IDS Clinic Pico Laser Treatment Review

I have been wanting to do face laser treatment ever since my army days, hoping that such a treatment could at least lighten my acne scars that had haunted me for years.
Since I am just lazy to do a detailed research on face lasers procedures as well as pricing, I decided to just stick back to the same skin specialist clinic which I have been visiting every few months for my keloid jabs and purchase of skin products.
I opted for a 6 session package which cost me around $2500+ and religiously scheduled each session every month for 6 months. For each session, the procedure was smooth, except that the waiting time could be a little unbearable after 6pm for Fridays (peak timing). The longest I had waited was 1.5 hours since the weekends would be perfect to stay home and away from staring eyes. 
After the nurse have cleansed my face, numbing cream is applied for up to an hour for it to take effect. I usually kept requesting for the timing to reduce to half an hour instead since I could withstand the pain and did not like waiting too long. The pico laser procedure was quick, just like a scanner scanning through my face up to twice for deeper scars. As for being painful? Just don’t ask me because my tolerance has increase due to countless painful pimple extraction from facial outlets I had went before.
After each pico laser session, I would leave IDS clinic red-faced and wearing a mask to hide my face. (As you can see from the picture below, it gets pretty red.) Depending on the intensity of the laser session, the redness varies. Of course the pain varies as well. A cream was given for application to reduce the redness which I felt was hardly effective and just decide to let the redness subside on its own. The downtime was about 5 -7 days before my face wasn’t red and I wore mask to work to prevent stares. I also diligently applied sunblock and carry an umbrella just in case.
Don’t get me wrong as this is not a sponsored post. I just wanted to pen down my thoughts about laser treatments as I had always thought that such treatment does miracle to faces. Don’t daydream of having porcelain smooth skin after 5-6 sessions of treatment but as least I could see my acne scars being lightened to a certain extent. Thank you doctor! 

Don Quijote Spanish Restaurant Food Review

Still not knowing how to pronounce “Don Quijote”, titled after the chivalric main character of a fictional Spanish novel, I recalled my dining experience I had at Don Quijote Spanish Restaurant which was located at Dempsey.
Don Quijote is an authentic Spanish restaurant in Singapore, not only acclaimed for their tapas and traditionally made Spanish fare, but also for their selection of alcohol. The owner has been to Spain for at least 10 times (and counting up) ever since the resturant has started 12 years ago. Every photographs framed up in his resturant were taken by him. 
The dishes served here were basically non-region specific dishes and I started off with a glass of Virgin Sangria ($10.00/glass), a non-alcohol version of Sangria Tinto (red) ($14.50/glass). It was a refreshing and light drink with fruit cubes in it.

Spicy Calamari ($16.00) was my addiction as it was rather fresh, great texture, nicely grilled with spicyiness just right for me. I had to skip the ‘Live’ Gambas al Ajillo ($18.00) due to allergy, yet the sight and fragrance of nicely brown chopped garlic loaded on top of the large sea prawns was so alluring.

I had an instant liking to the Croquetas con Jamón ($16.00) after my first bite on its non-oily, yet crisp shell with velvety smooth potato and ham filling. Definitely a great snack to go with alcohol.
The Secreto Iberico a la Plancha ($26.00) was Iberian pork grilled to what we called ”medium rare” in steak. It was slightly chewy and perfectly safe to consume despite the ”medium rare” state since these ”clean” pigs ate only grass and acorns.

Another highlight which I regret to take a decent picture of was the Rabo de Toro – Ox-tail stew ($36.00). The same recipe for the past 12 years and a great comfort food. The meat was so tender that it readily fell off the bone. I could not help grabbing bread and dipping it into the rich savoury stew!
Spicy Calamari ($16.00)

Croquetas con Jamón – Croquettes with spanish ham ($16.00)

‘Live’ Gambas al Ajillo – Live’ sea prawns in garlic and olive oil ($18.00)

Secreto Iberico a la Plancha – Grilled spanish ‘secret’ iberian pork ($26.00)
Cutting off the gimmicky plate breaking session during the serving of the Asado de Cochinillo Espanol as probably only the more tourisy resturants does that. The ½ Oven-roasted spanish suckling pig was served with really crispy skin and tender flesh as well. I would love to stuff myself silly with this dish.

