Read and post reviews on Shoebox Canteen at its new address
Mon - Fri: 12:00 - 14:30
Mon - Fri: 18:00 - 21:30
Sat: 18:00 - 21:00
This 30-seater has a sit-eat-go concept suitable for the rush hour types who are looking for a quick meal for under $20. The Western menu has a mix of burgers and pastas and is set to change every 4 to 6 weeks.
We arrived about an hour after opening time, a table was already taken, but the place was still so dimly lit it appeared to be still closed at a glance. Upon entering, the wait staff made no acknowledgement of our arrival and they appeared stressed out and busy despite it being the start of the day. After waiting in awkward silence, we were finally attended to. We placed our order at the cashier as instructed, paid up and were finally shown to our table. No welcoming smiles nor appology for the wait.
Service aside, the place had a rustic feel. Menu a chalkboard mounted on the wall. The menu also changes routinely, providing a reason to keep returning to try new dishes. We ordered a pitcher of passionfruit juice to share- delicious, refreshing and it tasted really healthy. Salad with buffalo cheese and parma ham- I've never like eating salads outside but this won me over. Sous Vide Salmon- cooked to perfection, still moist and very tender, absent of any fishyness. Ribeye steak ordered medium-rare, came slightly overcooked to medium; but still tasted great and served with a side of whipped potatoes that was very smooth. Brownie and vnilla ice-cream was for dessert- well, best brownie ever. moist warm cake with vanilla ice-cream so fragrant (visible vanilla pod seeds). Yum!
The place got gradually more crowded and was half-full by the time we left. Great place, Great food. Bad service...
Went there for lunch with a couple of friends. I ordered the fish dish which was a small portion so if you get arrive hungry then you are unlikely to leave full. Half way through my meal I realise that the fish fillet was rubbery and very under cooked in the middle which meant that over 50% of the fillet was inedible considering its small portion. I let the waitress know and she apologised and asked me if I would like it to be recooked. I told her not to bother as the dish was ruined. I was not offered a replacement dish and was charged the full price.
My friend who ordered the burger thoughly enjoyed his meal, however I was extrememly dissapointed as I had to pay for a meal that I could not eat due to it being raw undercooked fish and left as hungry as when I arrived. I will definitely not be coming back.
This is a review of the food menu, not the bar, which in itself deserves another write up.
The menu is scribbled on the wall with chalk for easy changes, currently having a grand total of 4 mains, 1 soup and a drink. Perfect for people with ADHD. It's a small kitchen, so rather than focusing on quantity, quality is the game. Besides, the menu items change every 1-2 weeks for variety. We ordered the Sous-Vide Duck pasta with Orange Foam and Scorched egg, Home-made Beef and Bacon burger as well as the Home-made Lemonade. I would have sacrificed a baby deer to try the much raved about capellini pasta with Prawns and Scallop, but apparently that was in last week's menu. d*** it all.
Now, with the duck pasta most people would think the orange foam is pretty redundant, but orange has been traditionally paired with duck in French cuisine for ages, like the Canard/Duck a l'Orange. Orange adds that slight citrus zest to the very flavourful red duck meat to expand the taste dimension. This dish is a play on our local braised duck mee- Yellow mee is replaced with thin capellini pasta, slow cooked Sous-vide French duck meat for a softer, tender bite and braised egg is substituted with scorched egg, a soft semi-cooked yolk centre similar to Japanese Tamago. Everything is then splashed in Singapore braised duck sauce. All components are recreated yet keeps the essence of a Lor Mee; reinvention is where Chef Warren's talents shine. My only gripe was the slight saltiness, easily corrected with less salt.
The beef burger with bacon in all honestly, was nothing spectacular other than the sheer size of the beef patty, cooked to medium doneness. Wrapped in crispy bacon between sesame roasted buns, this dish was more a comfort food for people who lacked the balls to try something new. The hand cut chips were crispy as hell though, not the kind of 'chips' you would expect anywhere else. Again, the show in skill lies much in the 'From scratch' method of cooking.
The most underrated item that day hands down, was the home-made Lemonade. Squeezed with fresh lemon juice, sugar syrup (home-made yet again) then infused with Rosemary and mixed with Pomelo sac, this drink was more refreshing than watching Gangnam Style the billionth time.
If you value dishes made using hours of preparation with the rustic essence of an ingredient in mind, this is the place for you. However, if you can't tell the difference between Wagyu and Macdonalds, then you should probably just eat at Hong Lim Food centre.
This was reviewed back in Jan 2013, since then Chef Warren who originally created the menu concept, has shifted restaurants, so I can't gurantee standards.
Check out my food blog for more reviews: