Three trustworthy friends, on separate occasions, told me that I should pay Pantler a visit. Pantler, which means “person in charge of bread in the pantry”, is opened by sexy Matthias Phua, a writer-turned-baker, and Chef Tomoharu Morita, whose resume includes Grand Hyatt Tokyo, and Joel Robuchon Singapore. Some ingredients are imported: flour from Japan, butter from France. Items are freshly baked on-site. Smooth, mineral coffee ($5.80) from Dutch Colony.
Currently, there is only a savory item, a parma and gruyere croissant ($6.80) which wasn’t crispy, buttery, fluffy enough, but, flavor-wise, the slightly pungent cheese, and salty ham went well with the viennoiserie.
The flaw of the croissant was replicated in both the banana eclair ($8.50), and the well-received choux ($5.50)– their skin didn’t break off decisively, a little lao hoong. But, like the croissant, they were both saved by their excellent filling. The bitterness of the chocolate matched with slices of sweet banana in the eclair. In the choux, bits of almond nougatine and chilled vanilla creme, speckled with vanilla beans, coaxed the eater into an illusion of textural contrast.
I don’t like Ricotta in general, so I couldn’t appreciate the specialty, Ricotta cheese tart ($8.50), because the flavor was too light, and it left a dry aftertaste on my tongue.
There are many things to adore about Pantler: gorgeous decor, pricing, service, and light, Japanese flavors. But among my friends, I am the odd one out who isn’t as enamored with Pantler as they are. It might be that I went after my friends oversold the bakery. It might be that I went on an off-day. It might be that I went in the late afternoon when the bakes were standing since morning. It might be that I went after a full 4-course lunch. If Pantler could improve the texture of their pastries, the bakes would shine with their balanced and light fillings. We paid $34 for two persons, a reasonable price. I should pay it a second visit–in the morning.
198 Telok Ayer Street, Singapore 068637
T: +65 6221 6223
M-F 8.30am-8.30pm, Sat 10.30am-5.30pm
Rating: 3.119/5 stars
Photos by A. Nathanael Ho.