries" (cooked in pure lard), cigarettes, beer and liquor, and soft drinks.

The names imply coronary artery bypass surgery, and refer to the danger of developing atherosclerosis from the food's high proportion of saturated fat and excessive caloric content. The Quadruple Bypass burger has 8,000 calories. Customers who finish a Triple or Quadruple Bypass burger are pushed in wheelchairs to their cars by the waitresses. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heart_Attack_Grill)




Goodness!!! What has the world come to??!! I can't believe that such a restaurant exists in America. Then again, it is America. But honestly, I admire the owner and creator of this restaurant for braving to put this up. I can just imagine the loads of criticism he's received and still go through with it.


I mean, if you don't have any value left over your life then you might as well swing by this place. Unbelievable!! But I'm sure the owner would say it's the choice of the customers to go here. If they feel offended or find it ridiculous then don't go. Which, if you actually think about it, is true.

No one really told you to finish that burger in one seating or to go here if you have a health condition. Acually, if I had the chance, I'd visit this place just for the heck of it, to take pictures or something haha.

This concept reminds me of "Burger Avenue" in the Philippines where they also serve humongous burgers that they give to you for free if you can finish it in 5 mins (they call it the 'Ridiculous Challenge'). But compared to Heart Attack Grill, Burger Avenue is kiddie stuff, haha.

There's also a place here in Singapore called "Clinic", though they're more of an upscale bar and restaurant but with a very similar theme.
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Monday, October 27, 2008

Blindness


A doctor's wife becomes the only person with the ability to see in a town where everyone is struck with a mysterious case of sudden blindness. She fakes blindness in order to take care of her husband as her surrounding community breaks down into chaos and disorder. "Blindness" is a psychological thriller about the fragility of mankind, a film adaptation of the 1995 novel of the same name by Nobel Prize winner Jose Saramago.



This movie is definitely very unusual with a very strong theme. It was very repulsive and disturbing but it did sure make me think. I was going through the different reviews on yahoo movies and it does ellicit a lot of mixed extreme reviews. Either you like it or you don't. I'm sort of in the middle.

The fact that I didn't fall asleep is a very strong indicator that it was enough to keep me glued, to think that we caught the 2.30am monday morning showing (since Monday is a Deepavali Holiday). I regard this movie as a very emotionally-affecting one. A film that really stings your emotions. So if you're the type that enjoys movies with laid out storylines, then don't go for this. I think they perfectly depicted the extent humans can go to given the extreme condition of survival of the fittest.

[Spoiler Alert]
The only thing I didn't like was the movie keeps you "blind" about why they went blind, how they went blind and how they gained back their vision. A bit dragging with no real clincher at the end. So it will make you very disappointed.

My rating for Blindess is 3.0/5.0.
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Sunday, October 26, 2008

Häägen-Däzs, Clarke Quay

After our Mexican not-so-good feast at Cafe Iguana, we decided to walk around Clarke Quay. Since our mouths were still burning from the chili, we unanimously decided to cool it down at Haagen Dazs haha!


I'm not really a fan of ice cream, surprisingly. Especially overly-expensive ice cream like Haagen Dazs. But since Bill treated us dinner, we opted to treat them dessert.



Zach and I had 3 scoops (S$14.90) with roasted almond nibs (S$1.00) - Green tea (A highly sought Japanese matcha green tea enhanced with the richness of the pure, sweet cream), Cookies & Chocolate (An indulgent fusion of chocolate ice cream and chocolate cookies), and our all-time fave Rum Raisin (Plump raisins soaked in rum and added to pure, sweet cream).

Aileen & Bill had 2 scoops (S$ 11.90) - Macadamia Nut (Macadamia nuts roasted to perfection and artfully blended with the macadamia ice cream) and a Chocolate-flavoured ice cream, I forgot which one...

The store manager was very accomodating and friendly, even introduced us to one of the filipina staff. I think if all managers were as friendly as him, customers would be very loyal and keep on coming back. He probably forgot to charge us for the topping on our ice cream or maybe he gave it us for free.

No rating for Haagen Dazs but I must say they have very tasteful decor for an ice cream shop. No wonder their ice cream is so damn expensive, haha.

3A River Valley Rd
#01-07
Merchants Court, Clarke Quay
Tel: 6337 0846

"Live, Love & Eat!"
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Cafe Iguana, Riverside Point

Aileen's fiance, Bill, has moved here to Singapore from Dubai and he wanted to treat us Saturday night dinner to celebrate his first salary and his new career here. Zach and I went to the gym first to burn some calories before our mexican feast hehe.


While waiting for Bill and Aileen to arrive, they gave us a free serving of corn chips and salsa. I'm not sure if it's homemade but it was ok. It was a bit thicker compared to regular corn chips and was perfect with the salsa.

