Food Review: PAUL French Bakery Restaurant
Editor’s Note: PAUL has not been certified Halal. Please contact the necessary authorities to find out the Halal status.
Two aspects of my recent visit to PAUL in Ngee Ann City/Takashimaya had me concerned about my ability to properly review it.
(1) I went with a bunch of girlfriends, and one simply does not pay attention to the finer details of service and food when one is immersed in giddy chatter in a long overdue meal with friends.
(2) I went for breakfast and was starving by the time I arrived—objectivity suffers a little bit when one is ravenously hungry.
But despite these obstacles I remained focused on the task at hand. And I must say, I was mostly satisfied with the ambience, service and yes, even the food.
We were promptly seated and attended to by staff that seemed absolutely intent on our enjoyment and did a spectacular job throughout.
The decor was tasteful and elegant but not over the top. The well-placed windows overlooked the tall trees of Orchard Road without displaying the traffic, managing to lend a laid-back, peaceful ambience to an establishment at the heart of the city.
In terms of food, unfortunately, there were far fewer options on the menu than I would have expected. I ended up ordering the classic omelette meal, which at $9.95, was appropriately priced. In addition to the eggs, I was served wholegrain toast with fresh butter and jam, turkey ham and roasted potatoes. The quantity was perfect for me but I did wonder if my husband would be satisfied as he would usually require more.
My choice of beverage was a glass of freshly squeezed orange juice. At the steep price of $8.95, I was expecting a very tall glass of exceptional juice. What I got instead was very average in quantity and taste and I was disappointed. I have been to restaurants that are much more upscale than PAUL that do not charge nearly as much for a glass of juice. I was considering ordering a tea to wash down my meal at the end, but because it was nearly $7.00, I decided against it. If you do end up patronizing PAUL and you’re on a budget, just stick to the complimentary (and continuously refilled) glasses of plain water.
But back to the food: the omelette itself was a little unseasoned for my taste but at least it was freshly made. Other breakfast places in Singapore simply microwave eggs that have already been prepared so I appreciated the difference in quality here. It would have been nice if there were options to have an omelette with various vegetables or cheeses though. The turkey ham was standard, nothing out of the ordinary. The roasted potatoes, however, were absolutely delicious—just the right amount of garlic and salt–and indeed represented the highlight of my meal.
I should add that one of my friends ordered a waffle with chocolate sauce that presented very well but unfortunately ended up being cold. It was crisp, however, so we did not doubt its freshness. Perhaps it hadn’t been delivered to our table in time. I also felt some fresh fruit on the side of it would have been appropriate.
Would I go back to PAUL? Yes Insha’Allah, I am planning another visit soon, this time with my husband. Of course, next time I will go for lunch as I noticed the lunch menu was much more extensive. But I don’t think this will join the regular roster of places we frequent. I do, however, think that if you’re looking for a pretty place to enjoy a leisurely European-style brunch on Orchard Road, this is a winner. 3.5 /5 stars. Bon appétit!
Saadia holds a Masters’ degree in History and Political Science from Wilfrid Laurier University in Canada. A native of Toronto, Ontario, she now lives in Singapore. She is passionate about Islam and issues of social justice. She enjoys reading, traveling, yoga and anything to do with food. She is a full-time mother of two beautiful boys and a part-time writer.