CLOSED: 20F Specialty Coffeehouse, Jalan Besar: A Surprisingly Outstanding Cafe, A Unique Duck Confit Sorbet Waffle

EDIT: 20F Cafe has closed down.

20f-specialty-coffeehouse-foch-road20F cafe is thus named because it’s at 20 Foch Road, in the Jalan Besar / Little India area. In a quaint shophouse, they retain the Peranakan-styled mosaic tiles—nostalgic with sepia lights.

20f-specialty-coffee-singapore-reviewAlthough they are named “specialty coffeehouse,” what they are good for is their food, not coffee. (Coffee from Liberty Coffee’s beans is good too.) Their menu is slightly different from other cafes’, and you can see the effort they put in to be creative.

20f-cafe-jalan-besarThe spicy wings ($10) are a good version of buffalo wings–tangy, spicy, and sweet. Duck waffle ($22, above) is memorable. The duck confit is good enough on its own, tender, and not dry like in most places. If you take the duck, buttermilk waffle, mixed berries sorbet, and a bit of the brown sauce in one mouthful, the taste is sweet, savory, warm and cold. Interesting and delicious! I dig it.

20f-specialty-coffeehouse-menuFor the heck of it, we ordered a non-specialty, 150 g rib eye burger ($24). Although the beef is done medium (medium-rare would be ideal),  and although the sweet brioche bun is thick, you can still taste all the distinct flavors of beef, red wine sauce, and zesty lemon mayo, creating a unified whole. I wish there were some fries to go with the burger; Burger without fries is a sacrilege.

20f-speciality-coffeehouseThe matcha cake ($5.80) is one of the best matcha cakes I’ve tasted—a very thick, strong, slightly bitter matcha taste. The cream is not so much as cream, but more espuma (foam), which makes the cake very light.

By the end of the meal, Mr Fitness said, “You should edit your Best Cafes in Singapore 2015.”

I replied, “It’s already published, but I’ll reserve a spot for 20F on the Best Cafes 2016 list.” Given the stiff competition, I’m hoping they can stay open for next 12 months till the list comes out.

20F Specialty Coffeehouse
20 Foch Road, Singapore 209261
T: +65 6291 4940
10am-10pm, closed Mon

Food: 7.25/10
Value: 6/10
Ambience/Decor: 7.5/10
Service: NA (tasting)
Overall Rating: 3.458/5

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This is an invited tasting.

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