If anyone is remotely interested, these two weeks are kind of a busy time for me, so there are actually less updates as compared to before. I have also been feeling more tired than usual, and there are those days where I just do not have the mood, motivation or energy to do anything, even writing. But well, I did go somewhere over the weekend; went to Space @ My Humble House at Esplanade for dinner! I must have been a real frog in the well because I never knew that My Humble House had a more affordable version, which is actually located right next to it on level 2 of the Esplanade. I haven’t been to Humble House before, and honestly I know nothing about it other than it could possibly be (and my friend validated that impression) expensive.
Space is just a 34-seater restaurant, comprised of some counter seats as well as square tables scattered around the sides of the eatery. It isn’t like your usual Chinese restaurant, possibly due to the way it is furnished, especially the use of dark colours against some white furniture. Well maybe it still comes across as Asian, because as I read the short intro on its website, it is the work of a renowned Japanese designer and his team, and then I thought, yes it does have some Japanese feel to it. Anyway, these were what we had, not the cheapest fare if you think about Chinese food, but definitely pocket-friendly.
Hainan chicken rice, that comes with a small pot of soup and rice, for S$12. It must be pretty good, because my friend has had it several times and it was also the recommended dish from her.
I was poring over the menu, even though it isn’t all that extensive. But since I don’t take hot food that much these days, I was going to give my stomach a treat. So this was my order of Sichuan mapo tofu that came within a claypot and is served with rice and a couple stalks of greens, for S$10.
The mapo tofu wasn’t spicy at all, to me. I had expected that Sichuan mapo tofu would mean a certain degree of spicyness but this was more savoury than spicy. Despite that, I think it was good, because I finished the whole piping-hot claypot of sauce and tofu! With all the goodness of the sauce, it goes really well with the rice.
They also had dim sum on their menu, interestingly called dim sum for the lunch menu, and tapas otherwise. I wouldn’t have thought to associate this term with Chinese food, but well I suppose it could be applied similarly, except that it probably originated from Spanish cuisine.
I liked the decor of Space, whether it’s inside, or the couple of seats outside of the restaurant, which were given a touch of privacy by these partitions put up around the tables. It also helped of course, that the area Space occupied is generally away from the usual noise and crowd of the Esplanade. The second floor is where thoroughfare from the link way of CityLink flows into, but this crowd will usually just head down to the ground level on the escalator so it doesn’t spill over to this part. It’s weird because it is just a few steps away yet the serenity felt on this part of level two is a stark contrast to the otherwise bustle of the area near the escalator. Maybe this spells bad news for a restaurant, but then again I think Humble House, and for that matter, Space, are probably not dependent on commuter traffic to generate business. Not sure how long they have been there but I think I remembered Space from sometime back.
Only downside for me was that the service and attentiveness of the staff could use some improvement. Aside from the fact that they didn’t appear interested in tending to the needs of customers, which included taking of orders and filling our glasses, they seemed more keen on huddling behind the counter chatting languidly among themselves. Even as customers left the restaurant by walking past them at the entry/exit point, they continued deep in conversation without bothering to say thank you/goodbye or even smile at the departing customers. For a restaurant well-received restaurant, I would have expected more, but perhaps for the price we were paying, we shouldn’t. Particularly if we were comparing the price level of Space to their next-door neighbour.