There was a lot of people but we were lucky to have had a nice outdoor seat. The view was magnificent. It was right beside the river overlooking neighbouring Clarke Quay.

The bar was a sight to behold with all the liquor stacked up high on the walls. According to their website, they get their handcrafted beer from Brewerkz Microbrewery, a restaurant just a few shops away.

Zach ordered "Shredded Steak Soft Taco" (S$18.99) - Handmade corn tortillas, traditional shredded cabbage garnish, lime cream and pico de gallo and side dishes of beans and lime-scented cilantro rice. The presentation was nice but once you start eating it, it got a little inconvenient because you have to wrap the tacos on your own. Also, I'm not sure if this is a different variety because from my experience soft taco normally doesn't come with rice.


Aileen ordered "Ancho-dusted Fried Calamari" (S$12.99) - Tender fried squid with mole verde. The breading was very nice and crisp but it was a bit bland. Quite interesting, though, was the bed of mole verde beneath the calamari. I researched the net and found out mole verde is a spicy Mexican condiment which is a mixture of pumpkin seeds (pepitas), ground nuts and sesame seeds, tomatillos, green chile peppers (typically poblano or serrano), spices, soybean oils, bread or crackers (wheat flour and corn starch), sugar, and other seasonings.


Bill ordered "Flank Steak Fajitas" (S$23.99) - Sizzling platter served with flour tortillas, sautéed onions and peppers, sour cream and guacamole. This was my favorite out of all the dishes. I always love the idea of interactive food, where you get to assemble your own fajita as you wish. The steak was also very tasty.


I had the "Shredded Steak Burrito" (S$19.99) - Served with lime-scented cilantro rice, b0rracho beans and cheddar mozzarella cheese.

The portion for this dish was quite big, probably good enough for 2 people. There was a lot of rice and steak and it was really filling. My only problem was it tasted the same as the soft taco. Plus, it lacks that mexican kick that mexican food usually has. Not the best burrito I've ever tasted, to be honest.

The El Yucateco extra hot sauce (the one in the middle) has got to be the spiciest, chilliest, hottest chili sauce I have ever tasted in my whole entire existence, hands down!!! God it was so spicy my mouth was burning for at least 10 mins after I tasted it. Moreover, I felt my stomach rumble as soon as I swallowed it. It was that hot!! Too hot actually it ruined my taste buds for a while. Cholula tasted like tomato sauce after that goddamn yucateco.

Overall, Cafe Iguana was a bit disappointing. I didn't taste like authentic Mexican fare. Cha Cha Cha in Holland Village is so much better. Plus service was a bit slow. Though I really enjoyed the view and ambiance, it was really breath-taking. Thanks for dinner, Bill and welcome to Singapore!

Here is my rating for Cafe Iguana-
Ambiance - 5.0
Service - 2.5
Food - 2.0
Presentation - 3.0
Value for Money - 2.5
OVERALL - 3.0

30 Merchant Road
#01-03 Riverside Point
Singapore 058282
Tel: (65) 6236 1275 Sorry, we’re unable to accept reservations after 7pm. Walk-ins only.
Opening Hours
Mon - Thurs: 6pm - 1am
Fri & Eve of PH: 6pm - 3am
Sat: 12pm - 3am
Sun: 12pm - 1am

"Live, Love & Eat!"
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Saw V

In the 5th installment of the "Saw" series, Hoffman is seemingly the last person alive to carry on the Jigsaw legacy. However, when his secret is threatened, Hoffman must go on the hunt to eliminate all loose ends that might expose him. (http://sg.movies.yahoo.com/Saw+V/movie/14880/)



Halloween is just around the corner so what better way to embrace it than to watch a horror movie - and a gorey one at that. Embarrassing as it may seem, but I looovvveee horror movies. Or do they still call 'em "horror" movies? Whether horror, suspense, thriller, or however you want to call them I just love them! The more blood, gore and cringe-moments, the better! :-P

So since we wanted to avail of our special cathay-movie-ticket-discount through UOB card (from $10.50 to $8 on weekends), off we went on a late Friday night. Of course, watching a horror flick past midnight just adds to the excitement.

To make the story short, I wasn't as pleased with the movie. Yes it did live up to the notorious uber-gorey "Saw" concept but I felt shortchanged. The story was too dragging. Then again, what do you expect on the 5th installment right? I guess the "Saw" series has succumbed to the usual dilemma that over-serialized (if there is such a word) movies encounter. It can never live up to the previous earlier releases.

The visual quality of the movie was terrible. Too grainy and dark. Like a cheap low-budget film. To make matters worse, it's so damn obvious that there's going to be a Saw 6, I bet my life on that.