Chuletón de Buey ($18/100gm (total – $324)) was the charcoal-flame-grilled bone-in tomahawk rib-steak weighing 1.8kg that day which wowed everyone with its grandeur size while ”bone-in”. My image was already deboned and sliced neatly, revealing the medium rare flesh. 
As for the carbs, both Paella Valenciana w ‘live’ Boston Lobster and Fideuá Negra w ‘live’ Boston Lobster ($65 (large) + $79 (w lobster)) were brimming with umami, probably the carbs had well absorbed the flavors of the seafood.  
Last but not least, the desserts served were Bomba de Chocolate -Warm-chocolate ‘lava’ cake ($19.00) and Churros with chocolate sauce ($16.00). Both desserts use Blanxart artisanal chocolate imported from Barcelona. Being a hardcore chocolate lover myself, I enjoyed how the chocolate wasn’t overly sweet nor ‘gelat’.
Trying out less common cuisines such as the Spanish fare from Don Quijote would always be an interesting experience for me. Although dining indoors tend to be more cosy, having it al fresco with alcohol and snacks would be a great way to chill too!
Asado de Cochinillo Espanol – ½ Oven-roasted spanish suckling pig ($169 for medium)

Chuletón de Buey – Charcoal-flame-grilled bone-in tomahawk rib-steak ($18/100gm (total – $324)) 

Fideuá Negra w ‘live’ Boston Lobster – ‘Live’ baby boston lobster squid-ink pasta ($65 (large) + $79 (w lobster)) 
Paella Valenciana w ‘live’ Boston Lobster – ‘Live’ baby boston lobster paella ($65 (large) + $79 (w lobster))

Churros with chocolate sauce ($16.00)
Don Quijote Spanish Restaurant

Block 7 Dempsey Road, #01-02
Singapore 249671
Tel: (+65) 6476 2811

Buffets with Yakitori in Singapore – Sumire Yakitori House, Shin Minori and En Japanese Dining

Any yakitori fans around here? If yes, you would love to read on since the post will be a personal review on 3 yakitori buffets found in Singapore that I have personally been to! I tank all the calories so that I could review these! (I did not put on a single kg anyway.)

Let me roughly share my experience!
Sumire Yakitori House
Price: $34.90 ++
Location: Icon Village
Meal of the day: Dinner
Variety: Middle range
The complimentary starter of cabbage given at the start of the meal tasted horrible to my friend and I. It was said to act as a ‘cleanser’ during our yakitori meal. Mainly easy-to-eat snacks such as this gyoza which was one of my favourite dish that day.

Their yakitoris were quite decent and refined, such as this bacon wrapped golden mushrooms. The only complaint I had was that they were too generous with their sweet sauce, resulting in overly sweet yakitoris that day. They were also not stingy with salt since their scallops were also slightly unbearable or I would have ordered more.
I was quite delighted to spot desserts in the Ipad menu! I had this soft mini taiyaki (waffle fish filled with red beans paste) as well as 5 scopes of ice cream! 
En Japanese Dining and Bar
Price: $38.90 ++
Location: Icon Village
Meal of the day: Dinner
No. of visits: 2
Variety: Limited range
One of the higher quality buffet around to make up for its limited range from its menu. I have been to this buffet twice, once in early 2012 and the other time was near the end of 2013. So far, I doubt there is a change in menu items. 

Sorry sashimi lovers, the sashimi platter is a 1 time serving only. (For 4 pax in this picture)

The menu also features salad and pasta that tasted of decent standard. 

Best pick for me would be the beef which were really juicy and tender, the scallops, salmon and meatballs. Check out these link for more information! (Round 1 and Round 2)

Shin Minori
Price: Lunch  $34.00 ++
          Dinner $37++ (Mon to Thur)
                      $39++ (Fri to Sun)
Location: UE Square
Meal of the day: Lunch and Dinner
No. of visits: 2
Variety: Huge range

The menu really wowed me and I was totally spoilt for choice and I only ordered the same few favourites of mine due to limited stomach space. Sashimi were not the freshest but decent. Swordfish available here, which is my all time favourite!

Too bad the pork belly we had was tough and dry, so my friend and I did not bother trying the rest unless it was stated that the grilled items were their specialty. (Check out my post here!)

