Most people are familiar with their chocolate cakes when I mention the brand Awfully Chocolate as a premium cakes brand with multiple counter outlets across Singapore offering fantastic chocolate cakes. Those like me who might not know, the original outlet at East Coast has since shifted into a bigger outlet just a few walks away to become a café offering both their tantalising desserts as well as various warm dishes good for any meal of the day.
Sporting a contemporary yet simple layout, one of the key highlight is the huge desserts and drinks counter which occupies about 30% of the main layout offering many different cakes and desserts for both dine in and takeaways.
We ordered the curry fries as the picture looked really good in the menu and the item came looking pretty similar to the menu with crispy curry leaves scattered around the fries. The fries were fried till golden brown and crispy while the curry flavour was light yet quite addictive. It reminded me of the Twisties’ curry flavour which was not spicy.
The prawn, crab meat and basil aglio aglio came with seared prawns and sautéed crab meat with a slightly creamy sauce. Instead of the usual drier aglio aglio style, the sauce has a slight orange hue and coats the pasta like a cream sauce thus giving the pasta deep umami flavours. The only downside is that the overall dish was on the slightly salty edge.
Instead of mash or chips, their fried fish came served with mashed peas which is probably not many people’s favourite side dish. The batter of the fried fish was extremely crispy and goes well with the tartar sauce served on the side. The texture of the fish was not light and springy thus affected the overall fried fish. From the texture, it felt like frozen fish was used therefore the meat was slightly mushy.
The ribeye steak came with garlic hash potatoes, caramelised onions, herbed butter and a red wine reduction sauce. Since I couldn’t eat this dish, according to my colleague who had this dish, the beef was tender enough with a nice charred flavour and pretty decent for this price point.
For my own order, I had the pork chop which also served with garlic hash potatoes, charred cabbage, crispy bacon, caramelised onions and a red wine reduction sauce. The pork chop served was a premium loin cut with the bone still in tact. The first cut and first few bites were pretty good with a the pork tender and juicy but the rest of the chop dried up pretty quick and I was not a slow eater so the other bites I had was a bit more dry and tough. In my opinion, it would have been better if they removed the meat from the heat 1 min earlier and let it rest longer after removing from the grill.
While waiting for our cake, we ordered coffee and other drinks and I had the hot chocolate which was surprising good. With a bittersweet note, the hot chocolate was creamy and smooth with the right amount of sweetness without being overpowering. I chose the classic dark chocolate version thus there was a bittersweet note. For those who likes their chocolate drink sweet, can try the white chocolate or the normal chocolate cappuccino version while those who really love bitter taste can get the 70% cacao version. The drink also came with a chocolate truffle which can be eaten before or after the drink itself.
According to others in my lunch group, the coffee variations were also decent with a nice aroma for the coffee and those who love both coffee and chocolate can also try their chocolate coffee like their hazelnut latte, mocha royale, and cacao mocha.
By the time, we got down to ordering cakes for dessert, we were all very full so we only got a single slice for sharing. There was also no special flavour so we settled for the white chocolate butterscotch block which looks very pretty with the chocolate swirls in the center. The cake was constructed with a chocolate swiss roll in the center topped with white chocolate cream as well as a butterscotch top. Personally, I found the cake extremely sweet; both from the white chocolate and the butterscotch.
Overall, Nine Thirty is a pretty nice café to hang out with their sinful yet very nice desserts and cakes. The servers were also friendly and warm while following strict protocols for safe distancing. The warm food was a hit and miss for some of the dishes but general not too expensive as they also have some sandwiches and light bite options for those not looking for a full meal.
Address: 131 East Coast Rd, Singapore 428816
Operating hours: 12 pm to 10 pm. ( till 12am on Fri and Sat. Opens earlier at 9.30 am on Sat and Sun)