The Providore marks our first brunch in our new hinterland. We're both city folks so living within walking distance (without sweating!) of the city was always priority numero uno for us. We love that everything is so close by, including food, so we're really spoiled for choice. Best of all, we're back to the short 15-minute journey to work so we get that precious extra shuteye (we'd been waking up real early to beat the horrendous Bt Timah/Holland Road traffic jam for the past 6 months while waiting for our home to be ready!). Plus, the location is a homecoming of sorts for the Hubs, who grew up within a stone's throw of our home. Like I always say to our friends, it's balik kampung for the Hubs...hah.
The Providore at the Mandarin Gallery, in contrast to their cavernous warehouse at Outram, was a surprisingly small and bright cafe, with seats so close you can't help but hear the rest of the diners' conversations. Not the most conducive if you're trying to have a private conversation.
Also, despite the small number of diners (due to the limited seating because of the tiny space), the kitchen was disappointingly understaffed and/or overwhelmed. We were kept waiting for about half an hour for our breakfast eggs. We'd originally planned to order another dish to share between the 2 of us, but were so put off by the inordinately long waiting time that we scrapped the idea. Well, you snooze you lose, right?
Food-wise, we liked that it was cheap (by Wild Honey's standards), but while the eggs were pretty decent, they were a little uneven, and not quite as elegant as I'd expected.
We had the English Breakfast ($19.50), with 2 scrambled eggs that while fluffy, were a tad too watery, sauteed mushrooms, roasted tomato, grilled back bacon, juicy pork sausage and a couple of sourdough toasties that were pretty awesome.I'm not that huge a fan of sourdough but The Providore's rendition sure changed my mind!
The Spanish Baked Eggs ($18.50) was a shashouka of sorts, with overcooked 2 eggs baked with coins of chorizo in a spicy tomato sauce seasoned with smoked paprika and topped with shavings of melted manchego cheese. This had way too much tomato paste, and too little onions, so it was both intense and flat. This needed a fair grind of pepper to add dimension.
333A Orchard Road
Mandarin Gallery #02-05
Tel: 6732 1565
Open daily from 9am to 11pm