Monday, June 15, 2009


I just don't know how to start describing this restaurant - Naive. Oh! I was so taken in by it. You know, when one is looking forward to something for a long time and when that something actually happens and it turns out to be just as amazing as one had expected it, if not better - that is exactly how our visit to Naive unfolded. It was a long pending visit, which when we finally visited, matched up exactly to how I had expected it to be.

Situated on East coast road, opposite to Katong Mall, the restaurant cannot be missed. I particularly liked their name board done up in black and white.

And while we are on the topic of the location of the restaurant, most of the posts on FoodieExpress so far have concentrated on restaurants in the eastern part of Singapore. That is mainly because we stay in the east and there are many restaurants that are yet to be explored here. That is one of the main reasons I shifted to the east :P Although I would like to mention that we are willing the travel the entire country in search of restaurants which serve up good vegetarian fare. If you know restaurants in the north, north-east or the west which meets this need and is non-Indian(preferably), do leave a comment and we will try to visit place and blog about it!

Okay, back to Naive. I am feeling a bit lazy and at a loss of words to compose this post. So, I will let the pictures do most of the talking.

The owners have a nice vision for their restaurant as can be seen from this picture and I was quite impressed.

The cover page of the menu.

I generally like glancing though reading the menu. I usually take my own sweet time to do that, like I am studying for an exam. After studying the menu, I am invariably confused on what to order because there will be atleast four or five items which I would want to try but I cannot, since I have a small appetite (being a foodie is not exactly about the quantity. Its about quality and variety!). So I generally bully my friends into ordering what I want and yell at politely remind them, if they touch the dish before I can take a photo of it :P

The drinks menu had interesting names for the drinks on offer.

We ordered the Passion of Life

and the Sour Power

But, Passion of Life tasted more sour than Sour power. LOL! While both the drinks were quite good, I liked Sour Power better!

Before the start of every meal, they have a Japanese inspired "Bloss" ceremony during which the diners are provided with a mortar and a pestle, which they use to grind some toasted sesame seeds, which can be sprinkled over the meal later.

Sayesha partaking in the "bloss" ceremony.

For starters, we ordered Penang Rendang along with some steamed buns which were very soft.

You can either tear a piece of the buns and dip it in the gravy and eat it or you could stuff the bread with the gravy(like a pita bread) and eat it.

We also ordered a plate of Mega Mini Mushroom, which is the recommended dish. And boy! We were so enamoured by this dish that we promptly ordered another plate of it. The dish comprised of succellent Lingzhi mushrooms fried and then mixed with a spicy szechuan sauce. Oh! It was very tasty. This is definitely one of the must have items at Naive.

Moving on, we ordered Wolfberry soup, Tom yam soup and a Organic mushroom miso soup! The soups were very well done. I personally liked the Wolfberry soup and it has a very comforting feel to it. Like being wrapped in a warm blanket on a cold day!

For the main course, we ordered a few bowls of Olive rice (creatively named as Oliver Twist on the menu) and a bowl of brown rice along with "Spice of Life" and a plate of Sambal Broccoli respectively.
Spice of Life comprised of vegetables which were sauteed in a spicy kongpo sauce. The sauce was quite similar in taste to the sauce in Mega mini mushroom dish. Nevertheless, it was quite good and went along very well with the Olive rice.

The Sambal Brocolli was quite good too!

One might notice (especially an Indian customer) that the vegetables in most dishes are quite raw. Infact, that is a very common complaint that I have heard from fellow Indian colleagues and friends. They feel that the vegetables are not cooked at all and that is one of the main reasons why they dont like eating the local food. As Indians, we are so used to eating dishes where the vegetable have been cooked tender along wth the spices in such a way that the flavour of the spices are more prominent than that flavour of the vegetable. This is not the case with many south east Asian dishes as is explained in this post.

Moving along to the dessert, we noticed that they don't have anything specifically mentioned on the menu. But, they do serve a dessert of the day. On the day we went, the desserts on offer were a pumpkin based item and a pear based item. We ordered the latter and this is what we got -

It was maily boiled pears along with some chinese almonds served in a mildly flavoured broth. We didn't like it so much. Maybe we should have ordered the pumpkin dessert.

Dinner costed us about 140 bucks for six of us, which boils down to about 22 buck per head. Not at all expensive considering and is definitely worth a visit. I am surely going to visit this place again!

99, East coast Road
Singapore - 428795