Might have more Yakitori Buffets in Singapore next time??

Penang Buffet at Princess Terrace, Copthorne King Hotel

Buffets of an Asian spread don’t usually excites me that much as compared to an international or a Japanese buffet. Perhaps the mindset of Asian food being rather typical to me since I grew up consuming mainly Chinese cuisine.

Anyway, it was not my first time having this well known Penang cuisine buffet from Princess Terrace Cafe, located in Copthorne King Hotel. The spread wasn’t huge but I still enjoyed some of the dishes available after all. 
Tried a piece of popiah ; best for sharing. 
I easily wiped out 10 sticks of these satays since it was my favorite that lunch! It tasted very different from the usual sweet ones found in hawkers as it was towards the salty-savoury side. I drenched them in peanut sauce for added texture and the chicken meat itself was already so tender and moist.

Tried a small portion of all the dishes available. The herbal ribs soup with my choice of noodles (not shown here) got me wanting for more too!
What got me most excited was the spread of colorful Nonya kuehs displayed along the dessert line! I admit that I was slightly disappointed at first since there were not a single cake in sight. I thought to myself, these kuehs better be good. Thankfully they were!
I started off with this super crispy pancake generously filled with grounded peanuts and sugar. After smashing the shell to create some mess for photo taking, I took a bite and tasted tradition! I had to pour out some fillings since I wasn’t a fan of peanuts.

Gosh! Since young, I have been a fan of these Nonya kuehs! Still am now! Everything was in petite bite size and subtly sweet. Desserts the elderly wouldn’t mind! My favorite was the ang ku kueh and bingka ubi (tapioca kueh).
Apom bokwa with caramelized banana sauce definitely made me sugar high due to its intense sweetness. It could easily satisfy any sweet tooth cravings! I was dumb enough to miss out adding the sauce on my first round, and thinking why this pancake so tasteless?
This was from the ala carte menu and not part of the buffet selection. Vanilla ice cream with a slice of tiramisu was just meh…

Another ala carte order was this banana split with the standard scoop of vanilla, chocolate and strawberry ice cream.. Memories of my childhood came flooding back to me as this dessert arrived on the table. What sweet childhood I had… 

Shin Minori – Omg, I see swordfish sashimi!

The search for a good and affordable buffet became a constant tinkling in my mind and ultimately becoming part of my lifestyle for a few years already. It sounds so exaggerated but a non binge eater would not understand that. The need to force myself to quit this habit ever since I looked through my external hard drive and realized that I ate an average of 10 buffets per year, with the most hitting up to 14. As age keeps going upwards and cannot be reverse, I dared not continue this sort of food spamming. I admit that I usually ended up bloated with food that would take many hours to digest after a buffet session. Not to say buffets, I sometimes eat dinner twice in just less than an hour apart – a bowl of noodles + burger. WTH right…?
Enough of being a anti-buffet person for now since I am about to share a Japanese buffet experience.

I got to know about this outlet located at UE Square after scanning through my Entertainer App for 1 for 1 food deals. Check out some of the other deals using the app here! Not my best interior shot but I felt that the sushi bar is the essence of any Japanese restaurant.

It is an ala carte buffet where we ordered through the Ipad. Obviously the first thing I would usually look for would be the sashimi. My eyes literally lit up upon seeing the word ‘swordfish’! How rare to have buffets serving swordfish sashimi nowadays. Even many hotel buffets remove swordfish from their buffet line. Could it be because of the price? The reason why I like swordfish is because their smell is really faint as compared to tuna, the texture is firmer and slightly chewier than salmon and taste wise would be harder to describe till you try it. Anyway, I easily wiped out 20+ slices of each (salmon and swordfish).

The ramen was just so-so to me but my friend really love it a lot. I guess it is just individual preferences. My other 2 favourite dishes that are not featured here due to ugly pictures were the unagi sushi and the pumpkin chawamushi. They were just amazingly delicious!

Besides the usual Japanese items like handrolls, sushi, sashimi, they also have grilled items! Too bad the pork belly we had was tough and dry, so we did not bother trying the rest unless it was stated that the grilled items were their specialty.

Need cups of tea to cleanse my tummy! Too busy with food that I did not take much pictures.

Last but not least, an awkward selfie after the buffet to end the post! No more buffets for me please!