Full The Marmalade Pantry review here: http://ivanteh-runningman.blogspot.sg/2014/08/the-marmalade-pantry.html
The Marmalade Pantry first opened its city outlet in 2009, enticing diners with its 'modernist larder' concept, which promises fresh, healthy and tasty food that is prepared quickly. Drawing rave reviews, especially for their creative and pretty cupcakes, pastries and cakes, I was left feeling confused when I experienced poor food and poor service at The Marmalade Pantry during a recent visit... perhaps it was a bad day for them.
Ambience at The Marmalade Pantry has an elegant colonial charm, with fine tableware and colours of black and white offset by gold and wood trimmings. Love the open concept of the city outlet, perfect for people watching and relaxing. But the cramped floorspace means less privacy, and you can easily listen in on the next table's conversations.
During my visit, I received below average service at the The Marmalade Pantry. First, it was difficult to attract staff's attention, even though the restaurant wasn't packed. Second, they forget to serve my dessert after I asked for it, and I had to remind them again. On the plus side, staff did offer greetings when I stepped into The Marmalade Pantry, and food was served quickly.
I'm rather ambivalent about the food at The Marmalade Pantry. While I commend the use of fresh ingredients, and the beautiful plating of dishes, the actual execution of the dishes fell flat. For a upper-range cafe with higher than average prices, I expect better quality and skill than what I got, as such, I feel that The Marmalade Pantry is not value for money.
Portions sizes are decent enough for one person. I think the desserts at The Marmalade Pantry stood out for me as well, very pretty presentations, with good taste, though some are overly sweet. Overall, I would probably only recommend The Marmalade Pantry for desserts, not for main courses.
The aggressive looking Lemon Meringue Sponge Cake (SGD $8) has a sweet, airy, and light meringue that shatters easily, revealing the soft cake within. The cake is somewhat dry, but stands out for its zesty lemon cream that is a burst of flavour in the mouth.
I loved the Peony Jade White Tea (SGD $7), with its light body, delicate floral aroma, and sweet fruity taste of lychee and passionfruit, with a slight bitter finish. Excellent choice for an afternoon high tea session!
The Bananas And Berries Hotcakes (SGD $16) is served with a medly of berries (blueberries, strawberries) and honeycomb infused butter. The problem was the poorly cooked pancakes, which were limp, dry, and slightly tough in texture. Not satisfiying or tasty at all, in fact, The Marmalade Pantry received several complains about the poor quality of this dish from diners that day. Avoid!