With all that said, my rating for Saw V is 1.5/5.
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Sunday, October 19, 2008

Lau Pa Sat, Boon Tat Street

Built in 1894, Lau Pa Sat is the largest remaining Victorian filigree cast-iron structure in Southeast Asia. Located in the heart of Singapore's business district, the former wet market has been restored and is now a favourite food centre of the locals, offering a wide and affordable variety of local food (lifted from http://www.visitsingapore.com/).

It was actually a very late saturday night when Zach and I decided to meet up and head over to Lau Pa Sat. He was craving for Satay while I was bored and feeling stagnant at home. I wasn't actually sure if they were open that time (11.30pm) but we tried our luck anyway. Lo and behold, they're open 24 hours. Hallelujah! hehe.

I remember the very first time I went to Singapore back in 2006, I first ate at Lau Pa Sat. I always love the idea of outdoor dining on a cool clear night and Lau Pa Sat is the perfect setting - plus it's in the middle of the bustling city centre.

For appetizer we ordered "Chicken Wings" (S$1.50 each). Quite expensive for chicken wings but this is Lau Pa Sat after all, where prices are mostly meant for tourists. I would have wanted the wings a bit more roasted and burnt.

Then we ordered "Beehon Goreng" (S$4) - malay-style stir-fried noodles. Not bad but nothing special either.

Finally, we had "Satay" (S$12 per 20 pieces)- combination of mutton, beef & chicken. I haven't had good satay in a long time and this was a very good comeback haha. That peanut sauce is a must with Satay (though the obvious floating oil is a definite no-no but what to do?! :-P).

Finally finally (haha), when we were just about to leave when Zach saw this indian stall selling his favorite indian crepe. So he just had to have some.

Would you believe that this stall doesn't have any prices??! Meaning you just pay as you wish, depending on how much you value the food. Honesty System in short. I was really amazed. I mean if you do this in the Philippines your business will go bankrupt in a day, or maybe even in an hour. So Zach paid S$1.50 for the crepe. Zach told me even the main restaurant of the same stall also doesn't have prices. This can only work in Singapore I tell you.

So no rating for Lau Pa Sat because there's so many stalls in this place and we didn't really eat a lot to give a fair rating. Besides, I really don't know from which stall our food comes from because the different servers will scramble for your business once you get there.

After a hearty meal, we strolled around the city from Lau Pa Sat to Clarke Quay to burn away the calories, hehe.

Location: Boon Tat Street

Getting There: Take the MRT to Raffles Place Station (EW14/NS26) and walk towards Robinson Road.
OPEN 24 hours
"Live, Love & Eat!"
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The Banana Leaf Apolo, Little India Arcade

I've been back in the gym lately and I'm so glad I've been able to join the spinning classes again. I remember 3 years ago when I lost 54 lbs (yes you read it right, 24.5 kg), it was mainly because I did so much cardio. Sometimes, I would join 2 consecutive spinning classes then I'll do tae-bo or kickboxing, then I'll do an hour of weights. However, when I stopped going to the gym and slipped back on eating fatty food, what do you expect right, I gained sooo much weight again. Anyway, no use in crying over spilt milk. From now on, I just try my best to eat healthy (at least during weekdays) and try to get as much exercise too (I've also been climbing the stairs 11 storeys to our flat after work).

So anyywwaayyy, after the gym last Friday, we decided to go to Little India since Deepavali is just around the corner. From Cali Fitness in Bugis, we walked all the way to Little India to scout for a nice place to eat at.
Little India is very festive during this season. The lighting and decor is a sight to behold. It reminds me of the "fiestas" in the provinces in Manila. I especially love the night market and the hole-in-the-wall cafes and shops that we saw while walking around. I really felt like a tourist again as it was my first time in Little India.

We decided to go to this place at the Little India Arcade called "The Banana Leaf Apolo". There were a lot of people so they must be serving real good food.

They actually had quite a lot on the menu and I was a bit confused on what to order as I'm also not that familiar with Indian food. Anyhow, I decided to have the "Apolo Chicken Briyani Set" (S$8) since Briyani is my all-time indian favorite food - it comes with Briyani rice, 2 kinds of vegetables, pappadum, chicken gravy and chicken masala.

I love the idea of eating on a banana leaf since it adds that casual and picnic-like way of eating and I'm sure they save tons on dishes and dishwashing - which is good both for their business and the environment.

They gave me sooo much rice it was probably good for at least 2-3 people. Of course I didn't finish it, else my workout would have been put to waste. Zach finished it, hehe. Despite the overwhelming look of this meal, I wasn't as overwhelmed with the taste. It was a bit too spicy and the chicken was quite tough and not so meaty. The "Chicken Briyani Set" down my street is only S$5 and their chicken is huge.

I also had their "Teh Tarik" (S$ 2), it was quite different from the malay version of teh tarik as this one had regular milk instead of condensed milk, therefore you need to add the sugar yourself.

Zach had the "Rava Masala Dosai" (S$2.70) - indian crepe with 3 kinds of dip, his all-time favorite. It was ok and quite interesting, the crepe had sunny-side up egg inside.

All in all, we had to pay around S$17.30 (including tax) for the 2 dishes and 2 cups of tea. Quite expensive for indian food but probably because it was in a restaurant setting. I do like indian food but I think I need some time to get used to it especially when it's too spicy.

Outside the resto, we grabbed some indian snacks from this stall. They looked really interesting, some even looked like bars of gold or silver as they were "silver or gold-plated". Problem is I find it too sweet, it tasted like a block of sugar :-P.

Here is my rating-

Ambiance - 3.5
Service - 3.5
Food - 2.5
Presentation - 3.0
Value for Money- 2.5
OVERALL - 3.0

Address: #01-32, 48 Serangoon Road
Little India Arcade, Singapore 217959
Reservations 62971595
Opening Hours 7.00am to 10.30pm - Daily

"Live, Love & Eat!"

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Saturday, October 11, 2008

Eagle Eye

Jerry Shaw and Rachel Holloman are two strangers thrown together by a mysterious phone call from a woman they have never met. Threatening their lives and family, "she" pushes Jerry and Rachel into a series of increasingly dangerous situations--using the technology of everyday life to track and control their every move. As the situation escalates, these two ordinary people become the country's most wanted fugitives, who must work together to discover what is really happening--and more importantly, why.



This movie felt like it lasted 3 hours. And if a movie feels that long (even if it's really just 2 hours), then it's seriously not interesting enough for me.

I admit I was glued to the movie for the first hour but as the movie dragged on to the ending, my mind also dragged into lala land. In short, I fell asleep in the last few minutes. And if you guys are a regular reader of my movie reviews, that is not a good indication. To think I had a strong cup of Teh Tarik (milk tea) before the movie.

To me it was like "The Truman Show" meets "The Amazing Race". They just kept on running and running away from the authorities the entire movie, while I kept on wondering and wondering why the hell they were doing so. The storyline wasn't fierce enough to keep you glued for 2 full hours and the clincher was lame. I was really expecting a phenomenal ending but instead I ended the movie myself by sleeping.

At least I know I'm not the only one who didn't like the movie since "Waiter Rant" and Yahoo movies (rating of C) also didn't like it.

My rating for Eagle Eye - 2/5 stars.
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Raj Restaurant, Biopolis Complex

I was at the Ministry of Education for 2 days this past work-week with one of our developers for an ongoing project. Since Naveen would only eat Indian, I was gracious enough to accompany him because I like Indian food anyway. So we ate at the Raj Restaurant in neighboring Biopolis for 2 straight days.

Zach was the one who introduced me to "Samosa" ($1.50), so when I saw it here I immediately got one for appetizer. It's like a puff with potatoes inside and is usually triangle in shape. I like the crispy dough yet chewy & savoury potato filling. It also comes with a sweet chili sauce but I like it on it's own.

Raj is an all-vegetarian restaurant but surprisingly they had so much items on the menu. It was quite pricey actually and since it was only lunch on a work-week, I normally wouldn't want to spend more than $5 (yeah call me a cheapskate, hehe).

In fact, up to now, I still bring a wheat sandwich to work for lunch. Though it hasn't done much for my weight-loss, I'm still happy to know I get my daily dose of whole grains and dietary fiber (I learned you should eat at least 5 grams of dietary fiber a day. More so, it lowers your cholesterol & blood pressure - Gardenia Multi-grain bread actually packs an impressive 5.8 grams of dietary fiber per 2 slices. Just perfect).

Naveen and I both chose the "South Indian Thali Set Meal" ($6.50) - consists of rice, sambar, rasam, 3 vegetables, 2 chappatis, papad, fried chili, special chutney, butter milk, daal and dessert of the day.

I love the festive look of this meal! It feels like you get your money's worth with all the choices on your plate. My favorite was the potato & cauliflower vegetable set. It also reminds me of korean food where you have so many viands.

We both actually had this same exact set meal on the second day and I was happy to know they change the viands each day. Too bad I wasn't able to take pics of the other food we ate on the second day, Naveen got excited ordering food and we ended up paying $14.50 each - Ouch!!

I'm not really the authority to know whether certain indian food is good or not but it was quite good for me. Not too much guilt because it was an all-veggie meal plus the "Chappati" (round thin bread) really made you full.

Here is my rating for Raj-

Ambiance - 3.0
Food - 3.0
Presentation- 2.5
Service - 3.0
Value for Money - 2.5
OVERALL - 2.8


Raj Restaurant
20 Biopolis Way, #01-03 Centros Block
Singapore 138668
Phone +65 6478-9495
Email raj@rajrestaurant.com.sg
Operating hours - Monday-Saturday: 11am-10pm
Sunday:Closed

"Live, Love & Eat!"

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