Friday, 1 July 2016

MUST-TRY Asian Fusion Dishes at Collins for $12 and Under!

Who doesn't love cheap and good food?

Unfortunately, cheap and good food seldom gel together. When prices are affordable, the food quality usually ends up being either sub-par or served in too-small portions. After all, that's how restaurants get you to spend more money with them, isn't it?

Their breakfast platters look so delish! And the prices are a steal, considering most of my cafe brunches for Eggs Benedict and its variations usually set me back by about $20. Definitely coming back here to try these babies out!
 Thankfully, a friend of mine recently introduced me to Collin's, which completely exceeded my expectations, and now I'm absolutely hooked. My usual go-to places are Astons and Xin Wang (for late-night meals), but now a new place has emerged top of my list! I doubt I'll be able to find any other restaurant which gives so much value for money without compromising on taste. 

TLDR, the food tastes amazing, are served in generous portions and most mains are only about $12!

My only regret is not having known about them until now. Apparently, Collin's is a local F&B brand founded by Chef Collin who honed his western cuisine experience working in five-star hotels and restaurants. They started out mostly in neighbourhood coffeeshops (15 branches island-wide) and have now expanded to 3 restaurants.

You can check out their full menu here and see for yourself how insanely CHEAP the prices are (by restaurant standards)! Their restaurants are open 24 hours on Fridays and weekends - so this is definitely replacing Xin Wang Hong Kong Cafe as my new go-to supper place.


Right now, I need to rave about their seasonal Asian Fusion menu, which is running until 31 July 2016. They've created 5 fusion dishes which integrates Southeast Asian spices into Western classics, and the result is unexpectedly delicious. Fusion dishes are usually a hit or miss (there are few in-betweens), and these dishes will definitely leave you wanting for more.

My absolute favourite is the Asian Seafood Spaghetti ($10.50), featured below. It looked a little "jelat" at first sight, and I'm not a particularly huge fan of cream-based pasta, but we were soon proven wrong because this turned out to be the best dish of the lot! We tasted turmeric and lemongrass in the sauce, and despite the affordable price, they weren't stingy on the seafood ingredients at all, as you can see from the picture below!



My second favourite dish was the Summer Lime Seafood Salad ($7.90), which had a slightly tangy and spicy sauce over lettuce, tomatoes, squid rings, mussels and fat prawns. The sauce was a true winner, as it'll dance right off your tastebuds and make you dig in again, and again, and again!

Once again, I was surprised at how generous the seafood serving was given the price. Serving it on a banana leaf added a nice touch as well. I initially didn't want to eat too much of the pasta as I wanted to leave room for other dishes, but this turned out sooooooo good that we lapped up every last morsel on the plate!



I'm only sad that these 2 dishes might be gone after July 31st. Collin, please make this a permanent mainstay in your menu even after July so that folks like us can continue enjoying it! Perhaps we should start a petition for this.

Another unique fusion dish was the Chicken Baked Rice with Cream Spiced Tomato Sauce ($10.50), which tasted like a baked and cheesy version of chicken rendang. I love rendang and the sauce didn't disappoint! The chicken meat was also really tender, which the boyfriend really liked. My only grouse was that the sauce didn't seem to seep all the way to the rice at the bottom so we didn't finish all of it, but that's a common problem with most baked rice dishes anyway.



We also tried their New Hawaiian Pizza ($18.80), which was one of the most expensive items on the menu but still relatively affordable for the size of the pizza and generous ingredient toppings. I adore thin-crust pizzas baked in a wood stone oven for that roasted smokey taste, but unfortunately such ovens are not very common in most restaurants. Collin's version here used a tumeric and lemongrass cream sauce instead of the usual tomato sauce pizza base, which made the pizza more flavourful than usual options. Definitely a try if you're coming here in groups!



We had a few other dishes too, but they're more common and easily found at other restaurants as well so I won't go into too much detail here. The fried chicken wings were crispy with just the right balance of oil and batter, whereas the appetizer platter was a tantalizing start to our dinner, and I would order these 2 dishes again when I come back.





I can imagine the roast chicken being good on its own (especially with such a generous portion!) but next to the amazing Asian pasta and salad, this unfortunately paled in comparison for me. If I ever feel like having roast chicken though, this will now be a good go-to place instead of my usual Astons!



You know how some restaurants seriously overcharge for drinks? Well, at Collin's we could choose from a wide range of fruit sodas for just $2.90! There were too many drink choices, but we eventually settled on the Avocado Milkshakes which were just $4.90, compared to the normal $7.90 - $11.90 charged at other restaurants, and it was good! 


A huge thank you to Joanne for introducing this place to me! If you're anywhere near Shaw Plaza, King George's Avenue or Jubilee Square (Ang Mo Kio), you should seriously consider dining at Collin's because I've not tasted anything this cheap and good for a longggg time.

Actually, even if you're not near the area, you NEED to make a trip down just to try that Asian pasta and salad! I've no idea where else you can get these in Singapore except at Collin's. Do note that this seasonal menu is only available until 31 July 2016 though, so try it before it is gone!

Bringing my girlfriends here next week to indulge in their Asian Fusion dishes again before the seasonal menu ends - so come here before 31 July. And if you see me around (I'll be back pretty often, heh) do say hi!

With love,
Budget Babe

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